SMX Day 1: You & A
Soon enough the session began when a guy asked Matt about how well Google can tell about a person’s location
M: Matt says that they’re able to pinpoint it about 80 or 90% of the time. IPs are a pretty good determiner of where someone is. (Except for AOL where everyone is from Virginia.) Matt mentions that he checked his IP at the hotel and found that it was able to identify him within just a few blocks. When you’re trying to figure out where are you on a map by IP, you can get close to a fair degree. Matt thinks that it’s a good thing over all–when the bath is overflowing you just type plumber not Seattle plumber. So then Google tries to figure out where you are so that they can return relevant local results.
Q: A representative called Pat, from feetthebot wants to know about Google’s Guidelines and where you(Matt) see the future of the Google Guidelines and why are they so undescriptive that I have to write about them?
M: The guidelines are ‘Avoid these sorts of things, you should be able to use common sense on the whole.’ They didn’t want to say ‘this is bad’ and then have to go in and adjust when something new but not kosher came up.Matt thinks they might be due for an update, and it might be good to get some examples in there. More detail rather than just ‘avoid link schemes’. Finally, Matt says Pat’s site Feedthebot.com, is a great way to learn more about Google’s guidelines.
Q: How SERPs for Image Search would better itself or if it would?
M: The simple answer was Onebox. Whether it was an image for J.Lo or a rainbow, everyone wants an accompanying picture with the result. eg: For, ‘fix a sink’, the result may be a video. However, when reported the search for ‘George Bush’ shows ‘Jimmy Carter’ while ‘retarded’ shows a photoshop-warped image, Matt said they would check it out.
Q: Progress of LSI, keyword grouping, themes etc?
M: To put it simply, see what works best for you. 1, Use synonyms in a natural way. 2, Don’t force keywords. 3, Bio and biography are synonyms. But not apple and apples. Besides, Google has to work some more on their semantic understanding.
Finally, it was Matt Cutt who asked:
Q: What do you guys want from the Webmaster console?
Spider traps, Realtime reports (Matt: what EASY things do you want?), Shared logins, RSS output of reports and links, 404 reports (where did this link come from? How did they get to this error?), Make it searchable, The 200 factors in the algo, more SERPs, Errors without having to click through to each domain (red flagged when there are errors) etc.