Friday, September 19, 2008

Section 2: Around the Net in Search Marketing

, September 19, 2008 Subscribe | Back Issues | Reply to Editor | MediaPost Home

Searching Deeper On The Web With InfoVell
Read Write Web
"Using a web search engine like Google is usually fine for casual searches, but when you need to delve deep into a subject, it just won't do," says Sarah Perez. "What you really need is a research engine that explores the unindexed reaches of the Deep Web. For that, there's now Infovell, 'the world's research engine."'

Infovell crawls info vaults, including PubMed Central (a trove of medical and health-based journals), claims filed with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, as well as various academic publications that are open for the perusing, but not indexable by the major engines. The engine can also send breaking news alerts to many devices, including PDAs.

The only caveat is that the cutting edge technology isn't free. "Although expected, it's disappointing to see that this service will be yet another source of critical information which most people won't have the time or financial resources to use it," Perez says. Interested searchers can try the service for a month free, starting Sept. 22. - Read the whole story...

Underused Google Analytics Metrics
More Visibility
Joe Teixeira schools readers on five Google Analytics metrics that most likely go unused. First up is the $Index, which gives each page on your site an average value. "It takes the amount of either Ecommerce Revenue or Goal Value that each page was responsible for, and divides it by the number of Pageviews for each page to give you a financial value in your currency of choice," he says.

Meanwhile, percent of search exits tells you the percentage of visitors that leave immediately after conducting a site search (if your site has that capability). "These people did not go any deeper into your website, or did not refine their search at all - they simply left," he says. "Think of % Search Exits as the 'Bounce Rate' of your search function. If a lot of people are doing this, chances are your search function isn't working properly, or serving up relevant results."

He also suggests digging into the revenue per click, per visit goal value and abandonment rate stats to finish up. - Read the whole story...

The Fruits Of Microsoft's Powerset Integration
Powerset Blog
Microsoft only acquired semantic search startup Powerset about a month ago, but the integration has already greatly improved Live Search in three key ways: better Wikipedia captions, better related search suggestions and better answers to question-style queries.

Before the integration, Wikipedia snippets showed up as sentence fragments in Live Search results; now, the captions are more substantial. Meanwhile, searchers will find more Live Search Answers in the results thanks to Freebase, an open source database that Powerset was already pulling from. Lastly, users will get better related search suggestions, as Live Search is using Powerset's Factz technology to improve relevance. - Read the whole story...

Google's Suggestions For Hiring An SEO Firm
How would your team stack up if a potential client used Google's criteria for screening an SEO agency? The giant has posted a list of guidelines for site owners interested in organic search services, starting with asking for examples of previous work -- be it through case studies, testimonials, or even actual SERP screengrabs. Big G also suggests that site owners ask about goals and how they're measured from the onset.

Meanwhile, when's the last time you brushed up on Google's Webmaster Guidelines? Do you have experience in the client's chosen vertical? What about their city? Do you have international optimization experience? Lee Odden argues that the premise behind some of Google's questions is faulty -- as the answers likely won't guarantee that a firm is well-equipped to handle the business.

Still, the suggestions are a good start. "All in all, I think it's great to have guidelines for companies when challenged with the task of finding and then evaluating potential Search Engine Optimization firms," Odden says. "As much as business owners would like to just pick... whoever seems to 'click,' hiring the right SEO consultant does take a commitment on the client side to become educated." - Read the whole story...

AdWords Conversion Tracking Logo No Longer Required
PPC Blog
AdWords users who were also tapping Google's built-in Conversion Tracking no longer have to display the "Site Stats" logo on their tracked pages. Previously, a text block with the words "Google Site Stats" automatically appeared on every page where users had embedded the conversion tracking code. The info let visitors (who converted from an AdWords ad) know that they were being tracked and offered info about how to disable the cookies if they wanted.

"For some websites, the logo from time to time could delay the loading of the conversion confirmation page which caused [the] bad experience for visitors," says Gordon Choi. So Google changed the policy, allowing users to choose a different Site Stats text block, or even create their own. - Read the whole story...

Search Insider - Around the Net for Friday, September 19, 2008


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