Well, my final day of the Search Engine Strategies Conference has finally arrived, and I'm back to bring you today's first update!
Last night was a night of partying. I attended two separate parties, one held by Overture and the other by GoToast.
I interviewed a few poeple at the Overture party, but accidentally left my notebook there when I left. I asked one of my fellow attendees to take some pictures, though, so I should have eight or nine snapshots to share once I get in contact with him.
A Bar Called Louie. The GoToast Party was at a bar called Bar Louie. All drinks were free on GoToast, so as you can probably imagine, everyone was pretty loose. Oh, and I won a free martini shaker -- woohoo! :)
I chatted again with Greg Boser, president of WebGuerrilla LLC, who is one of the most anti-Google people I've met so far! Greg puts it all out on the table, admitting, "I've been spamming Google for years." His direct challenge to Google? "You can do it the easy way or the hard way, but my clients will end up in your engine!"
Greg is one of the http://www.webmasterworld.com administrators and his viewpoint kind of follows the same path that I got from my interview with Brett Tabke, the editor of WebmasterWorld.com.
To me, the WebmasterWorld guys are like SEO cowboys and the World Wide Web is their Wild Wild West. I get the sense of a love-hate relationship between them and Google.
Will Google ever get the spam situation under control? Greg doesn't think so. He says, "It's sixty engineers versus sixty thousand spammers - I like those odds!"
"It's always been very easy to scam Google," he says, "They make their results as crappy as users will tolerate to drive Adwords sales." He believes there's a clear relationship between the new Google algorithm and Adwords results. I didn't get clear impression of what he thinks it is, but I've heard theories like his before.
So where's the love for Google? There's plenty to be found in Bruce Clay, the originator of the search engine relations chart, and the owner and president of http://www.bruceclay.com, which has 17 employeees. It was Bruce's first time as a sponsor at a conference, and he said, "I'm amazed at the number of people who came to the conference to learn about search engine optimization."
Is It All Just a Trick? Like most of the people I talked to, Bruce has his own theory on the algorithm change at Google - but Bruce's theory is much different from that of any of the theories I'd heard before. Bruce believes the algorithm change was a decision by board members rather than engineers. He believes Google is rebuilding its Page Rank database, and made the algorithm easy to spam on purpose so they can catch spammers easier. Essentially, he thinks they are trying to trick people into spamming them.
Bruce also believes things are going to go back to normal - that the old Page Rank will return on or around December 19th -- that's just a week from tomorrow, but I'm not sure what the significance of that date is. Does anyone have any ideas?
Bruce's Top Advice. I asked Bruce, "What's your top advice for people who've gone down in ranking since the changes at Google?"
His reply was, "If you're doing well, don't mess with it. Wait it out..."
"I love Google."With so much anti-Google sentiment in the air, Bruce is proud to be a Google fan and has very bright hopes for the future. "I love Google," he told me. "When they clean this up it will stabilize the Google index so well that it will validate the entire search engine optimization industry better than ever before."
SEMPO Needs Standards. Then I asked his opinion on SEMPO, the Search Engine Marketing Professional Organization. He said, "When SEMPO has set of standards and a way to expell people then I'll join." He said it's a good group and he's definitely interested in joining but they have no standards for what is legit and what's not. They're just trying to drive membership right now, so he's going to wait.