Matt Cutts has a blog filled with lots of good stuff, and lots of boring stuff.  Even some of the SEO stuff is mundane and basic, so I decided I'd filter it out and enumerate the gems from his new videos.  Unfortunately, though Matt's videos are super cool and employ totally cool special effects and props, they are sadly not indexable.  This should help, and covers everything up to "Vidyo" on August 1, 2006.  Here they are:

Note: My opinions are in italics to indicate where I'm expressing an opinion, not citing Matt.

1. Matt Cutts thinks link bait is ethical, but he calls it a hook instead.  I've seen a few people question the ethics of link bait. Source:

2. Google's chooses whether to use the ODP snippets based on the query in the SERPs.  It may pick ODP, meta tags, or abbreviated content for the SERPs based on their relative relevence. Source:

3. Matt actually admitted that Google favors the "<b>" tag over "<strong>."  I'm actually both surprised that this is true, and that he admitted it.  I had assumed they'd be the same. Source:

4. Google does look at whether there are too many similar sites located at the same IP ranges. Source:

5. Google does investigate similar Javascript signatures on various sites if they are suspect. Source:

6. Too many pages being launched at the same time may be suspect.  Previously, he answered this question at SES and he said it wasn't much of a concern.  Now, he changed his mind.  This indicates it's a real factor to me.  Source:

7. Cleanliness of code is largely unimportant, but the recent accessibility work may eventually make it become a small ranking factor.  That said, Matt downplays it since 40% of the web doesn't validate. Source:

8. Matt recommends using mod_rewrite to hide parameters if there are too many of them.  Obviously, using mod_rewrite without eliminating duplicate content will not fix everything. Source:

9. Parameters with the value of long numbers could be perceived as session IDs.  This can be problematic. Source:

10. Geotargeting is ethical according to Matt, as long as your British content, for example, serves the same British content to Googlebot as it would to a user.  Google itself does geotargeting. Source:

11. Buying a domain and 301ing it to gain the links will be suspected if the acquired domain is semantically unrelated. Source:

12. Matt is still against what I term "ethical cloaking" — i.e. serving different content or behaving differently to make Googlebot's life easier. Source:

13. If you are going to do A/B testing, do not do a redirect.  Preferably, do A/B testing on a page that is excluded.  If the page changes completely from page-load to page-load, it could be suspect.  Source:

14. If you want adult content to be considered as such, there is no tag that exists to indicate "I am porn."  Use the meta tags to include an explicit word or two.  Say "I am porn," for example. Source:

15. Index updates are gradual process, unlike how it used to be ~2003 — monthly.  The only time you would actually perceive it is when they change the way the index is built, and it creates an incompatibility.  Then another index would have to be build in parallel.  But this is rare.  He analogizes this to buying a new car. Source:

16. Algorithm updates can happen instantly, and they can be pushed out rapidly. He analogizes this to getting a new engine for a car. Source:

17. A data refresh is fetching fresh data to feed to the index and algorithm. He analogizes this to changing the gasoline you use in your car. Source:

18. He denies that June and July 27th was anything other than a data refresh.  He says that you should check for over-optimization, but I seriously doubt this, as I've seen sites drop out of the index after no change, then get reincluded after a short while. Source:

Note: Some have questioned whether Matt Cutts is speaking freely in these videos :) 

Tell an amigo:
  • Sphinn
  • Digg
  • Reddit
  • StumbleUpon
  • Facebook

Related posts:
Matt Cutts Gems: Part III This is a summary of the videos located at
Matt Cutts Gems: Part II This is a summary of the videos located at
Matt Cutts Wages Jihad On Paid Links In Google's latest blatant exhibition of ridiculousness, Matt Cutts has...
Mattcuttsarama: 21 Great SEO Tips From Google's Matt Cutts This is a compilation of stuff Matt Cutts has said...
Microsoft the Most Standards-Compliant? Is the world upside down?  By way of Jake's post...