The Mender

Metamend's Search Engine Optimization Newsletter
Issue 42
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Advice and techniques for the promotion of your web site plus Search Engine Optimization News and valuable resources for the serious on-line marketer.

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Welcome to "The Mender" Issue 42


The producers of are soon launching, the Credibility Search Directory.

Google moves toward clash with Microsoft
By John Markoff


Interland Finds Search Engine Marketing Best For Small Businesses
By WebProNews, Staff Writer

Jeeves/Teoma Database Now Includes PDF Content


Regaining Control of a Hacked PHP-Nuke Site
By Vinu Thomas, Internet Technology Consultant


Google's New Blog


New Strategic Partner
Metamend and InQuent Technologies are pleased to announce that InQuent has chosen to add Metamend's search engine submission and search engine optimization (SEO) technologies to its suite of shared hosting services. Read the complete press release here:

New Web Site Content
We've updated our search engine tools to provide a free evaluation of your web site. Click on the 'get started' button on our home page.

We've also expanded and upgraded our internal FAQ content to answer many of the questions you may have about search engines, search engine optimization, web site optimization and online marketing. Click here to access the section:

Web Site Marketing Edge 2004 Seminar
Metamend will be hosting an afternoon seminar on web site promotion and marketing, plus an introduction to the new Overture site match program. There will also be free web site analysis and search engine friendliness testing for all attendees.

Friday May 28th 1-4pm Vancouver Island Technology Park
2201-4464 Markham Street,
Victoria, BC, Canada

Open to the general business public. Admission is a reasonable $10.00.

New Linking Strategy

Metamend is currently seeking links with other search engines and search engine or webmaster resource sites or portals. Should you have or know of a site whih may be appropriate, please drop us a line at our Feedback Form. Thanks for your help.

Web Site Marketing - Search Engine Strategies (SES) Toronto
(a review)

by Robert K. McCourty

Well I attended my first SES conference in Toronto in early May. The event is sponsored by Jupiter Events a division of Jupiter Media and brings together all manner of search engine representatives, guest speakers and expert panelists for two intense days of seminars, brainstorming and discussion sessions.

There were over seven hundred paid attendees so it made for a swarm of activity at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. Jupiter did an admirable job of coordinating the event, from the printing of the seminar handbooks to the signage, to the registration procedure, all were handled efficiently.

Upon arrival I was disappointed to find that search engine Guru, Danny Sullivan, could not attend due to family reasons. Shame, I was looking forward to meeting him. I hope all is well with his family. His counterpart, Chris Sherman, was in attendance and the moderator for most of the sessions. It was a pleasure meeting him. I've enjoyed his work over the years.

The Seminars:
Never let it be said that the experts have all the answers. Sitting in seminars with representatives from the top search engines, (Google, Ask Jeeves, Overture/Yahoo!) was interesting but less than inspiringly informative. Ask Jeeves was the most forthcoming explaining how their engine measures and weighs links through their 'community' model. They also had useful graphics to illustrate the process. Google on the other hand presented their linking strategy based on 'Pagerank' but their cards on how the formula actually works were held very close to the chest. They actually did not explain anything you couldn't find by searching their guidelines on the Google web site. Somewhat disappointing considering some folks (myself included) had traveled thousands of miles and paid up to a thousand dollars to attend. When queried as to the future of Google properties such as DMOZ (open directory project) they simply pleaded the fifth, stating that Google was in "Quiet Mode" right now and not at liberty to discuss the issue. Gee, thanks!

Not too slag Google too much because they did throw one heck of a party on the Tuesday night, but I would rather have had some 'inside tips' on how to improve organic growth or linking rather than Google colored cocktails. Where better to show your appreciation for all the hard work SEO firms have been doing in the background over the years to help your Engine grow, than at a conference with a targeted captive audience in exactly the same industry. At the very least Google should have thrown the crowd a couple of SEO bones to chew on. They came across instead as somewhat secretive and even a touch paranoid that others in the industry would find out what they were up to, which in this writers humble opinion, was exactly why I attended, to gain some inside knowledge. Unfortunately, there was none to be had.

Another observation on the overall conference was the overwhelming concentration on pay-for-click vs organic or any other form of search engine optimization. As previously stated this was merely an observation on my part, one which should be taken in context. Perhaps other SES events have a higher degree of organic search components or perhaps (and this is most the likely scenario) the entire search industry has now adopted the make bucks approach and to heck with organic content. This would be very distressing for any number of reasons the least of which would be the change in the science of SEO and the now skewed playing field between the 'haves' and the 'have nots.' Some would argue that PPC has a very high cost and a very low return on investment (ROI). We constantly get clients complaining about it. Pay-for-click is a great SEO tool when utilized properly but it's certainly not the -only- SEO tool. I feel the SES conference would have been better rounded out by presenting a wider variety of SEO strategies and approaches.

The Business Aspects
My partner and I asked everyone from Google to Yahoo!/Overture if they had any business development reps at the show. None did or at least we were deflected from meeting them. One interesting point from out perspective was we managed to use the time in Toronto to solidify two fairly large deals with hosting companies. One of them provided an opportunity for a press gathering right at the SES show. Maybe a photo op along the lines of "SES Promotes Business in Toronto" I thought it would have been a no brainer, but apparently no one on the media list responded to Jupiter's request to attend. Hmmmmmmm? Opportunity lost.

The Good News
All in all however, SES Toronto was a very well run conference with great networking opportunities and a wonderful chance to meet the engines and leaders in the field. And there were some interesting tidbits to take away from some seminars. It was encouraging to find out that some engines are working on ways to read and index Java script and Flash documents, (all the more important reason to optimize those sites). There were also some very comprehensive technical sessions for the devout webmasters in the audience. The session on "Successful Site Architecture" was generally well received judging by the scuttlebutt during the day two lunch break. Sometimes at a conference like this, because we have been entrenched within the SEO industry for the past five years, it's refreshing to meet people who are just beginning to grasp the concepts of search engine optimization and the importance it plays for their online marketing efforts. I met several top executives who were very excited to learn about concepts such as meta tags and submission procedures. This is very encouraging for future of the search technology industry as a whole. The more people who are brought in and educated only serves to increase search and SEO as a credible entity. Hats off to JupiterMedia for bringing people from all levels of our industry together.

The Bottom Line
In summary, SES Toronto was a very well run conference with great networking opportunities and a wonderful chance to meet representatives from the Internet's top search engines and other leaders in related fields. I'm certainly glad Jupiter had the foresight to bring the conference to Canada. SES Toronto 2005 is already being planned. Book your calendars now! Hope to see you there.


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