Yahoo Releases Support for NOYDIR Tag

Yahoo has come through with it’s promise to release a no Yahoo directory meta tag much like the no ODP meta tag.

Many webmasters complained that the title and description given to organic search listings when a site was listed in the Yahoo directory affected click through ratios and rankings. Now they can opt out of Yahoo using the directory information.

The format for the meta tag is:

<META NAME="ROBOTS" CONTENT="NOYDIR">

or

<META NAME="Slurp" CONTENT="NOYDIR">

Yahoo noted that to make these changes effective there would be an index update. Full information is available on the Yahoo blog.

Carl Icahn Invests in Mobile Content Provider Motricity

Motricity, a mobile content and services company based in Durham, N.C.,  has announced a $50 million round of equity funding from serial investor Carl Icahn.

Being a company local to me, I’m glad to see them growing and getting some working capital. but I’m sure they’re well aware that Icahn is not always an investor that likes the status quo.

Channel Sponsors

Yahoo Slams Google’s Usability

I guess Yahoo felt they needed to be in the news this week – no matter what the reason. It’s the only explanation I can think of for Yahoo’s Jeff Bonforte, senior director of real time communications, attacking Google’s usability efforts.

“[Google] definitely is lacking in usability,” Bonforte said in a meeting with reporters at Yahoo’s corporate headquarters.

“They don’t have this intimate connection in usability with consumers that Yahoo has had for 10 years. When it comes to consumer applications, no-one is more successful than Yahoo hands down. And it happens over and over and over again. In every application, we are number one or two.”

Judge Confirms Search Engines Can Reject Ads

You’d think this would be obvious, but it took a recent law suit and a judge’s ruling to confirm Google, Yahoo and Microsoft don’t have an obligation to run every submitted ad.

Someone bought some gripe ads on Google, Yahoo and MSN, only to have them rejected. He then sued all three companies arguing that the search engines should be required to post his ads. The judge in the case appears to have made quick work of it, dismissing almost all of the claims and pointing out in no uncertain terms that many were specious and frivolous.

If I had a “dumb moves” category, this news would be filed there.

Tracking Potential Google Killers

Read/WriteWeb continues to monitor the second tier of search engines. Last month, they published the top 100 alternative search engines. This month, they’ve updated the list for February, with 32 new additions.

The criteria to make the list:

1) The Search Engine should exhibit superiority to Google—not as a whole, but in just one particular area. . . . We are not arguing that any one of the 100 list members is a “Google killer”. Rather, that they should be matched against the appropriate corresponding part of Google. For example, TheFind is a shopping search engine and therefore should be compared to Google’s shopping search engine, Froogle. . . .

Challenging Google’s NC Tax Breaks

The North Carolina Institute for Constitutional Law (NCICL), led by former North Carolina Supreme Court Justice Robert (Bob) Orr, is challenging Google’s tax breaks. Orr and the NCICL are questioning whether the North Carolina Constitution allows the legislature to extend tax breaks like the ones it awarded to Google. (Google is not specifically named in the legislation.)

Orr says:

“The idea is that you don’t give individuals or individual companies to receive special treatment. There are provisions in the constitution that say your tax legislation be uniform. The fact is that these are tax breaks for one company. I don’t think anybody would disagree that these are not for Google.”

Take Advantage of Google’s “YouTube Bias”

A pingback from BlackHatSEO.no on yesterday’s post about YouTube infiltrating Google SERPs brought up an interesting point that I hadn’t considered.

What, you can’t read Norwegian? Okay, neither can I. But I’ll attempt to paraphrase:

Jordan McCollum from Marketing Pilgrim has an interesting post on how YouTube is beginning to creep up the SERPs. There’s some potential here—if your site is stuck in “Google’s Sandbox” you can generate a strategic video, optimize YouTube for on-site search [I think] and drive video traffic from YouTube to your site.

Now there’s one way to use YouTube to really help with your online marketing: but easier said than done. The “shoes” video apparently ranks because it’s a viral hit, and is probably most popular for its shock value and oddball humor. Can you imagine how it would change your perception of the brand if the video featured the words “ManoloBlahnik.com”? (That’s an upscale women’s shoe brand, whose shoes may well cost $300 or more. Let’s get ‘em.)