Bing, as announced today, is Microsoft’s latest variation of its search platform. A screenshot of the Bing introductory video - click to view.The search engine is supposed to marry a myriad of search verticals to create a one-stop-shop for netizens. For example, according to this official introductory video the search engine will incorporate price comparisons and reviews for everything from flights, to hotels and electronics. It also appears to include a hefty dose of local content for anyone trying to choose a restaurant in their area or needing directions.

Screenshots of the major functions of Bing are available in this extensive virtual presskit Microsoft has kindly made available. Read more…

Congratulations to my friend Joost de Valk and his new business ally Brian Gardner of StudioPress Development. The two WordPress gurus have joined forces to build WordPress themes with SEO essentials built right in.

Why is this News? I know from experience working with WordPress sites there is a lot of optimization that can be built in from the get-go if the proper template is used which saves time and money so this news is very good news for the web marketing community and WordPress users alike.

If you would like to learn more about optimizing your WordPress website check out this interview I did with Joost de Valk on SEO 101 on WebmasterRadio.fm about WordPress search engine optimization.


Last week Microsoft announced a few updates to adCenter that anyone doing pay-per-click advertising should take a look at. Here is a quick summary created with snippets from the announcement:

    A snapshot from Microsoft showing the changes to AdCenter this Spring.

  • Better Targeting Options
    “Now you can apply customer targeting and incremental bids for your entire campaign with new campaign-level targeting, and then further refine targeting at the ad group level.”
  • Greater Bidding Flexibility
    ” Now you can set default keyword bids for your ad groups, and use nondefault bids to override the default when you prefer”
  • Improved Keyword Research Tool
    You can now: “use new filters to refine your list of suggested keywords … view performance and demographic data by keyword …  add selected keywords to your negative keyword list … bid on keywords and review estimated performance data … review keywords and bids and add them to an ad group”

Here is the link to the detailed posting at Microsoft. In addition, here are links to the other updates Microsoft has applied this Spring to adCenter: Account Management Updates, adCenter Desktop, Content Ads (US Only).

Today the Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB) released version 1.0 of the guidelines for measuring click fraud. The guidelines were created with the aid of Yahoo, Microsoft and Google in order to ensure that all major search engines would back the finalized guidelines. Here is a key snippet from the document’s Scope and Applicability section: Read more…

According to the latest figures over at Hitwise, Google’s market share is inching closer to the 73% mark, that’s up 0.35% since last month, and up nearly 5% compared to April of 2008. Read more…

My 3 part series on how to optimize for google (part 1, part 2, part 3) were recently published over at SiteProNews, and I have been seeing a number of people commenting and asking questions. Here is a post to address all the comments thus far.


A question begins here Do you think the keyword density formula will change soon? Read more…

On May 1st I wrote about the close of GeoCities and how all accounts with GeoCities will soon be deleted permanently. I wanted to take the time to discuss the importance of having your website hosted on your own domain, and also to give those currently using GeoCities a few ideas on how to move forward.

Over the years I have spoken with a handful of people looking to optimize and improve their search rankings for their GeoCities-hosted website. These are not people who simply had a personal site with photos of their families and furry pets, but people with actual tangible businesses being run through this free hosting platform. Read more…

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Friday, May 1st, 2009

Yahoo to Close Geocities

If you need another reason to always host your websites at your own top level domain (TLD) the recent announcement of Yahoo permanently closing GeoCities should be enough to convince you.

At the end of 2009, GeoCities will cease to exist, and if you don’t move your site, it will be permanently deleted. Yahoo is urging existing users to sign up for their paid hosting of $5.98/month. This closing is a reminder that no free hosting is guaranteed forever. The only way to ensure that your website address will always be safe is to own and host it on your own domain. Read more…

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Wednesday, April 22nd, 2009

Top Posts on Search

Here are the top posts on Search from the old StepForth SEO Blog.


Ins and Outs of Local Search

‘Submission to local search based engines is becoming more and more important for any sites servicing a local or specific geographic audience.’

Google Latitude Adds More Social to Mobile

‘See where your friends are right now.’ Read more…

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Tuesday, April 14th, 2009

Ins and Outs of Local Search

Local SearchAs the population with internet access explodes, and more and more people are using search engines to find what they need, the usage of local search also continues to rise. For any sites servicing a local or specific geographic audience, submission to local search based engines is becoming more and more important.

Read more…