Latest Interview: Google’s Sep Kamvar

Our interview of this week is with Google's Sep Kamvar. It provided a lot of insight into Google's views on personalization. Check it out by reading the article. If you want to comment on it, please go ahead and do so below. ... Read More >

Is Google Going to Expand its Punishments of Paid Links?

Search Engine Roundtable put up a post yesterday asking Are SEOs Still Buying Links?. Based on this post, I thought I would update my thoughts on whether or not SEOs will continue to purchase paid links. First though, let's start with some poll data from Barry at Search Engine Roundtable. The post starts by presenting the output of a poll on the topic of Buying Links at the Digital Point Forums. Here is the data from the Digital Point Poll: No - I never bought links and never will (27) - 39.71% No ... Read More >

Latest Interview: Microsoft’s Ramez Naam

My latest interview is with Ramez Naam of Microsoft. The interview focused on core technology improvements recently made my Microsoft to Live Search. It turned into a great discussion that illustrates many of the complexities involved in a modern day search engine. Check out the interview for details. Feel free to comment below if you want to discuss it. ... Read More >

Bounce Rate as a Ranking Signal

I received an e-mail from a reader who was interested in a post talking about bounce rate, and how that might be used by search engines as a possible ranking factor. The concept is that a higher bounce rate would be seen as an indication that a site is of relatively poor quality. For example, does a bounce rate of more than 70% mean that you have a bad site? That's pretty high, right? Bounce Rate Definition First let's start with a definition of what it means. There are two possible definitions - one ... Read More >

Problems with Anchor Text as a Ranking Signal

Periodically you see articles that talk about what the most important are for search engine ranking. One of the really good ones is the SEOmoz Search Engine Ranking Factors survey. Nearly every such article identifies anchor text used in links to your page as a major ranking factor. For example, only one factor got a higher score then anchor text (Keyword use in the Title tag got a higher score). But there is trouble in Wonderland. There are problems with placing a lot of weight on this particular ... Read More >

Core Improvements in Live Search

This post will provide some more info on the September 26, 2007 Searchification event that Microsoft put on. In particular, this post will focus on the core search engine improvements part of the presentation. I will provide some brief comments on each announcement, as well as pictures of the speakers. 1. Introduction by Brad Goldberg. Brad Goldberg, general manager of the Windows Client Product Management Group at Microsoft, who manages the search team from a business perspective, started things off ... Read More >

15 Things About How Google Handles Duplicate Content

Duplicate Content is one of the most perplexing problems in SEO. In this post I am going to outline 15 things about how Google handles duplicate content. This will include my leaning heavily on interviews with Vanessa Fox and Adam Lasnik. If I leave something out, just let me know, and I will add it to this post. Google's standard response is to filter out duplicate pages, and only show one page with a given set of content in its search results. I have seen in the SERPs evidence that large media ... Read More >

Google VP Search Quality, Udi Manber

Just last week I had the pleasure of speaking with Google's VP of Search Quality, Udi Manber. We focused our conversation on various aspects of search quality, Google's algorithms, and Google's development processes. Understandably, Udi was not going to provide a tremendous amount of detail about these things, because these are areas that Google considers a proprietary advantage. Nonetheless, the conversation proved to be very interesting. For example, it was suggested that Google is looking quite ... Read More >

Page Rank, and Query Specific Page Rank

Page Rank gets a bad rap sometimes. It's easy to understand why. People got obsessed with Page Rank a few years back, and for a long time, people would not let go of the notion that Page Rank was the only thing you needed to worry about in SEO. For that reason, many really smart SEOs started to downplay it greatly, and to suggest that Page Rank is meaningless. But that's over doing it. Page Rank is still very, very important, and I still use it. Page Rank still provides the best way of measuring the ... Read More >

12 Ways Webmasters Create Duplicate Content

At the recent SMX Advanced Conference in Seattle one of the big sessions was on duplicate content. There is great blow by blow coverage in posts by Vanessa Fox and by Matt McGhee. You can also see an older post about dupe content here by Chris Boggs. At the start of this session, the search engines all talked about various types of duplicate content. But let's take a deeper look at the way that duplicate content happens. Here are 12 ways people unintentionally create dupe content: Build a site for ... Read More >