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Searchmetrics Fall Summit 2017 – Recap

Once again, Berlin’s Kulturbrauerei (Cultural Brewery) was host to the Searchmetrics Summit, returning for the second time this year after February’s conference. The main event day saw a range of top industry experts speaking across two parallel tracks, with the venue filled with SEO experts, online professionals and content marketers.


It was the morning of the 21st of November, as visitors streamed towards Berlin’s Kulturbrauerei for the Searchmetrics Summit. Most came not just for the great location and the great food, but to hear high-quality content delivered by respected speakers, to network with like-minded experts and to debate the latest issues surrounding SEO, content and digital marketing with enthusiasts who unfortunately held the wrong opinion.

The Searchmetrics Fall Summit 2017

Digital transformation, machine learning and struggling to find out the connection between content relevance and what Google’s John Mueller calls “awesomeness”. That, as well as the ever-increasing specificity in the SERPs are just some of the challenges for SEOs and content marketers that are neither going away nor getting any smaller.

The Searchmetrics Fall Summit 2017 looked at a range of issues, including these, with experts exchanging ideas, insights and experience on topics like from relaunching websites, getting real insight from analytics and developing chatbots.

The talks were split into two tracks:

  • The Management Track dealt with trends and use cases from the world of content and search engine optimization, looking at problems faced by digital marketers everywhere, like how to manage a smooth website migration.
  • The Expert Track went into more technical detail, with SEO professionals revealing their tricks of the trade, and which tools (besides the Searchmetrics Suite) they use to get real insights and make measurable improvements to website performance.


Picture gallery

Head over to Facebook to take a look at a few photos we took at the Summit and get an impression of the event.

Searchmetrics Summit Picture Gallery

Content meets search

The Fall Summit was all held in English, so members of our California- and UK-based teams could join in. This meant Doug Bell, VP Marketing, could join Daniela Neumann, VP Product, in leading us through the event. They kicked things off, after a very-German safety announcement, with an invitation to take part in our Twitter competition for the chance to win a pair of Searchmetrics sneakers. Entrants had to come up with a clever/funny/please-not-offensive tweet completing the phrase “Content and search belong together like….”

Here are a few of the more creative suggestions our visitors came up with:

Back-to-back-to-back content in two tracks


The agenda for the Fall Summit contained wall-to-wall presentations in two rooms packed with high-quality content.

The conference got started with keynotes given by Searchmetrics CEO, Volker Smid, and CTO and Founder, Marcus Tober. For the opening talks, all Summit guests were gathered in the venue’s main room, with some spilling onto the galleries. Thereafter, participants were able to choose between the Management Track (in the main room) and the more technical Expert Track (upstairs).

For anyone who couldn’t make it to Berlin or who couldn’t get a ticket for the Summit, we recorded all presentations, which will be available in due course.

A quick run-down of the presentations (Videos coming soon!)

With both tracks, there was always something for everyone on offer. We would like to take this opportunity to thank our speakers once again, without whom such an event wouldn’t be remotely possible.

Here is a short run-down of the presentations, with a quick summary quote (or paraphrasing) for each. For the full insights, check back later for the videos.

volker-smidOpening Keynote

Volker Smid, CEO Searchmetrics

“In some markets, like DIY, overall revenues are stagnating, but the eCommerce segment is growing. The companies that recognize the opportunities presented by search are going to be the companies that succeed.”


Know Your Audience – How Search Data Helps Improve Your Content Strategy

Marcus Tober, CTO Searchmetrics

“Big ranking factor analyses based on thousands and thousands of keywords just dilute your data. It’s not about size. It’s about how you define the market.”

amory-kelie-002How Will SEO Help Adidas Grow Its Digital Business from 1 Billion in 2016 to 4 Billion in 2020

Amory Kelie, Adidas

“We are here to create stories that are born from genuine insights that consumers are able to see themselves in.”



Advanced Technical SEO – In-Depth Look into JavaScript SEO and Technology Behind GoogleBot

Bartosz Goralewicz, elephate

“The technology that GoogleBot runs on is as old as an iPhone5. And the technology to optimize loading for the user experience has been around since the PlayStation 4.”

nils-kattau-1High-End Form Optimisation for More Leads & Sign-Ups

Nils Kattau, Smartimize

“To transform features into benefits that fulfill your user’s need, you need to ask yourself how your product helps the customer. Always make clear what you offer and why your offer is helping the consumer.”


Learn more about high-end form optimisation at Nils’ Facebook livestream on November 27.


bastian-grimm-peak-aceInternational Site Speed: A Complete Guide to Super-Speed Around the World

Bastian Grimm, Peak Ace

“When measuring site speed, you need to define performance metrics that reflect actual aspects of the user experience. Just measuring the overall page load time is meaningless.”

Gerrit-Grunert-200x200“More Money, NO Problems” – The Digital Transformation of Sales

Gerrit Grunert, Serviceplan

“With the whole process taking place online, every stage of the sales funnel can be measurable, predictable, reliable and scalable. This makes ROI-driven content marketing possible.”


The Big Hairy Relaunch Monster

Björn Beth, Searchmetrics

“Take advantage of an https migration to get other changes quickly indexed as Google recrawls your whole site faster when you do it.”

daniela-matos-camposContent on the Move – How to Manage a Smooth Migration

Daniela Matos Campos, Scout24 Group

“You need to involve all the affected stakeholders when carrying out a major content migration, but the process should always be driven by the SEOs.”

christian-oliveiraWhy Your Analytics Tool May be Lying to You About AMP

Christian Oliviera

“Because of how AMP is built, a single user can be counted as more than 4 different users on the same browser.”


Some Like it Bot: What I Have Learnt From Launching a Chatbot

Emilie Reynaud, Ringier

“Understanding the technology behind products will help you with your rankings. And while Voice Search is only the tip of the iceberg, conversational interfaces are here to stay!”

summit-speaker-gianna-brachetti-truskawaGet it Right Internationally: 10 Common hreflang Mistakes

Gianna Brachetti-Truskawa, GoFeminin

“Don’t combine hreflang with canonical. Don’t combine hreflang with noindex.”

tino-triste-200x200How we Survived, and Thrived. A Full Scale Website and Social Media Restructure

Tino Triste, Coop

“Keep your link juice flowing.”


Google News Optimization – Basics, AMP and Timingraphael-raue-in-circleinsa-winter-in-circle

Insa Winter and Raphael Raue, Spiegel Online

“There’s no cookie-cutter way of doing things right for Google News, but always keep it simple. Google News hates JavaScript and loves plain HTML.”

Korbinian-Spann-200x200Global Dashboards with Tableau: How to Drive Change via Analytics

Korbinian Spann, GORE-TEX®

“You need a weekly meeting to actually interpret your analytics data. It’s not enough to just create beautiful dashboards.”


Jono-AndersonDigital Marketing is Dead: Survival Tips for What Comes Next

Jono Alderson, Distilled

“Optimise your brands for agility. Be prepared to pivot on platform, positioning, and product. Build hub-and-spoke models to remain flexible. Play to your brand’s strengths, and learn to reinvent.”


Panel Discussion – The Evolution of Search and SERPS

Jono Alderson, Marcus Tober, Olaf Kopp (Aufgesang Inbound Marketing), Gianna Brachetti-Truskawa, Fili Wiese (, Markus Klöschen (Moderation)

In the final session of the Summit, the panelists discussed how users react to changes in the Google SERPs, the issue of possible increased polarization and filter bubbles created (or enabled) by personalized search, and the changing role of SEO and SEO professionals. There were differing opinions, but one point everyone could agree on was Marcus Tober’s closing statement: “I believe SEO is super super sexy!”


German speakers amongst you can also read other event summaries here:

Participant feedback

We are always looking to improve our events, so love when people give us suggestions for how to make things better. Though of course, we also love to get positive feedback. Here are a few comments from participants, picked completely at random of course:

  • “At the Summit I discovered new SEO approaches, new speakers and a new ways to use Searchmetrics. It was inspiring.”
  • “Excellent organization, great atmosphere, very interesting topics. My team and I came out of the event with many useful tips and ideas, and we started working on some of them immediately on the morning after the Summit. Will surely attend again!”
  • “I read SEO news and articles daily, still I was able to discover many new things at Searchmetrics Summit“

Thank you very much and see you next year in London!

Thanks once again to all our speakers, participants and everyone who helped organize the event. Thanks as well to the location and to our sponsors, Hootsuite and Iosis, and our media partner, It takes everyone’s commitment and input to make an event like this work, so we are extremely grateful to all involved.

Our next summit is scheduled for June 2018, in London, so we look forward to seeing many of you there next year! We can’t promise sun, but we can promise SEO.