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Highlights from the SEW Blog: March 24-28, 2008

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We've collected all the search marketing news from selected posts to the Search Engine Watch blog in the past week.

From the SEW blog:

Organic Search

  • Does Google Allow Good Google Bombs?
    To some, it appears that Google has painted itself into a corner with its reliance on linking for its ranking algorithm. The lines between legitimate SEO, paid links, and Google bombs are becoming increasingly blurred.
  • New Google Webmaster Tool Aids Robots.txt Creation
    For the coding-challenged, creating a robots.txt file for instructing search engine spiders on the preferred way to crawl your site has not always been easy. Thankfully, Google has created a robots.txt generator as part of its Webmaster Tools.
  • Maybe Google's Not Becoming a Portal?
    Last week at SES NY, new comScore data on universal search showed that Google was sending more traffic to its own properties than it had been in the past. That led some people (including me) to wonder if that meant Google was becoming more like a portal than a search engine. But that data appears to miss the larger picture, where Google is sending even more traffic to news sites than it does to Google News.
  • SEW Experts: Search Within a Search: Where's it Leading?
    Some publishers are getting up in arms over a new feature from Google, which allows users to search a publisher's site without leaving the SERP.
  • SEW Experts: Yahoo and the Future of Search
    Because of spam, search engines had to stop trusting Webmasters to tell them about their site. Now, Yahoo is looking at new ways to get information from Webmasters.

Search Advertising

Linking Issues & Social Media

  • SEW Experts: Social Media: One Size Does NOT Fit All
    Spending time on linkbait or viral ideas can drive traffic to a site. However, if the same attention isn't given to preparing what to do with the traffic, the only remaining value is links, many of which don't pass juice.
  • SEW Experts: Creating a Link Building System
    We, as industry insiders, often lose the pulse of the real world. Sometimes, we all need to take a step back and look at things from a new perspective, and realize that the majority of marketers are not immersed in search marketing as we are.
  • How to (Actually) Earn Money (Now) with Social Media (Really): Part 1
    Leveraging digital assets and hot social channels for long-term SEM benefit has now become SEO 101. However, your boss or client may need to be convinced that investing in another layer of content management system (CMS), content, and conversational networking WILL in fact yield measurable financial results soon.
  • Microsoft Tries to Compete with OpenSocial
    Microsoft has announced a partnership to create data portability across 5 social networking sites. Facebook, Bebo, Hi5, Tagged and LinkedIn are all part of the arrangement, which will "exchange functionally-similar Contacts APIs."
  • Google, Yahoo & MySpace Team Up for OpenSocial
    Yahoo, MySpace and Google have pledged their support to open standards for social media development and data by joining together to form the OpenSocial Foundation.

Analytics & ROI

  • Google Launches YouTube Insight - Google Analytics Lite
    Today Google video search engine YouTube launched a free Web analytics tool. Think Google Analytics Lite: it's essentially a way to see how popular a video is over time combined with a global map that shows where it's popular.

Local & Mobile Search

  • Google's New Wifi Push Will Drive Mobile Search
    There's unused "white space" lying between the regulated TV signals and Google has big plans for them. In new lobbying effort, Google is asking the FCC to auction the unused airwaves to establish faster internet access that has a wider reach. Expanding Wifi will have major implications for mobile search.
  • New Google Mobile Search Feature Gives Your Thumbs a Rest
    Do you dream of searching Google for local information with your mobile phone without having to use your thumbs? Soon, you may be in luck.

Vertical & Specialty Search

In-House & Outsourcing

  • SEW Experts: The SEO Copywriter: Wordsmithing the Web
    Combining both technological know-how and a strong command of the written word, agency SEO copywriters are the front-line troops of any SEO initiative.
  • Conversion Rates & The Value Of Outsourcing SEM/SEO
    According to a new study, outsourced conversion rates are much higher. It may be that agencies that are specialists in a particular area see a wide cross-section of accounts and industries among their clients, and thus should be able to do a better job.
  • SEW Experts: Read Any Good SEO Books Lately?
    Some people are looking for the right book to learn everything there is to know about SEM. Unfortunately, it doesn't exist. Still, there are several books out there that can help further your understanding of search marketing in general, or do a deep dive on a specific sub-topic.

SEM Industry Issues

Searching/Search Technologies

More from the SEW Blog

  • Twitter: Welcome to my Google Nightmare
    Twitter may give Google a run for its money. Twitter's one more way, though, that Google knows everything about you.
  • Stupid SEO Spammers
    Lesson #1: Don't spam people with your SEO services. Lesson #2: Definitely don't spam people who write for SEW and have close relations with spam blacklist owners about your SEO services.
  • Lifetips Escalator Pitch, SES NY 2008
    Byron White, the president and founder of LifeTips, helped us launch a new feature at SES NY 2008: The Escalator Pitch.
  • Matt McGowan in Times Square, Day 1 SES NY 2008
    John Connor Mulligan of SEO-PR interviewed Matt McGowan, the Global Vice President of Marketing at Incisive Media, on the first day of SES NY 2008


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