Archives for February 2005

Autolink Paranoia

Traffick reports on the over-hype of Google Autolink and I agree. Autolink is just a tool. You have to turn it on to make it work. If you don’t like it, turn it off. That’s from the user perspective.

From a web site owner’s perspective, I can understand some concern, but no where near what some bloggers are ranting about. If you really don’t like it as a site owner, add the Autolink blocking JavaScript. I think that’s reasonable.

If you don’t want Google to index all or part of your site you have to add a noindex meta tag and/or modify your robots.txt tag don’t you?

A Blog Publishing Story

My pop was showing me how he has been documenting the history of Holdingford, the small central Minnesota town he lives in (think Lake Wobegon) scanning in town council meeting minutes since 1897, documenting businesses that existed, city council members and city officials in a spreadsheet and also interviewing “old timers” recording the audio on his Mac and scanning in photos. It’s a pretty ambitious project, even for a small town.

My dad has always been very progressive regarding computers and Internet so we talked about how he could publish all this information he’s collecting.

A web site is logical, but with all the effort he’s going through, it seems the process would be as interesting as the outcome.

Will RSS Overtake Email?

Here’s a recent release we helped with from MarketingStudies.net: “RSS Marketing May Overtake E–mail as Top Info Delivery Tool – RSS News Feeds Provide Effective Two Way Communication”

Rok Hrastnik, author of the new RSS marketing e-book, Unleash the Marketing & Publishing Power of RSS, is warning marketers that email may no longer be an effective form of delivering information to customers.

According to DoubleClick, only 34.3% of all e-mail messages are ever opened. AOL currently blocks 75% of the 2 billion e-mail messages received daily and sends another 4% ‚ 7% to the bulk folder.

Email marketing is dead,” said Chris Pirillo, a keynote speaker at the Blog Business Summit. Conversion rates are decreasing, blacklists continue to grow, and we have to pay for white-listing services.‚

MSN taking a beating?

Interesting posts regarding Microsoft/MSN recently:

Dvorak says Microsoft’s marketing sucks – from Scobleizer (and he agrees). Put the ad money into making a better product like Amazon and Google have.

MSN Search – Flop with Search Community – from Threadwatch. NickW stirs things up.

Does the New MSN Search Hold Up? – from Google Blogscoped (OK, this was from last week, but it seems to fit) Search comparison between MSN, Google and Yahoo.

I was very optimistic about the new MSN search, hopeful really, that something new would come out and provide a worthy alternative to the current dominance in search engines. Not because I don’t like Google and Yahoo search, I use Google many, many times a day and Yahoo.com is my homepage. It just seems that at the moment, MSN search isn’t doing the WOW thing (accurate search results) as much as I thought it would.

RSS Feed Creation Tools

Steve Rubel posts about RapidFeeds, a tool to create, publish and syndicate your own RSS feeds. What’s particularly useful is the tracking options.

The IceRocket search engine has a very similar RSS creation tool called RSS Builder but without tracking.

RSS creation tools offer promising applications for sites that want to promote newsletters, press releases, etc via RSS but do not want to do so through a blog. Although, I think it makes more sense to use a blog for that type of promotion so your content can get picked up by search engines as well as RSS directories and news aggregators.

Tags: RSS, feed, blog, blogging, marketing, SEO blog

Become.com Beta Shopping Engine

I’m trying out Become.com, a new shopping research search engine that avoids ecommerce sites in favor of informational web sites. The site is designed to help you locate difficult to find information. Search results display much like any other search engine (plus Google Ads on the right side) but what’s pretty cool is the list of suggestions at the bottom of the search results.

From the site: “We find buying guides, articles, forums, reviews, specs and information from across the web to help you buy the right product.”

Become.com was founded by Michael Yang, founder of mySimon.com and Yeogirl Yun, founder of the Wisenut search engine.

Heads up from MarketingShift

Test drive of new Google Maps

Google recently launched a beta version of Google Maps:

Google Maps is an online service that allows users in the U.S. to find location information, navigate through maps, and get directions quickly and easily.”

Includes features for viewing maps, local search within the displayed map area and driving directions. For example, I entered in my city/state and Google Maps quickly showed a map of the area. Then I searched on “hardware store” and the map was redrawn with icons and a list of locations to the right. Each results shows options for the web address, additional matches and directions to or from the location.

What’s really cool about Google Maps is that they’re dragable. You can use your mouse to literally move the map to see areas outside of the viewable window without having to do another search.

Latent Semantic Indexing

Very nice post by SEO Book, I mean Search Engine eBook, ah how about Search Marketing Guide? 🙂 about Latent Semantic Indexing. The idea is related to what I’ve seen described as “contextual relavency” where a search engine (like Google) ranks a document in part based on the related concepts in the page as a whole and compares them to other related documents in the index. What this means for your SEO efforts is explained in more detail in the post, but one take-away is to be sure you mix up your anchor text as well as keyword useage on-page.

Additional resources on this topic are posted at SEO Roundtable.

 

New Vote Business Blogging Awards

The first voting script for the Business Blogging Awards apparently had some issues, so a new voting system is in place and any votes prior to today have been scrapped.

So please take a moment and cast your vote for Best SEO Blog
Our blog is listed as: Online Marketing SEO Blog

Additional categories to vote for include:
Best Overall Blog
Best Group Blog
Best New Blog
Best Law Blog
Best VC/Entrepreneur Blog
Best Financial Industry/Investment Blog
Best Personal Finance Blog
Best Blog by a Small Business
Best Blog About Small Business
Best PR Blog
Best Tech Company Blog
Best Media Blog
Best Real Estate Blog
Best Marketing Blog
Best Project Management Blog
Best Leadership Blog
The Picasso Award (Best Design)
The Peacock Award (Most Self-Important)
The Chris Pirillo Award (For Shameless Self Promotion)