Ex-Google webspam employee on SEO

by retsek
17 replies
  • SEO
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An Interview with an EX-Member of Matt Cutts's Search Quality team! « James Norquay

Edit: Site now down, enter this into Google search box to get it:

cache:http://jamesnorquay.com/an-interview-ex-member-matt-cuttss-search-quality-team/

Edit 2: SEL now picked it up.
Ex-Googler: "To Please Google With Your SEO, Forget About SEO"

Nothing new, but those pulling their hair out and wondering "What Google Wants" might be interested.



Question 5. What are common trends you looked for to determine a spammy link profile?

There are a good few elements taken into account here, like how many links are there in total? A very important one; what is the quality of the pages they come in from? Do the pages look "real" or are they just there to host the links? What anchors are used? The commercial vs. non commercial ratio of the anchors.

In reality it's very easy to recognise a blackhat profile, all you have to do is imagine what anchors would have been used if the linking happened completely naturally and compare it with what is going on in reality. Anyone can do it, just think logically and keep in mind which keywords convert to money.

Question 6. From your time in Google what are 3 on page tactics that you recommend?

Very good question, on page tactics are often overlooked, while in reality they should be a key element in your SEO strategy.

First of all, choose your domain name wisely, having a good URL can give you a head start in the race. Good domains are still expensive and for a good reason.

Second, be very thorough about your basic elements like titles, descriptions and H1/H2 headers. People are so focussed on putting the most expensive fuel in their car (link building) that they totally forget about the basics like putting wheels on it (on page elements). Of course you can't over-do it as Google now also penalises for over optimisation, so don't putt more than 2 commercial keywords in your titles or Google will frown upon it.

Third, and most important, focus on content quality. Try to work on your website as if SEO was not part of your plan, create content out of a sincere interest and enthusiasm for the topic of your page. This is what Google and your users want form you, I know it's tempting to think about financial gain but remember that Googles primary concern is valuable information!

Question 7. What are 3 off site (link building) tactics that you recommend?

Off site link building has dramatically changed since the recent updates. Anything that you can do automatically or at scale putts your website at risk. So keep the following in mind; Link building has changed from an almost purely technical process into something that resembles a relationship management campaign.

Building a network with owners of sites that are related to yours for example. If your website is about cheese production, reach out to people in the milk industry, like I mentioned before, relevance is the new PR.

Second, don't dismiss directories completely. I have heard people talking about directories being altogether bad and advise people to avoid them. This is not the case, good quality, moderated directories, or niche directories are still worth looking in to.

Third, to stay focussed on quality of pages linking in to you, Google judges your link profile by the quality of pages linking to your site, getting 3 links from authentic pages will do much more than 1000 links from splogs, so invest your time into getting quality, not quantity.
#employee #exgoogle #seo #webspam
  • Profile picture of the author mfarg
    Thanks for posting! This confirms other stuff that I've seen about pleasing Big G.
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  • Profile picture of the author yukon
    Banned
    That hxxp://netcomber.com is interesting.
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    Hi
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    • Profile picture of the author dennis09
      Originally Posted by yukon View Post

      That hxxp://netcomber.com is interesting.
      Wow, now this is even more interesting than the OP. A bit creepy too...
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      There is no elevator to success, you have to take the stairs
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  • Profile picture of the author Mike Anthony
    Good find. I would have been far more interested in what this means

    The job also entailed creating reports about the current spam “situation” on a particular market
    Depending on how you read that it comes REAL close to saying that Google is watching and targeting certain markets and marketplaces. I got to think Internet marketer types are one of the "particular markets" Google does reports on. Food for thought the next time some guru comes out with another brand new popular technique that everybody runs with. If you had just been watching here and two other Forums what would you have come up with to target?

    Hmm.....

    Rental Blog networks ----Check

    automated mass link building---Check

    EMDs --- check

    Right now the rage is tiered link building with the same tools in the same mass link spam way

    Still he has been at Google too long. He blows pure smoke when he claims that buyers of links WILL be caught nowadays. Totally untrue. Theres no way for Google to tell all the links being bought. They dont share common footprints and can look completely natural.

    However we have to understand if you work close enough to know anything its a given that you had to sign a contract that if you say a peep anytime you could be sued to Siberia. These Ex employees are still under the terms of their contract of non disclosure and are not going to tell us anything we don't know.
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    • Profile picture of the author Mantasmo
      Originally Posted by Mike Anthony View Post

      Depending on how you read that it comes REAL close to saying that Google is watching and targeting certain markets and marketplaces.
      Yep, I've been saying for a while now: every SERP is like a snowflake (lol) - unique. Maybe not exactly "every single SERP", but you get the point.

      He's a data mining expert. Analyzing "situations" (spam or some other thing) within data sets (in this case SERP categories) is exactly what he does. It probably goes like this: run a sample on a large set, anomaly detection -> investigate. Pretty clever, although these concepts have been around forever. SEO is still in its infant stages though.

      Really exciting to see where Google is taking this.

      edit: netcomber.com is sooo out there, they have a lot of work ahead of them.
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  • Profile picture of the author retsek
    Oh snap, I didn't even go to netcomber. What an interesting project.
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    • Profile picture of the author MikeFriedman
      Originally Posted by retsek View Post

      Oh snap, I didn't even go to netcomber. What an interesting project.
      I'm not very impressed with netcomber.

      I put in some random sites. It basically just pulled up sites on the same IP address.

      Then I put in a few sites that I am working on that I know have some overlap in their backlinking. They are in the same niche, targeting similar keywords, and all run on the same platform (as are a lot of their backlinks). None of them were detected as similar.
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      • Profile picture of the author retsek
        Originally Posted by MikeFriedman View Post

        I'm not very impressed with netcomber.

        I put in some random sites. It basically just pulled up sites on the same IP address.

        Then I put in a few sites that I am working on that I know have some overlap in their backlinking. They are in the same niche, targeting similar keywords, and all run on the same platform (as are a lot of their backlinks). None of them were detected as similar.
        I plugged in some more well known sites that dominate niches and they had data. They only had data on 1 of my 5 sites. I guess they need to crawl more.
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      • Profile picture of the author Mike Anthony
        Originally Posted by MikeFriedman View Post

        I'm not very impressed with netcomber.
        I dunno if this is the guy I want to trust to tell me secrets about Google. Looks like he's Luke and Vader has convinced him to turn to the dark side

        "Find out what top affiliates and SEOs are working on now"

        "Reverse-engineer experts' systems"

        "Discover new ways of making money online" (how far away can the WSO be?)

        on the other hand perhaps he took some ideas with him from Google. hmmm

        "Links: Common links, backlinks and forward links." Beware all ye rental networks

        "Hosting: DNS, mail servers, IP addresses, network locations."

        SO glad I am not with SEO hosts anymore. Although I think the DNS bit is going to be useless. Thousands of sites can share the same DNS and be totally unrelated just merely hosted by bog hosting outfits.

        Anyway the whole thing seems sleazy to me. I know its all public information but all that digging around just smells of invasion of privacy for people not even in SEO or internet marketing.
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        • Profile picture of the author Mantasmo
          Originally Posted by Mike Anthony View Post

          Anyway the whole thing seems sleazy to me. I know its all public information but all that digging around just smells of invasion of privacy for people not even in SEO or internet marketing.
          Tons of companies out there are digging through our data right now. Big data is the future and there is no way to avoid it.

          His results are going to improve dramatically as the system trains on a larger data set and becomes more accurate. It's a constantly learning/evolving organism. It'll take time though. Interesting to see where this is going tbh.
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          • Profile picture of the author Mike Anthony
            Originally Posted by bnetwork View Post

            Tons of companies out there are digging through our data right now. Big data is the future and there is no way to avoid it.
            Irrelevant to my point. There are satellites that can see through your roof too and its unstoppable doesn't mean there aren't issues with it and it wouldn't be sleazy to use it just for business purposes.
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            • Profile picture of the author Mantasmo
              Originally Posted by Mike Anthony View Post

              Irrelevant to my point. There are satellites that can see through your roof too and its unstoppable doesn't mean there aren't issues with it and it wouldn't be sleazy to use it just for business purposes.
              Everyone's already doing it (not the creepy stuff you've described - more like what netcomber are doing). I have no issues with it, who cares.
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  • Profile picture of the author retsek
    Dude's site is getting slammed ..hostgator suspended him ?

    Enter this into Google search box to get it:

    cache:http://jamesnorquay.com/an-interview-ex-member-matt-cuttss-search-quality-team/
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  • Profile picture of the author kindsvater
    Interesting the site was shut down.

    Interesting he believes common owner identification is important enough to build a business around.

    .
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  • Profile picture of the author supaH
    The best take away I got from this was "contet relevance is the new PR" in relation to backlinks.
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  • Profile picture of the author CyborgX
    Thanks for the sharing so nice and so use full information .
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  • Profile picture of the author olelar
    Thank you for sharing this. Most useful post I have read tonight!
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  • Profile picture of the author Muhammad sakil
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