Monday, July 31, 2006

Google's Matt Cutts Answers Questions on SEO on Video

Fascinating that Matt decided to answer SEO mail via video.

Put a face and voice behind the always informative Matt Cutt's blog:

Links to his videos:

  1. On quality of good sites
  2. On SEO myths
  3. On whether sites should be optimized for search engines or users
What he had to say in a nut shell:
  • It's fine to have multiple sites on the same IP, unless you have thousands of sites :-)
  • If you are publishing millions of pages at once (crazy I know) you should launch them more softly.
  • You should optimize for search engines AND uses (duh...) Keep users interests and search engine interests as aligned as possible.
  • Google has a lot of tools to detect spam, but they are not public. You can look at Yahoo's site explorer, there are tools to see which sites are on one IP address, definitely check Google sitemaps
  • Cleanliness of code is not of ultimate importance. Since 40% of all pages have syntax errors we can't exclude everything that does not validate. It is a good idea, but it is not at the top of the list - good content is at the top of the list.
  • About sitemaps: pageviews are not a factor on when things are updated on sitemaps. Each of the elements in the diagnostics are updated on a separate schedule.
  • In general, the number one mistake people make in SEO is not to make it crawlable. If you can get through your entire site through a text browser you will be OK. Try Lynx.
  • Have good content so people will want to link to you. Good idea to have viral kind of content that people will want to link to - something interesting that sets you apart from the pack.
  • Think about the people that will be interested in your content and make sure they know about you.
  • Google uses the Dmoz snippet instead of the valid meta tag when it is a better match to the query. Snippets are actually query dependent. Very interesting! You can use a meta tag called no ODP snippet.
  • Google favours bold over strong tags, just a little - but not much.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Fortune 500 execs DO use Internet for research and decisions

Since it's often an uphill battle convincing some people that executives actually search and read web sites, it's very exciting then when reports like this come out:

This from

A study dispelling three Internet myths confirms that marketing, sales and product development professionals rely most heavily on information from the Internet for their daily decision making.

This study was apparently published by OutSell Inc., but I can't find it on the OutSell web site, and unfortunately DMN didn't quote the name of the study. Anyone that knows more about it please let me know.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Google SiteMaps Are Good For You

Recent enhancements to Google's SiteMaps tool are a boon to seo webmasters.

I had previously questioned the value of creating Google SiteMaps because it did not make a measurable difference in search results - but the true value is appearing as something different than expected:

Matt Cutts just made a post that mentioned enhancements to sitemaps diagnostics that made me quiver. I quickly validated my site with the service and found it reveals fascinating information about your site:

  • What crawl errors were found
  • URL's that timed out
  • unassigned pagerank pages
  • top words in your site
  • top words in links to your site
  • and very interestingly - top queries that returned your site in the top results
This last point showed me that my web site showed up on the second page of an important query that I wasn't even tracking yet. This is clearly going to be one of the growing arsenal of tools for Internet marketers.

Kudos for Google for being so democratic in their sharing of information.