Just 1 Week Until SMX West, Register Today!

It's time. Search Marketing Expo - SMX West begins next Tuesday at the Santa Clara Convention Center. Register now to reserve your place. Your investment in coming to SMX West will pay off many times. We guarantee it. Whether you're a beginner or experienced search engine marketer, SMX West has sessions just for you. Check out the agenda. Conference chairs Danny Sullivan and Chris Sherman, and the all-star SMX programming team, have developed a comprehensive agenda that is tactical, strategic and forward-looking. Listen to Danny's SMX West preview podcast here. In addition, we've [...]


Google Gets Fearful, Flags Entire Internet As Malware Briefly

Earlier today, Google started placing malware warnings next to every site listed. TechCrunch has an excellent screenshot, and there's much discussion on Techmeme. As part of its malware blocking system, this also meant anyone trying to reach a site by clicking on a link from Google were instead routed to a "do you really want to go to this site" page. The problem has since ended. Google hasn't posted an official statement yet, but the head of its web spam team Matt Cutts has twittered that one is coming, along with apologies. Postscript: The Google blog post is up now, explaining that human [...]


Marin Software’s Multi-Conversion Tracking Helps Fine Tune Keyword Bidding

Marin Software has introduced a new tool that the company says is unique in the industry. It's called "Multi-Conversion Tracker." It enables search marketers to define various kinds of actions or "conversions" (e.g., newsletter sign up, e-commerce transactions, e-mail capture, etc.). That process then enables SEMs to determine the relative performance of keywords and ad copy in terms of those defined conversions. They can then refine and fine tune their keyword bids accordingly. Here's how the company explains various use cases: The new feature, now available to all Marin Software use [...]


SearchCap: The Day In Search, January 30, 2009

Below is what happened in search today, as reported on Search Engine Land and from other places across the web. From Search Engine Land: How Search Marketing Made Me a Fantasy Football ChampionOkay, so it's not curing polio or splitting the atom, but winning my fantasy football league this year was a fairly rewarding experience. Week after week, I racked up the points and left my circle of friends in the dust. My secret? Search marketing training. Losing Hope With Yahoo, After Watching The Paid Search Division StumbleCome and get us, Microsoft. That might as well be what Yahoo's s [...]


How Search Marketing Made Me a Fantasy Football Champion

Okay, so it's not curing polio or splitting the atom, but winning my fantasy football league this year was a fairly rewarding experience. Week after week, I racked up the points and left my circle of friends in the dust. My secret? Search marketing training. First, for those of you who are clueless about Fantasy Football (FF), it's become a very popular game following America's most followed sport, Professional Football. It's estimated that fifteen to twenty million people play FF and around twenty-two percent of males between eighteen and forty-nine are engaged annually in the pastime. [...]


Losing Hope With Yahoo, After Watching The Paid Search Division Stumble

Come and get us, Microsoft. That might as well be what Yahoo's search ad division -- Yahoo Search Marketing -- is doing with its action of changing advertiser accounts without asking first. Part of Yahoo's long-standing problem has been that it generates less advertising revenue per ad than Google. The Panama upgrade that came out two years ago was supposed to fix that -- and didn't. Then the partnership with Google was supposed to fix things -- and never happened. Moreover, that deal just highlighted problems with Yahoo's broad matching system. Rather than fixing those problem an [...]


Are You An SEO Hybrid?

During search engine optimization (SEO) consultations, have you heard any of the following statements: "I didn't hire you for website usability. I hired you for SEO." These statements, and the sentiments associated with them, come in many variations, such as: "I didn't hire you to redesign my site. I hired you to get my site #1 on Google." "We don't need usability testing with searchers. People use our site all of the time." "We can't rewrite our content. Optimize what is already there." "Just make our AJAX search-engine friendly. Don't do anything else." Unfortunately, many of th [...]


Live Search “Auto Suggest” Add-On For Firefox Released

Microsoft's Live Search still isn't built into Firefox, but you can add it to your Firefox search box manually. Now, a new add-on from Live Search does this complete with the ability for the search box to auto-suggest terms you might be searching for. For more, see the Live Search blog. [...]


Martin Schaedel (Lazerzubb) Killed In Plane Crash

I can recall when I first met Martin Schaedel, known widely by his online handle lazerzubb, I think it was at a search conference in Sweden or Germany years ago. He was the youngest person I'd ever seen show up at one (he was maybe 15 at the time), and he was eager to make his mark. And so he did among many in the search and internet marketing community that watched him grow up. Sadly, Martin was apparently killed in a small plane crash in Santa Monica yesterday. Over the years, Martin was a fixture at various events. He moved beyond search and was involved in venture capital and va [...]


SearchCap: The Day In Search, January 29, 2009

Below is what happened in search today, as reported on Search Engine Land and from other places across the web. From Search Engine Land: Google Street View Car Kills Bambi, Censors Pictures AfterwardWe've seen Google's Street View cars capture a variety of interesting scenes, such as a house on fire, but this is a new one. Apparently, one hit a deer and then captured a photo of the poor thing lying dead or dying afterward. ... Obama Inauguration Sets Standard For Live Video StreamingOn January 20th, CNN.com served over 21.3 million live video streams of President Obama’s Inaugura [...]


Google Toolbar For Firefox Adds Chrome-Like “Most Visited Sites” Tab

One of the key features of Google Chrome is how it will list the sites you regularly visit on your home page when the browser starts. Now Google has brought that to Firefox, via the latest Google Toolbar update now available. With the update, if you open a new blank tab in Firefox, the sites you visit most often will be listed. Of course, not everyone will like having all the sites they regularly visit showing up this way. I find it annoying in Chrome that this cannot be disabled. But Google tells me this can be disabled using the Google Toolbar's Settings option. And if you clea [...]


Google Street View Car Kills Bambi, Removes Pictures Afterward

We've seen Google's Street View cars capture a variety of interesting scenes, such as a house on fire or car accidents, but this is a new one. Apparently, one hit a deer and then captured a photo of the poor thing lying dead or dying afterward. The Daily What has the before screenshots, reprinted above with permission. Want to see them now? Sorry, if you try, you'll see a message saying that Street View is unavailable "due to high demand" or that "This image is no longer available." Postscript: Reader Tim Cohn sends news of funnier capture out of Street View, two guys apparentl [...]


Obama Inauguration Sets Standard For Live Video Streaming

On January 20th, CNN.com served over 21.3 million live video streams of President Obama’s Inaugural Address, breaking CNN.com’s previous daily-streaming record (5.3 million on Election Day). Page views swelled to 136 million. The CNN feed also included a sidebar that allowed Facebook users to comment live on the speech. Others watched on CBS.com, Washingtonpost.com or Boston.com. This deluge of simultaneous video streaming produced a few minor glitches on MSNBC.com (time lag) and Hulu.com (choppy) and took down some sites, such as the BBC. But, for the most part, inaugural video streamers [...]


A Look At Article Directories and Their Influence in Organic Rankings

Article directories and article syndication websites are one the earliest forms internet marketing, but do they still work and are they worth the effort? The main problem with syndicated articles is that they will most likely be seen as duplicate content, which Google claims will be filtered out of organic SERP's. Article directory owners tell a different story. In a style reminiscent of late night infomercials, they will talk about the exposure benefits and tidal waves  of traffic that contributions to article directories can bring. So where's the truth? In this article we'll be taking a loo [...]


Google AdWords Testing New Interface

Tim Cohn writes about a new user interface beta that Google is offering to some AdWords advertisers. As you can see from Tim's screenshot below (which was probably left small to protect personal data), the new interface looks similar to the charting/graphing system that Google Analytics uses: (It also looks somewhat similar to the Yahoo Sponsored Search interface, too, for that matter.) From some of the other screenshots Tim shares, we see that this change is only to the way data is presented to advertisers, and has no impact on the ads themselves. One screen says: The updated int [...]


SMB’s Need More “Local” Outreach

(Business owners, if you're looking for actionable advice, skip to the end) I spoke at a local Chamber of Commerce here in the Portland area last week, giving a brief presentation on the fundamentals of SEO. Unlike a previous event I'd attended just three months ago in eastern Washington, about 75% of this audience had actually heard the term "SEO" before. But after my brief synopsis on local search, I still received a couple of questions from the audience related to "claiming your listing" and what that was all about. It seems that even in incredibly savvy small business markets l [...]


YouTube Searchers: It’s All About The Music

You can learn a lot about a web site by peeking below the hood of its internal site search. And, based on Hitwise data out today, YouTube is a surrogate music video search engine. Hitwise research suggests that 72% of the site's Top 50 search terms from December 2008 are music-related -- from L'il Wayne to Beyoncé, to song titles like "Womanizer" and "Heartless." That YouTube leans heavy toward music shouldn't be a surprise. Universal Music's channel is the most popular on the site, with 3.3 billion views, and seven of the top ten channels are music-related. We've reported previously t [...]


Google TV Ads Tells How DVRs Affect Your Ads

Google's TV Ads team has announced the addition of new metrics detailing time-shifted viewings of your TV ad. Here's the formal explanation from Google's announcement: "[Time-shifted viewership data] ... provides you with insight into how and when viewers see your ads during DVR playback of recorded content. As with all metrics in your Google TV Ads reports, time-shifted impressions reflect the viewership of your specific TV commercial, not just general program viewership." The new reports are free, and are live in advertiser accounts now. Google's blog post includes a video showing how [...]


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SearchCap: The Day In Search, January 28, 2009

Below is what happened in search today, as reported on Search Engine Land and from other places across the web. From Search Engine Land: Pew: Young Or Old, Search Cuts Across Age CategoriesThe Pew Internet & American Life Project has come out with a fairly comprehensive look at generations and internet activity, called "Generations Online." The report segments users by age categories (i.e., X, Y, Boomers) and looks their online activities. The data were drawn from responses by thousands of users to surveys conducted by Pew researchers between 2006 and 2008. Content: The Once, Curr [...]


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