Extreme SEO panel Q&A at A4Uexpo 2009

April 28, 2009


Who was there?
Dave Naylor (Bronco)
Ciaran Norris (altogetherdigital)

Marcus Tandler (Mediadonis)

Joost de Valk (Orange Valley)

Dixon Jones (Receptional)

Bob Rains


Who talked more than anyone?
Dave Naylor (of course!) and Dixon


What were the highlights?

* Dixon is in favor of Yahoo! answers as a free links source that is well indexed by Google.

* have just bought some expired domain? Dave recommends not to change anything  (content, design, hosting company etc) right away but to do it gradually, after a couple of months, otherwise search engines realize that something is happening.

*Black hat is:
– Messing up with someone else’s site (Dixon).
– Buying even a single link from authority site like newspapers website.

* Canonical Tag:
– Works better than 301 at the time (Joost).
– Doesn’t work in cross domains (Dave).

* Google knows almost everything so don’t use the same IP or PC to login for different accounts.

* Using Wikipedia for SEO can work only after participating (writing articles, adding comments etc) and joining the Wiki spam team (Joost).

* Although the links on Wikipedia are nofollowed, removing them can hurt the site’s ranking (Marcus).

* Mobile search is important when advertising offline simply because this is when people tend to use their mobile for search. Ciaran said that he saw an ad of Samsung on a train station that said: “Search for any deal on Google” but once he did a search about it he found all of Samsung competitors on the search results but not Samsung. J

* Use http://www.majesticseo.com to check the links that lead to your competitors and then try to get those links to yourself.


How long for a New site to get indexed by Yandex?

December 31, 2008

yandexI guess most of you know that yandex is dedicated to the Russian market and as such tends to show in its search results Russian sites, but not only.
What about indexing a new site in the Russian language?
Yandex.ru is known as “a unique product for indexing Russian-language resources” and yet I have a friend who started a blog in Russian not too long ago and he says that he has waited for more than a month for his blog to be indexed in yandex but nothing happened, ‘though it was written in Russian and had some backlinks from other Russian sites.

Two important things to note are:
1. His blog had a Russian hosting.
2. His blog had .biz extension (my-view.biz ).

After discussing this issue and searching the subject on the web, noticing there are others who had the same problem, he decided to buy a .ru domain and to perform 301 redirect of the old domain name to the new one. 6 days after making this 301 redirect his blog was indexed by yandex!!!

I wish he was a little bit more patient so we could test the time that takes yandex to index a new site with .biz extension, but he didn’t care for SEO tests and I understand him J
In any case, there are some questions left:

1. Is yandex, like most search engines, not in favor of .biz domains?
2. How much time does it take for yandex to index a biz domain vs. com or ru domain?

I’d be more than glad to hear your thoughts and experience on this one.
Спасибо и до новых встречь 🙂

Nice Post about Link Development by Sugarrae at WebmasterWorld

December 8, 2008

Sugarrae at Webmasterworld.com
For all of you who haven’t read this post by Sugarrae already – just wanted you to know that I’m 100% heterosexual
and yet I fell in love with this heavenly bright creature.
Excellent writing (especially the instructions for changing the year on your PC calendar)
and great things to think about.
Please do read the post and the discussion following it:


I’m following sugarrae on twitter and I think you should too.

Barry Schwartz is Snooping for SMX Israel

November 18, 2008

Last year it was the first time “evar” for the sphinncon session in Israel and it was great. Now it looks like good old Barry Schwartz is snooping around for some real SMX conference in Israel.
So, for all of you who are a little bit like me and would like to be apart of this event,
check this link, answer the small list of questions (positively) and then hold your fingers tights we’ll all get together sometime around January near Tel Aviv. 🙂

**The short survey can be answered anonymously.**
** The event is somehow already announced, as can be seen here, but I guess it won’t happen unless enough people will demonstrate their enthusiasm**

Blended Search Celebrates its first Birthday

April 29, 2008

I have just finished listening to Chris Sherman on the SMN webcast, talking about the advantages of blended search ( a year after it was launched) and I thought “What the hack? Why not summarizing it for you guys?”
so here it goes:

Blended Search – Definition
Blended search, also known by the name of “Universal Search” or “Search 3.0”, is incorporating results from non-web sources (like books, videos and images) into the regular web search results.

What is it Good For?
The sources that we use to get information from are just the same, but we use them more than we did before the launch of blended search. Searchers no longer need to use the search engine’s different tabs (news, images, etc) – they get the relevant results for their search inquiry directly on the web results page. In other words – if “Vertical Search” was alive somewhere in the past, I guess there’s no doubt it’s starting to die now. 😦

Search marketers and businesses’ websites have more seats on first results page to “fight over”. Before “blended search” was born, websites could be shown on only 2 out of 10 results per page. Today, one can be shown on the same two seats from the past (seats that are reserved for the website’s pages, usually the homepage and some inner page) but also on other seats taken for social sites such as youtube (video results) or news sites (press releases).
Basically, one can be shown on most if not all of first pages’ results (take Britney Spears for example).

Searchers are open to more sources of information otherwise they might not know about. Think about your old uncle – if not for the blended search, will he still be sending you funny YouTube videos? Moreover, the blended search makes the all process of searching much easier. looked for an IPhone and got a video result among others? With Google’s “Universal Search” results you don’t need to jump to the video site in order to watch it – Just click on the “Watch video” link (marked in red at the following example):

What is it Sad for? 
Less precision: Vertical search resulted in better search results, since it was focused on specific search field (video, news, images etc). Blended search returns a wide range of results that are more speculative than accurate (in terms of what the searcher was searching for). This is clearly demonstrated by  the following screen shot taken from Chris Sherman’s webcast:

No more “good old only web results”:  Google is no longer showing only web results. Even if you use the “web” tab in the search process, you’ll get the blended search results which means web sites, videos, images, news sources and alike. This lost of “only web feature” is quite sad, since there are still lots of people who’d like to get these results with no extras… 

Bad blogs and products results: Search engines don’t index these two very well, so blended search in this term is quite poor. 

So what will Blended Search bring?
Better and much more sophisticated statistic tools to track conversion rates out of different search results, such as video which is un-trackable at the moment.
– Better and much more sophisticated SEM efforts: Traditional SEO will be nothing but complemental, while search marketing will focus on viral video, creating juicy (and highly optimized) press releases and so on.

What do you say?
Do you see the future of blended search differently?

Feel like reading more about blended search? I bet you’ll enjoy the following:
Blended search increases your visibility ( April 2008 )
Blended search results study by iprospect ( April 2008 )
Google’s ranking advice in blended search ( February 2008 )
Optimizing for blended search ( January 2008 )
Search 3.0 by SearchEngineLand ( Nov 2007 )

My 3 Reasons to Use Sphinn

April 5, 2008

I can’t imagine search marketers and SEO specialists that haven’t heard about Sphinn yet (it was launched by Danny Sullivan on July 2007) but you know what they say – “never say never”… Any way, since lately I become quite an addict of this social news site, mainly as a source of information about the SEM industry, I feel like a few words won’t hurt no one (maybe even the opposite). These are my 3 reasons to use Sphinn:

1. Stay Up To Date & Diverse
Sphinn allows you to get the latest news from the SEM industry using not a single source but a diversity of sources, including some that aren’t very popular (yet). I don’t know what about you, but if you’re anything like me, I guess you got used to get your SEM reading mainly from one big source, such as search engine land for example. With Shpinn you can get a lot of worthy news items from different sources which is more than just refreshing.

2. Network Yourself
Sphinn community is built on people like you, who are in the business of SEM, SEO, SMO and so on. Visiting Sphinn on a regular basis allows you to get to know important others as well as to get your self known by them. Sphinn users can visit your profile and they’ll probably do that if you sphinn-up their submitted stories or submit an interesting story yourself. Since the users profile include plenty of communicating channels such as email or skipe address, facebook profile, linkedin, twitter and much more you can’t complaint you can’t reach others…

3. Win Traffic (for free)
Assuming you’re not one of those who live by the “time is money” phrase, by participating in Sphinn, especially via submitting news stories you wrote yourself, there’s a big chance you can get some free (and quite targeted) traffic to your blog or business site. Submitted stories at Sphinn can get to the “hot topics” (thus presented at the main page) list even with just a few votes such as a little bit higher than twenty.




Check what others had to say about Sphinn:
Sphinns (Positive)

The social news site every search marketer should be using (SEOmoz)
Confessions of a sphinn vote begging whore (Aim Clear Blog)
How to dominate Sphinn in 4 easy steps (Huomah)
XMCP’s Guide to Frontpaging Sphinn.com (Slightly Shady Seo)
Sphinning Sphinn (Search Engine Guide)
Is Sphinn bad for the industry (Bruce Clay)
Are You the Underdog in Sphinn? (Learning Seo Basics.com)


Desphinns (Negative)
Goodbye Sphinn (Andy Beard)
Sphinn is basically a popularity contest (Internet Hunger)
Sphinn spammers (Blogstorm)


Sphinncon Israel 2008 – PPC panel Summary

February 6, 2008

Keyword Inflation

The PPC panel was called “Will the PPC model hold up as click prices rise?”. Avi Wilensky (CEO of Promedia Corp) had a few words on the keywords inflation, saying it has to do with more advertisers appreciating the PPC market, click fraud and “ROI Blind Bidders” (those who bid on any possible keyword no matter if it is or isn’t convertible).
Speaking of which, he mentioned “MicroHoo!” – the possibility of Yahoo and Microsoft ad center to merge, an act that will definitely lead to a greater keywords inflation (less keywords supply).


Avi defined the PPA (Pay Per acquisition) as an affiliation model of revenue sharing and said that in this model the risk is on the publisher and that is why search engines prefer the PPC way.
The PPC model is the most common and profitable one,. Especially for Google and Yahoo! (their other services don’t get them so much money as the PPC advertising does).

10 Tips to Fighting Keywords Inflation and Staying ahead of the Competition:

10. Buy text link ads via brokers such as TLA (Text Link Ads) and TLB (Text Link Brokers). There are ads acquisition possibilities other than Yahoo and Google adwords.

9. Invest in the “Shvartz” (tail). Long tail keywords are cheaper and can still get you traffic and / or sales.

8. Geo targeting. If you aim to a local market don’t forget to geo-targeting your campaign. There are less players on the local market.

7. Landing Page Optimization for conversion purposes. Check what version of your landing page has the best conversion ratio, check the effectiveness of different areas on you landing page, etc.

6. Don’t ignore usability.

5. Write some kick-ass creatives.

4. Diversification. There are search engines other than Google…

3. Demographic Targeting. Target your campaign to the appropriate age, gender, etc.

2. Experiment with Dayparting. Check the effectiveness of you campaign on different hours of the day.

1. It’s OK not to be on the 1st spot. Your goal is to be on positions with higher ROI!

The PPC Q&A section mentioned the negative keywords that can be used on PPC campaign to make it a better more targeted one, as well as the possibility of buying ads directly from the buyer (and not via google) as long as you are a big advertiser.

Read about the SEO panel on Sphinncon