SEO site review session from Google I/O 2010

A couple weeks or so ago, we did an SEO site review session at Google I/O 2010. The video from that session is now live:

The video is about an hour long, but I hope it’s a pretty good use of your time if you’re interested in search engine optimization. Enjoy!

99 Responses to SEO site review session from Google I/O 2010 (Leave a comment)

  1. Looking forward to digesting all this, this weekend. Thanks Matt.

  2. This is the equivalent of Scorsese critiquing your film or perhaps Martha Stewart critiquing your china pattern.

  3. Percy Salazar

    Excellent video. Thanks for posting, Matt. By the way: Do you know why some pages appears in the Google results with the text “X hours ago” in the search engine result pages (near to the result text)? I see pages and blogs with the same posting frecuency but not all has this text. Maybe is because of a the_time function (related with WordPress) that makes the blogs shows a date that others don’t. I’m not sure…

  4. Thanks for posting the video.. I missed this session.

  5. Is there a certain wordpress theme that you find loads the fastest? I try to keep homepages under a meg. Thanks!

  6. Great video – I wish I was out doing something else, instead of watching it on a Friday eve.

    Anyone else who may be skipping back and forth like I did… the site is:


  7. Time well spent! I enjoyed learning a few things new and tips from real world web sites. Take some time to visit Ventura next time you’re in So Cal!

  8. Thanks for sharing. Time well spent and some great tips.

  9. 500 sites? wow.. that’s super cool!

    Very nice Video, I am still at the middle of it and enjoying, just thought to tell you πŸ˜‰

  10. Good that the Googlers and xGooglers share stuff on SEO for young professionals.


  11. This was the BERRIES!! Please can you let us see more of these type of sessions. Whilst I am fairly well informed about seo and this was basic, I sat through it and was amazed that I actually learnt a thing or two. Not being resident in the USA it was really useful (and cool) to get a “look in” and hear it from the horses mouth! Thank you.

  12. Thanks, Matt. I just had time to watch the first five minutes now, but looks great, and I’ll be sure to come back within the next day or two. All the best.

  13. Matt, will it be a good practice to always use blue color for LINKS. I think this is because normally a text with the blue color is a link.

    On Vanessa’s site, she has got some links at the bottom with gray text and some in blue. I am not sure if she want to emphasize more on blue links and less on gray?

  14. Great session, that would be great if there were more like that coming soon. Nothing is better than live examples. I love the Phoenician Stone’s example πŸ™‚

  15. Great video with excellent tips. Was hoping though you digged a little deeper about the ajax question. Looking forward to next reviews.

  16. Great video, I hope some people have learned valuable lessons from the fedback you gave them, espcialy those with no content.

    @Uzi the colour of links does not matter as much, just make sure they stand out i.e dont have them a simular colour as your backgrand or the rest of the text on your page, apart from that colour, style and underline removal does not matter.

  17. Hi Matt,

    Very impressive; you look very relaxed up there.

    With regards to your comment re buying links. We all realise that buying links is against the guidelines however the example you gave was of what seemed like article marketing which is not buying links. When you write an article you have no control of which sites add it to their websites. I personally believe in article marketing and work very hard each day to write and submit at least 2 articles – it has worked very well for me thus far. Each site has a choice as to whether to use the article on their website – no money is changing hands – therefore what is wrong with it etc?

    Are you now saying that you would advise people against article marketing?



  18. Great information! Matt, can I submit my site for your review and suggestions on this blog?

  19. Very good video (nice, only one hour!).
    Thanks Matt for presents information clearly and in a way so easy that even an absosolute beginner as I can understand without feeling overwhelmed by the dark terminology of experts. Thanks!

    Huberto, SeΓ±or de Corbax

  20. Matt, thanks for looking at the in Ann Arbor site! I appreciate the constructive tips and will pass them on to the web masters. I assumed from your tone that the different blog was not optimal (orginally subscribed to another company to begin blogging and my web master did not offer blogging – now they do). So I guess that needs to be investigated?
    Anyway I did want to mention that The Produce Station blog was my original work – I just posted it to another location first )before puting it on my site later too. I subscribe to you and continue to learn. Much Thanks.

  21. Thanks a lot Matt for this and whole lot of videos on .

    All the videos has helped a lot. Gratefulness flows through my heart whenever i watch these videos and learn some important aspects and get some good ideas.

  22. Thanks for this Matt. I have a question regarding the Geographic targeting that came up right at the end of the Vid. I note you advised not to change this for seasonal campaigns – and I certainly would not want to do that anyway… sounds a bit crazy… However, If someone was to accidentally choose a specific geographic target, is it OK to change it back to no geographic target by un-checking the box?

  23. as always great video/information, actually it is not a bad idea to get a place to submit sites and get one reviewed every once in a while πŸ™‚ that would be awesome.
    cheers from kentucky

  24. Everyone who has a website or works on a website should watch this video. Certain points are discussed which are essential to achieving and maintaining a success website or blog. The discussions about security issues were great.

    If you pretend that nothing is going to happen to your site then you may find your site is promoting adult sites or viagra in the Google index and possibly removed entirely. So listen up folks and prepare and protect your sites. Apparently about one in 150 websites are infected with malware. Seems like adult and drug sites are being even more shady than usual lately.

    If I had to to show someone how to do SEO on their own site I would have them watch this video and point them to Google’s SEO Starter Guide. Great stuff.

  25. Thanks for the very useful video.

  26. Lots of good stuff there. It’s a lot to take in. Thanks, Matt.

  27. Any chance to get additional information about the recent ranking update? Is is still underway or completed? I see some pretty strange things in the SERPS, scraper sites (sites that copy my contents) are for instance ranking in front of my site when I perform a title search in Google. That cannot be right, can it? This happened from June 1/2 onwards, not in May. Any help or additional information on how to tackle that problem would be appreciated.

  28. Morris Rosenthal


    Fun, as usual. Question though. Vanessa (I think) said in talking about Webmaster Tools that Google recognizes sites with malware and drops them from the index. Yet, every time that I check for infringements of my eBooks, Google spits up a bunch of file sharing sites that AVG warns are downloading malware. I can’t believe that AVG is better at identifying sites with malware better than Google, but if they are, wouldn’t it be worth your (Google) getting some advice on the problem?


  29. Hi guys,

    Thanks for sharing the video Matt. I would most definitely check it out.

    Kind regards,

  30. An hour well spent – so involved I let my dinner burn…

    A lot of good advice for ‘unexplained’ low ranking – it’s always the little things that can make a massive difference in tweaking a site.


  31. Morris, AVG will block harmful sites. Google can only remove them from the index so you don’t see them unless you type the address (URL) in. My guess is that the reason so many show up on Google’s products is that thousands are infected daily, adversely, thousands are removed daily too. So keeping all that data up-to-date has to be extremely difficult and time consuming. Sometimes the malware on the sites will not try and infect your stuff, many now are cloaking the sites and offering you the normal version and then they show the search engines a site promoting their adult sites. That is why we all must have a very proactive approach with fresh backups.

  32. Could i find, script of this video in english text? because video is taking long to load in my browser, probably due to slow net speed.

  33. Hello Matt,

    It was a great session and really informative video, specially the things about breadcrumbs, using .htaccess to white list IP addresses for admin access on wordpress CMS e.t.c.
    I liked your suggestion of getting reviews of users to increase your product quality, reliability and most importantly user generated content ;).

    thanks dude.

  34. Awesome information Matt! however one simple Q’s. Please do ponder upon this. Is there any difference in the approach to optimize a website for and seperately?

  35. Tiffany said she wrote a blog post about optimizing Google Places. Can you post a link please..

  36. Matt, I’ve got a huge gripe with your site ausability.. I decided to leave a comment while I was watching the clip. The whole page reloaded when I did. I was over 30 minutes in.. Not cool. I not have to reload the clip, and find where I was at…

  37. Thanks for all the tips.

  38. There goes my Monday morning watching Matt’s videos. :))) Thanks for this. It’s awesome.

  39. Why you have never mentioned SkipFish before, Matt? Sounds like a useful tool.

  40. nice…will defiantly look it up when I get home or after hours…nice to see google is stepping up its SEO advises clarifying good SEO practices.

  41. Nice… looks very simple but complicated πŸ™‚

    My conclusion: Use Google tools all the time, use information and guides from Google, forget what 95% of “seo experts” say!

    Thanks Matt.

  42. Great video Matt. I watched it over a couple of days, and definitely some great stuff in there. The mention on security and Malware issues were great, wasn’t really aware of that, so looking out for that now.

  43. I don’t know Mr. Cutts … seems to me what ranks well in the results pages lately for anything competitive is quite manipulated by off-site ranking factors. I understand the need to create for the Internet visitor but most well-crafted well sites are difficult to find in searches and much more expensive to build compared to the cookie-cutter competitors who hardly even know the language. I have seen over the years how Google has worked hard to reward important webpages yet the Internet seems to be more cluttered with garbage than ever before. Keep up the good work.

  44. Matt,

    Thanks for the great video and sharing this information with us. Seems as though content is really king in performing high quality SEO. This was definitely worth the hour spent watching it, educational yet entertaining. I’ll be checking out the rest of the videos when I have some time.


  45. Great video. I got a lot out of it. I like the info on malware

  46. Hi, Matt

    Really nice and interesting seminar.

    I have a couple of questions for you when you have time please;

    1) Is there a way I can contact you personally? I would like to go through a couple of things in-depth.

    2) I have my website fully designed in flash however my Contact us page and About us Page are in html and php. I have followed all the SEO mentioned in the vid and more, however the problem is that my keywords are only being grapped from the “About Us page” and none from the flash site. The site has been online for about a month now. I am switching to full html now and just use flash for widgets and animations. The Question is if I want to put a full flash site online how will I do for keywords? All the text in the flash site is selectable and coplieable

  47. Great videos Matt.
    I know a lot of people find these very informative.
    I do wonder though, why don’t you team up with Amit Singhal?
    Just you two and a presenter to guide audience questions.

    Anyway, this is bit off topic. About Trustrank.
    You ones declared in a video, in this video;
    “It is completely separate from Google”
    “Google was working on a anti phishing filter. And as part of that google had to come up with a name for it. And so they filed for a trademark, and i think they used the name Trustrank”
    It just so happens to be that in this google patent Trustrank is not described as a anti-phishing filter.
    It is described as in the original version of Trustrank, to be a addition to pagerank and a anti-spam measurement.
    See the contradiction… i thought i’d ask you for clarification and provide you with the ability to defend your integrity.


  48. Matt,

    Ive been following your blog for two years now and really tried to implement your tactics, good content and look for links from related sites. But is there such a thing as over optimization and while I think I’ve been hot with that what do I need to do when this occurs?

  49. Hi Matt, It was a great presentation and it was nice meeting you in after the session. When we spoke you said you’d get someone to take a look at our TV site. I was hoping you might have had a chance to make that happen.

    Also, it would be awesome if at next year’s IO you guys could host office hours like the other teams (GAE, GWT, API’s, etc).


  50. Hi Matts, Thanks for sharing the wonderful information about SEO, all the sites you had choose for discussion are great. You explain each and everything very simple way. Once again thanks Google, thanks Matts.

  51. This will help get rid of smoke and mirror companies ruining the natural search industry.

  52. Enjoyed the show and lots of good examples, hard not to have a slight feeling of our trade secrets starting to escape to the masses though πŸ™‚ keep up the good work Matt

  53. I’m surprised you only got 500 sites submitted to you. Thanks for the video.

  54. Hi Matt,
    you referred in the Video to copied content. it sounds a bit “problematic” when you think that the web site content is copied.
    if the copying web site is “stronger”, Google will find the new content on the new web site first. this means, that Google will think the “weaker” web site copied the content.

    lets try and put this on Danny Sullivan’s copyright story (
    Danny published the original story on Friday. many web sites copied his story (and image) without giving him credit. Google Robot finds the content on another web site (first) and we know there were no links to Danny’s web page. the second web site Google finds is Danny’s.

    can Google robot determine Danny is the source and everyone else copied?

  55. @CMS Buffet
    Of course i can not give you a definitive answer, but i can shed some light on this.
    Sergey Brin one of the google founders published a paper about detecting copied content in 1995;
    One could imagine that this has evolved over the last couple years.
    Issued patents from the last decade suggest that it has;
    In fact, Google docs has the ability to compare two documents.
    Which might be fun to check out and also further confirms that the technology is there.

    Chances are though that the original document will be the highest ranking.
    If this is the case i wouldn’t worry about it, free publicity.
    If they are outranking you then you can send them a DMCA;
    Or contact there host via whois lookup.
    If the document is scraped, or 100% copied, you can do a spam report here;
    and google will take care of the rest.

    But… just to be sure.
    Try to being the one that is visited by the google bot first.
    Finally, you have a excuse for using the “new” pubsubhubbub. πŸ™‚


  56. Hi Matt, Thank you for covering the topic of framed (IDX) property listings. I would just add that there are two ways to provide property listings on a real estate website. One is via framed IDX (you discussed this briefly at 27:30), the other is via hosted IDX (not covered in the video).

    Here’s a good example of a designer who used AgentPress (from StudioPress) and WordPress to build an integrated, hosted IDX solution, complete with a custom subdomain (

    The website and results shown above are quite different from what you might find on a site with framed IDX search.

  57. re this post: Robbie June 5, 2010 at 6:32 am
    the issue that’s been raised here is extremely important and needs a considered answer matt – what IS google’s stance on article marketing because as the original poster stated, once an author has published an article to an article directory, the author has no control over where it’s subsequently distributed.

    for years we’ve been encouraged by the search engines to produce good content and publish it widely.

    consequently, the search engines benefit from good, authoritative content and the authors benefit from back links.

    if we’re now being told the rules have changed where on earth does that leave us? new articles can remain on our websites, but what about everything thats out there in the ether?

    realise that you’re a busy man matt, but robbie has asked a question that needs to be answered.

    btw, good video other than the fact that some of its content has made me feel a little queasy :p

  58. Is there any content text version of this video to translate it in Spanish? Awesome video Matt,

  59. As always, great video. Quite informative. It’s nice to watch it multiple times to pick up on little bits you may miss on one viewing!

  60. Great video. I really love it. Nice to see that you people care so much on user questions. Many thanks for your efforts from germany.

  61. Great video, a lot of useful things discussed in there.

  62. For anyone too busy to watch the whole hour’s video, we summarised it at the Ikroh blog here:

    Cheers, Matt!

  63. Matt and co.
    Thanks for the great presentation. I am happy you touched on the tag issue, improperly nested html, and syntax. I am wondering if using tags under tags counts as “shouting”. If you nest your html according to best, practices , , … require sequentially nesting. Moreover, in html 5 it appears a tag will be included in this hierarchy. Are tags handled the same way as tags by Google? In reading the HTML5 documentation sequential tags are equivalent to nested to tags, according to the *W3C. *(

  64. Frederick Gimino

    Sorry, at appears my h1 tags and h6 tags were stripped. The post should have looked this:
    Matt and co.
    Thanks for the great presentation. I am happy you touched on the h1 tag issue, improperly nested html, and syntax. I am wondering if using h2 tags under h1 tags counts as “shouting”. If you nest your html according to best, practices h1, h2, h3… require sequentially nesting. Moreover, in html5 it appears a section tag will be included in this hierarchy. Are h1 tags handled the same way as h6 tags by Google? In reading the html5 documentation sequential h1 tags are equivalent to nested h1 to h6 tags, according to the *W3C. * Thanks for the great presentation.

  65. This was a really great video. I always find it very useful to here are speak. I spent several hours checking out all your webmaster help videos on youtube (lots of red shirts πŸ™‚ ). Wow, these sites got such amazing publicity. And not cause their great, but because they are crap. I think its hilarious, because they are probably generating some good traffic and backlinks now.

  66. Hey MC, pls tell why my DP question pops up in the Video TIme-13:51 πŸ˜›
    Any act of making me popular ?
    And why don’t you spend 6 seconds to review my blog !!

  67. Hello Matt,

    I am writing on behalf of Thanks for choosing our site for the review. I am really sorry that at that time the site was got hacked and it was under the problem for 7 long days. After that only we have been able to drive away the malware from the website. Now the website is completely out of the bondage.

    Thanks for all.

  68. excellent video, very informative and helpful for people like me who just starting. I just joined google webmaster and seen like a great tool like you said.

  69. hi Matt… hope you are fine.. πŸ™‚
    I am unable to find any suitable space for my message to Google Inc. rather than to post as a comment here.. πŸ™
    I am a fan of Google Inc. (as many of the users are) studying in IIITM Gwalior, India . During the time period of October 29-31, 2010 our national annual Techno-Managerial Fest Infotsav 10.0 is planned and for the same I request someone from Google Inc. (even from India) to give a seminar on S.E.O, Google Caffiene and / or any other Google products.

    Thank you
    Tushar Sharma

  70. A friend of mine sent me this video, it’s very informative.. how often do these events take place? And how likely would it be that we could get our site as one of the sites reviewed πŸ™‚

    Thanks again for the invaluable information as we march towards the quest of ranking.

  71. Great video. Nice to see that you people care so much on user questions. I really like it.

  72. Dear Matt,

    How to OCR the web for next to nothing:
    img src=”” ocr=”eureka” width=50 height=200 align=top


  73. Does anyone know how to get tickets to an event similar to this? I’ve been told that pubcon is *the place* for seo talk, how newbie friendly is it though? After googling I found SES (seems to have multiple conferences throughout the year) as well.. any feedback on that?

    Thanks for this video, it taught me quite a bit.

  74. Hi Matt, I’ve seen the video completely and you have emphasized more on original content.

    I have a doubt on content writing. There are some topics like “What is SEO?”, “What is the meaning of Google?” etc… where the answer is straightforward and will also have a common answer. Now my doubt, many people use the same definition of SEO in their posts.

    So, Does Google recognize these posts as duplicate content? If so, there are many webmasters to be punished due to duplicate content even Wikipedia. Please help me regarding this topic.

    Thanks in advance.
    Radha Krishna (India)

  75. Great review.

    I really liked the review on the Real Estate site.

    I read from the comments that Kathy still is going to stick with a company who is doing nothing more then churning out large numbers of sites, that do nothing for the her (or any other real estate company).

    Its sad , because this lady is wasting money using a company that can not do what they say they do (if it was not that bad then why did she submit the site to YOU to see what is wrong??? exactly)

    Then you tell her what is wrong, and she still wants to stay with that company.

    I guess it boils down to survival of the fittest, and in Michigan Real Estate it’s sure not her.

    Hopefully she will see the “light” soon, and realize the money and time she has wasted.

    I would love to see you go after more of these Real Estate companies that offer crap sites / services and tear them down just like you did a few years back with LARGE RE website company that I will not name any names, but let’s say you were able to knock out thousands of realtor websites out of the SERPS because of the company they paid (thousands a month) broke the rules.

  76. hi there,
    I have a question regarding SEO, if anyone of you can answer it.
    Suppose I have multiple links linking to my website but they are from the same top level domain and the links are from its subdomains.
    Will each link that I get from each subdomain provide extra value in increasing my Page rank or its treated once as its from the same domain?

    Thanks in advance.

  77. I think some more people from Google should have attended the workshop. I found pages on the Google Online Store include some of the same errors that you mentioned in the workshop Matt (cut and paste from Word errors).

    I blogged about it here

  78. Matt,
    That is great advice on putting addresses on the home page. It’s amazing to me how many sites fail to put an address anywhere on their site at all. Thank you for posting this video.


  79. I watched the whole video . I couldn’t believe the knowledge you people had . Nice reviews and everything made sense to me , especially the hacking thing. Now im safer than ever . Thank you

  80. Great! Matt its a comprehensive video. I am catching up with the trends once again. Lakshmi

  81. Such initiatives seem very interesting and are a great resource to learn with practice on real cases. Thank you very much, please put more of these.

  82. Matt, how is it possible that these people tricked Google and now show us how proud they are?:

    If you see, the state the used “legal” SEO techniques, so we have Google putting on first place for “Vatican” a domain with no content at all….

    Amazing, don’t you think?

  83. This is a great video to learn more about SEO and web design. I appreciate the effort of Google to make “small web design” companies like mine improve their work quality. Thank you all, Greeting from Sahara Desert in Morocco! Any time here you are all welcome!

  84. It was awesome. Already knew many of the points before but it kind of refreshed my memory of the basics. In the end a great video and will help many struggling webmasters. Thanks.

  85. Text, text, text and more text plus consistency between elements like meta title meta description, header tags, and content. What amazes me is the number of web “designers” out there who don’t get the most elemental aspects of providing something for the spiders to eat. Thanks for the video.

  86. Running a Madrid based design company – I really appreciated the question from the member of the audience on accentuated and non-accentuated keywords indexing and search results (Question & Answer time: 50m50sec), this is always a hot topic here with Spanish businesses – some example questions I’m faced with can be: ‘should we buy our name with or without accents?’, ‘we want to English speakers to find us but they don’t accents on their keyboards – will Google still display us in the SERP’s if we buy with accents?’

  87. This was the best video I have seen in such a long time. Thank you so much for the golden nuggets provided in this video. Nothing better than analyzing sites and having Google tell reps tell us exactly what they want! Awesome!

  88. Matt, thanks for providing this great free video and others in which you have been the keynote speaker – the information is invaluable. I’ve wanted to attend some of these seo conferences, but the prices are just astronomical. So thank you for helping out DIY business owners.

    If you’re ever in NYC, I’d love to attend one of your events. Thanks again.

  89. Great video and good information – one question – is there a difference in optimization a site for various google locations, i.e. say, google in US vs. google in other international locations?

  90. Matt, great video! I love site reviews, so I can relate to some of the “real life samples” and implementing some of the best practices. I really wish that you guys took the time to do an in depth review on one of sites, such as how to improve search ranking on particular keyword term and improve conversion.

  91. Matt and guests, thank you for posting this video on the web. I’m sure to watch it several time to make sure I completely understand all the concepts you covered. Regards from the Seattle area!

  92. Good video Matt, thanks.
    Cleared some questions on mu mind.
    But the H1 tag question was not clear.
    You said all page H1 tag is like shouting, and of course i get that is completely wrong.
    But what about multiple H1 tags. I mean what if there is 4 H1 tag in one page.
    (I am asking this because of slide show i use on my front page has H1 tags for all slides it has)

  93. Hey Matt, i am tackling seo on my business site myself due to budget really, and have to thank you for this vid. I have watched a lot, let me repeat LOT, of vids on the art of seo, some informative and make you salivate thinking about your increased rankings and some do your head in with over the top techy jargin thats beyond us mere mortals trying to understand and tap into this world.
    For what its worth this vid was simple and concise so thanks.
    Now i will spend another entire night tweaking my site accordingly, sleeps overrated anyway.
    Cheers from Australia

  94. I agree with Enver, the duplications of using H1 tags can be up to 4 for titles on sliders. Will this really affect the content for search results?

  95. Thanks for posting this Matt it was a great video–loved the Rodbot part sorry you guys were all disappointed in what he offers OR DOESN’T for that matter lol πŸ˜›

  96. Great session, that would be great if there were more like that coming soon. I really like it.

  97. Matt, Thanks for the great videos. I always watch your stuff on youtube.

  98. Thanks for the Google Ad Words Tip Matt, and the excellent video!