I noticed a few articles recently about keyword optimized press releases. It’s good to see the concept starting to attract a broader audience. News sites like Yahoo News and Google News have more readers than CNN and BBC, and in order to find a particular story or release, you have to search for it. So while there’s a broad audience, the viewers of a particular story or release have pulled themselves to it via search – and that qualifies them a bit as a prospect in terms of the marketing value. That’s the beauty of search marketing – visitors pull themselves to your message rather than the message being pushed out to them.
Small and Medium Businesses Rely on Online Research for Technology Purchasing Decisions “59 percent use search engines on a daily basis.” – From MediaDailyNews. Based on research sponsored by Yahoo! and Grey Global Group and conducted by IDC.
Here’s another report supporting the notion that technology marketers needs to emphasis their online marketing component – especially search. I’m continuously amazed at how many technology solutions companies do not effectively market themselves via search engines. The market is there, searching products and solutions every day.
Too many rely on their web designers/developers to perform site optimization when most do not have the necessary skills or time to keep up on the constant changes in the search industry. It takes time and effort to get the basics down and more time and effort to stay on top of what’s current – both from a strategic and tactical perspective.
Took a look at our main site server logs and noticed this interesting list of visitors over the past few weeks:
Now the question is, how many of these companies contacted us? Answer, one. But that’s not my point for the list. It’s to show that major brands do indeed click on organic search engine listings when researching online marketing vendors. Each of these companies found our TopRank site through a search on Google or Yahoo using variations of: search engine marketing firms, search engine optimization firms, online marketing firms, etc.
Google Dance. This is sort of old info for those of us in the SEO industry by now, but it’s not a bad take on Googles updates in the past few months. From Media Daily News.
Sullivan: No One Will Win Search War – Great interview with Danny Sullivan and I agree: increased competition within the search engine space leads to better search performance for users and spreads traffic opportunities for companies. It used to be that a web site could gain excellent amounts of organic listing traffic from any of 5 or 6 top search engines. In the past year or more, it’s been all about Google. If Google makes an update that does not favor a particular site any longer, the vast majority of traffic is lost. With multiple primary sources of organic listing traffic, any one engine is not as critical to a site’s success. From ClickZ News
Yahoo! to charge companies to ensure search index placement – Site Match, the commercial paid inclusion component of the new program, will be available on a subscription or full-service basis directly from Overture and other resellers.
eWeek’s Take on Google Relevance Snippet: “Google’s reliance on link popularity may have finally hit a wall. Past a certain point, link counting rewards “optimized” sites rather than lesser-known sites that may contain exactly what you need.”
Practical Guide to Basic SEO – Not a bad rundown of tactics, shameless plug included. From iMedia Connection.
Two ways to get your site listed in Yahoo! (both require a Yahoo membership):
Everything you ever wanted to know about Google – From Wired Magazine. Ah, they left this out though: United States Patent 6,678,681
Here’s a decent article on what you should know about Web Analytics – From iMedia Connection
SEMPO Gain New Sponsors: Google, Overture, and GO TOAST – This is a great thing, to see more major search properties acknowledging SEMPO. SEMPO’s charger is to increase awareness and promote the value of search engine marketing services.
Why Yahoo Discontinuing Google Results May Cost You Even More Money – You can pay to be included in Inktomi and for now, show up in Yahoo default search results. This article by Mike Grehan, explains how Yahoo will discontinue automatic inclusion for Inktomi paid inclusion in exchange for another index, which will need to be paid for separately. i.e. – you’ll have to pay Yahoo and Inktomi separately.
The loss of MSN as a major client really hit LookSmart hard. It’s a familiar scenario – remember what happened with RealNames? They say they’re restructuring, but how will LookSmart ever make up for losing such a huge client? Article from Media Daily News
New results on MSN search will come from Inktomi, which is now owned by Yahoo. Inktomi will also power the default search results on Yahoo since the relationship with Google is terminating. If a website is not ranking well with Inktomi sourced search engines, then any traffic from Yahoo and MSN will pretty much disappear.
It’s important to diversify sources of online traffic more now than ever. After Google shook things up a bit last December and in January this year, many web marketers have re-evaluated their obsession with Google, and started to look more seriously at other avenues of traffic. I have no doubt Overture and Google AdWords PPC revenues are up.
Here’s an interesting tidbit from Google: A recent patent filed by Sergey Brin for their search technology “invention” that describes some of the inner workings of how Google ranks pages. After reading this you’ll either: a) get very excited b) fall asleep
If you’re interested in that, you’ll also like the classic “The Anatomy of a Search Engine. I’m sure there are a few out there that would like to see a digested version of this information that provides specific web development and copywriting guidelines. For the most part, it’s still true that a site with robust, quality content that is well-linked will do nicely on Google.
Article from News.com – Google made it’s entry into the social networking marketing live yesterday. Officially, Google says Orkut is not part of it’s product lineup – the site indicates it is “in affiliation with Google”.
Interesting move by Google, but is it a strategic initiative, or just a pet project by Orkut Buyukkokten, the Google engineer who developed the app? Anything new that Google comes out with prior to the IPO is going to look like a bit of beefing up, I think.
To join Orkut, you must be invited, you cannot sign-up on the site, which is interesting. “orkut is a trusted community. In order to join, you need to receive an invitation”. I’m not going to hold be breath for that. That may be an intentional effort to make the service exclusive. Google news started out much the same way so I gues we’ll see.
Yahoo recently announced that it’s formed Yahoo! Research Labs, a team of scientists that will investigate and develop future Internet technologies. The team is led by chief scientists from Yahoo and recently purchased PPC firm, Overture.
If you’re not familiar, Google Labs has been around for quite a while. Cool tools like voice search and Google deskbar as well as features like Google News have come out of the Google Labs initiative.
With Yahoo discontinuing to use Google search results soon, Yahoo is clearly positioning itself to edge in more aggressively on the market share it once had from Google. With Inktomi soon to replace default search results on Yahoo, businesses that rely on traffic from Yahoo will do well to ensure their rankings are also prominent within Inktomi. Otherwise, when the changeover happens, traffic from Yahoo may all but disappear.
Starting with “Tech marketing rebound”, this article from BtoB lists 10 marketing trends to watch for in 2004 based on comments by top marketing, agency and industry execs interviewed by BtoB.
“Search will continue to be big,” said Greg Stuart, president-CEO of the Interactive Advertising Bureau.
Keyword search made up 31% of total online ad revenue in the first six months of the year, and Stuart said it will keep growing. “Search has not peaked, and it‚Äôs not going to level off any time soon” he said. “Most people are making profits on first customer contacts with search.”
Link to Article
Heavy Internet Marketers Reveal What’s Working What’s Not, & 2004 Budgets
Article: From MarketingSherpa.com
At the time of this post, the link above will reveal the entire article, but after a week or so, I believe it’s placed in a pay-to-view situation (nominal fee).
One of the comments I found interesting was, “We expect SEO spending to continue strong in 2004…” Companies that are tired of spending money on PPC like a water faucet will increasingly look to reputable SEO firms for guidance. That is not to say PPC is going away, or has matured, or anything like that. As marketing organizations within companies are increasingly held accountable, the drive towards finding cost effective tactics will simply increase.