At Chicago’s Search Engine Strategies expo (which I’ve never attended, by the way, but really want to someday), Yahoo’s Tim Meyer gave the a great overview of smart search engine marketing:
Tim: “We basically treat [your site] as plain text. Use common HTML if you want the search engines to know what is on your site … but that needs to be consistent with CSS. A lot of it is about intent … there isn’t a black and white. If you are giving different signals to the search engines than the user then that is a problem. H1 Tags signal the search engines that something is important on the page.”
Why do I like it so much? Well, I’ve been saying it for years, for one thing (Ian pats self on back). But also because it confirms that search engines want to deliver relevance, based on what the user wants to see.
You can boil his quote down to: Write good code, use a smart structure, and don’t deliver stuff to search engines that differs from content provided to users.