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Archive for the 'Search Engines' Category

A Federal judge has allowed a lawsuit to move forward against Google clearing the first hurdle in actually bringing the suit to trial.  The company e-ventures Worldwide LLC (a search engine optimization company) is alleging that Google Inc. has improperly censored search results for “anti-competitive, economic” reasons. (more…)

For awhile we have known that speed is an important factor in Search Ranking but over the last week we have seen an interesting notification for this being tested.  As reported on SearchEngineLand, Google has been testing a bright red “Slow” warning that can be found in Search Engine Results Pages (SERP) for sites that are slower than normal.  This way users can be warned that clicking the link will result in a slow page load time. (more…)

On December 1, 2014 Mozilla rolled out version 34 of its popular open source internet browser – Firefox.  This may not sound like a big deal as updates to Firefox come pretty frequently but what was included in this new update may very be.

The default search provider has been switched to Yahoo in the United States.

 

Firefox Switches to Yahoo Search

Since 2004 Mozilla Firefox has been in an agreement with Google to use them as their default search provider on the home page and the search box in the top right corner in almost all countries.  This has been the main source of revenue for Mozilla over these past 10 years which had forced them to become dependent on Google. (more…)

SEO Moves - Waves - Photo Credit: flickr.com/photos/onigiri_chang/Aaron Wall of SEOBook recently predicted that, in 2013, SEOs who “remain overly-public will continue to invent language to serve their own commercial purposes while chastising those who do not fall in line.” I appear to be living up to (the first part) of that promise because I’m calling it: the breakthrough ranking factor of 2013 will be “waves,” a term I just made up.

This will be a somewhat speculative post, so I feel compelled to say that these opinions are my own, and don’t necessarily reflect the opinions of Northcutt as a whole.
Where did this crazy idea come from? It started with the realization that, back in 2009, Google’s Chief Economist told McKinsey Quarterly “I keep saying the sexy job in the next ten years will be statisticians. People think I’m joking, but who would’ve guessed that computer engineers would’ve been the sexy job of the 1990s?”


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Google Logo - SEO MovesIf you work in the field of SEO, you probably understand that Google controls everything. We constantly bend to its will and try to outthink it at every turn. Just as space travel is unpredictable because we haven’t yet experienced much of it, SEO is also a largely new frontier and we seldom know what to expect from our environment. Our environment, of course, is Google. But what if Google didn’t exist? Where would we look for sites? How would we get links? Your brain is probably boiling over with great ideas right now, and that’s the point of this whole thing—if we eliminate Google from the equation entirely, those paths that we come up with are almost completely organic.

Google is extremely popular with both the general public and with SEO professionals, but it often locks us inside of a box. At some point we’re not exploring the web on our own, and instead we are relying on an algorithm and some web spiders to explore for us. We can break out of this box and choose our own destination in a natural, organic way. Considering the question “what if Google didn’t exist?” is a great way to answer the question “where can I get more links?”

What If?

Playing “what if?” is a fun, but sometimes dangerous, game. It’s easy to get stuck down in the mire of negativity and use “what if?” to fuel your own pessimistic fire. If you use it correctly, however, “what if?” can be a great catalyst for ideas and innovation. For example, think about the popular post apocalypse genre of fiction, where a shovel might become the protagonist’s best weapon, best tool and best friend. Similarly, in a world without Google, a message board buried somewhere inside of a mediocre site with low domain authority might become an excellent research tool. After all, if all of these people are willing to brave an underwhelming site just to talk to each other and share about a topic, that means they’re passionate about it. Passion leads to great info, great leads on new sites and useful links. Google does exist, of course, but thinking outside of that box produces some interesting results.

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I wonder what algorithm update Google used to determine the users intent for this search result? Oh wait, they have not searched yet, I wonder if this provides a great user experience?

Stay calm it’s still working …

This from Phil Leahy

I normally check every site that I visit to see their Google page rank and alexa page rank. I noticed from Thursday 6th of October it was not showing up on my Alexa toolbar or SeoQuake toolbar. I did some research via twitter to see what was going; on only to see people saying Google has just stopped its PR feature!
As a result I visited Google and do some research & see what is happening. The problem isn’t with Google stopping its pagerank feature or that there was another update, the problem had to do with something else.
The Recent Google PR Server Change
The reason for the recent changes in Google PR is due to the fact that Google just changed its PR server and as a result also changed its query URL.
The old query URL is:
http://toolbarqueries.google.com/search?client=navclient-auto&features=Rank&ch=8f3b58e04&q=info:[URLHERE]
The new query URL is:
http://toolbarqueries.google.com/tbr?client=navclient-auto&features=Rank&ch=8f3b58e04&q=info:[URLHERE]
What that means is that any software addon such as Alexa or Seoquake, website or PR tool trying to use the old server to check PR won’t be working again.
So nothing has happened to your pagerank, and your site won’t be affected. The only thing happening is a recent change in the Google PageRank query URL which will soon be fixed in a lot of SEO tools and websites, and as a result you will soon be able to check your Google Pagerank again via your chosen tool.
If you want to check your Google pagerank now (to ensure everything is okay) you can easily install the new Google Toolbar on your Mozilla Firefox (version 4 or under) or Internet Explorer browser and you will be able to check it. To change the settings in SeoQuake: Open preferences, Click on “Parameters Tab”, Double click “Google Pagerank”  Replace: http://toolbarqueries.google.com/search?client with http://toolbarqueries.google.com/tbr?client.

Pretty Nice Bonus to Brands within natural search results today, the sitelinks are now going VERY wide across many valuable pages within your domain.

Check this out:

Google New Sitelinks Format

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I think this is a GREAT move by Google, as in most cases it will eliminate people from marketing themselves around someone else’s brand. Clearly will help provide someone looking for a particular brand a better user experience.

 

 

 

Just noticed something new in Google webmaster tools called “Google instant preview” it appears to be something they have tied to the fetch as Googlebot. It appears to be somewhat flawed, and does not crawl or display flash (makes our website look bad). Although it is yet another way to keep an eye on your website for errors and crawl-ability. I think this is fairly heavily tied to the “load time” of your website, as it appears to only provide Googlebot with a limited amount of time to grab a snap-shot of your website.

Google Webmaster Tools Instant Previews

 

It showed us as having 26 errors on this page, seems like a lot considering our website is fairly tight (not as tight as our clients websites).

One last interesting note, our page actually appears rock solid in the Google Search Preview, yet not in this instant preview….hmmmm…..

 

Google announced the launch of Google Shopping in four new countries this week: Australia, Italy, Spain, and the Netherlands. Google Shopping is a comparison shopping engine delivering product results already in US and many other countries.  Google includes products delivered to them via data feed.

Product results in US are shown directly on page one of standard search, with images, pricing, and customer ratings.  This high visibility can be a large traffic force for any ecommerce business.  But thus far the shopping results in the new countries are not displaying in the main results. The user must click the Shopping tab on the left to use the retail search engine, but we expect in due time Google will integrate products into page one as they have elsewhere.

This is basically free traffic and advertising, so any business shipping to these countries needs to take some action. If you already provide your data feed to Google, you just need to create a new feed and choose that country from the drop down.  If you are not set up with Google Shopping yet in any country, visit the Merchant Center to open an account and set up your product feed.

With our strong presence in the Australian market, we are most excited to see this launch! We have been prepping our clients for this and ready to get them included immediately.

Also note that this makes it more important to use the hreview microformat for your customer reviews as we discussed last week.