Getting Vertical Search Right

Aug 20, 2008 - 2:55 pm 0 by

Philip James, CEO, Snooth, Inc.

What changed? Web got big
- search engines index small portion
- poor results for focused searches
- endless tweaking of search terms

- need for specialized search
- videos, jobs, medical data, blogs, etc

Its easy when you are a niche
- smaller = high relevancy
- balance specialization vs market size
- dominate your space
- room for 1 to 3 players each

Getting the word out
- From a search engine
- SEO - if you have content
- SEM - if you have a fast conversion cycle


- SMM - depending on the business

How scalable are these?

Delivering better search
- new content search - blogs, images, bideos
- canned search - dog friendly employers
- parametric search - more like DB queries (example: or or searches that you select a price or some range)
- semantic search - implied meaning
- filters and relevant post search tools

Killer combo: parametric/semantic
- no need to disco er intent, its already clear
- parametrics and semantics in action

*showed financials of what you will need eCPM and page views and went over it*


Paul Forster, CEO, Indeed

vertical search charactersistics
- specialized data
- hidden web
- structured or semi-structured
- time sensitive
- comprehensive search

- travel -
- jobs -
- shopping -

Why does this matter to marketers?
- are you looking for people with specialized intent?
- focused audiences (ex. search indeed for search engine marketing jobs and search from SF… you know their location and intent)
- Google is bad at it
- spectacular growth (shows a growth chart where vertical search engines are way above other sites)

How do you market there?
- organic inclusion (can you provide a feed?)
- optimize your feeds (check to be sure its complete and correct)
- accuracy
- reliability
- dedupe
- paid inclusion
- emails, subscriptions and more
- kayak has ppc and sponsoring

Questions to ask?
- what audience am i trying to reach?
- what kind of vertical search sites to use?
- does a prospective site get enough traffic?
- how significant is their partner network?
- is free organic inclusion on offer?
- have I optimized my feeds?
- what ad products does the site offer?
- how can I track results and ROI


Jonathan Dingman, VP of Marketing, Digitally Imported Inc.

Vertical Search

How do you stand out? Be unique.
Content is king - with a lyrics site you are going to have the same content. What you need to do is make yourself unique.

Can you keep up?
- fast moving results
- staying on top of SEO
- SEO? links
- SEO? Keywords
- SEO? Stay relevant

Whats the bottom line?

- be unique
- bring visitors back to your site
- be memorable
- be unique

Q. Why should I choose vertical search over just trying to optimize for Google/MSN/Yahoo?
A. Traffic is growing very fast on Vertical search engines. *said a stat about the growth but missed it*


Live blogged by Dave Rohrer


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