Google Ad Plans, More Relevant Searches Top of Mind at SES

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NEW YORK -- Google's efforts to mine traditional advertising mediums and the demand for more relevant search results were two popular topics in the all-question-and-answer format of yesterday's Pundits on Search session at the Search Engine Strategies Conference and Expo, being held this week at the New York Hilton.

Asked about Google recently auctioning ad space in several print magazines, Matt Cutts, software engineer at Google Inc., explained that the company is testing how to pinpoint the most relevant ads and show advertisers their return on investment. He also directed everyone to an article in USA Today this week that explained the mechanics of Google's print, radio and TV advertising plans.

"Google has Madison Avenue very nervous," said David Vise, author of "The Google Story." What the company "is doing is likely to channel a substantial number of dollars into traditional mediums of advertising but on a targeted basis."

Several questions focused on vertical search engines, local engines and other ways that search is becoming more relevant to the Internet user.

"The next major leap in search will be to blend organic results that are the same for everybody with what's interesting to you," said Jeremy Zawodny, Technical Yahoo at Yahoo. He cited real-time search engines such as, which produce results based on what's interesting to people at any given time of day. Another is the My Web option on Yahoo, which lets a group of friends bookmark pages as they do their own searches. When someone in the group does a search, the top results will feature sites that are relevant to his or her peer group.

In the future, local results will appear first when Internet users type in a search, moderator Danny Sullivan predicted. Sullivan is the editor of Searching the Web will be a secondary option that users will have to choose.

Chantal Todé covers catalog and retail news and BTB marketing for DM News and DM To keep up with the latest developments in these areas, subscribe to our daily and weekly e-mail newsletters by visiting

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