I spoke today at the Startonomics conference on the topic of SEO. I only had a half hour to speak, so I had to cram a lot of critical info into a small amount of time. Here’s the video of my session:
Some folks came up afterwards to ask for clarification on several of the many recommendations I made during the course of my half-hour:
One question was on nofollows. Why would you nofollow some of your internal links? The answer: because your PageRank gets divvied up amongst all your links and thus having fewer links that receive PageRank means that those followed links will get a larger share of PageRank. So on the dogster.com home page, the latest blog posts of the moment don’t necessarily deserve as much PageRank as the dog breed pages do.
Another clarification: when improving a URL iteratively, be sure to 301 the previous URLs to the latest iteration, because you don’t want to lose the PageRank you’ve “earned” from bloggers etc. through the course of your URL tests.
Startonomics live streamed the entire conference on ustream.tv. So you could have watched it all live for free. What a great model for running a conference! The also put all the presentation decks onto Slideshare.net. Each session had a blog post on the Startonomics blog dedicated to it, with the ustream video and Slideshare slide deck embedded along with some key points summarized in the blog post text. So it’s possible by pouring over all the videos and Powerpoints and blog post summaries to get more education out of this conference than by attending it in person! Of course you miss out on the networking, which is also hugely valuable. One of the panelists on the last panel gave out this money saving tip: hang out as a non-registered person (loiterer?) in the halls at key events like the Web 2.0 Summit. You’ll make great networking connections without the conference fee investment.