Google


 

Local Search Engines

I could not believe my eyes this morning when I awoke and did some mundane searches on the Internet.  Low and behold, Google updated and changed the local search results page.  If you notice in this image, they now display 10 local business’s on the local search results, or Google maps. Before they only showed three (3) results, so this is a welcome improvement, especially if you want to list your business in Local search engines

How do you do this? Is your business listed in local searches? Is your competition already there?  Let me tell you, you better prepare your self and either learn how to submit your local business to local search engines, or out source this to a local Internet marketing company. This move by Google is a huge indication that these types of results or business inquiries are here to stay.  The days of the yellow book, or yellow pages may soon be replaced by Google Local, Yahoo local, and many others.

It does, so don’t get me wrong, properly worded anchor text is critical for link building, and ranking for keywords, but recently the buzz on the internet is that Google may or may not be penalizing sites that use the same anchor text repeatedly. According to some discussions, some web sites previously ranking in position #1 for “Home Run” words, have been dropped 4-5 positions….WHY?? Stay tuned, but for now word on the street is Google is basing this action on usage data.
It seems like landing pages with too many inbound links using exactly the searched keyword as the anchor text were picked up by Google’s filter. Web pages without word variety in their anchor text seemed to be outranked.
What is the solution? I recommend the following:

1) Use different but related keywords as anchor text for links to your site.
2) Stay tuned, I’m sure there will be more discussion on this.

Google Inc. said on Wednesday it is combining its different Web search services into one “Universal Search” service that will present Web sites, news, video and other results on one page.

This was a significant overhaul of Google’s widely-used features, and took effect  Wednesday, they also say that this exciting move will be  improved over time, executives told reporters at the company’s “Googleplex” headquarters.

Notice some interesting comments:

I think of it as a pretty natural evolution, with the one interesting thing being the video side of it,” said Martin Pyykkonen, an analyst with Global Crown Capital.

The thing everyone is wondering right now is what will an advertiser be willing to pay for a video link,” Pyykkonen said. “From the advertiser standpoint, I think they will be interested in how to hook their customer better.

What does “Universal Search” mean? Simply this, typical or standard Google searches will draw results from other properties such as news, images, local information, books, and video, 

It’s breaking down the silos of information that have been built up. It’s a broad, long-term vision that will unfold over the next few years,” Mayer said. “We are really excited about what Universal Search could evolve to in the future.”

You may have also noted that Google has changed the appearance of their standard home page, have you seen the changes?  What are they?

Well for one, I noticed that they have included more navigational links.  This comes at no surprise given the fact that Google has been adding “Google” products & features like crazy and hardly the general populace sees them.  Look below and check out the new layout or you can read an interesting story and see these screen shots from Danny Sullivan, “master SEO dude” check it out.  Danny also a good article on this universal roll out, as does CNN.

 

                                   Old                                                                                New

More Drop downs

One final thing I noticed, was that in search results, they added a little grey gradient color change right below the search box?  It may seem like a small change, but take into consideration Google has not altered the look of their results page in many moons, (other than recent sponsored listings box)

Bottom line, this was a HUGE announcement in the search engine arena…… 

Yes…Web Marketers get ready; Google is expanding their Internet advertising network to the print world in a gutsy move to capture traditional ad dollars. Are we ready for “Google Print Ads”?  Read on below screenshot.

Google makes 99 percent of its revenue from Internet ads, but now is beta testing print advertising sales. Google continues to position itself to becoming a one-stop shop for online and offline marketing. This is the first attempt for Google to dabble into offline ads and could perhaps be a tremendous portal for marketing agencies to offer complete packages.

Advertising and marketing agencies using Google Print Ads can devote more time providing high-level service to clients instead of spending time on a vast array of multiple print ads within a plethora of markets, this is in part due to the fact that “Google Print Ads” is built into the Google Adwords PPC dashboard.

Let’s find out a little more about this new feature – From Google themselves!

What is Google Print Ads?

Google Print Ads is an online marketplace that makes it easy for advertisers and agencies of all sizes to run ads in newspapers across the U.S. – whether you’re buying space in one paper or a hundred.

Why newspaper advertising?

Newspapers remain a vibrant and popular medium that speaks more directly to local markets than most other media. When executed well, newspaper advertising can make any marketing campaign stronger.

How does Google Print Ads work?

Running newspaper ads with Google Print Ads is easy – you use a simple online interface to select newspapers and place bids for ad space in them. The papers you’ve selected approve or decline these bids (and give you direct feedback about their decisions). After your ad runs, you can see electronic copies of them on the page.

So there you have it.  Yes this is still in beta, but with Google’s recent partnership with DoubleClick, one if the largest digital marketing groups, who knows where Google will go?  I guess that’s why it’s exciting to be in this arena.

Ty’s Perspective..

Looks like the secrets out, Google is set to roll out an interesting addition to Google documents & spreadsheets…Google Presentations.

It appears that Google purchased Tonic Systems based in San Francisco and Melbourne, Australia sometime back.  I wish I could link to this site, however everything relating to this site has a 301 going here?  You can however read about this news on Google’s official Blog site.

Will this have an impact on PowerPoint from Microsoft?  It’s doubtful, in fact read what the folks over at SearchEngineLand had to say about this last night, and listen to what Google’s CEO Eric Schmidt said as well.

 

What is Google doing now?  2 Things:

 First,  have any of you noticed this change to Google’s sponsored ad background color?  It seems that Google has settled on this soothing yellow/pale color.  As we all know, Google is always testing something and I have been noticing the background color changing the past few weeks from it’s normal blue.

I must admit, I do like this color a bit better.  Obviously they are doing this (my perspective) for a number of reasons such as less dilution or separation to the eye between sponsored and organic listings.

 

 

Second, just read an excerpt from Google’s blog regarding the actual search box, this could really impact CTR:

we’ve modified what counts as a click in this box to be consistent with what counts as a click for the ads on the right hand side. Instead of clicking anywhere in the box, users now need to click on the link in the top line of an ad in order to be taken to an advertiser’s site. Together, these changes help decrease the likelihood that a user will unintentionally click on an ad, while making our highest quality ads more visible.

I would love to hear your feedback about these two new features of Google sponsored ads, for a change give me your perspective….

Results have come in for the weeks ending in Februaury 2007, and it looks good for Google, so so for the others….  Initial reports are that as a result of loss of Microsoft live, Google & Yahoo have positive changes, however Google went up alomost a complete percentage.  At this rate, Google will have 70% share of searches by the end of the year!!

Can anyone compete with this Behemoth!

 

Hitwise US – Leading Search Engines – February, 2007

This list features the top 4 leading search engines based on US Internet usage, ranked by volume of searches for the 4 weeks ending February 24, 2007.

Rank      Search Engine         Volume                  (Change from January 2007)

1.             www.google.com          63.90%                   +0.8%

2.             search.yahoo.com       21.47%                    +0.1%

3.             search.msn.com             8.81%                      -0.1%

4.             www.ask.com                   3.52%                     0.0%

Source – Hitwise – February, 2007 – based on volume of searches.

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