In my preparation for a search engine optimization (SEO) course I am teaching at a local college (Camosun College) I came across this awesome video by Google’s Matt Cutts. This video does the best job I have seen yet of explaining how Google works and, I think, it may even displace some misconceptions I run into every day when talking to prospective clients. So, if you are curious about search engine optimization or you just want to see your BFF, Matt Cutts, in a very slick video you can watch it below!

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Source: How Search Works by Matt Cutts

I found this on the Google Corporate Information Page where other great videos are as well.

The Google URL shortener was originally launched back in December as a tool primarily for use by Google itself. Well, today Google announced in their blog that the tool has been launched and made available to everyone!

You do not need a Google account to use goo.gl. That said, if you want to know the analytics and history of your shortened URL, you will need to log into Google account to hang onto that statistical data. Read more…

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Thursday, September 9th, 2010

Enough with the “SEO is Dead” Crap

My pet peeves related to the SEO industry change on a regular basis but right now it is definitely the “SEO is Dead” headline… it is overused, totally unimaginative, and always wrong. Yet here I have to use it… at least it is to spurn it defiantly!! Sure, search engine optimization (SEO) changes, there is no doubt about that, but it is not dead and won’t be for a very very long time. If you think it is, I would love to hear an argument for why your website no longer needs to provide a clear picture of keyword relevance to search engines.

Anyone Saying “SEO is Dead” Doesn’t Understand What SEO Is

First, for the sake of choosing a neutral starting point let’s look at the parts of Wikipedia’s definition of SEO that relates to this discussion:

Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of improving the visibility of a web site or a web page in search engines via the “natural” or un-paid (“organic” or “algorithmic”) search results. … Optimizing a website may involve editing its content and HTML and associated coding to both increase its relevance to specific keywords and to remove barriers to the indexing activities of search engines.

Based on that definition, what has changed? No matter what happens, every website owner who values search engine traffic will yearn to be more visible. Read more…

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Thursday, September 2nd, 2010

Google, AOL, Extend Search Deal

For many years now AOL search results, both organic and paid, were powered by Google. Now with a deal announced by AOL – none of that is going to change.

This morning AOL announced the renewal and expansion of their global partnership. The five-year renewal will include a broad range of features to both improve and expand the products and services. Read more…

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Tuesday, August 24th, 2010

Hotmail Fail with Google Sitelinks

I wish I had found this myself, but a friend of mine sent me an instant message today with a link to a “fail” over at FailBlog. I tried the Google search myself and sure enough the error is in fact real. I thought I would share it with all our readers who need a quick laugh.

I only wish I had discovered this myself but I seldom have a reason to Google “hotmail” – it’s up there with Googling Google. (and no, Googling Google does not present any fails – oh well.)

A copy of the astounding google local results found by the guys over at blog.converseon.com

{Update: The local results are live as of October 27th, 2010. For more information read “Google’s New Local Results – How to Adapt“} The original article now begins…

Chris Boudreaux and Adam Edwards over at Blog.Converseon.com stumbled across Google search results for a highly local term that spells trouble for anyone who has not spent time focusing on Local SEO.

What do I mean? After all, what could Google possibly do to make local such a big deal? How about removing ALL organic search results in favor of local results! In this case the local search utilized was highly localized which is the only way this sort of result should ever be triggered. The search was for “car rental nyc” and the results were jaw-dropping… nothing but local listings were in the results where the organic rankings used to be.  Here is a link to the full-size screenshot that Chris and Adam used to document this event (I copied it to my server in case theirs got overburdened).

What does this mean for you?

First of all it is important to understand that Read more…

Tune in to Monday the 16th of August’s episode of SEO 101 on WebmasterRadio.FM where I (Ross Dunn) and my co-host John Carcutt interview Jon Henshaw and Taylor Pratt of Raven Internet Marketing Tools (affiliate link – this article is, however, a legit preliminary review).

In short, Raven Tools can help you with the following:

Website analytics, managing link building campaigns and tracking their success, search engine optimization, social media reputation and campaign tracking, keyword research, and… see more farther on as I outlined the list of features.

The August 16th show will delve into some of the unique (and very cool) reporting options and tracking functionality that Raven has integrated over the years. From discussing how Raven IM Tools has uniquely layered link building reports and ranking reports over top of your overall site analytics (powerful combination!) to learning more about their integration of bit.ly, social mention and other popular metrics providers, this show is well worth a listen. That said, here is a little more about the show and my experience with Raven Tools since we recorded the program. Read more…

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Friday, August 6th, 2010

Celebrating Google’s Failures

If you are looking for a fun Friday Afternoon read, check out the latest article by Danny Sullivan over at Search Engine Land. Danny pokes into the many attempts Google has made in products that didn’t quite make the cut.

Google has had some massive success with a number of their initatives, but with that success there are always those that don’t quite make it. Read more…

The Google Places LogoToday Google announced it is finally embracing the two way conversation for business place reviews on its Google Places platform. As a result, business owners can reply to both negative and positive reviews for their businesses which were left on their Google Places profile.

This is Very Good News
Having dealt with some reputation management issues in the past for clients it used to drive me to distraction that the client could not respond to negative reviews on many of the review websites online. As a result, unfortunate situations where a miscommunication or simple mistake had occurred would quickly bloom out of control because the business owner had less options to respond as publicly as their unhappy patron. Fortunately, over the years IYP platforms that allow reviews such as Yelp and TripAdvisor finally opened the doors to allow business owners to give their side of the story and today Google took the same leap. Read more…

Since the launch of bing a little over a year ago, Microsoft has tried all kinds of things to try and boost their search market share. Well they are out with their latest marketing attempt – switch to bing and Microsoft will donate $3 to schools in need!

As of the time of this writing, bing has donated nearly $45,000, $3 at a time. Read more…