SMX Live: SEO Myths, Mistakes & The Madness Of Crowds

Mar 10, 2011 - 12:50 pm 0 by
Filed Under SMX West 2011

Live Blogging Coverage SMXBelow is live coverage of the SEO Myths, Mistakes & The Madness Of Crowds panel from the SMX West 2011 conference. This coverage is provided by Barry Schwartz of RustyBrick.

Disclaimer: The coverage is brought to you in real time, using a custom live blogging tool. Feel free to ask questions or leave comments for inclusion into the live coverage. During the live event, live notes will auto-scroll with newest entries at top. After the session is complete the archive version will have the oldest entries at the top. We ask you to please excuse any typos, as these are live notes.

Finished Auto-Refresh: Off
Barry Schwartz: 10:00:49 am
We start now...
Barry Schwartz: 10:01:42 am
Okay, maybe we are a bit delayed...
Barry Schwartz: 10:03:05 am
click for full size
Barry Schwartz: 10:03:10 am
Okay, here we go...
Barry Schwartz: 10:05:13 am
Moderator: Matt McGee, Executive News Editor, Search Engine Land
Q&A Moderator: Michelle Robbins, Director of Technology, Third Door Media, Inc.
Speakers:
Greg Boser, SVP of Search Services, BlueGlass Interactive, Inc.
Stephan Spencer, Founder of Netconcepts, Co-author of The Art of SEO, StephanSpencer.com
Shari Thurow, Founder and SEO Director, Omni Marketing Interactive
Jill Whalen, Founder and CEO, High Rankings
Barry Schwartz: 10:07:01 am
Myth 1: PageRank = Rankings
Barry Schwartz: 10:07:12 am
Shari said FALSE
Barry Schwartz: 10:07:25 am
click for full size
Barry Schwartz: 10:07:48 am
Stephan said PR out of Toolbar is fake but there is true PR and that is at the GooglePlex
Barry Schwartz: 10:08:23 am
Greg: Toolbar PR can help find issues on sites. Like looking at how PR degrades from page to page.
Barry Schwartz: 10:09:09 am
PageRank Sculpting = Rankings
Barry Schwartz: 10:09:19 am
Shari said FALSE
Barry Schwartz: 10:09:56 am
Stephan said it did work but Google changed it. The concept of PR sculpting is still value but there are other ways to do it.
Barry Schwartz: 10:10:17 am
Greg said the concept is called "Evaporation"
Barry Schwartz: 10:11:07 am
Jill, it is important to take into account your site architecture for PR channeling...
Barry Schwartz: 10:11:27 am
Shari, if you build your site correctly in the first place, PR sculpting is BS
Barry Schwartz: 10:11:39 am
Myth 3: Site speed impacts rankings?
Barry Schwartz: 10:12:00 am
Greg: It is not dramatic but it is important.
Barry Schwartz: 10:12:28 am
Stephan: It really kills conversions (but that wasn't the Q)
Barry Schwartz: 10:14:30 am
Jill: It is like any of these myths. There is some basis to the fact. Google needs your site to be fast. If your site is reasonably fast, you are fine...
Barry Schwartz: 10:15:12 am
Shari: There is a difference between actual and percieved download time. So I question Google's definition of site speed.
Barry Schwartz: 10:15:23 am
Myth 4: Tweets & Likes impact rankings:
Barry Schwartz: 10:15:31 am
Greg: Yes, they do.
Barry Schwartz: 10:15:39 am
Jill: It is a trick one to measure.
Barry Schwartz: 10:16:00 am
Stephan: It is more of a corroboration signal
Barry Schwartz: 10:17:07 am
Jill: You get a lot of traffic from these things...
Barry Schwartz: 10:18:09 am
Myth: Flash kills SEO, don't use it
Barry Schwartz: 10:18:25 am
Shari: Over generalization, I wouldn't do a full Flash site, but you can use it.
Barry Schwartz: 10:18:37 am
Stephan: Don't use Flash for primary navigation, etc.
Barry Schwartz: 10:19:30 am
Greg: Keep your textual stuff out of Flash
Barry Schwartz: 10:20:03 am
Jill: People are afraid to make Flash banners, but they are fine...
Barry Schwartz: 10:20:41 am
Myth: Do you have to use H1, H2 and H3?
Barry Schwartz: 10:20:48 am
Jill: you do not need to use them
Barry Schwartz: 10:21:02 am
Stephan: It is good to test this on your own. Test it on your site and see if it works.
Barry Schwartz: 10:21:34 am
Greg: I am a fan of semantic structure and I do use them. So he is saying yes.
Barry Schwartz: 10:22:05 am
Shari: She tested it and sees no difference with or without it.
Barry Schwartz: 10:22:19 am
Myth: Keyword Density (250 words)
Barry Schwartz: 10:22:54 am
Jill: (she is responsible for this myth), but search engines do not care about a specific number... use your judgement on the content of that page.
Barry Schwartz: 10:23:04 am
Shari: It is important to have your page content focused.
Barry Schwartz: 10:24:19 am
Stephan & Greg: Shallow content is bad....
Barry Schwartz: 10:24:28 am
Greg looks at the ratio of text to links...
Barry Schwartz: 10:25:34 am
Myth: XML Sitemaps = Rankings
Barry Schwartz: 10:25:48 am
Stephan: No they do not increase rankings, but helps spidering..
Barry Schwartz: 10:26:51 am
Greg: It is a great way to feed Google URLs but how they rank those URLs has nothing to do with the sitemap.
Barry Schwartz: 10:27:23 am
Greg and Stephan: Let Google index the site first and then after, submit a sitemap.
Barry Schwartz: 10:27:47 am
Jill: The Q is do XML sitemaps help indexing or not? Even that is questionable. Vanessa Fox told her it does.
Barry Schwartz: 10:28:43 am
Video XML Sitemaps are great and help...
Barry Schwartz: 10:28:55 am
Videos are separate
Barry Schwartz: 10:29:17 am
Myth: Inbound Links and TLDs (.edu .org) etc, are some TLDs better or not...
Barry Schwartz: 10:29:30 am
Jill: No, edus are not any better than other TLDs
Barry Schwartz: 10:30:09 am
Greg: It is a by-product, because edu sites typical are more trusted... so ...
Barry Schwartz: 10:30:53 am
Stephan: He asked Matt Cutts this and .edu do not get any special credit.
Barry Schwartz: 10:31:14 am
Myth: Buying Links = Banned?
Barry Schwartz: 10:31:26 am
Jill: No, it totally doesn't. Only if you get outted.
Barry Schwartz: 10:31:35 am
Stephan: You can buy links for competitors and tank them.
Barry Schwartz: 10:32:27 am
Greg: Separate banning from filtering... It will remove pages from the search results without removing whole site. It is not about them being paid but being stupid with your links....
Barry Schwartz: 10:33:36 am
Jill: Google doesn't know if money has changed hands unless you are totally stupid
Barry Schwartz: 10:34:01 am
Myth: Competitors Can't Harm You?
Barry Schwartz: 10:34:09 am
Stephan: They can torture you.
Barry Schwartz: 10:34:18 am
Greg: The idea that it can't happen is a myth...
Barry Schwartz: 10:34:33 am
Shari: It can happen. They can write fake reviews, post bogus tweets...
Barry Schwartz: 10:34:48 am
Jill: This stuff SHOULDN'T affect rankings but does it?...
Barry Schwartz: 10:35:09 am
Greg: Today it would be a lot more expensive to tank a competitor than it was in the past...
Barry Schwartz: 10:36:20 am
Jill: You also run the risk of helpng your competitors when you buy links for them. It works well in Bing Greg said.
Barry Schwartz: 10:36:32 am
Myth: Linking Out Helps SEO...
Barry Schwartz: 10:36:49 am
Stephan: If you are not linking to anyone it looks abnormal
Barry Schwartz: 10:37:30 am
Greg: It is all about modeling... Thinking even about Farmer. There is a footprint and common thing that good trusted sites have links out...
Barry Schwartz: 10:37:59 am
Jill: Linking to Google won't specifically help you...
Barry Schwartz: 10:38:15 am
Myth: Google endorses some SEOs
Barry Schwartz: 10:38:33 am
Stephan: that is so evil of SEO companies to do
Barry Schwartz: 10:38:39 am
Greg: It is stupid
Barry Schwartz: 10:40:03 am
Jill: There are lots of AdWords, Analytics, etc certified Google people. But not Google SEO certified...
Barry Schwartz: 10:41:46 am
Myth: SERP clicks affects rankings
Barry Schwartz: 10:41:57 am
Shari: In personalized search, yes.
Barry Schwartz: 10:42:14 am
Jill: They probably are looking at it to some extent, but not something you can game... small factor....
Barry Schwartz: 10:42:28 am
Greg: They have been tracking this forever, the idea of they don't look at this is stupid...
Barry Schwartz: 10:44:41 am
Shari: Bounce rate is a myth on SEO because it depends on query type.
Barry Schwartz: 10:45:51 am
Myth: Goal of SEO = Rankings
Barry Schwartz: 10:46:18 am
Jill: No, because you don't even know where you rank anymore b/c everyone sees different results. persoanlized/geo-targeting...
Barry Schwartz: 10:46:52 am
Greg: Rankings are obviously important, because if people do not see you, you won't get traffic. But you need to get conversions...
Barry Schwartz: 10:47:20 am
Stephan: think about the whole funnel: crawling, indexing, ranking, traffic, conversions, etc.
Barry Schwartz: 10:47:38 am
Shari: I've seen sites that don't rank well, but the sites that link to them get traffic
Barry Schwartz: 10:49:08 am
Q&A time...
Barry Schwartz: 10:49:47 am
Does the position of keywords in the title tag affect rankings? Everyone said yes.
Barry Schwartz: 10:50:35 am
Does all the conversation around Flash also apply to AJAX?
Barry Schwartz: 10:50:49 am
Greg: AJAX is good for cleaning your toilet, not for use with SEO.
Barry Schwartz: 10:51:13 am
Overall, it is not great to use AJAX
Barry Schwartz: 10:51:38 am
Videos: Host them offsite or onsite?
Barry Schwartz: 10:51:45 am
Stephan: I put them on YouTube...
Barry Schwartz: 10:52:19 am
Greg: I hate that. It is obvious Google likes YouTube more than videos on your site. But if you can get your videos to show up in universal results, then host them on your site.
Barry Schwartz: 10:53:28 am
Shari: I tend to host on my server because it is architecture but also will post on YouTube for social stuff...
Barry Schwartz: 10:54:27 am
Site wide vs page level factors...
Barry Schwartz: 10:54:52 am
Greg: One take away from this conference... The days of things being based of page by page factors is gone. It is way more site wide factors now....
Barry Schwartz: 10:55:49 am
Jill: we have seen this for a long time with the whole authority thing... It does seem that Google knows your site should be ranking for a page....
Barry Schwartz: 10:56:52 am
They pretty much agree...
Barry Schwartz: 10:57:15 am
click for full size
Barry Schwartz: 10:57:36 am
AdWords influence organic rankings?
Barry Schwartz: 10:57:41 am
They all say NO
Barry Schwartz: 10:59:22 am
15 minute break and then
Barry Schwartz: 10:59:31 am
11:15am 12:15pm
* The Spam Police - Barry Schwartz and Brian Ussery
* Hot Topics In Paid Search - Keri Morgret
* Credit Where Credit Is Due: Demystifying Attribution - Marty Weintraub
 

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