Demand Media & Being “The Best Click” On Google

Demand Media's success? Listening to what people want and generating great content to show up at Google. At least that's part of it, said Demand's chief revenue officer Joanne Bradford -- and she came armed with screenshots and examples to prove it. Bradford's illustrations came during a case study presentation, "Are You Really Listening," at FM's Signal LA event. My live blogging of her talk is below. I've added some analysis, as well. Yes, Demand Tracks Bananas Bradford starts off saying people buy lots of bananas, $1.05 billion of them per day (or maybe per year). More people check [...]

What Time Does the 2011 Super Bowl Start? A (Continuing) Lesson in Search Visibility

(For those wondering what time the game really does start, the 2011 Super Bowl between the Green Bay Packers and the Pittsburgh Steelers kicks off on Fox at around 6:30pm ET.) Before the Super Bowl in both 2009 and 2010, I checked out the search engine results for the Super Bowl start time. In 2009, the results were abysmal. No one was taking advantage of the clear searcher interest. One could argue that the search engines themselves did a poor job at surfacing relevant results but that argument assumes relevant results existed. The official sites were virtually uncrawlable. In 2010, the se [...]

Blekko Bans Content Farms From Its Index

TechCrunch reports Blekko, the SlashTag search engine, has made the bold move of banning some "content farms" from their index completely. Rich Skrenta, Blekko's CEO confirmed the ban with us today. He told us Blekko has decided to ban the "top 20 spam sites from blekko's index entirely, based on our users click /spam on results." This includes, one of Demand Media's top revenue generating web sites. Rich explained this came up after listening to Danny on This Week In Google. Rich hacked together a reverse slashtag named -/contentfarms that allowed searches to remove these si [...]

The Rise And Fall Of Content Farms

With Demand Media having gone public last week, it is worth taking some time to discuss the future of content farms. Clearly, lots of people are seeing value in the business model, as shown by the street's willingness to accept the IPO, and the acquistion of Associated Content by Yahoo! last May. But what is the real value, and where is this headed? That is the subject of today's column. I will begin the column with some background, and then finish up with my commentary on why I think this model will ultimately fail (hint: it won't be because of Google). Looking at the Demand Media IPO [...]

The New York Times, Demand Media Edition

Demand Media -- widely described as a "content farm" -- went public yesterday and quickly racked up a valuation higher than the New York Times. I figured the news might cause some at the New York Times to wonder if they needed to be more Demand Media-like. Would every story be turned into a question? How might that look? So I did a mockup. Here's what I started out with, the real New York Times home page, from just before noon Eastern Time. Click on the image to enlarge it: And here's what I call the "Demandified" version, which you can also click on to enlarge: In Seriousness.. [...]

Demand Media’s IPO: The Google & SEO Aspects

Demand Media has filed for an IPO. The company, known as a content farm to some, produces much of its content on sites like eHow and others in direct response to what it determines people are searching for on the web. Its filing shed new light on how much it depends on SEO and Google, in particular. That's interesting, because I've never known a company -- a publisher -- so dependent on SEO (outside of actual SEO companies) to go public before. Below, highlights on these aspects. The SEO and Google aspects really get going around page 14 of the filing: Page 14: Google Funds Big Chunk [...]

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