Tag Archives: Ask
Note to the reader: this article was originally posted on our Italian blog on October 28th. The quiz targeted an Italian audience; we’ve published this translation in order to allow a wider audience to follow search marketing developments in Italy.
It seems that the summer fun is now over, but not so fast: it’s time to check, just for fun, your SEO knowledge! We’ve prepared 15 multiple choice questions on topics which appear frequently in SEO projects.
Only for a limited time
The quiz will be available for just 5 weeks, from 28 October to 1 December 2008. Once the quiz is over, the correct answers and the overall results will be published here. Participants will receive an e-mail with their results and a certificate of participation.
Five lucky participants will receive a free copy of Internet PR
In three short years 1 Google Analytics has become an important tool for many companies looking to get more out of their presence on the web. Google Analytics’ wide range of website reports, from traffic sources to conversion rates, provide invaluable insight into a site’s business performance for an initial cost which is difficult to beat.
One particular report, the Search Engine report, is of particular interest to companies looking to optimize their organic search engine marketing activity. This report identifies sources of search traffic that brought visitors to the website.
For each search engine source, a drill-down feature shows the keywords people used – the very keywords which express a visitor’s intent as they came to your website.
Just to clarify, for the purpose of this article, by search engine or search engine source, we mean search driven traffic – whether it be from a pure search engine like Google, or from an ISP portal which offers a search function, such as Earthlink or Virgin Media.
An important consideration for Google AdWords advertisers is to understand just where their contextual ads might appear. Google notes that AdWords ads can appear on the:
- Google search engine
- Partner search engines (e.g. Aol, Ask.com, Libero / Arianna, Virgilio / Alice)
- Google owned web content sites (e.g. Gmail, Google Groups)
- Third party web content sites (practically any site wishing to display Google ads)
While Google has recently improved information about participants in the Google content network2, it isn’t so easy to find an updated listing of which major generalist portals and pure search engines rely on Google for their organic and paid search results. The following table aims to rectify this, at least for the Italian market.
The traditional August break in Italy is a wonderful time to work on projects which linger on the back burner during the rest of the year. Last August led to the release of a free keyword selection guide (in Italian); this year’s focus is a Course on using the AdWords PPC paid search marketing program.
Search for Milan – Rome Flights
Travel is one of the most highly competitive business sectors on the web. It shouldn’t then be a great surprise that we have 3 sponsored results (with the beige background) above the organic results in addition to the standard sponsored results on the right. The results at the top appear when there is a high chance of the ad being very profitable for Google – the maximum bid is high, as is the historic click-through rate.
A new search engine, Cuil, has launched, in an attempt to become the next Google. Cuil was founded by people with experience from Google, AltaVista and IBM – sufficient enough to get the mass media’s attention in the dog days of summer.
Rather unfortunately Cuil decided to tout it’s index size as a primary feature. As seasoned search engine professionals know, there are many other issues which also impact quality search results. Are the indexed web documents fresh, up to date? Google is indexing some sites in just minutes:
On it’s home page, Cuil says “Search 121,617,892,992 web pages”. This number hasn’t changed in days; it seems that their index is more static than Google’s.
Have duplicate pages, such as print versions and syndicated content, been filtered out? Is there a sophisticated ranking algorithm to show the most pertinent documents to the web searcher, based on their intention?
While analyzing web analytics log files, I noticed that
the Ask.com bot, Ask Jeeves/Teoma, stopped crawling my Antezeta web sites on February 22/23, 2008. Yet I see a post from early May in the Ask.com search results.
I just discovered that someone on a Web Analytics discussion group misconstrued the recent Google announcement of better Flash search engine crawling support to mean it is now good to use Flash when developing web sites.
Nothing could be further from the truth. While Google’s move is welcome support for all the legacy Flash websites still in circulation, companies shouldn’t generally be deploying new sites made wholly using Flash.
What Google has announced is significant improvements to their ability to extract information, specifically text and links, from Flash objects. Despite what many are trying to read into this, Google already crawled and extracted this information from Flash only sites – this is not exactly new.
What is new is that hit or miss crawling and discovery is probably just mediocre instead of bad. But mediocre is not good nor is it great. Before site architects and designers rush off to develop Flash only websites, they should still consider SEO and non SEO issues with Flash:
Regular readers of this blog be warned – this article is about the internet infrastructure needed to insure Internet users are online in the first place. We can perform all of the search engine optimization (SEO) we want, but if our target audience isn’t online due to lack of access, our results are going to disappoint. Marketing professionals are thus warned: what follows is a look at a potential technical solution to the digital divide.
In the early 1980′s I discovered the net. As a university student in Maine, I kept in touch via e-mail with a friend at Cornell University in New York state. It seemed like magic – 80 character monochromatic video terminals allowed us to exchange messages in minutes. The net in question was Bitnet, an early type of Internet connecting educational institutions. Later, in the early nineties, I used today’s internet to exchange email and files with clients. A great improvement over sending pizza sized magnetic tapes across town or across country. In Trieste in the mid-nineties I was able to browse the latest New York Times with Mosaic. By the late nineties, I had an ISDN connection in my home office (thank you, Peter Friedenbach). Of course ISDN gave way to ADSL… or did it?