The Search Engine Report, July 2, 2001, Number 56

July 2, 2001- Number 56

By Danny Sullivan
Editor, Search Engine Watch
Copyright (c) 2001 INT Media Group, Inc.

About The Report

The Search Engine Report is a monthly newsletter that covers developments with search engines and changes to the Search Engine Watch web site,

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In This Issue

+ Site News
+ Search Engine Strategies Comes To San Francisco
+ The Evolution Of Paid Inclusion
-- (full story online, link provided)
+ AltaVista Opens Paid Inclusion
+ Paid Inclusion Program, Other Changes Coming To FAST
+ Make Room For Teoma
-- (full story online, link provided)
+ Excite Makes Changes
+ iWon Brings Back Inktomi
+ Google Adds Picture Search, New Languages
-- (full story online, link provided)
+ Google: No IPO Imminent
-- (full story online, link provided)
+ Microsoft Smart Tags Abandoned
-- (full story online, link provided)
+ Search Research From The WWW10 Conference
-- (full story online, link provided)
+ Search Resources
+ SearchDay Articles
+ Search Engine Articles
+ List Info (Subscribing/Unsubscribing)


Hello Everyone--

I hope all my Canadian readers had a happy Canada Day yesterday, and a great Fourth of July to all my fellow American readers.

In site news, the Jupiter MMXI European Search Engine Ratings page has been updated with listings of the most popular search engines and portals for various European countries. A link to the page can be found via the What's New page, below.

On What's New, I also expect to post another link to new figures for US search engines and portals, from Jupiter Media Metrix.

Search Engine Watch What's New


SES Comes To San Francisco

Coming to San Francisco on August 16th and 17th, the Search Engine Strategies conference features a day devoted to search engines and promotion issues, with a second day featuring panels on promotion, sessions for web developers and two tracks with panels designed to help Internet searchers.

I'll be speaking at the conference, along with other search engine marketing and research experts. There will also be speakers from the search engines themselves, including, AltaVista, FAST Search, Google, GoTo, Inktomi, LookSmart, MSN Search and Netscape/The Open Directory.

Exhibiting companies include, EasyAsk, Fast Search & Transfer, Inceptor, Firespout, LexiQuest, LingoMotors, NuTech Solutions, Position Technologies, SiteLab, Sprinks, Web Ignite, WebSeed and WebGenius.

Those interested in sponsoring or exhibiting should contact Frank Fazio Jr,, for more information. Attendees can find the agenda or sign-up for the conference via the URL below. Do so by July 18th, in order to save up to US $200 on registration.

Search Engine Strategies: San Francisco 2001


The Evolution Of Paid Inclusion

Paid inclusion has always been a tricky concept to explain, but understanding it is important to both webmasters and searchers, as recent changes have suddenly made paid inclusion commonplace with search engines. For webmasters, do these new programs mean that you won't get listed, unless you pay? And for searchers, do these programs present a threat to the quality of your results? See the article below for more about some new developments in paid inclusion.

The Evolution Of Paid Inclusion
The Search Engine Report, July 2, 2001


AltaVista Opens Paid Inclusion

After months of talking about it, AltaVista finally unveiled a paid inclusion program last week. Similar to the program Inktomi began offering last September, this guarantees that submitted pages will be listed within AltaVista's web page index in a prompt manner and revisited on a regular basis.

AltaVista has hinted that it was going to offer paid inclusion since late last year and even accidentally posted pages promoting its "bulk inclusion" program when it introduced its "ransom note" Add URL puzzle system back in March. The company has finally followed through on this by launching its new "Express Inclusion" program.

The program allows you to submit up to 500 URLs, which will be visited on a weekly basis. This means that a brand new page submitted to AltaVista through the program should show up in about week, or changes to existing pages should be reflected in about a week.

AltaVista's pricing is more expensive than Inktomi's paid inclusion program -- much more -- starting at US $78 per year for the first URL and dropping in price as follows:

URL 1: $78
URLs 2-10: $48.00
URLs 11-100: $38.00
URLs 101-500: $24.00

AltaVista actually sells its service on a six month basis, so you can get started with paid inclusion for half the prices shown on the list above. I've changed the figures to yearly pricing, so you can more easily compare to Inktomi's paid inclusion prices, where service is sold by the year.

Here's Inktomi's current charges, as sold through Position Technologies:

URL 1: $30
URLs 2-20: $15
URLs 21-1000: $12

As you can see, AltaVista's prices are easily double what Inktomi charges. To include 25 pages for a year with Inktomi would be $375, while at AltaVista, the same number of pages for the same time period would be $1,080 -- almost three times what Inktomi charges.

Still, more than $1,000 for 25 pages and no guarantee that they will bring in any traffic? Rather than that gamble, it might make more sense to put the money into AltaVista's separate paid listing program or into GoTo listings, which are carried on AltaVista's pages.

Remember, you can continue to use the free Add URL page to add new pages to AltaVista. Now called "Basic Submit," the downside is that you have to enter a ransom note message for each batch of five URLs that you add. In addition, the former weekly insertion schedule has now been downgraded to 4 to 6 weeks, to make the paid inclusion program more attractive. Of course, that's not out of line with the delay Inktomi has when using free Add URL pages to submit to it. The biggest drawback is simply the uncertainty. There's no guarantee that your pages will get picked up.

Before you panic, remember that AltaVista is also continuing to add pages for free, through its regular crawling. It also still promises to revisit pages in its index each month. That means you may already have plenty of pages listed, and they should stay there despite the addition of the paid inclusion program. Nor will those non-paid pages be downgraded in relevancy.

"We're not going to penalize in relevance the people who are adding through free Add URL," said Chris Kermoian, director of search and web marketing services for AltaVista. "We'll also still go through our standard crawling process."

A longer version of this article is available to
Search Engine Watch members.
Learn more about becoming a member at


AltaVista Express Inclusion

AltaVista Free Add URL

IMPORTANT! If you fail to include the ? at the end of the URL above, you will only get a blank page.

AltaVista Submission Changes & Other Developments
The Search Engine Report, April 2, 2001

Tips about the "ransom note" submission free Add URL service.


Paid Inclusion Program, Other Changes Coming To FAST

FAST Search is launching a trial version of its paid inclusion program this month. Called "PartnerSite," the program guarantees that submitted pages will be included in FAST's web index. They will be revisited and reposted to the FAST index every 24 hours. Ordinarily, changes to pages may take up to two weeks to appear in the index.

PartnerSite will also provide webmasters with site search functionality. This will allow users to search your site for content by adding some simple HTML code to your web pages.

Pricing begins at $500 per month to index up to 4,000 pages, with custom quotes to those with more than 4,000 pages, with pricing based on the number of pages, expected query load and marketing budget.

FAST Search is also planning to release a new look and functionality to its site later this week. The revamped service is designed to automatically present information from appropriate indexes as required. For instance, if you do a picture-oriented search, FAST hopes to present relevant pictures along with matching web page listings. The new changes are supposed to go live on July 6, and I'll be doing a longer review of the new service in a following newsletter.

A longer version of this article is available to
Search Engine Watch members.
Learn more about becoming a member at

FAST Search

FAST PartnerSite

You can apply for the trial program via this URL. After the trial, FAST will make adjustments to the program and pricing. The program is set to open to the general public in September.


Make Room For Teoma

After the loss of Go earlier this year and the expected departure of NBCi, you might have thought it was all over in the search engine game. However, just as consolidation seemed inevitable, new player Teoma has stepped up with an impressive debut of its new search service. Opened to the public last month, Teoma leverages link structures from across the web to provide not only relevant results but to allow present different views of information automatically. See the article below for more about this new service.

Make Room For Teoma
The Search Engine Report, July 2, 2001


Excite Makes Changes

Excite has finished making changes to its search interface, mostly minor alterations that that service hopes will improve usability. Here's what you will find that's different:

+ More emphasis on the "Zoom In" search refinement tool.

+ Results are now numbered, to help those who wish to remember their place when returning to the search results page.

+ Search page numbers are now at the bottom of the screen, allowing you to jump directly to the second, third or tenth page of results, should you desire.

+ Site listings now put more of an emphasis on title and summary.

+ Page clustering is now automatically performed, so that only one top page per web site is displayed.

In other news, Excite@Home's WebCrawler service is to transform this month into a more pure search service. Chris Sherman will be following up on the change in Search Engine Watch's SearchDay newsletter. You can sign-up for it via the URL listed below.

A longer version of this article is available to
Search Engine Watch members.
Learn more about becoming a member at




Good News, Bad News for Excite@Home
WebSideStory, June 26, 2001

Despite Excite@Home's ISP operations rising, usage of its search engine has plunged, according to search referral traffic measured by StatMarket.

Excite UK MD: We are not closing down
NetImperative, June 25, 2001

In June, Excite@Home said it would close all but its Italian and UK operations in Europe. This articles covers rumors that the UK site would also be closed, which Excite@Home denies.


iWon Brings Back Inktomi

Last month, I wrote about how iWon had switched to delivering pure paid placement results from GoTo, rather than the Inktomi-dominated listings it had historically used. iWon said this was a temporary move, and to its credit, Inktomi listings were returned in mid-June. They now appear midway down the results page, after the "Featured Listings" section, which are paid listings from


iWon, Go Paid Placement
The Search Engine Report, June 4, 2001

Past article about the iWon change.


Google Adds Picture Search, New Languages

Google has added a new picture search facility to its service, along with the ability to search in 48 languages, such as Bengali, Welsh, Telugu, Elmer Fudd and Pig Latin. Search Engine Watch's associate editor Chris Sherman has reviews of both new features available online, via the URLs below:

Speaking in Tongues at Google
SearchDay, June 25, 2001

Google's gone multilingual, allowing you to search in 48 languages. Soon, you'll be able to search in any language, and automatically translate results from one language to another.

Google Polishes its Image
SearchDay, June 26, 2001

Google has taken the wraps off its new specialized image search engine, allowing you to search and browse more than 150 million digital images.


Google: No IPO Imminent

Following an story in the UK's Sunday Business newspaper, it was widely reported by other media outlets that Google was expecting to go public by the end of the year. The company strongly denies that this is the case. More details can be found via the URL below:

Google: No IPO Imminent
The Search Engine Report, July 2, 2001


Microsoft Smart Tags Abandoned

Microsoft has given up on its plan to add "Smart Tags" to web pages viewed by those using Internet Explorer and Windows XP, following bad publicity over the system. More about the proposed system can be found via the URL below:

Microsoft Smart Tags Abandoned
The Search Engine Report, July 2, 2001


Search Research From The WWW10 Conference

A number of papers relating to indexing the web and searching were presented at the recent 10th International World Wide Web Conference, which was held from May 1 to 5 in Hong Kong. In the article below, I've highlighted some presentations that seemed particularly interesting. Be warned -- many of these are highly technical documents.

Search Research From The WWW10 Conference, June 18, 2001

Search Engine Resources


WebLens offers access to over 4,500 Internet research tools and resources. It's the companion site for writer Pam Blackstone's weekly technology column for the Victoria Times-Colonist newspaper.


Diggit is a new image search engine that lets you search for images using other images and keywords. Image matching is based on color, shape, and texture. You can even paint your queries right in your browser window using the Diggit FX (ActiveX) or Diggit Graffiti (Java) applets.

Linking And Crawling Issues

This article covers some of the legal aspects of linking and crawling that may have an impact on both web site developers and search engines. Written by attorney Ivan Hoffman who specializes in online content and intellectual property issues.


The WordTracker service now offers the ability to research what people are searching for via the popular meta search services of MetaCrawler and Dogpile. It provides access to query logs stretching back for two months, which amounts to 350 million queries or 40 million unique search terms. The database is also kept constantly updated, with new data added each week.

SearchDay Articles

Here are some recent articles that may be of interest from Search Engine Watch's daily SearchDay newsletter:

+ Backwash: A Web Concierge - Backwash is a hybrid portal, community and search site that organizes the Internet by personality, not by subject matter like most traditional search engines and directories.

+ 12 Cool Sites and Tools for Searchers - A roundup of interesting search-related sites, services and tools, with this issue heavy on browser companions and add-ons that must be downloaded prior to use.

+ What Search Engines See Isn't Always What You Get - Cloaking is a technique used by some webmasters to deliver one page to a search engine for indexing, while serving an entirely different page to everyone else.

+ Web Archaeology: Yahoo Relics - Do you remember what Yahoo looked like in 1994? Digging into the web reveals several fascinating relics of the service that later morphed into the portal we're familiar with today.

+ Pass Me the Blog, Please: "How in the world did you find THAT?" The answer, quite often, is by searching through blogs, the web's equivalent of a sophisticated early warning system.

+ The End of 404s?: There's nothing more frustrating than clicking a link only to see '404 - Page Not Found'. Two U.C. Berkeley professors have proposed a solution that could banish aggravating 404s from the web forever.

+ Super Searchers on Wall Street: The techniques and tricks used by professional investment researchers to score winning returns and avoid financial disasters.

+ Orbitz Takes Flight: A new travel site that uses some seriously powerful search technology, capable of instantly analyzing more than two billion options to help you find the best possible flights for a trip.

You can find all of these articles and more via the archives page, below. You can also sign-up for SearchDay on that page to get more articles like these during the workweek, along with search engine headlines from across the web.

SearchDay Archives

Search Engine Articles

Cyber Law Journal: Invisible Publishing Sparks a Lawsuit
New York Times, June 29, 2001

We've had metajacking and pagejacking, and now here's a new one -- a case involving allegations of copyjacking. Copyjacking? A new term I've made up for taking HTML body copy from someone else's page and posting it to your own in hopes of attaining higher search engine rankings. It involves the horoscope site alleging that InternetHoroscopes, a site, used text from EasyScopes to boost its rankings. By the way, the "tricks" used by EasyScope as mentioned at the end of the article aren't aimed at search engines but instead at potential copyjackers, the company says. They include spelling errors to make it easier for EasyScopes to track down unauthorized use of its material.


Optimizing for International Search Engines
ClickZ, June 27, 2001

A look at major non-US search engines and tips on submitting.


Intelliseek Gains $1.4 Million From CIA-Backed Firm
Washington Post, June 25, 2001

The US Central Intelligence Agency thinks that invisible web search firm Intelliseek's technology might come in handy in tracking down information, so its venture capital firm has made a large investment in the company.


Google ` go-go
Salon, June 21, 2001

Interview with Google director of research, on how the service operates.


Napster, Gnutella have competition
ZD Net Australia, June 15, 2001,2000020814,20232639,00.htm

A look at Napster alternatives, focusing on Audiogalaxy.


Search the Web Like a Map Web Search Guide, June 18, 2001

Review of tools that let you see web search information in visual or graphical form.


Deep-Net Fishing
Industry Standard, June 18, 2001,1902,26992,00.html

Focus on attempts to mine information located in the "invisible" or "deep" part of the web.


AltaVista Unveils New Software
AP, June 12, 2001,1848,44461,00.html

AltaVista has upgraded its search software for intranets, with one of the key enhancements being new support for email formats. It can also work with AltaVista's "personal" software that runs on employee desktops, so that employees can search beyond just the information available on the company's shared network servers. This development has some privacy advocates concerned, suggesting that it will be easier for management or fellow employees to find personal information of other employees. This could certainly happen, but this isn't a software problem, it's a legal problem. Employees may be surprised to discover that "personal" email on company computers actually belongs to the company. Solution? If you don't want someone to see something personal, don't store it on your company computer, because intranet searching is going to continue expanding onto employee desktops. Alternatively, find out what your rights to privacy are according to company policies and your local jurisdictions.


Three Site Types Dominate Surfing Habits, June 11, 2001,2198,3531_782381,00.htm

Nine out of ten web users visit a search engine, portal or community site each month. They also revisit frequently, nearly five times per month.


Reverse Search Inside Out Web Search Guide, June 11, 2001

How to do reverse lookups on phone numbers, web pages, IP numbers and other items.


Designing Web Usability - Search
Web Developers Virtual Library, June 8, 2001

Usability guru Jakob Nielsen shares his tips on improving search at your own web site.


Search Engine Compares Terms
ResearchBuzz, June 7, 2001

Review of a tool that lets you compare how many listings appear for different words on various search engines.


Visual Search Engines, June 7, 2001

Review of eVision Java-based toolkit, which is designed to improve visual searching.


Search Engine Optimization -- FREE!
WebMonkey, June 5, 2001

In-depth article on the most important things you can do to attain good placement with search engines.


The High Price of Search Technology
eCompany, May 31, 2001,1653,12179,00.html

Review of the Charles Schwab web site deploying new search software from iPhrase, which can assemble information from multiple web pages into a single answer.

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