There are a lot of so called search engine optimization “experts” out there. Nothing more than pirates most of ’em! 😉 an’ I should know!
Well, Mike Grehan, he ain’t a pirate, I’ve met him a couple of times at the Search Engine Strategies in Stockholm and he knows what he’s on about. This article is more proof of it.
You might ask what this has to do with conversion. Well, it doesn’t matter how good your pages are at converting your target audience, if your visitors can’t find you then you’re sitting in the doldrums. But imagine if you could figure out exactly how the search engines rank your pages. There are a bunch of different theories but really there aren’t too many people (‘cept the people working for the engines) that really know how your pages are ranked. Mike is saying that he knows the engines are following Information retrieval (IR) science and is immersing himself in the research. I for one will be watching what Mike and others in the IR field are doing because this statement from him seems right on the button;
In my experience, having a general understanding of IR techniques and how they can be applied to commercial search engines (an entirely different proposition to the homogenous collections they were originally conceived for) can save an awful lot of wasted effort and mind clutter in SEO.