Search Engine Marketing News - 2006-12-13

Hi Everyone,

It's a packed newsletter this week so let's get right to it.

Have a great week!

Robert Clough



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Search Engine Marketing Articles

Interview with Chris Pirillo
by Lee Odden - Chris started Lockergnome in 1996 and hosted TechTV’s “Call for Help” show for 2 years. He hosts a popular conference every year called Gnomedex which has been sponsored by the likes of Google, Yahoo and Microsoft. He’s written books, columns and many articles and he produces a popular online radio show.

Online Public Relations: What Not to Write About
by Brian Cooper - Don't detract from your online public relations campaign by distributing expert articles or online press releases just because. If you don't have a solid topic, wait and write the article or press release when you do.

8 Simple Steps to Make a Page More "Local"
by Matt McGee - We don't know much about the local search algorithms in use at Google, Yahoo!, and MSN. We do know, however, that local SERPs use a different algorithm than the main SERPs – a location-based algorithm. So if you're a small business that relies on local search traffic, it's a good idea to make sure search engine crawlers have a good sense of where you're located.

Search and the Bumpy Ride Ahead: The Winds of Change in Chicago
by Gord Hotchkiss - There's a collective holding of our breath, to see what's next. One of the wonderful things about search, the fact that it's the intersection of so much activity on the internet, is also its biggest challenge. To truly leverage search, you have to have one foot in a lot of different worlds. And that's tough to do as a small independent shop.

Is Social Bookmarking the Next Big Thing?
by Jennifer Laycock - Social Bookmarking is a hot topic in the online marketing world right now. That's a good thing, because there's quite a bit to be learned from social bookmarking...namely, that people tend to gather together in groups to share the things that interests them. The problem is that just because something works for one site, it's not guaranteed to work for ALL sites.

Protecting Your Brand’s Reputation Online
by Bruce Clay - With all the self-publishing options on the web, nothing is sacred, including control over your brand. The multiple sources of user generated content published and communicated online can dramatically affect your company’s reputation.

Interview with Adam Lasnik of Google
by Lee Odden - Google has done an increasingly good job of interacting with the webmaster community through the efforts of Matt Cutts and Vanessa Fox as well as Adam Lasnik. After having the chance to talk to Adam, I thought he and his job sounded pretty interesting and he agreed to do a short interview.

 

Search Engine Guide Blog Posts

A Wordie is Worth a Thousand.... Words?
Wordie is a social network, kind of like Del.icio.us where you can store your favorite words and see who else likes those words as well.

Interview with Chris Pirillo
Chris started Lockergnome in 1996 and hosted TechTV’s “Call for Help” show for 2 years. He hosts a popular conference every year called Gnomedex which has been sponsored by the likes of Google, Yahoo and Microsoft. He’s written books, columns and many articles and he produces a popular online radio show. (skip to "Interview with Chris Pirillo" by Lee Odden)

Online Public Relations: What Not to Write About
Don't detract from your online public relations campaign by distributing expert articles or online press releases just because. If you don't have a solid topic, wait and write the article or press release when you do. (skip to "Online Public Relations: What Not to Write About" by Brian Cooper)

Ask City Offers Some Impressive New Features
Search Engine Guide readers might remember my experimental week earlier this year when I gave up Google and vowed to use nothing but Ask.com for a full week's worth of searching. One of the things I walked away from that experiment with was the opinion that while Ask still has some work to do in terms of pure algorithmic search, they are really blazing some trails in terms of specialty search offerings. That's an important point to consider when checking out the latest offering from Ask ... Ask City.

Changes to the Yahoo! Search Marketing Interface
Had an email from the Yahoo! team this week making note of some changes that they'd made to the interface of their campaign management tool. They've removed the "Top 5 Max Bids," "Position" and "Your Cost" columns. While Yahoo! had planned to add two new columns to their interface, they actually ended up adding three. The new options could go a long way toward helping companies come up with new bid management strategies, mostly because they focus on delivering trending data rather than "current" data.

Wordtracker Offers Chance for Free SEO Training
The folks over at Wordtracker are offering up a unique opportunity for someone looking to learn more about search marketing. By simply writing a short essay on why you'd like to improve your search term research skills, you'll earn yourself the chance to win a free trip to one of their 5 day "SEO Mastery Workshops", the chance to do some blogging on the Wordtracker site and a year's free subscription to the Wordtracker keyword research service. The deadline to enter is December 15th, so you'd better get writing if you'd like to get the chance to talk SEO in between rides on Space Mountain.

Google Ads Collapsible Maps to Some Results
Google is now showing collapsible maps on some search results.

Google AdWords ClickFraud Rate Is Under 2%?
Andy Beal has a post over at Marketing_Pilgrim that's sure to shake up the paid search industry. In the post, Beal writes about a conversation that he had last week with Shuman Ghosemajumder, Google's business product manager of trust and safety. According to the post, Ghosemajumder shared quite a bit of insight into how Google categorizes clicks and ended up revealing that just under 2% of fraudulent clicks ever end up getting charged to the advertise. That flies heavily in the face of reports and studies that claim click fraud rates of 15% or more.

8 Simple Steps to Make a Page More "Local"
We don't know much about the local search algorithms in use at Google, Yahoo!, and MSN. We do know, however, that local SERPs use a different algorithm than the main SERPs – a location-based algorithm. So if you're a small business that relies on local search traffic, it's a good idea to make sure search engine crawlers have a good sense of where you're located. (skip to "8 Simple Steps to Make a Page More "Local"" by Matt McGee.)

Know Your Audience. Seriously...Know Who They Are!
Over the years I've spent a lot of time harping on all the basics of good communication that seem to be tossed out the window in the fast paced world of online marketing. Things like taking the time to consider things from your visitors' point of view...things like building relationships as a way to bridge the gap toward link building...things like taking the time to know who it is you are emailing before you shoot off an email. That last one came to mind today after I received two emails from two fairly well-known businesses in the industry.

Search and the Bumpy Ride Ahead: The Winds of Change in Chicago
There's a collective holding of our breath, to see what's next. One of the wonderful things about search, the fact that it's the intersection of so much activity on the internet, is also its biggest challenge. To truly leverage search, you have to have one foot in a lot of different worlds. And that's tough to do as a small independent shop. (skip to "Search and the Bumpy Ride Ahead: The Winds of Change in Chicago" by Gord Hotchkiss)

Is Social Bookmarking the Next Big Thing?
Social Bookmarking is a hot topic in the online marketing world right now. That's a good thing, because there's quite a bit to be learned from social bookmarking...namely, that people tend to gather together in groups to share the things that interests them. The problem is that just because something works for one site, it's not guaranteed to work for ALL sites. (skip to "Is Social Bookmarking the Next Big Thing?" by Jennifer Laycock)

New Conference Aimed at Promoting All Forms of Online Marketing
The first ever Online Marketing Summit 2007 (OMS) will be held next year from February 22 - 24 in San Diego, California. The conference will feature case studies, panel discussions, one on one marketing labs and hands-on sessions designed to help boost online marketing ROI. The Summit will not have vendor booths or sponsorships so that attendees can focus on learning through networking rather than via veiled sales pitches.

Back Home From SES Chicago
After a whirlwind two days and a flight that was delayed just enough to let us slip on board despite leaving for the airport just one hour before it was scheduled to take off, I've returned home from Search Engine Strategies Chicago with loads of new things to think about and write about. So what's hot?

Heaviest Online Shopping Day Ever
According to ComScore, December 4, 2006 was the heaviest e-commerce shopping day on record. Spending topped out at 647 million dollars!

Do You Suffer From SEO Paranoia?
I run across a lot of paranoia in the SEO business. Most of the time it comes from clients that want to keep their marketing efforts a closely guarded secret. To me, this is especially funny in the SEO industry.

Protecting Your Brand’s Reputation Online
With all the self-publishing options on the web, nothing is sacred, including control over your brand. The multiple sources of user generated content published and communicated online can dramatically affect your company’s reputation. (skip to "Protecting Your Brand’s Reputation Online" by Bruce Clay)

Interview with Adam Lasnik of Google
Google has done an increasingly good job of interacting with the webmaster community through the efforts of Matt Cutts and Vanessa Fox as well as Adam Lasnik. After having the chance to talk to Adam, I thought he and his job sounded pretty interesting and he agreed to do a short interview. (skip to "Interview with Adam Lasnik of Google"

Fun With Social Media
Now here's an example of social media breaking away from driving links and into the world of having a little bit of fun. The site Drop Spots allows users to log the location of "gifts" that they have hidden in spots around the country so that other users may head out and try to find them.

A Little Blog Growth Humor
Fresh out of speaking on the "Link Baiting and Viral Marketing" sessions here at Search Engine Strategies Chicago, I ran across a pretty accurate (and amusing) take on the explosive growth of the blogosphere. In response to Technorati's David Sifry's report on the state of the Blogosphere...Philipp Lenssen offers up his own take on the different subsets of bloggers that contributed to all that growth.

The Simplest Thing Can Blow Your Online Reputation
Stoney deGeyter makes some excellent points in a blog post today that talks about building relationships online as part of your marketing and link building plan. From blogging to discussion forums to email marketing, the smallest effort can be rewarding and the smallest blunder can be disastrous...

Click Fraud Funding Terrorists?
We've always known that click fraud is a danger to small business marketing success, but now it seems that click fraud may also be helping pose a danger to the world at large. Webmaster Radio's Jim Hedger has announced that he'll soon be releasing information from an investigative report on Google AdSense click fraud being used to raise funds for terrorist groups like Al Qaeda and Hezzbollah. (Hat tip to Loren Baker)

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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.)

Blogrolls and Ordinary Link Exchanging
Cre8asite Forums - "What is the difference between a blogroll and using ordinary link exchanges (reciprocal linking)?"

Heatmap Your Pages
Cre8asite Forums - "Just found out about a pretty unique stats program that has a heatmap overlay. This is a mighty awesome resource for us small fry webmasters. A heatmap visual gives you an instant analysis of your page without number crunching."

Google Says Internal Duplication Is Ok
Cre8asite Forums - "There is no penalty doesn't mean there is no loss. ...this setup means that Google, and not you or your marketers, decide which page your customers will see for a specific product or service."

SEO Work: do not accept list?
Search Engine Watch Forums - "Are there any genres of sites that you would not touch with a 10 foot SEO pole?"

Google's Invalid Clicks Is Less Than 2%?
High Rankings Forum - "Andy Beal had an interview with Shuman Ghosemajumder from Google, who said that 'invalid clicks at Google was on average is in the single digits, quarter over quarter.' What do you guys think?"

Yahoo Search Update: Dec. 11, 2006
Webmaster World - "Seeing big movement..."

Search Marketing Jobs Slow Down?
Search Engine Watch Forums - "This can't possibly be true! Many analysts claim in-house SEM is growing by leaps and bounds, are you seeing a slowdown in the space?"

Ecommerce: Google Offer Takes on PayPal
Webmaster World - "...we've had such a positive response from merchants that we decided to extend the offer through the end of 2007. From now through December 31, 2007, we'll process all of your Checkout transactions for free."

Secured Server and SEO?
SEO Chat Forums - "...asking if https:// is treated any different than http:// by the search engines?"

Accessibility Basics
Webmaster World - "I thought I would share some of the things I do to make my sites more accessible. You will get CSS 'tricks' to help you build cross browser site more easily as well as some accessibility basics."

Keeping a Changelog - for when Google (or any) trouble strikes
Webmaster World - "What do you do when troubles show up? Keeping a website changelog can be one of the best disciplines you ever put in place for that rainy day. ...members discuss what changes should always be logged."

How To Obtain A Gov Tld Backlink
Cre8asite Forums - "Does anyone have any ideas on how I could obtain a link from a .gov site?"

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Recent Conversations In Our Small Business Forum
(If you like our search engine news, you'll love our small business news.)

Cost Of Doing Biz Or What?
"When I buy inventory, should the shipping & delivery charges be factored in to the value of the inventory or is this an ordinary cost of doing business?"

Low Income Neighborhood, High Revenue Potential
"I think there may be many potential businesses that could work, but probably where I would start seeking ideas is by talking to people in the area. What type of new business would those customers of the restaurant, grocery store, etc like to see..."

Article Writing Tips From SpongeBob SquarePants
"I suddenly realized that everything you’d want to know about writing articles for your website can be taught by SpongeBob SquarePants and his friends. When you write for your newsletter, blog, or website, which character are you most like?"

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