Search Engine Marketing News - 2006-07-06

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Hi Everyone,

Who Loves You Baby? Our beloved editor Jennifer, that's who! :-) She is giving a free online presentation that will help you:

"...figure out which types of sites are most likely to send customers to understanding why it's important to build relationships with link partners, learn about how you can tailor your link building campaigns based on analysis of past visitor behavior."

Jennifer is obsessed with teaching people how to bring in visitors that convert to customers and this is a great way to learn from her. This is an online presentation with no charge so anyone can attend. But, space is limited so be sure and go here to register.

Want to be in BusinessWeek? We are helping spread the word about this project:

"BusinessWeek.com is conducting research for a story on small businesses that have set up shop in a previously non-commercial property. It could be a converted Victorian house, fire station, schoolhouse, church, you name it... If you own or know of a business that meets this criteria..."

If you fit the bill, you can reply in this thread: BusinessWeek Story: Smallbiz in Non-Commercial Properties

Have a great week!

Robert Clough

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Search Engine Marketing Articles

Supplemental Results in Google
by Jill Whalen - The good news is that as long as your content isn't the same as elsewhere on your site, being in the supplemental results at this time is really more of a glitch on Google's end than anything you need to worry about.

Google Adds to SEO Toolbox
by Ross Dunn - So what is Google Trends? It offers a genuine but prototype (beta) peek into Google's search history so that you can better understand search trends.

25 Ways to Add Quality Content to Your Web Site....
by Robin Nobles - We've known for a long time that quality matters to Google. Quality matters when it comes to content, and it matters when it comes to links. However, building content and links doesn’t have to be painful. Web site owners tend to think of content in a very limited way.

Key Performance Indicators for Content Based Sites
by Jody Nimetz - When trying to determine the proper key performance indicators, one of the most important factors to keep in mind is the type of business that you have. And as we are in the online marketing industry, let’s stay with the theme and take this one step further… when determining your KPIs you need to understand the type of site that you have.

Wise Words about Branding from the Usability Sage
by Gord Hotchkiss - If ever you’re looking for justification for not using large graphics on a site, look (sorry, no pun intended) no further than eyetracking heatmaps. In session after session, users skirt around large graphic blocks, focusing their interaction on text and navigation.

Top 10 Through SEO Copywriting
by Karon Thackston - First of all, I'm not a big fan of checking rankings on a regular basis. This experiment began when I noticed the home page of one of my sites was ranking highly for a keyphrase that didn’t seem to appear anywhere in the text.

Real Small Businesses, Real Big Ideas (This Time, It's Personal)
by Jennifer Laycock - Last week I alluded to the next big project that I'll be launching here at Search Engine Guide. I'll be working with a team of volunteers from different areas of the industry in order to help an existing small business figure out the next steps that they need to take in order to get their online business moving.

 

Search Engine Guide Blog Posts

SEO Works...Really, It Does!
Business Week has a great article about a small business owner in California that maxed out her local marketing and decided to tap into a new customer base via search engine marketing. In just 18 months time, the campaign helped shift the customer base from being 80% local to just 33% local. That time frame also way the addition of 55 international customers. It's a great success story and it's nice to see some positive coverage of search marketing in the news without the obligatory mentions of sneaky, black hat, voodoo marketing techniques.

Supplemental Results in Google
The good news is that as long as your content isn't the same as elsewhere on your site, being in the supplemental results at this time is really more of a glitch on Google's end than anything you need to worry about. (skip to "Supplemental Results in Google" by Jill Whalen)

Google Adds to SEO Toolbox
So what is Google Trends? It offers a genuine but prototype (beta) peek into Google's search history so that you can better understand search trends. (skip to "Google Adds to SEO Toolbox" by Ross Dunn)

Google Loses...It's Now a Verb
Not long after Google became the prevailing king of search, journalists, bloggers and people began using the engine's name as a verb to describe ANY online search. Google was never a very big fan of that approach, even going so far as to send letters or emails to journalists asking them not to use the word in that manner. Word is out this week though that the folks at Merriam-Webster have officially included the word in their newest version of their popular collegiate dictionary.

Get Over It! Google Doesn't Owe You
It's bad enough to read the regular postings on discussion forums about webmasters that are upset that Google has destroyed their business due to a drop in rankings, but now the mainstream media is getting involved. An article over at the Guardian Unlimited today that talks about the need for Google to hire a third party reviewer to work with businesses that have been delisted. As if it's Google's JOB to either list you, or give you a good reason why you aren't listed.

Free Linking Class from ClickTracks Featuring Yours Truly
ClickTracks' next free educational seminar is coming up next week and it actually features me as the speaker. The online seminar is titled "Who Loves You Baby?" and talks about the wide variety of ways that you can use your web stats and your common sense to both build links and to manage your online reputation. The session runs for about an hour and includes plenty of opportunity for you to submit your questions. Space is limited and time is running out to register, so mark your calendars for either the session on Monday, July 10th (1pm EST) or Tuesday, July 11th (10am EST) and head off to the ClickTracks site to register for the event.

The Power of a Blog Post
I've written time and time again about the need to stay on top of things when it comes to finding out what people are saying about your business online. I've also pointed out how essential it is for businesses to realize that anything and everything that they and their employees do could come back to bite them in the online butt. Those two points were demonstrated to American Online in graphic detail over the past two weeks as a disgruntled customer and a five minute audio tape made the rounds through cyberspace reaching not dozens, hundreds or even thousands of people...but reaching tens of millions.

27% of PPC Advertisers Reduce Spending Due to Click Fraud
A new study that's been released by the research team at Outsell, Inc talks about the growing problems associated with click fraud and online advertising. The San Francisco Chronicle reports on the data and points out that internet advertisers paid an estimated $800 million on bogus clicks last year. It goes on to explain that 27% of surveyed business owners have either reduced or stopped their spending due to click fraud concerns and that an additional ten percent plan to reduce spending in the future for the same reasons.

25 Ways to Add Quality Content to Your Web Site....
We've known for a long time that quality matters to Google. Quality matters when it comes to content, and it matters when it comes to links. However, building content and links doesn’t have to be painful. Web site owners tend to think of content in a very limited way. (skip to "25 Ways to Add Quality Content to Your Web Site...." by Robin Nobles)

Key Performance Indicators for Content Based Sites
When trying to determine the proper key performance indicators, one of the most important factors to keep in mind is the type of business that you have. And as we are in the online marketing industry, let’s stay with the theme and take this one step further… when determining your KPIs you need to understand the type of site that you have. (skip to "Key Performance Indicators for Content Based Sites" by Jody Nimetz)

Real Small Businesses, Real Big Ideas (This Time, It's Personal)
Last week I alluded to the next big project that I'll be launching here at Search Engine Guide. I'll be working with a team of volunteers from different areas of the industry in order to help an existing small business figure out the next steps that they need to take in order to get their online business moving. (skip to "Real Small Businesses, Real Big Ideas (This Time, It's Personal)" by Jennifer Laycock)

Ask Reverses Content Filtering
Last week, I blogged about the fact that Ask.com seemed to be running some pretty heavy content filters on searches related to terms like pedophilia and child sex. Even research style phrases like "child sex abuse" and "treatment for pedophilia" returned zero results alongside a notice that the search phrase violated Ask.com's terms of service. This week, it seems that Ask has responded to public criticism and has corrected what they call a "filtering issue" so that these types of searches now return actual results.

Wise Words about Branding from the Usability Sage
If ever you’re looking for justification for not using large graphics on a site, look (sorry, no pun intended) no further than eyetracking heatmaps. In session after session, users skirt around large graphic blocks, focusing their interaction on text and navigation. (skip to "Wise Words about Branding from the Usability Sage" by Gord Hotchkiss)

Top 10 Through SEO Copywriting
First of all, I'm not a big fan of checking rankings on a regular basis. This experiment began when I noticed the home page of one of my sites was ranking highly for a keyphrase that didn’t seem to appear anywhere in the text. (skip to "Top 10 Through SEO Copywriting" by Karon Thackston)

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Discussion Threads of the Week
(Links to search engine forum discussion threads that deal with search engine marketing topics. Each listing provides the topic, the source, and a brief snippet from the discussion.)

eBay Bans Google Checkout Payments From eBay
Webmaster World - "eBay is banning sellers from requesting payment through Google Checkout. The online auction giant updated its Safe Payments policy this week to add Google's new payment service, Google Checkout to its list of online payment methods not permitted on eBay."

Is There a Retention Strategy?
High Rankings Forum - "I've just discovered that I'm number two and three of page one in Google... Now I don't want to be a one-week wonder - so what do I need to do to stay there?"

Are Subdomains Better or Worse Than Separate Domains?
Cre8asite Forums - "Are there advantages or disadvantages of subdomains versus separate domains? Is it the same story with Google, Yahoo! and MSN? What do we really know on this?"

So Confused About 302 Redirects
Cre8asite Forums - "It seems that not many people have heard of a 302 redirect. I called up my current hosting company. They never heard of it and told me to call Google and tell them to keep my rankings the same."

No AdSense = More Traffic?
Site Reference Forums - "I think there are some ads that are annoying, but I personally am welcoming the trend for more targeted, more precise ads. I like to know more information, and if that comes by way of a paid ad, then so be it."

edu links
V7N Forum - "I have a chance to get a couple of .edu links from friends. I have a software site and they are studying completly unrelated topics. So I can get an edu link but from a history related page. Is that good? can it hurt?"

Are Outbound Links Rewarded?
High Rankings Forum - "If I link to several authoritative sites, and/or sites that naturally relate to my topic, can that add to my credibilty as far as search engines go? For example, when you write a research paper, doesn't your choice of references add weight to your work?"

Google Checkout - Exaggerated Claims
Search Engine Watch Forums - "Google Checkout is making the rounds as well, but do you think this new service can stand up to its initial claims?"

"Spam is an Arms Race" - Douglas Merrill/Google
Search Engine Watch Forums - "Having made the BBC, this story is getting a lot of play in the SEM community. What's your take on it?"

A Guide to Keyword Analysis
Webmaster World - "... keyphrases are like products and all that applies to product management or product marketing applies to keyphrase management and keyphrase marketing..."

Google Checkout Launches - Strikes At Heart of Yahoo Stores
Webmaster World - "...it looks a whole lot more like the back end of Yahoo! Store than like PayPal... Looks like the trasaction fee is %2 + 20cents a transaction. That would be a significant increase over PayPal World Seller. Does not look like any compelling reason to use at first look."

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From the Small Business Ideas Forum...
(If you like our search engine news, you'll love our small business news.)

Dealing With State Colleges
"I have a business idea that requires a college to allow me to use their property. Basically, I'd be brokering a deal where the school would make good money for nothing more than allowing me to bring in a third party. My question is: will government run entities (like a state school) be able to sign off on a deal without opening up a bidding process that could give away my original idea?"

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"I'm finally reading your book, and it is amazing. You have done a marvelous job of explaining SEM in general, SEO, keyword research, copywriting, linking -- damn, you're good."

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