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Search Engine Strategies 2008 – 2 Questions

Search Engine Strategies 2008 LogoLast week was then annual Search Engine Strategies New York conference. It’s billed as “the intersection of search, marketing & commerce”, and includes talks, panels and discussion on many aspects of the online search world – both Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Search Engine Marketing (SEM). I work in SEO, and attended most of the SEO-focused talks on Thursday, March 20th.

I sat in on the Images & Search Engines talk. The talk description was:

Regular search engines can’t understand text trapped within images, and this session looks at strategies to combat this problem for the image-intensive site. It also examines how to generate traffic using your images via image-specific search engines.

It was moderated by Anne Kennedy of Beyond Ink, and the speakers were Liana Evans from KeyRelevance, Chase Norlin from Pixsy Corporation, and R.J. Pittman from Google.

During the Q&A session, I asked R.J. Pittman of Google about assigning SEO-relevancy to images hosted off-site and served dynamically to e-commerce platforms. I mainly had in mind Adobe’s Scene7, which integrates into ecommerce platforms, and will automatically resize and re-serve product images, based on what section the site and conversion process the user is in. I personally think this is a cool technology – and I’ve even bought from a site that uses it – eBags. Take a look over at eBags, and you’ll notice for many of their product images, you can click and zoom in to a super high res image. This high res image is the same that’s being shown in thumbnails – but it’s being resized to the appropriate size dynamically by Scene7.


I also sat in the “Meet the Crawlers” talk, which featured Sean Suchter from Yahoo, Evan Roseman from Google and Nathan Buggia from Microsoft. At the Q&A, I asked Sean and Evan about the specialized news indexes of the major search engines, and what the criteria/process is for getting content indexed and shown on sites such as Google News and Yahoo Finance. Here’s the audio.

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