Tag Archives: China

What Google Knows about Google… and a few other things

There is a wonderful saying that one hears in big companies, particularly when discussing Knowledge Management – KM initiatives, “if only we knew what we know“. It is unlikely that Google is exempt from this problem, but their data-driven culture has launched several information dashboards which aim to overcome this problem by facilitating internal and external communication of data, from Google service statuses to internet statistics.

Search engines are great in helping us find something when we suspect that there is an answer out there somewhere, to borrow a phrase from X-File’s Fox Mulder. Yet search engines aren’t very helpful when you don’t even know or imagine a resource exists. This article aims to help insure these mostly lessor known Google tools and resources get the visibility they deserve.

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Google giving up on China (for now). Bing, what say thou?

Google’s very undiplomatic announcement that it is going to stop censoring its search results in China doesn’t leave much face-saving wiggle room for the Chinese government – a big no-no in Asian culture. Significant blocking of Google in China seems imminent – you don’t go to great lengths to build the great firewall of China for nothing. Google, a data-driven company, knows full well that Chinese users will be discouraged from using a search engine if it is slow or worse, unreachable. Game over as they say.

While it is easy to applaud Google for taking the moral high ground, you almost get the feeling that something else is happening: Google has given up its battle for search engine supremacy in China. Perhaps Google is giving up the fight because China is one of the few markets where local players, like Baidu, command more market share, regardless of who is doing the counting.

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Search Engine Crawlers: Who’s visiting my site and why?

Organizations implementing search engine optimization (SEO) strategies will sooner or later consider monitoring search engine crawling activity. Before a web page can appear in search results, the content has to be discovered through a crawling or spidering process. This is done through software which automatically navigates the web, finding and downloading web content for the search engine to parse, index and rank.

search engine spider
A “spider”, also known as a “crawler”, “robot” or simply “bot”, finds and retrieves web pages. Once a search engine finds your site, either through a link from another site or through a submission form, the “spider” will begin to crawl your site.

Search engine crawling activity is an early sign that SEO is functioning or a potential warning sign of site issues impeding content discovery.