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Google’s Latest Tool Identifies Page Speed Issues

There has been plenty of talk about just what signals Google is using for search placement. What are the social signals? Will +1 play a role? Honestly, since SERP’s can be so different for every searcher you always have to wonder these days, right?

Well, one SEO signal that has received some attention in the recent past is the speed with which a page loads. Google has always rewarded sites that are coded cleanly and load quickly because it is important to user experience of that page. Another result of a ‘clean’ page is the page loading quickly.

To help measure this element Google has introduced its Page Speed Online tool, which is described in their Webmaster Central Blog.

Yahoo Search Predicted to Decline Further

Well, that didn’t take long. Yesterday we get news that Yahoo is really looking to improve its search experience. Good news, right? Well, eMarketer isn’t going to let Yahoo get off that easily as it released numbers predicting a continued decline in Yahoo search ad revenue share (mainly due to Bing’s gains). Those gains by Bing are slowly happening but perhaps the bigger surprise is the predicted rise in Google search ad revenue share. Here it is.

Are you agreement with these numbers? Will Google become even more dominant as Yahoo fades off in to the sunset and Bing picks up the pieces? How will this play out? Let’s hear your predictions in the comments.

The New Google Analytics; the Same, but Different

Google is rolling out an updated user interface to approximately (initial) 1% of Google Analytics users.

In its announcement, Google says…

Our goals for the new version are to make it easier and faster to get to the data you want and to enhance the Google Analytics platform to bring you major new functionality. Many of the changes in the new version are the result of your feedback. For example, you can now view multiple advanced segments without needing to also use All Visits. You’ll find some of the other most requested features like multiple dashboards in the new version as well.

And, while I’ve not had a chance to thoroughly poke around the new interface, it appears the new version is mostly a change to the “look and feel” of Google Analytics. Kind of like when a car manufacturer does a facelift each year, not a full redesign.

Top 4 Reasons to Abandon SEO

As an online marketing consultant I’m always preaching the value of SEO, but every now and then a website owner crosses my desk where I advise them to abandon their SEO efforts (cue the boos and hisses). I’ve compiled a list of the reasons I feel justify abandoning your SEO efforts and I hope it leaves you thinking about the value of all of your marketing campaigns and how they fit into your overall strategy.

1. None of your sales come from your website.

The Free Google Ride is Over for Lazy SEOs & Keyword Domain Names

There’s a lot of discussion surrounding a new video from Matt Cutts.

In it, the prominent Google engineer explains why you should not be swayed into registering a domain name that includes the keywords you are likely to target for your SEO efforts. He provides many examples of successful companies that have a branded domain name–and not a keyworded one.

Then he drops somewhat of a bombshell for all those SEOs that have been relying on the keyword in the domain to do all the heavy-lifting:

Google Adds Eject Button for Content Farms

Google is taking more steps to create a truly personal search experience. Now, if you don’t like results from a site you a can remove those results from that domain completely from your future searches. Talk about the ability to get rid of content farms!

The Google blog states

You’ve probably had the experience where you’ve clicked a result and it wasn’t quite what you were looking for. Many times you’ll head right back to Google. Perhaps the result just wasn’t quite right, but sometimes you may dislike the site in general, whether it’s offensive, pornographic or of generally low quality. For times like these, you’ll start seeing a new option to block particular domains from your future search results. Now when you click a result and then return to Google, you’ll find a new link next to “Cached” that reads “Block all results.”

Google Leads in Overall Search While Bing Powered Search Leads in Success Rate

It’s time for the monthly pondering of whether Google is losing its strangehold on the lead in search market in the US. Experian Hitwise has released its numbers for February 2011.

In Google’s position any move backwards is considered trouble so a 2% decrease from January to February is not great news. Bing powered search, on the other hand, continues to show progress moving up 4% from January.

Where Bing claims victory is in Experian’s metric of search success rate. Those numbers are unchanged with Bing doing very well compared to its nemesis.

Month to month numbers are hard to draw conclusions from but Bing continues to inch forward and Google seems to have stalled. Of course stalling is relative when your market share is twice that of your nearest competitor which consists of two outlets rather than Google’s single platform.