How search engines are evolving to cater the demand of increasingly sophisticated users?
Kristine Marshall – BING TRAVEL
Roberto Brenner – GOOGLE
Lorenzo Montagna – YAHOO!
Mauro Lupi – AD MAIORA
2009 travel sales online have surpassed traditional distribution channels. According to recent data presented earlier today the UK is set to hit this milestone by 2012 – italy lags behind with a 21% of transactions occurring online.
We know the needs but not the people. 2/3 of people search with 3 or more words. For the engines the challenge is to provide an accurate answer to a precise question. Algorithms are now changing (shifting at very high frequency (even once per week) to keep up with the ever changing needs of the users.
YAHOO! – IT’S YOU!
In search the need for a service for an enriched search experience – must be rich in content – users don’t like complexity – technology must transparent to the end user.
search engines are similar but not in direct competition – they do similar things.
Search is personalized – search pad from YAHOO! Search is something personal (bye bye SERPs …)
Data presented is based on US market. 60% or more relied on search engines as a key entry point of the purchase process. Generic keywords are covering 63% or search related to travel in the US. Looking at doing this for specific markets. Rolling out interactive search forms to assist in the search.
Where is the search technology heading ?
understand query intent: via a generic query like hotel if I’m in florence Google will understand where I am (in Florence), geo-position me and serve selected hotels near my actual location
Relevance is central . Search is sophisticated to provide a simple and intuitive way to interact with the search engine. The semantic web could be the future of search. Mobile is important and has a different search technology. – a completely different set of results
richer more organized experience. Bing has a navigational bar – a focus on categorizing results. browsing on a visual level.
Fro a hotelier poin of view, there are millions of photos and videos an uncontrollable amount of information making it impossible for them to manage this presence.
understand your objectives – info-commerce or e-commerce – how do I make me site visible ? google insight for search helps understand typical search behaviors.
BING – hotels and hotel chains make sure you work with a long tail of keywords on your website – a keyword list that includes land marks. Social Media is important: need to know what’s going on with your company.
Indexing of social media content
BING – bing.com/twitter (you’ll be re-directed to the US website)
IS SEO DEAD ??
Google: Absolutely not – there is a need today and this need can only grow in the future to support, design and manage an online presence.