Friday, December 31, 2004

Happy New Year 2005!

Thursday, December 30, 2004

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Favorite Topics of 2004 (ClickZ)

“The end of the year brings a rash of columns predicting the future and ranking the past. Last year, I did some crystal-ball gazing. This year, I'll look back. But backward-looking columns tend to suffer from the "objects in mirror are larger than they appear" problem, with titles like, "The Hottest News Stories of 2004." I won't succumb. Instead, I'll list the topics that not only got my attention but that I genuinely enjoyed talking about.”

Wednesday, December 29, 2004

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Search Predictions 2005, Reflections 2004 (Double Click)

2005 Predictions:

* Paid Search: Better, stronger, faster
* Alternative Search: The channel widens to include content, meta, local and personalized
* Datafeeds: Product data supplements keywords in paid placement
* Content: Search marketing reaches beyond search engines
* Local Search: A lot of buzz, little bite

* Personalized Search: An up and comer?
* Share of Voice: Search gets a seat at the branding table
* Shop Til You Drop: Comparison shopping engines and portals rank high in results

2004 Reflections:

* Search became a must-have in the marketing mix
* Money's no object
* It's not a fad

Tuesday, December 28, 2004

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A Look Back [2004] and A Look Ahead (Predictions for 2005) [John Battelle's Searchblog]

Monday, December 27, 2004

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2004: The Search Engine Year in Review
(Search Engine Blog)



Sunday, December 26, 2004

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Whatever happened to the search engines disclosure of paid placement and paid inclusion? (Pandia, Norway)

"More than two years ago Pandia as well as Internetbrus reported that the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) had demanded that search engines should show clearly which search results were sponsored and which were not."



Saturday, December 25, 2004

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Search Engine Spam? You're Fired! (ClickZ)

“Search engine spam is a hot topic. Search engine marketing (SEM) experts far and wide hotly debate the issue. What's generally considered to be search engine spam is common knowledge to tenured SEM professionals. The major search engines publish broad guidelines regarding the SEM tactics they consider spam:

* Google Webmaster Guidelines

* Yahoo's spam guidelines

* MSN Search's Guidelines for successful indexing

Yet many highly reputable SEM firms still spam.”




Friday, December 24, 2004

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Blogs - Diamond in the Rough for your Marketing?
(Internet Search Engine Database)


“Blogs are a potential gold mine of insights for readers, provided by business leaders, market leaders, innovators, philosophers, marketers, political commentators, and many other opinion makers who never before have enjoyed such easy access to a simple and unmoderated public forum in which to share their opinions, ideas and insights.

These leaders have taken to using the Internet to publish their thoughts for the same reason they make public speaking appearances; to build credibility for themselves and for their company, and to become recognized as a resource, usually with the expectation that it will lead to sales.”

Thursday, December 23, 2004

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Don't use Google Desktop in enterprise: Gartner
(iTnews - Australia)


“The recently-disclosed -- and patched -- flaw in Google Desktop Search drew a repeated warning this way from research analysts about the danger of using first-generation local search tools from the likes of Google, Microsoft, and others.

In an alert posted on the Gartner website, analysts Whit Andrews and Ray Wagner said that even though Google quickly fixed the bug by rolling out an auto update, "Gartner still advises caution in enterprise deployment of this tool.”

"Google's search tool, and its soon-to-be-introduced competitors, may be suitable for enterprise use in the long term, but [they've] not yet been adequately vetted for security," the pair wrote.

Enterprise security managers should discourage the use of Google Desktop Search, they advised.”



Wednesday, December 22, 2004

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Search Engines and JavaScript (ClickZ)

“Are you using JavaScript as a main navigation scheme, such as for HTML (form) drop-down menus? Are you using it for DHTML drop-down menus? Are any of your links to pop-up windows? If so, how many? Or, do you simply place mouseovers on your navigation buttons? Many people who create framed sites use JavaScript to keep frames intact at all times.

When you use JavaScript on a site's navigation scheme, the scripts can greatly decrease the "crawlability" of the links. Currently, most search engines won't follow the links embedded inside JavaScript code (including mouseovers and menus), or they greatly limit the types of JavaScript-embedded links they'll crawl.

Some JavaScript code is more search engine friendly than others. As a general rule of thumb, the simpler the script is, the more likely a search engine spider can crawl the link.”


To Flash, or Not to Flash? (ClickZ)

“Flash enables very rich and compelling online experiences, with sound and dynamic moving images, which engage users intimately with a brand.”

“Let me leave you with a few last thoughts. Start with the user. Do your homework so you can make an informed decision. Understand how, when, and why users access the experience and design accordingly. Many marketers maintain two versions of a site (Flash- and non-Flash-based sites) to side step this problem. Track results closely, and validate whatever decision you make.

Undeniably, Flash will continue to play a major role creating increasingly more sophisticated Web applications and brand experiences that will ultimately propel online marketing further. So when your market is ready, you may want to Flash, too.”




Tuesday, December 21, 2004

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Phishing hole discovered in IE (CNET News)

“Microsoft is investigating reports of a new Internet Explorer flaw that puts people with the most secure version of Windows at risk of phishing attacks.

The software giant said Friday that it is looking into reports from security company Secunia and others that a vulnerability in IE6 enables scammers to launch a phishing attack against PCs loaded with the latest security updated version of Windows, Service Pack 2, and older versions of the operating system”

"The problem is that users can't trust what they see in their browsers,” Thomas Kristensen, chief technology officer at Secunia, said. “This can be used to trick users to perform actions on what they believe is a trusted Web site, but actually these actions are recorded and controlled by a malicious site.”

[ My friend, use Mozilla Firefox. ]


Monday, December 20, 2004

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The Ranking Algorithms of Major Search Engines
(Dev Harware)


“Google, Yahoo and Beta MSN appear to be in the midst of an extremely dramatic shift in algorithms.

Keeping abreast of these changes and "experiments" is essential in the extremely competitive world of search engine referrals.

Google is extremely sensitive to hyperlinked keywords in backwards links and of course, the popularity of those links. However, new variables appear to have been added to this standard that are quite confusing to Webmasters and SEOs who have witnessed dramatic changes in their "ethically" programmed sites.”



Sunday, December 19, 2004

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Accoona, A New Search Engine (ResearchBuzz)

“The new search engine is called Accoona, and it got a lot of press attention because former President Bill Clinton helped launch it (http://www.eweek.com/article2/0,1759,1736894,00.asp)

“But still... Sorry Bill Clinton, I'm not impressed. The division between sponsored and organic results is not distinct enough, the results page lacks, and while the syntax sound good I wasn't able to make them have a real impact on my search results.

Accoona needs more work.”

Saturday, December 18, 2004

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Desktop search 'a likely target for malware'
(ZDNet UK News)


“Companies should not deploy a desktop search tool without first considering the security implications because they could end up helping virus writers, say security experts.”


Friday, December 17, 2004

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Google Planning To Index Entire Libraries
(ResearchBuzz)


“For a long time there have been rumors going around about Project Ocean, a project by Google to index all the pre-1923 content in the Stanford Library. (I'd call it a little stronger than a rumor since it was in the New York Times, but Google wouldn't comment on it.)

Now it's come out that Google is planning to do a LOT of library indexing -- specifically they're working with Harvard, Stanford, the University of Michigan, the University of Oxford, and the New York Public Library to scan books from their collections and make them available via Google search.

(You can see Google's announcement at
http://www.google.com/press/pressrel/print_library.html)”


Thursday, December 16, 2004

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Advertisers Will Spend $4 Billion Dollars in 2004 on Search Engine Marketing According to the Search Engine Marketing Professional Organization (SEMPO)

"Advertisers Expected to Spend on Average an Additional 39% in 2005 on Their Combined Search Engine Marketing Programs Compared to 2004.

Chicago, IL - December 14 2004.

The Search Engine Marketing Professional Organization (SEMPO), a non-profit professional association working to increase awareness and promote the value of Search Engine Marketing (SEM) worldwide, today published a research paper, " The State of Search Engine Marketing 2004," which concludes that in the U.S. and Canadian market, advertisers will spend $4.087 billion dollars this year on search marketing programs.

That figure comprises payments to search engines and search-related media companies, search engine marketing agencies as well as in-house expenditures in support of such programs, including "paid placement," "paid inclusion," "organic search engine optimization" and "search engine marketing technology platforms" (terms which all are further defined in the report).”



Wednesday, December 15, 2004

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How Web Design Can Affect Search Engine Rankings
(Search Engine Journal)


“Uniquely built web sites can create unique issues when being promoted on the search engines. From a basic 3 page brochure site to a corporate site with hundreds of dynamically generated pages, every web site needs to have certain design aspects in order to achieve the full effects of an SEO campaign.

Below are a few points to take into consideration when building or updating your web site.

1. Size Matters.
2. Graphics-Based Web Sites.
3. Dynamic Web Pages.
4. Proper Use of HTML.
5. Choosing a Domain Name.
6. Using Frames.
7. Update Your Information.”

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

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Search Engine Inclusion Techniques on Google
(Search Engine Journal)


“Over the years of its existence Google gained a well-deserved reputation as the top choice for internet users.

Providing a comprehensive coverage of the web and returning searched queries with great relevancy in less than a second, Google certainly is the internet’s front door.

Because of the popularity of this search engine, it is critical to get your website listed in Google and achieve a high ranking in search results.

There are two types of listing you will find in Google search results: free listings and sponsored listings.”


Monday, December 13, 2004

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How Do Search Engines Work? (The Hawaii Channel)

“The good news about the Internet and its most visible component, the World Wide Web, is that there are hundreds of millions [+ 8 billion] of pages available, waiting to present information on an amazing variety of topics.

The bad newsis that there are hundreds of millions of pages available, most of them titled according to the whim of their author, almost all of them sitting on servers with cryptic names.

When you need to know about a particular subject, how do you know which pages to read? If you're like most people, you visit an Internet search engine.”


Sunday, December 12, 2004

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Search Engines and the SEO Business (ClickZ)

“Recently, an article appeared in the press that said Ask Jeeves and Lycos would each offer SEO (define) services. After the piece appeared, Ask Jeeves said it's only doing SEM because of a relatively small relationship it inherited when it acquired Interactive Search Holdings.

Nevertheless, the article spurred some interesting and important discussion in the industry. Some search engine optimizers feel a search engine company offering optimization services is a clear conflict of interest. Others believe it's the natural evolution of search engine monetization.”



Saturday, December 11, 2004

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May we Suggest Google? (Search Engine Lowdown)

“Thanks to SEW for pointing out Google's new lab project “Google Suggest”.

I've been testing it out and absolutely love it. How does it work?

Simply start typing in your search query and Google will offer search phrase suggestions, on-the-fly, based upon an algorithm that looks at the most popular word combinations. This is great for those times when you kind of know what you want, but not sure of the exact wording to use.”



Friday, December 10, 2004

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Search Engine Optimization For Blogs
(BusinessKnowledgeSource.com)


1. Use your primary keyword in your blog domain
2. Use your primary key phrase in your blog header tags and the title of your posts
3. Use your secondary keywords in the body of your post
4. Use your keywords in the anchor text of links
6. Make sure search engines can spider your blog easily
6. Get backlinks from other blogs or websites
7. Update frequently
8. Stay put


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Thursday, December 09, 2004

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First Google web site to be defaced (Zone H)

“One web site (picasa.google.com) belonging to Google has been defaced on saturday by the Brazilian defacer Xfaulz.

Picasa is a software for managing photos, the company has been acquired by Google earlier this year.”

“The screenshot of the defacement is available here:

http://www.zone-h.org/en/defacements/mirror/id=1775926/


Wednesday, December 08, 2004

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SEO and Successful Site Architecture (ClickZ)

“A Web site's information architecture can greatly affect a site's search engine visibility. Specific page elements, such as the site navigation scheme, and design technologies, such as CSS (define) and JavaScript, can interfere with a search engine's ability to spider a site.

Site architecture has been poorly addressed by search engine marketers (SEMs). Many of them have limited knowledge about information architecture and site usability. Some only specialize in search advertising, focusing on the media buy and the bidding process. Many SEO (define) firms specialize in cloaking (define). Nowhere in this skill set is information architecture. That's a shame.”

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

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Corporate PCs 'riddled with spyware' (The Register, UK)

“Corporate systems are riddled with spyware, according to a study by an anti-spyware firm. Companies voluntarily using Webroot's Corporate SpyAudit tool had an average of 20 nasties per PC, Webroot reports.

Most of the items found were harmless cookies. But average five per cent of the PCs scanned had system monitors and 5.5 per cent had Trojan horse programs, the two most nefarious and potentially malicious forms of spyware.

The audit - based on scans of more than 10,000 systems, used by more than 4,100 companies - is touted by Webroot as the first comprehensive analysis of the presence of spyware within corporate networks.”

“According to a study by analyst IDC published yesterday, the need to identify and eradicate these parasitic programmes will drive anti-spyware software revenues from $12m in 2003 to $305m in 2008. IDC reckons two in three PCs are infected with some form of spyware.”



Monday, December 06, 2004

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Help, my site has been banned by Google! (Pandia)

“It is the ultimate search engine marketing nightmare: Your site has been removed from Google's index and your traffic is falling.

By all means panic. Then draw your breath and read our Banned by Google Survival Guide. And yes, it works for the other search engines as well.”


Sunday, December 05, 2004

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The Definitive Secret to SEO Revealed
(Virtual Promote Gazette)


“The Definitive Secret to SEO is ... keywords.”


Friday, December 03, 2004

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The magic that makes Google tick (ZD Net, UK)

“Google's vice-president of engineering was in London this week to talk to potential recruits about just what lies behind that search page. ZDNet UK snuck in to listen

The numbers alone are enough to make your eyes water

· Over four billion Web pages, each an average of 10KB, all fully indexed
· Up to 2,000 PCs in a cluster
· Over 30 clusters
· 104 interface languages including Klingon and Tagalog
· One petabyte of data in a cluster -- so much that hard disk error rates of 10-15 begin to be a real issue
· Sustained transfer rates of 2Gbps in a cluster
· An expectation that two machines will fail every day in each of the larger clusters
· No complete system failure since February 2000”


Thursday, December 02, 2004

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Blogging policy examples (Charlene Li's Blog)

”Sample Blogger Code Of Ethics

1. I will tell the truth.
2. I will write deliberately and with accuracy.
3. I will acknowledge and correct mistakes promptly.
4. I will preserve the original post, using notations to show where I have made changes so as to maintain the integrity of my publishing.
5. I will never delete a post.
6. I will not delete comments unless they are spam or off-topic.
7. I will reply to emails and comments when appropriate, and do so promptly.
8. I will strive for high quality with every post – including basic spellchecking.
9. I will stay on topic.
10. I will disagree with other opinions respectfully.
11. I will link to online references and original source materials directly.
12. I will disclose conflicts of interest.
13. I will keep private issues and topics private, since discussing private issues would jeopardize my personal and work relationships.”

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

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Google's G-nius (Fool.com)

“Over the course of the last couple of years, there have been plenty of occasions to wonder whether Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) was out of its noodle.

What started out a simple search company with a Spartan interface and non-intrusive ads grew to take the search engine industry by storm, becoming the engine of choice through little more than word of mouth.

I thought I'd examine the reasons Google's taken the world by storm.”