Drew Rattray : Design vs. Functionality
Drew Rattray
| News and views on design vs. functionality balance across the communications and technology space.


SEO Jeopardy

June 14, 2011

Image via Wikipedia

Spoiler Alert:  I’m not going to show you new tricks or give you inside information to any trade secrets. Now that half of you stopped reading, I’ll address the other half that isn’t scrambling for a “quick-fix.” 

For the most part, search engine optimization (SEO) doesn’t work out as a global strategy that will optimize for every type of query and keyword. 

The Misconceptions about SEO

April 14, 2011

I have a love/hate relationship with SEO.  I probably spend about half of every day researching strategies from around the Web and analyzing my own data to adjust company strategies.  I spend the rest of that day either consulting, or actually getting in the trenches and hammering out some physical Web elements to boost internal efforts.  It’s invigorating trying to solve the puzzle, but the inconsistencies and what I call “Search Engine Mood Swings” are infuriating at a level only a married man can relate to. 

Bing Isn't Too Friendly to Other Search Engines

June 16, 2009

I found an interesting feature of Bing this afternoon.

First, go to Google and do a search for Bing.  My search found about 47,800,000 results and displayed the first 10.  Now do a search for Yahoo!.  This search turned up about 2,460,000,000 results for me. 

SEO for Bing

June 15, 2009

Hooray another search engine... sorry "decision engine" according to Microsoft.  What's does Bing mean for people like me?  New rules, new headaches, and more importantly new research.  While it's still a fledgling at this point, Bing has sparked enough interest to make me actually care about trying to devote extra effort into gaining ranking somewhere other than Google, which still holds 60% of the search engine market share.

Don't get me wrong, I always try to rank everywhere. 

Twitter Needs Filters

May 1, 2009

I jumped on the Twitter wagon a month or so ago and like almost everyone else in marketing, I used twitterfeed to abusively spam topics of interest across the Twitter interface in an attempt to gain exposure and social prowess in my field of expertise. I've had a change of heart.

While now unethical in my eyes, my strategy worked.  I basically set my Twitter on auto pilot. My twitterfeed would pull from 5 or 6 of my favorite rss feeds every hour or so. 

Facebook Workshop: Harnessing the Social Graph

March 25, 2009

This was actually one of the more disappointing tracks from this week at SES 2009 so far.  I don't mean to complain about Facebook any more than I already have on my blog, but for a company that is being regarded as one of the hottest marketing tools today... this just felt unprofessional and for the most part worthless to anyone that was already familiar with the social platform.


Kasey Galang, Product Marketing Manager and Rebecca Sawyer, Online Sales Operations Manager at Facebook spent 30 minutes trying to guide us through the social graph and provide tips and tricks for leveraging and optimizing our advertising on Facebook.

Kasey isn't much of a public speaker, and the lack of fresh information coupled with her monotone and very unenthusiastic voice really got this track off to a slow start.  Rebecca was a bit more captivating but she followed up with information that I felt was mostly common sense.  The question and answer session was comical.  After each question the two girls would whisper to each as if they were contestants preparing an answer for the old Double Dare show. After each little secret session, one of them (usually Kasey) would pop back up to the microphone with an answer that revolved around the phrase, "Nothing I can report on today".

Discover the Power of Linking: Link Building Basics

March 25, 2009

My first track of day 2 at SES 2009 NYC is another fundamentals session.  These sessions may seem a little basic to developers, but they are some of the most valuable to attend if you aren't missing out on something else in the same time slot. As in anything in life, you can't be the best, or even succeed for that matter, if you can't execute the basics of your practice.  This track was another reassurance that the strategies I have been using also work for the "experts" in the field (there's that word again). The art of SEO consists of a lot of trial and error, and it's nice to know people you respect in your field are using the same strategies.

The track was moderated by Chris Boggs, Director, SEO, Rosetta.  The speaker panel consisted of Kristjan Mar Hauksson, Dir. Search & Online Comm./ Managing Partner, Nordic eMarketing; Debra Mastaler, President, Alliance-Link; Sharad Verma, Senior Product Manager, Yahoo! Search Technology; Sasi Parthasarathy, Program Manager, Live Search, Microsoft; Ankur Choksi, Director, Search Technology, Ask.com; Peter van der Graaf, Advanced Search Specialist, Netsociety.

Landing Page Testing and Tuning

March 24, 2009

This was another valuable track I had the pleasure of attending today at Search Engine Strategies Conference and Expo 2009 New York.  It was a solo presentation by Tim Ash, President, SiteTuners, and author of Landing Page Optimization: The Definitive Guide to Testing & Tuning for Conversions.  Tim is an exceptional speaker, and kept the audience involved throughout the track.  He even went to the lengths of handing out $20's for correct answers to questions he asked the audience (after the first $20 was handed out, everyone was very eager to stay involved).   I also had the pleasure of speaking with Tim after the session at the Google booth and received a complimentary signed copy of his book.

Tim's introductory lesson in tuning your site is that your web visitiors should influence the design of your site. 

SEO: Where to Next?

March 24, 2009

As I go through my 3 days at the Search Engine Strategies Conference and Expo 2009 New York, I figure I'll blog an in depth overview of a few of the tracks I attend.  Again, if you want up-to-the-minute updates on everything I attend, follow my tweets.

"SEO: Where to Next?" was a great warm up track to get everything rolling for me at this conference.   The track was a basic overview and panel discussion on where to get started with SEO, and the basics of what does and does not work. The discussion was moderated by Jeff Ferguson, SES Advisory Board, Director of Online Marketing, Napster.

Search Engine Strategies Conference and Expo 2009 New York kicks off with twitter

March 24, 2009

I've been so busy recently with the daily grind at TMC that I completely forgot to mention that I will be attending the Search Engine Strategies Conference and Expo 2009 in New York City Tuesday through Thursday this week. In preparation for the conference, I joined twitter yesterday to better understand their Tuesday Keynote by Guy Kawasaki, the author of Reality Check.  As a secondary goal I was going to tweet during each track I attended so that my colleagues at TMC and the rest of the world could keep up with up-to-the-minute notes.  Yeah I know...