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Search Engine Optimization :: Lyndsay Walker :: Toronto, Ontario

SES – Day Two

Day 2 had lots of great sessions, and I had trouble choosing between them. For the morning, I stayed with the Advanced Organic track, then switched to the Linking track in the afternoon.

The first session I attended was “Can You Please Them All”. Aaron Wall, Dave Davies, and Michael Murray talked about what matters most to the search engines, and the specific things that each search engine likes. Rahul Lahiri from Ask was available for Q&A.

The second session was the Duplicant Content session with Shari Thurow, Mikkel Svendsen, Matt Cutts from Google, Tim Converse from Yahoo!, and Rahul Lahiri from Ask. This ended up being a rather comical session, as it was Mikkel vs. the rest of the panel as he tried to convince the audience that automating keyword replacement is a great idea. The others were quick to label any type of automation as spam, but it was very lighthearted and a lot of fun. During the Q&A, however, I would like to highlight a quote from Mr. Svendsen:

“Have fun and spam the engines.”

Because MSN did not have a representative at this session, it truly became a “pick on MSN” session. Someone said, though I can’t remember who, said that MSN really cared, they would have sent someone to represent them at this session.

At lunch I wondered around the Exhibit Hall for a while, picking up some cool swag including a stuffed goat from Trexy. Okay, I admit – I have a lot of stuffed animals, but mostly Canadian critters. I can honestly say I’ve never had a stuffed goat before and I think Trexy’s goat will make a fine addition to my collection.

I spent the afternoon learning all about Link Building and Site Architecture.

Mike Grehan, ahh, he’s a funny guy – first thing he did was pull a fast one on the audience. He said he had placed a yellow post-it under one of the chairs, and whoever had that post-it on their chair had to stand up and tell everyone why his or her site deserved to rank number one. He laughed at all the paniced faces in the crowd. Another thing that sets Mike apart is his use of a shoehorn as a pointer. Definitely a creative one, that Mike is.

Back at home, Mark had mentioned that at a Mike Grehan session, the phrase “green fairy dust” would surely be used. Mark, I think you should know that it took Mike nine minutes to say “green fairy dust”.

Eric Ward and Debra Mastaler also talked about link building, and link myths and mistakes.

The Site Architecture session, I have to admit, was disappointing. The majority of the presentation dealt with duplicate content – something that a lot of the crowd had already heard about earlier in the day.

Barbara Coll, Derrick Wheeler, and Matt Bailey presented. They talked about robots.txt, session IDs, and redirects – things that had been mentioned already. 404s were grazed upon briefly, and SSIs and other headers were not discussed at all.

The other disappointing aspect of this session was the replacement of a Q&A with a site clinic. Instead of taking questions from the audience, they took web sites and examined them. So instead of taking probably 6 or 7 questions, we examined two web sites. The second web site the owner even admitted that it didn’t need help, he just wanted to know it was okay. I felt that a great waste of my time, the presenters’ time, and the audiences’ time.

And so ended Day 2’s sessions.

Category: Conferences

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