Where librarians and the internet meet: internet searching, Web 2.0 resources, search engines and their development. These are my personal views and not those of CILIP or any other organisation I may be associated with.
Ever wondered which websites are the most visited? This resource provides you with one basis for comparison if you're fed up using other applications such as Alexa. Simply pop along to Ranking.com and type in a URL. You'll then get a position for the site (based on links, number of visitors and so on) which may be useful if you're exploring a site and need a bit more information.
Official Google Webmaster Central Blog: Google's SEO Starter Guide. I don't write a lot about search engine optimization, even though it's of interest to me, but this is one that's particularly worth noting I think. Google have finally produced an official guide listing a few of the things you need to do in order to get a good ranking with their search engine. Much of this won't come as any surprise to people in the know, but if you're just interested or simply starting out in this area you may find these tips to be of use. Read the entire article for the full details, but briefly...
Create unique and accurate page titles. Accurately describe the content Create new tags for each page Use brief, but descriptive titles
Make use of the description meta tag This one amused me, since so many 'experts' have said that meta tags are dead, but Google is saying that the content tag is useful in some circumstances.
Improve the structure of URLs Create proper, sensible folder structures Use real words Provide one URL to reach a document
Make the site easier to navigate
Good quality content
Write better anchor text
Use header tags appropriately
Optimise use of images
Effective use of robots.txt
All in all, it's a very useful and interesting document which is worth spending some time going through if you want to optimise your website.
SEO Tools Google Optimization. The Multiple Datacenter keyword position check tool is useful in telling you where a specific URL is in the Google results for a particular search term. It also tells you where the page returns in the different Google datacentres.
Doing a Google search for tablet pc. brings you to a page of results on the subject. No surprise there. If you then take a look at the sponsored links, up pops the Dell advert. With no mention of tablet pcs other than the title. And when you follow the link through to their site there's no mention there of tablet pcs either!
I saw a story from Softpedia about Microsoft and Google and thought it would be worth taking a look at. I started to read the story and moved my house and wallop! Up comes a big advert, which I then have to either click to remove or move my mouse away and wait a few seconds before it disappears. A few seconds later I inadvertently did it again - same thing happened. This page is literally festooned with mouseover adverts; there are 15 of these, 9 small Google adverts and 1 large Google advert. What's worse is that the mouseover adverts have very little, if any relevance to the story I'm reading - they are there simply to try and make money for these idiots and to irritate me.
So, here's the rant. A webpage should be there to be read. That's what it's for - you have information and you want to make it available to other people. Only not according to the idiots at Softpedia. Oh no.. they're not interested in the story, other than as an opportunity to puke adverts all over your screen. Once you start to think about it, this is where it gets really stupid, because once you realise that, you start to wonder just how they have twisted and written their story to ram in as many adverts as they can. So the news becomes less about the actual news, and more about them. As a user it means that I have to try and skip through a minefield without blowing up the bombs and spraying advertising over everything. I can't trust these people to provide good quality news, and I can't even read what they are saying, so what IS the point of going there in the first place? There comes a point when it becomes so blatant that a company is that desperate for money that it's embarrassing, and that's what's happened here. Of course, it's going to backfire because they're not going to make any out of me, because I'm not going back to their tatty marketstall again. (Rant over)
Seriously though - how stupid is that? Yes, I sometimes have the Snap mouseover operating on some of my pages, but only where I actually think it's useful for a reader, and it's not as intrusive as the rubbish being thrown out here. Don't these people ever *think* about the effect of what they're doing on their readers - the one group they can't afford to annoy? (OK, rant really over this time).
Link: WebGuild Silicon Valley - Searchnomics 2007 Conference. This looks to be a useful conference if you happen to be in that part of the world. Searchnomics is where the leaders of the search industry meet to share
cutting-edge knowledge, best practices, and trends in: • Search Engine
Marketing • Search Engine Optimization • Design and Development •
Branding and Promotion • Web Analytics • New Innovations and
If you're interested in signing up go to this registration page and fill in the details. Pop my name in as a referrer as well, though I'm not entirely sure why.
SMX: The Search Marketing Expo Conference Series. If you're into search marketing, and you're based in the US, this is as good as it gets. Danny Sullivan and Chris Sherman are both involved with it, so you know it's going to be good. SMX Advanced is taking place in Seattle in June 4-5, for the experienced search marketer. Take a look, and if you're thinking of registering, if you follow this link, they pay me money at no cost to you!