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Everyone loves Top10 lists. In the SEO industry, where search engine results form the ultimate Top10 lists for clients and practitioners, the sheer number of ways a website, document or other spiderable object can be designed makes it very difficult to produce a general Top10 list for best practices. There are however, a number of basic mistakes made by webmasters, site designers and new online-entrepreneurs that inadvertently create obstacles to search placement success. Read more…

Online advertising is entering a fourth phase of innovation. Each of the previous waves of online marketing innovation has directly influenced or informed the development of successive waves. Starting with banner ads ten years ago, the online economy has revolved around advertising. While subscriber fees, government grants and private investment capital paid for the development of the backbone, advertisers paid for the development and sustentation of commercial websites. The same is true today but, just over a decade into the evolution of the public/commercial Internet, advertising has become much more precise, targeted and universally pervasive. Read more…

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Friday, October 21st, 2005

SEO and Mass-Market Templates

SEOs see a lot of different Content Management System (CMS) driven websites in the course of a day. Some are very well designed and some are not. The ones that are well designed are often delightful to work with, even the most technically complicated. The ones that are poorly designed however, even the most basic; provide an unlimited well of headaches, extraneous lines of code, and frustration. Read more…

Here is yet another cool use of the Google Maps API. Earlier this week, Search Engine Watch Forums moderator Elisabeth Osmelowski created a Google map showing where hundreds of search engine optimizers and marketers are located. Read more…

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Wednesday, October 19th, 2005

Splogs + Scraping + AdSense = Fraud

The other day, an article appeared in Search Engine Journal suggesting webmasters monetize their sites using Google AdSense. While the article neglected to mention an alternative webmaster advertising program offered by Yahoo Search Marketing, the idea of using one’s website as a commercial medium (if possible or practical) makes good sense and can provide a minor side-income. Such minor side-incomes are often the first ingredients in making the gravy craved by all small business owners. Read more…

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Wednesday, October 12th, 2005

SEO Business – The Joys of Reselling

As a facet of the Internet economy, search engine optimization is a specialized service that shares several characteristics with other web-based businesses. While the objects of our labours might be seen and used by millions of unique people in millions of unique places, our workspace consists of a 17″ – 24″ monitor, a miniature window on an exponentially expanding world. A 24″ portal might seem small by modern building standards but as both Yahoo and Google will tell you, size is not the issue, depth is. That 24 inches represents the largest window of opportunity anyone could ever open. Read more…

Two recent columns I wrote about organic search engine marketing have generated a larger than normal amount of reader response. Two weeks ago I wrote about how search advertisers, eager to see immediate results for their investments, were turning to paid-search advertising while ignoring optimization for organic placements. Earlier this week, I wrote about a survey that showed almost 2/3 of search advertisers neglecting to implement SEO recommendations made by third-party vendors (SEO firms). Judging by some of the emails I received from folks who read the articles (some of which were quite pointed but all of which were polite), there are a lot of frustrated advertisers trying to work the Internet. Just to be clear on this, the vast majority were NOT frustrated Viagra advertisers or affiliates but regular business folk, the merchants and marketers we know from Main Street. Read more…

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Monday, October 3rd, 2005

A Look at Local Search

September has graduated into October and there is simply no more time to whine about a summer spent staring at the screen. Autumn is upon us and the retail world is gearing up for what should be the most wonderful time of the year. Not only is my birthday just two days away, Christmas is coming. With the traditional surge in consumer activity spurred by both events, I am curious about what is happening on the local search front. Read more…

I have recently learned that students as young as grade 6 and 7 are being pressured to declare career interests in order to best direct the limited public education resources after years of funding cut-backs. I don’t recall that sort of pressure in school twenty years ago. I completed my schooling in the days before the Internet existed in the public realm. Things seemed a little less focused back then though I must admit the core curriculum placed in front of today’s students is much more challenging than those placed in front of my generation. There is simply far more knowledge to share today then there was when I was a public school student, especially in math and the myriad science-based specializations. Read more…

Over the past two years, both the business and practice of search engine marketing have become much more complex. The same is true of the websites search engine marketers work with. The evolving design techniques and technologies that have made the website of today far more versatile than those of previous years, have also made them harder to work with for third party service vendors such as SEOs. Read more…