SearchCap: The Day In Search, February 14, 2011

Below is what happened in search today, as reported on Search Engine Land and from other places across the web.

From Search Engine Land:

  • New: Block Sites From Google Results Using Chrome’s “Personal Blocklist”

    Google has announced that a new way to block certain sites from appearing in Google’s search results, though a special Google-made Chrome browser extension named Personal Blocklist. Using Personal Blocklist How do you use Personal Blocklist? (1) Download and install the extension over here. You will need Chrome. (2) When you are viewing search results [...]

  • Hot At Sphinn: Can You Ignore Facebook, J.C. Penney Slapped, HuffPo’s SEO & More

    Another busy week on Sphinn included a couple well-known brands having … shall we say SEO “issues”? Slate pretty much called out The Huffington Post on part of its SEO strategy, and the New York Times did a big exposé of how J.C. Penney managed to use low-quality links to reach the top of the [...]

  • 3 Tips To Detect & Fix Mobile Search Leaks, Improve Your CTR

    I’m pleased to join you with my first installment for the new Mobile Mondays column. As a long time Analyze This columnist, I appreciate SEL making space for the mobile marketing conversation. Mobile marketers love the data Google announced recently at the “Think Mobile” event. First, they shared that one in seven queries (15%) now [...]

  • One Mission Accomplished: Microsoft’s Deal With Nokia Injects Windows Into The Smartphone Conversation

    We don’t know yet whether the much-discussed deal between Nokia and Microsoft will yield the hoped-for results for both companies. But one thing is clear: it has already helped create a perception that there are now three mobile platforms that matter and Windows is one of them. The other two are of course Apple’s iOS [...]

  • Study Asks, Can You Trust Google’s Personalized Search Results?

    New research designed to analyze Google’s personalized search results and make the process the search engine uses more transparent has generated interesting and controversial findings. The study examined a number of commonly held notions about personalization, including the idea that personalization is subtle, that it can often surface more long-tail results, and that personalization is [...]

  • SMX West Preview: Managing PPC For Large Companies

    Next month, I’m going to be speaking at SMX West, talking about one of my favorite topics, managing PPC campaigns at big companies. To be honest, I’m pretty passionate about this stuff and I have a lot to say on the topic. I’d like to use this space to add some detail to the presentation [...]

  • 3 Ways Google Could Adjust The Revenue Dials

    Occasionally, I’m asked by investment bank types whether Google can “dial up” their revenue on a whim, and moreover whether they do so. The short answer is “certainly, yes” to the first part, and “probably no” to the second. It’s worth spending a bit of time to detail Google’s three major revenue dials. {Note: Most [...]

  • deCarta Challenges Google With Free Mapping, Local Search Tools Aimed At Mobile Developers

    Today at the Mobile World Congress event in Barcelona, deCarta announced a set of free developer tools intended to challenge Google Maps and Places. I received a briefing last week and was impressed by the suite of products and tools, which include the following: White Label Maps Application White Label Local Search Engine Maps APIs [...]

  • Google Image Search Adds SVG Filter & Google Displays Satellite & Terrain Maps

    Google’s weekend update includes two new recent updates for Google Search and Image Search. (1) Google Image Search added an SVG image search filter. Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) graphics are scalable graphics that can be used in many ways. Google began indexing and crawling SVG files in September 2010. Then Google began ranking those file [...]

  • SMX West Keynotes: Foursquare’s Tristan Walker, Author Steven Levy & Danny Sullivan

    A benefit of attending Search Marketing Expo – SMX conferences is the luxury of participating in horizon-expanding presentations. You’ll be a more inspired, creative and well-rounded internet marketer after these three SMX West keynotes, March 8-10 in San Jose, CA: Search and social media marketing are like California’s geology: ever-changing, unpredictable, and sometimes unstable. Search [...]

  • Google’s Valentine’s Day Logo By Robert Indiana

    Google is featuring their Valentine’s Day logo, designed by Robert Indiana. Robert Indiana designed the 8 cent love stamp back in 1973. Google decided to use that design towards the 2011 version of their Google Doodle for Valentine’s Day. The logo is not a typical standard “doodle”-like version of their logo. Typically, the letters of [...]

  • ComScore Looks Back At Smartphone Growth In “Mobile Year In Review”

    ComScore has released “The 2010 Mobile Year in Review,” which compiles data the company has mostly already released in various forms from the previous year. However it’s nice to have it all in one place. The report covers the US, EU and Japanese markets at a high level. It largely depicts the growth of smartphones [...]

  • Google Wants You To “Map Your Valentine”

    Google has created a little site called “Map Your Valentine” in honor of today (thanks Mike Blumenthal). It uses Google Maps and enables you to send a email card to your spouse/partner/lover/friend/stalkee. At the end of the sequence it allows you to search for local florists, chocolatiers or even “find a date” (not exactly). You [...]

  • New York Times Exposes J.C. Penney Link Scheme That Causes Plummeting Rankings in Google

    Today, the New York Times published an article about a search engine optimization investigation of J.C. Penney. Perplexed by how well did in unpaid (organic) search results for practically everything the retailer sold, they asked someone familiar with the world of search engine optimization (SEO) to look into it a bit more. The investigation [...]

  • Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me: “I Search Google. So Does Bing”

    Stephen Colbert & Jimmy Fallon weren’t the only ones having fun with Google’s accusations that Bing was copying Google’s search results. NPR’s “Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me” quiz show did a funny send up, as well. The show, which aired on February 5, had host Peter Sagal stumping panelist Roxanne Roberts, at first, with a [...]

  • January 2011: Search Engine Land’s Most Popular Stories

    Below are Search Engine Land’s 10 most popular stories from January 2011: Google vs. Bing: The Fallacy Of The Superior Search Engine The New York Times, Demand Media Edition Confirmed: Google Readies “Google Offers” Groupon Clone Internet-To-TV Players Compared: Roku, Apple TV, Boxee & Google TV A To Do List For Google’s New CEO Larry [...]

  • Bing Sees 13% Spike In Searches In January

    Happy new year to you, Bing: According to the latest comScore survey, you experienced a 13% rise in search queries during January. Search activity was up on Google and Yahoo, too, but Bing’s activity rose more than triple those two. In terms of overall market share, Bing also posted the only gain during January — [...]

Search News From Around The Web:

Business Issues

Link Building

Paid Search & Contextual



Social Media

Video, Music & Image Search

Recent Hot Items From Sphinn, Our Social News Sharing Site:

  • JC Penney has a bigger problem than paid links – Alan Bleiweiss explains why "getting only 7% of all traffic from organic search" counts as epic failure, and elaborates why that's not 70% without utilizing any link broker.
  • The Data and Details Behind “The Dirty Little Secrets of Search” – Everybody is talking about the NY Times piece regarding JCPenney's approach to SEO, but Doug took a little time to dig deeper into some of the shadier techniques that were employed.
  • Using Facebook Connect for Product Q and A – Linda Bustos takes a look at a new tool that lets shoppers ask questions to people who have already purchased products on your site. She suggests that Facebook Connect could help get over the friction of otherwise forcing people to login to engage on an e-commerce website.
  • New York Times Exposes J.C. Penney Link Scheme That Causes Plummeting Rankings in Google – From Vanessa Fox at Search Engine Land: "Today, the New York Times published an article about a search engine optimization investigation of  J.C. Penney. Perplexed by how well did in unpaid (organic) search results for practically everything the retailer sold, they asked someone familiar with the world of search engine optimization (SEO) to look into it a bit more. The investigation found that thousands of seemingly unrelated web sites (many that seemed to contain only links) were linking to the J.C. Penney web site. And most of those links had really descriptive anchor text. It was almost like someone had arranged for all of those links in order to get better rankings in Google."
  • Using Dayparting Effectively in PPC, Part 2: Advanced Tactics – One of the areas that PPCers often overlook is the times of the day, or days of the week, that conversions are generated.  Since ROI tends to be higher during these times and days it is important to understand how to use Dayparting to for your campaigns.  -  The 2nd part of In Part 1, we talked about basic dayparting techniques, such as turning off ads during days or hours where results are poor. But what if you don’t want to turn things all the way off?
  • Testing, Testing, 1-2-3: A/B Tests Boost Creativity, Productivity, and Bottom Line – Yes, you guessed it, the topic of this post is testing. More specifically the topic is testing alternative website content and features to produce the best possible traffic conversion rates. I have illustrated some of my points with tests conducted using Monetate’s testing, targeting, and optimization platform. However, the need to test, and the value of testing to the enterprise, is quite independent of Monetate and there are other technologies you can use to conduct tests. Right now I’m more interested in getting you excited about testing in general than about Monetate in particular…
  • Why Google, SEOs & Users Must ‘Blekko Up’ – As a professional writer, there’s a lot I could say and a lot that I want to say about the issue of content farms and its effect on search engine relevance, SEO, and branding. But I know me. It would get angry and passionate and people would accuse me of ranting. So I won’t. The fact that content is the red-headed step child of the Internet is just something us writers have to accept. For all its importance, as vital as it is, writers will never earn the respect they deserve. Not when you can buy a batch of 100 unique articles for less than a McDonald’s value meal. Oreo McFlurry and chocolate chip cookie included.

Related Topics: Channel: SearchCap | SearchCap


About The Author: is Search Engine Land's News Editor and owns RustyBrick, a NY based web consulting firm. He also runs Search Engine Roundtable, a popular search blog on very advanced SEM topics. Barry's personal blog is named Cartoon Barry and he can be followed on Twitter here. For more background information on Barry, see his full bio over here.

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