October 2007: Search Engine Land’s Most Popular Stories

Below are Search Engine Land's 10 most popular stories from October 2007: 1) Mapping The Southern California Fires - I'm back home (my original home) in Southern California for vacation, and to welcome me back, the Southland is on fire. Ah, just like old times. As I was keeping up with the news, I came across some maps online from Google Earth, Google Maps, Virtual Earth, and elsewhere that I thought I'd share with others. =================== 2) Billboard Showdown: Google 411 Takes On Ask's Algorithm - I'm in the Bay Area this week, and driving down Lombard Street, I brought the car to a h [...]


SEOs Should Understand Network Infrastructure

As an in-house SEO, you need to interact with senior engineers, project managers, and analysts who know your infrastructure and its limitations inside and out. Adding an understanding of your network infrastructure to your SEO knowledge base gives you the right lingo and frame of reference for conversations with techies to help you gain coveted respect from the IT department. Knowledge of your network can open doors to complex decision making conversations that SEOs need to be part of. Who to talk to: Ask for a network overview from one of your senior architects who can answer specific que [...]


Social Networking Through Search: Hakia Helps You Meet Others

Hakia, a natural language search engine, has just added a new spin to search: social networking. Their new Meet Others feature lets you connect with others who are searching for the same things you are. Since Hakia processes queries differently than old school search engines such as Google, you aren't just matched up with people who typed in the exact query you did -- you're matched with a larger set of searchers that Hakia thinks are looking for the same things you are based on natural language processing. For instance, if you're searching for "what drug treats a headache," Hakia processes t [...]


SearchCap: The Day In Search, October 31, 2007

Below is what happened in search today, as reported on Search Engine Land and from other places across the web. From Search Engine Land: Yahoo Search Updates Algorithm, Index & CrawlThe Yahoo Search Blog has posted that they are currently undergoing an index, crawl and algorithm update. Priyank Garg of Yahoo said: Over the last few days, we've been rolling out some changes to our crawling, indexing and ranking algorithms. While we expect the update will be completed soon, as... GOOG Cracks The $700 Threshold, Partly On Mobile SpeculationPropelled by strong quarterly earnings and rampant [...]


Yahoo Search Updates Algorithm, Index, & Crawl

The Yahoo Search Blog has posted that they are currently undergoing an index, crawl, and algorithm update. Priyank Garg of Yahoo said: Over the last few days, we've been rolling out some changes to our crawling, indexing and ranking algorithms. While we expect the update will be completed soon, as you know, throughout this process you may see some ranking changes and page shuffling in the index. I posted signs of this update this morning at the Search Engine Roundtable, and linked to several forums discussion, which highlight what appears to be a pretty significant update. [...]


GOOG Cracks The $700 Threshold, Partly On Mobile Speculation

Propelled by strong quarterly earnings and rampant speculation (and coverage) about its mobile plans, Google stock earlier today crossed the $700 price target many Wall Street analysts had set for the company. It's down slightly right now. Once Google provides more visibility about its mobile plans, investors could become more bullish or potentially be disappointed. However, it's unlikely that any practical market impact would be felt immediately because there would likely be a lag between any mobile announcement and the actual product rollout. As Silicon Alley Insider points out, in terms o [...]


Ask Introduces New Maps & Directions For UK

The mapping upgrades and improvements are coming so fast now from Google, Microsoft, MapQuest, and Yahoo that it's difficult to keep track of all the changes. Luckily, the Ask Blog walks us through all the features of the new and improved Ask Maps UK, which includes multi-point routing, walking directions (which are claimed to be unique to Ask), aerial views, and incorporates landmarks, transit, and points of interest. However, this isn't a map-centric local search site, like Ask City in the US. A search for local information on the Ask UK Maps site (e.g., London Hotels) will send users to As [...]


Ask.com Helps IAC Earn 40% Increase In Q3 2007 Media Revenue

IAC Reports Q3 Results from CNNMoney reports that IAC saw a 4.2% decline in net income year over year. Here is IAC's press release for the third-quarter numbers this year. But if you pull out Ask.com, IAC's search engine, which is part of IAC's Media & Advertising group, you will see that sector saw an increase of 40% in revenue and a positive net this past quarter. In Q3 2007, the Media & Advertising group saw revenues of $189.8 million up from $135.5 million in Q3 2006, plus operating income this past quarter was $15.4 million, up from a loss of $2.1 million last year. The Media & Adver [...]


Google AdWords Lets Advertisers Choose Date & Number Preferences

Kevin Gibbons spotted a couple new features in Google AdWords for advertisers, including a convenient way for advertisers who are not based in the United States to now change the format of numbers, times, and dates within their accounts. For example, if you prefer your dollars and cents to have a comma instead of a period, you can specify that. If you prefer your dates to start with the day and not the month, you can specify that. How do you do that? Here are the instructions on how to configure that setting. Another feature AdWords released recently is to see on the Account Snapshot pag [...]


Want To Opt Out Of Behavioral Ads? AOL Says It Is Your Choice

AOL Will Let Consumers Opt Out of Targeted Ads from the Wall Street Journal reports that AOL will announce today a new tool that will enable AOL users to opt out of targeted or personalized ads. (NOTE: The AOL announcement is now live). AOL has behavioral ad technology that stores consumer's preferences and then tailors ads based on the sites' users' visits. AOL is expected to announce a system that will give these users the ability to opt out of those ads. The Wall Street Journal says AOL most likely timed this announcement to pre-empt the Federal Trade Commission meeting tomorrow on "con [...]


Lead Management: When Conversion Is Not Enough

Let's listen in on a call between a sales rep and a new lead generated by a paid search campaign: Hello Sarah, my name is Brian, and I’m your sales rep from Widgets Inc. I noticed you recently clicked one of our ads and registered to download our paper "10 Ways to Better Profits through Widgets." I'm calling to see if you have any questions... You haven’t read it yet? Oh, OK. Do you mind if I ask you a few questions anyway? Do you have a Budget approved to buy widgets? Are you the Decision Maker? When do you expect to purchase a Widget solution?.... Oh, I see, you’re just researchi [...]


Google, Yahoo, Ask.com Do Halloween Logos & Themes

Google doesn't always do special logos for every holiday, but in the case of Halloween, it's pretty consistent. Up today on the Google home page is the ninth consecutive Halloween logo it has run since 1999. Below, a look back at the past years, as well as this year's animated logo from Yahoo and a Halloween-themed home page from Ask.com. Google Halloween Logos 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 And 2007 in context of the entire page: Yahoo Halloween Logo 2008 Yahoo went for a fun animated logo, where two skeletons walking a skeleton dog are scare [...]


Truveo Launches Big International Expansion

After relaunching this August as a video search engine and consumer destination, AOL's Truveo is aggressively expanding on a global basis. By the end of the year, Truveo intends to be in 15 countries, including Russia and Turkey. Starting today it will be available outside the U.S. in France, Germany, India, Japan, Korea, Spain, Taiwan, and the UK. The URLs all follow the pattern: http://uk.truveo.com. More URLs for the international sites can be found in the release. YouTube has numerous international sites as well. However, Truveo indexes YouTube video in addition to video from major brand [...]


OpenSocial: Led By Google, Social Networks Band To Take On Facebook

As expected, the much-discussed Google social play turns out to be an alliance with other companies to "open up" social networks and their data to developers. TechCrunch and the New York Times both have early news of an expected announcement tomorrow on how Google, along with partners like Ning, Linked In, Friendster, and others, will introduce a set of common APIs -- called OpenSocial -- to be used for getting data from and writing applications for social networks. The idea, as the New York Times explains, is to help combat the number of people who are developing for Facebook [...]


Let Google Know The Geographic Location of Your Site

For years, webmasters have wished for a way to tell search engines the country that should be associated with their sites. Starting today, Google Webmaster Central is offering a solution for those geographic woes. Country association is used both in overall ranking (for instance, searchers in Canada will see a greater number of Canadian sites than searchers in the United States will) and in country-restricted searches (for instance, searchers on google.co.uk can choose to see only "pages from the UK"). Historically, search engines use the top level domain of a site to determine location. [...]


SearchCap: The Day In Search, October 30, 2007

Below is what happened in search today, as reported on Search Engine Land and from other places across the web. From Search Engine Land: SMX West Is Coming! Ready To Speak?February 26-28, 2008 is an important date for Search Engine Land. That's when we'll be holding Search Marketing Expo West, the first "big" show in our SMX conference series. This will be a multi-day, multi-track event designed search marketers of all levels. I'll be posting the agenda in mid-November and... Microsoft's Web Analytics Product Project Gatineau Now In Private BetaThe Microsoft adCenter blog has [...]


SMX West Is Coming! Ready To Speak?

February 26-28, 2008 is an important date for Search Engine Land. That's when we'll be holding Search Marketing Expo West, the first "big" show in our SMX conference series. This will be a multi-day, multi-track event designed for search marketers of all levels. I'll be posting the agenda in mid-November and telling readers more about the show in coming posts. But for now, I'm looking for session ideas! I've been programming search conferences for nearly a decade now, and my advice on how to become a speaker remains the same: suggest a great, compelling session on a topic that will [...]


Microsoft’s Web Analytics Product Project Gatineau Now In Private Beta

The Microsoft adCenter blog has announced a private beta of their web analytics program: Project Gatineau. The blog entry notes that features include: Click and visitor tracking reports Marketing campaign reporting and conversion tracking Unique demographic and geographic information from your site visitors If you want to try it out, you can request an invitation. No word on how quickly the invites are being handed out. Gatineau is free, although it requires an adCenter account (which entails a $5 setup charge). Rumors about Gatineau began early this year after Microsoft acquired DeepMetr [...]


Zillow Direct Ads Turn Site Into Dynamic Ad Platform

Zillow has always seen itself as a media company. The real estate site, which launched in early 2006, has continued to add features and listings that are very real-estate centric. But with the introduction of its "DirectAds" program it has become something else -- a site that uses its considerable data and data-mining capabilities to allow for precision ad targeting based on location, income, and other variables. In fact, this is probably the most precise geotargeting ad capability online: down to the house. The new ad program is designed for regional and national advertisers. The company of [...]


Google Phone (Or OS) Ready To Launch: Mobile ‘Maka-Maka’

In what now has become an almost weekly industry exercise in anticipation and speculation, the Wall Street Journal writes about the forthcoming unveiling of Google's plans for its (Phone/OS) mobile launch ("within the next two weeks"). The interesting new aspect of the piece is the idea of the OS/software as an open development platform for third parties (a la the iPhone). Here's the relevant discussion from the article: The Google-powered phones are expected to wrap together several Google applications -- among them, its search engine, Google Maps, YouTube, and Gmail email -- that have alr [...]


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