Google Adwords’ Run for the Money

December 10, 2008

google-alcohol-adwordsTwo months ago we were announced that Google adwords allow gambling ads in the UK
Now it says the same about advertising alcohol on Google adwords in US.

Does any of you share the same annoying feeling that in the face of the world economic threat Google decided to loose its moral restrictions?

Please don’t misunderstand me – I’m in favor of this new policy of advertising “tricks and treats”,I just think that Google shouldn’t pretend to be something it’s not.
Does democracy really work on the web and can you really make money without doing evil, as Google claimed philosophy says?

I don’t think so, but maybe I’m in minority…

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Blended Search Celebrates its first Birthday

April 29, 2008

I have just finished listening to Chris Sherman on the SMN webcast, talking about the advantages of blended search ( a year after it was launched) and I thought “What the hack? Why not summarizing it for you guys?”
so here it goes:

Blended Search – Definition
Blended search, also known by the name of “Universal Search” or “Search 3.0”, is incorporating results from non-web sources (like books, videos and images) into the regular web search results.

What is it Good For?
The sources that we use to get information from are just the same, but we use them more than we did before the launch of blended search. Searchers no longer need to use the search engine’s different tabs (news, images, etc) – they get the relevant results for their search inquiry directly on the web results page. In other words – if “Vertical Search” was alive somewhere in the past, I guess there’s no doubt it’s starting to die now. 😦

Search marketers and businesses’ websites have more seats on first results page to “fight over”. Before “blended search” was born, websites could be shown on only 2 out of 10 results per page. Today, one can be shown on the same two seats from the past (seats that are reserved for the website’s pages, usually the homepage and some inner page) but also on other seats taken for social sites such as youtube (video results) or news sites (press releases).
Basically, one can be shown on most if not all of first pages’ results (take Britney Spears for example).

Searchers are open to more sources of information otherwise they might not know about. Think about your old uncle – if not for the blended search, will he still be sending you funny YouTube videos? Moreover, the blended search makes the all process of searching much easier. looked for an IPhone and got a video result among others? With Google’s “Universal Search” results you don’t need to jump to the video site in order to watch it – Just click on the “Watch video” link (marked in red at the following example):

What is it Sad for? 
Less precision: Vertical search resulted in better search results, since it was focused on specific search field (video, news, images etc). Blended search returns a wide range of results that are more speculative than accurate (in terms of what the searcher was searching for). This is clearly demonstrated by  the following screen shot taken from Chris Sherman’s webcast:

No more “good old only web results”:  Google is no longer showing only web results. Even if you use the “web” tab in the search process, you’ll get the blended search results which means web sites, videos, images, news sources and alike. This lost of “only web feature” is quite sad, since there are still lots of people who’d like to get these results with no extras… 

Bad blogs and products results: Search engines don’t index these two very well, so blended search in this term is quite poor. 

So what will Blended Search bring?
Better and much more sophisticated statistic tools to track conversion rates out of different search results, such as video which is un-trackable at the moment.
– Better and much more sophisticated SEM efforts: Traditional SEO will be nothing but complemental, while search marketing will focus on viral video, creating juicy (and highly optimized) press releases and so on.

What do you say?
Do you see the future of blended search differently?

Feel like reading more about blended search? I bet you’ll enjoy the following:
Blended search increases your visibility ( April 2008 )
Blended search results study by iprospect ( April 2008 )
Google’s ranking advice in blended search ( February 2008 )
Optimizing for blended search ( January 2008 )
Search 3.0 by SearchEngineLand ( Nov 2007 )


Shew… Google is selling SEM Company Performics

April 6, 2008

 What a great piece of news, don’t you think?
I guess we can all start dancing to show our joy and thankfullness to Google for rethinking the absord situation and deciding to step out of it. Google will sell the SEM company Performics to maintain objectivity, since, as they say, they “do not want to be in the search engine marketing business”.
Good for us who want to stay in this business. 🙂


Google Inspired Websites

March 7, 2008

Google makes the web go round but that’s an old news. I just wanted to share some sites I ran into and are google related in one way or the other:

Google Fight 
A cool site in which you can enter two terms to see them fighting on how many results each one has on Google. Those who have no inspration can use the links on the left to see the classics google fights, the fight of the month, funy fights or the last 20.
This is not a SEO tool but it sure can be used to get a first impression on the competitiveness of your market in compare to others.

Googlified
A blog about google written by quite a young foursome (16, 17, 18 and 21 years old guys)
who likes Google and blogging. Googlified includes news and updates about Google, funny images, summaries of Doodles  and much more.

Google Watch
The Google Watch site offers a criticism of Google, ask questions like “Is Google god?”, saying Gmail is creepy, pagerank sucks and much more. Too bad it is not organized by dates or categories and yet “Google Watch” proves that when you have an interesting content, people will stay and read it, even if your site is not a user friendly one.

Logoogle
This site offers funny fake Google logos as well as images (“With friendly permission by Google“) and links to related sites. Sweet.

Blogoscoped
Blogscoped, edited by Philipp Lenssen, has been covering Google and the tech world for 5 years now. For serious people only.

GoogleWorld
All the information you need about Google, or as the site defined itself: “A quick and easy way to find any type of information about the world according to Google”.

GoogleFan
“Every useful Google link on one page.”

UGFC
The unofficial Google fan club. Last update was made on September 2005, so I guess the slogan of “beause we love Google” is no longer valid…

Are you familiar with other Google related sites?
Please share!


No to Google Knol

December 27, 2007

3 reasons why I won’t use Google *Knol
 – if I weren’t an online marketer 🙂

1. I’m tierd of this “give and get for free” thing.
I think it was my father who told me that when you think about it, at the end – any cheap buying turns to be the most expensive one. I really enjoy using blogger (Google blog platform) and gmail (google free email service) and all the rest of Google’s freebies, but it’s starting to feel like the price for all of this is getting higher and higher each and everyday.
We all heard about Google reader getting into the users’ pants just as we all suffer from overload of adsense on our gmail.

The online world enjoys plenty of sharing-information platforms (which I am sure Google could have purchased). I don’t need another one by Google, especially if it’s going to influence its SERP (See You Tube acquisition by Google).

2. I’m tierd of the world trying to sell me things and I bet the knol platform would be full of not only valuable content but also google ads (rumors say one can decide whether to show or not to show adsense on his knol). No doubt it would be highly targeted and contextual and yet. No thanks. I think am sure I’ll  pass.

3. I’m tierd of people like me (SEO people) who just can’t hold theirselves from not abusing any social platform that comes in their way, especially if it is Google related. 🙂

* Knol = Google’s version for wikipedia focusing on the authors. 
   Still in beta.


Wiki SE, Top 10 Websites and Improved Google Maps

November 19, 2007

Some news highlights from the world of search…

Wiki Powered Search Engine
Jimmy Wales, the founder of Wikipedia, had released some screen shots of his new wiki-based search engine. Rumors say it lookes very much like Facebook pages… 🙂
 

Top 10 Websites by Brand
According to Nielsen Online, these are the top 10 websites in terms of unique visitors and the time spent on sites:
1. Google
2. Yahoo!
3. Microsoft
4. MSN / Windows live
5. AOL Media Network
6. FOX Interactive Media
7. YouTube
8. eBay
9. Wikipedia
10. Amazon

Users (will) make Google Maps Better
From now on Google maps can be edited by their users, whether it’s to correct a location or add details about it, only for now it won’t get up on the net before it is reviewd by Google.
Of course all edits can be done only with a Google account…


Google Takeovers – Who Knows the Exact Numbers?

October 15, 2007

Google had acquired Jaiku a few days ago and it made me wonder – What is the exact number of google “takeovers”?

Looking at Wikipedia’s List of Google Acquisitions the total number is 49.
I made my search (deeping into google SERP) and found the same number, with one exception – Buying DoubleClick on April this year made Google also the owner of Performics (DubleClick used to own it).

Personally, I think that when you talk in terms of “takeovers” and not “acquisitions” the number is higher. Much higher.

Google apps for education (50), for instance, took over the former email services universities such as Arizona State University and University of North Carolina Greensboro used to work with and in a way took over the privacy of students as well as universities’ management. (By the way, Google titled this one as “Google at School“…)

And what about the spectulated gPhone (51)? Or the fact that Google tookover the definition of successful startups and changed it into “be acquired by Google” (52)?

Even worse:
What about the fact that most of us don’t do anything out of Google services, whether it’s sending e-mails via Gmail, search the net using Google’s SE or editing our photos on Picasa? This is the biggest takeover ever:
Our internet routine, our web-way-of-thinking, even our job (see SEO & SEM) – Everything is Google Based.