Adwords Changes Google Checkout Buttons Above the Fold

Google has been running small checkout icons next to Adwords ads above the fold and large buttons with the sidebar ads for awhile now. They are now placing the large button next to the above the fold ads. I am seeing the large icon on all searches with all browsers so I am not sure if this is a test or something that’s permanent.

 

Google Checkout Button

 

I wonder if the Paypal / Yahoo partnership prompted the change. Information arms race anyone? Or maybe it’s in response to dropping CTR rates.

Is Feedburner Siphoning Your Link Juice?

While browsing today’s SEL SearchCap I noticed a pattern. Out of the 58 external stories linked to, 28 of them linked directly to a FeedBurner feed and not to the actual content on the site. That’s 40% of the stories that did not receive any link juice from Search Engine Land.

Some may ask why SEL would link that way. It’s not their fault. The 28 blogs blogs in question have click tracking enabled on their FeedBurner RSS feed. It’s a very nice feature but unless the feed click stats are a life and death stat for your business model I would recommend you turn it off.

YouTube to Use Pre-Roll Ads?

vnunet.com reports that Google is planning on using 30 second pre-roll ads on YouTube beginning next year according to Patrick Walker, European head of video partnerships at Google. YouTube and “the broadcaster” will share revenue from the ads.

vnunet.com also stated:

Walker told delegates at the MipTV conference in Cannes that broadcasters have been enthusiastic about creating the ads, and predicted that 2008 will see “real money coming in” from video advertising.

Google “youtube preroll” and you’ll see what we all already know—YouTube users don’t want pre-roll ads. ClickZ reported almost six months ago that most marketers say pre-roll isn’t the best way to monetize online video. At the time, Google was only in the process of buying YouTube and according to Daniel Blackman, strategic partner for development at Google Video, they were shying away from pre-roll ads.

MySpace and Photobucket Make Up

Last week, as Andy mentioned, MySpace blocked Photobucket videos and remixes from displaying on its members’ pages.

As of yesterday, the problem was resolved. Photobucket CEO Alex Welch stated on their blog:

Moving forward, we’ve established open lines of communication and procedures with MySpace to prevent a sudden block of Photobucket content in the future. We want our users to be able to share their content and understand it must be within the framework of MySpace’s Terms of Service for it to appear on the site.

How had the violated the TOS in the first place? Apparently, Photobucket encouraged its users to post ad-sponsored slideshows. From MySpace’s TOS:

Commercial advertisements, affiliate links, and other forms of solicitation may be removed from Member profiles without notice and may result in termination of Membership privileges.

80% of Blogs Have Offensive Content

PC World reports on Scansafe’s Monthly Global Threat Report for March 2007, which states that up to 80% of blogs contain “offensive” content. This includes porn, offensive language, hate posting, and malware—6% hosted active malware.

PC World describes the methodology behind the report:

The figures were gleaned from an analysis of real-time traffic passing through the company corporate proxying service, designed to filter out the worst content. A total of 614 sites were chosen at random from sites reckoned to have blogging as a significant activity.

One incidence of offensive content was enough to flag the entire site. According to
Tamar at SERoundtable, even a user comment containing offensive content was enough to set off the “offensive” rating.

The PC World article anticipates the obvious argument:

The Marketing Pilgrim Podcast – Episode 3

How do you like that? Two years to go from episode 1 to episode 2, but barely a week to get to the third podcast!

Here’s everything you need to know…

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Episode: 3

Date: April 24th

Program:

Items discussed this week include –

Flooding Your Link Profile

With the recent brouhaha Matt Cutts raised over webmasters reporting paid links, I’ve had a few customers ask me how they might protect themselves. Since I was on the subject, I wanted to give you all some real world examples of how to cover tracks from the prying eyes of your competitors.

There are limited resources for webmasters to do competitive intelligence on another website’s link building activities, and of those resources, all of them return only limited results. Yahoo for example returns a maximum of 1,000 backlinks. You can pull a few tricks out of a hat and get maybe 2,000-3,000 backlinks if your lucky. That doesn’t help for a site with 20,000 backlinks.