We are back from PubCon and have lots to share. Each time we come back from a conference, we write up detailed documentation of what was learned and distribute to all of the employees. I decided we should do it a little differently this time around. Instead of distributing it in a Word doc to our staff, I am going to publish it on our blog. So this first post will be more of an overview and following posts throughout the next few weeks will be more detailed posts covering specific topics. So here it goes…
There was a lot of discussion about local, Google Place Pages and how Google is now displaying Place Pages within the organic results. There are a lot of changes in this space, some of which will create opportunities for local businesses and some of which may create more challenges. This is worthy of its own blog post so keep your eyes open for one soon.
User Data Signals
It was speculated that Google now takes into account user data signals as one of the triggers to score a website’s worth. User data signals can be things such as Facebook Likes, Tweets, forwarded emails from Gmail, reviews, etc. We will also discuss this further in a future blog post.
As is standard in search conferences, there is a lot of discussion revolving around tools and which of them are best to use. We will be trying out some of the recommended tools over the next couple of weeks and will report on our findings.
Lots of discussion here too. While it was said that Google is currently not using page speed as a very large factor in your rankings, it was the common agreement at PubCon that this factor will play a larger role over time. There was a lot of great advice on how to improve your website page speed. Rather than regurgitating what was discussed, we implemented some of these suggestions on a few of our sites and documented the process along with before and after page load results.
We sat in on a really good PPC session. One of the main key points pushed was that search queries matter more than keywords. There was a lot of discussion on how to improve your quality score and how a higher quality score will lower your CPC. Lots of good information about how to break out your ads into smaller ad groups and more accurately target your desired clicks and eliminate the non-converting or non-relevant traffic/clicks. We will be writing a couple of different posts about this with screen-shots in the weeks to come as we ourselves implement some of the suggestions.
It’s no longer sufficient to be “thinking” about getting your site mobile ready – it is now crucial. With stats such as “mobile search queries have grown 500% in that last 2 years,” it is evident that your site needs to be mobile friendly if you want to tap in this rapidly growing traffic. This increase is due largely to the Android – which Google is investing in heavily – so this upward trend isn’t going away any time soon. Future blog posts to come on this topic will cover different ways you can make your site mobile friendly and methods you can use to capture those mobile searches.
HTML 5 and Microformats
This is more techie but there was some very good information on how to use microformats within your website pages/content and how to structure it with HTML5. We will be writing more about this too as we implement some of the suggestions into a couple of our sites.