Friday, August 7, 2009

links to tools

Alexa



Backlink



  • Anchor Text Backlink Checker

    This tool is to check your backlinks and the anchor text used in those backlinks.

  • Backlink Analyzer

    Research and analyze websites for link quality. Checks for Indexed Pages, Links to Website, EDU & .GOV Links, Domain Age & Expiration, Google PageRank, Alexa Traffic Rank, DMOZ Listing


  • Backlink Anchor Text Analyzer

    This tools help you determine the backlinks of your website and link text used by your backlinks to Link to your website

  • Backlink Builder

    Building Quality backlinks is one of the most important factors in Search Engine Optimization…


Domain Popularity, Domain Stats Tools…



  • Domain Age Tool

    This tools displays the approximate age of a website on the Internet and allows you to view how the website looked when it first started

  • Domain Dossier


    Investigate domains and IP addresses

  • Domain Popularity

    This tool shows you all backlinks for the given domain, including up to 10 subpages per backlinking domain, host IP and Google PageRank

  • Domain Stats Tool

    This tool helps you get all kind of statistics of your competitor’s domains. The statistics include Alexa Taffic Rank, Age of the domains, Yahoo WebRank, Dmoz listings, count of backlinks and number of pages indexed in Search Engines like Google, Yahoo, Msn etc.

  • HTTP / HTTPS Header Check

    This tools allow you to inspect the HTTP headers that the web server returns when requesting a URL. Works with HTTP and HTTPS URLs

  • View HTTP Headers

    This little tool lets you view the HTTP headers for a HTTP request


  • View HTTP Path

    This little tool lets you view the path/redirects a request takes to get fulfilled


Google Page Rank Checker, Adwords Keyword Tools,Google Banned Tools…



  • Advanced Google searches

    Use this tool to search google in many special ways. A useful resource for search engine optimization (especially keyword research) among other things

  • Check Google Pagerank

    Now you can check the Google PageRank of any web page without installing the Google toolbar

  • Check PageRank by Google data center


    With this tool you can check the PageRank from different data centers

  • Free Google Adsense Keywords & YPN Keywords Search Tool

    With the ability to search a growing database of tens of thousands of high-dollar Adsense keywords, Iotaweb allows publishers to find the keywords and key phrases that will allow them to focus their content to monetize their site most effectively.

  • Google Adwords Keyword Tool

    Keyword tool from Google that provides Specific and Similar keywords.

  • Google Banned Tool

    This tool uses two methods to check to see if a URL you enter is in the Google database. Its a great way to check to see if you have been banned by Google for various reasons….

  • Google Keyword Ranking Tool


    Search with list of keywords from differnet Google search sites

  • Google Page Rank Checker

    Instantly check the PageRank of any website or web page

  • Google Page Rank Checker

    A simple tool that checks and your PageRank so you can display it on your website

  • Google Sets

    Automatically create sets of items from a few examples.

  • PageRank Authenticity Check


    This tool shows you the PageRank of a given domain. Also the PageRank will be checked of authenticity

  • Page Rank Tool

    Our PageRank Tool will query and return the Google PageRank values for submitted URL from various Google datacenters…

  • Visual PageRank

    The Visual PageRank - Tool shows all links and there corresponding PageRanks


Keyword Analysis Tool, Keyword Density, Keyword Suggestion Tools…



  • McDar Keyword Analysis Tool


    Enter URL and keyword, it will display Pagerank and Back links pages for the Top 10 websites.

  • Keyword Density

    This tool shows you how often appears which word in content of given domain

  • Keyword Density

    The keyword density tool is useful for helping webmasters and SEOs achieve their optimum keyword density for a set of key terms.

  • Keyword Density Checker

    Keyword Density is the percentage of occurrence of your keywords to the text in the rest of your webpage. This tool will crawl the specified URL, extract text as a search engine would, remove common stop words and Analyze the density of the keywords.

  • Keyword Difficulty Tool

    The keyword difficulty tool is used to analyze the competitive landscape of a particular search term or phrase, this tool issues a percentage score and provides a detailed analysis of the top ranking sites at Google and Yahoo…


  • KwMap.net

    A Keyword Map For the Whole Internet

  • Keyword Suggestion Tool

    This keyword suggestion tool will help you with the choosing of the right keywords for your website. You can see which keyword combinations are more popular and also get ideas for more keyword combinations..

  • Website Keyword Suggestions

    This tools tries to determine the theme of your website and provides keyword suggestions along with keyword traffic estimates.

  • Ontology Finder

    Related Keywords Lookup Tool



Link Popularity Check, Site Link Analyzer, Link Value…



  • Deep Link Ratio Tool

    This tool was created to analyze how the deep link ratio of a site affects its rank in search engines. We can use this tool to compare the DLRs for the best ranking sites for a search phrase.

  • Link Popularity Check

    Link popularity check is one of the best ways to quantifiably and independently measure your website’s online awareness and overall visibility…

  • Link Popularity Checker

    The Link Popularity Checker tells you how many websites are linking to yours…

  • LINK VALIDATION SPIDER


    Free Online Broken Link Checker

  • Link Price Calculator

    This tools will help you determine the approximate amount you should be paying (or charging) per month for a text link (ad) from each and every page of the specified website

  • Link Value

    This tool calculates the link value per month of a given website.

  • Reciprocal Link Check

    This tool helps you ensure that your link partners are linking back to your website. It also determines the anchor text used by your link partners to link to your website.

  • Site Link Analyzer

    This tool will analyze a given web page and return a table of data containing columns of outbound links and their associated anchor text…


  • The Link Reputation Measurement Tool

    Reveals backlinks pointing to your target url along with the following: Link Survey - Link Reputation Score - Text used in links pointing to you - Alexa traffic analysis for the site corresponding to each backlink

  • Outbound Links

    This tool shows every outgoing link from the given domain. Separated in external and internal links


Meta Tag Generators



  • Meta Tag Generator

    Our Meta Tag Generator will read the page you specify, remove common words from it, and pick the most used words on the page. It will then generate a Meta Keywords tag using the words it has found…

  • Meta Tag Generator


    Use this tool to generate a search engine friendly Head Tag for your web site

  • Title & Meta Tags Generator

    his code generator will build the title and meta tags for your site to help improve your website’s search engine ranking using our Meta Tag Generator


Miscellaneous Tools



  • Directory Submission Manager

    Use this free tool to track your submissions to various web directories….

  • Copyscape


    Search for copies of your page on the Web

  • Site Analysis including Link Popularity

    This tool generates a complete site analysis e.g. amount of backlinks, indexed sites, Google PageRank and also if your domain is listed in DMOZ and Yahoo directory

  • Sitemap Generator

    Create your Google Sitemap Online

  • Similar Page Checker

    Search Engines are known to penalize websites that contain Duplicate / Similar content. Your content could be similar to other websites on the Internet, or pages from within your own website could be similar to each other. This tool allows you to determine the percentage of similarity between two pages

  • Speedtester

    This tool shows the duration of a given website. This value can be used for showing how long a website take to load and if it is better to optimize the website or change a (slow) ISP.


  • mod_rewrite RewriteRule Generator

    Our mod_rewrite RewriteRule generator will take a dynamic url given to it, and generate the correct syntax to place in a .htaccess file to allow the url to be rewritten in a spiderable format

  • URL Rewrite (mod_rewrite)

    With this tool you can generate dynamic urls to search engine friendly urls..

  • URL Rewriting Tool

    Create Search Engine Friendly URLs

  • User Agent Cloaking Detector

    This tool simulates the Googlebot (based on User-Agent) to detect cloaked content

  • What is Hosted on that IP


    This little tool lets you view the virtual hosts on a particular IP


Search Engine Position Checker, Spider Simulator, Ranking Report, SERP Tracker



  • Google vs Yahoo Graph

    This tool looks at the results from Yahoo and Google, finds the similarities and then gives you a graphical display of what results are in both search engines

  • Search Engine Position Checker

    The Search Engine Position Checker tool will automatically query the search engines you specify and check if your URL appears in the first 50 results for your chosen keywords….

  • Search Engine Spider Simulator

    With this tool you see all informations a search engine spider receive from a website.


  • Marketleap Search Engine Verification Tool

    Our verification tool checks to see if your site is in the top three pages of a search engine result for a specific keyword

  • Number of pages indexed

    This tool will generate a report showing how many pages of your website has been indexed by the search engines so far. It supports all major search engines: Google, Yahoo, MSN, Alltheweb, Hotbot and AltaVista.

  • Search Engine Ranking Report

    Input key phrase list get Google rankings

  • Serps Position

    Use this tool to find out, on which position your domain is ranked for the given keyword and compare the first 100 results by Google, search.MSN and Yahoo.

  • SERP Tracker


    The SERP Tracker reports on search engine results and charts performance over time


SEO Analyzer, Scanner



  • Free SEO Tools

    SEOToolSet

  • Cool SEO Tool!

    This internet marketing tool checks the top 10 sites that rank in Google. After that, it checks to see how those 10 sites rank in Yahoo and in MSN….

  • SEO Analyzer

    The SEO Analyzer is a FREE tool that uses a sophisticated algorithm that detects how optimized your web design is for search engines


  • SEO Scanner

    An all-in-one advanced SEO analysis, tracking, and reporting tool


Robots.txt Tools


Thursday, July 30, 2009

Microsoft, Yahoo! agree on Internet search partnership

SAN FRANCISCO -
By MICHAEL LIEDTKE and JESSICA MINTZ, AP Technology Writers - Wed Jul 29, 2009 5:50PM EDT

Microsoft finally persuaded Yahoo to surrender control of the Internet's second most popular search engine and join it in a daunting battle — taking on the overwhelming dominance of Google in the online advertising market.

A 10-year deal announced Wednesday gives Microsoft its best shot yet to show its new search technology, Bing, is as good as or better than Google's. Microsoft also hopes to use Yahoo to divert sales from Google, which generates more than $20 billion a year from ads.

Gaining access to Yahoo's audience would instantly more than triple Bing's U.S. market share to 28 percent. That's still a far cry from the remarkable 65 percent of U.S. searches handled by Google, according to the research firm comScore Inc.

By joining forces, Microsoft and Yahoo are betting they will be able to focus on their respective strengths. By turning over responsibility for search technology to Microsoft, Yahoo can concentrate on sales of billboard-style advertising on the Web — and figuring out how to keep luring traffic to its Web sites, which already attract more than 570 million people worldwide every month.

While the agreement shapes up as a potential boon for Microsoft, it was greeted in the stock market as a letdown for Yahoo. Just 14 months ago, Microsoft dangled $9 billion in front of Yahoo in an attempt to forge a search advertising partnership, only to be rebuffed. Yahoo had also turned down Microsoft's $47.5 billion bid to buy the entire company.

Yahoo has been struggling so badly since then that Microsoft isn't paying any money in advance. Instead, it will give Yahoo 88 percent of the search ad sales made on its Web site, above the usual commission of 70 to 80 percent.

By spending less on its own search technology, Yahoo expects to boost its annual operating profit by about $500 million — but not until 2012, when the two companies expect to have all the pieces of a complex technological puzzle in place.

"I think a lot of people are kind of looking at the numbers and seeing a lot of question marks where they expected to see exclamation points," said Scott Kessler, a Standard & Poor's equity analyst.

Yahoo Inc. shares plunged $2.08, or 12 percent, to $15.14 as investors expressed disappointment over the absence of an immediate windfall. Microsoft Corp. shares gained 33 cents to $23.80 while Google Inc. shares shed $3.61 to $436.24.

It took Carol Bartz, Yahoo's chief executive, just six months to strike a deal with Microsoft — something that neither of her predecessors, Terry Semel and Yahoo co-founder Jerry Yang, seemed interested in doing.

"This move makes up for a lot of the stupid mistakes made by the preceding administration," said technology analyst Rob Enderle, who thinks Yahoo will be able to devote more energy to developing services to compete with online hangouts like Facebook.

Shortly after her arrival, Bartz made it clear she was willing to farm out Yahoo's search engine for "boatloads of money" as long as she as thought the company would still get adequate information about its users' interests. Bartz predicted the deal will enrich the company over the long run.

"This agreement comes with boatloads of value for Yahoo, our users, and the industry," Bartz said.

Yahoo will have limited access to the data on users' searches, which yield insights that can be used to pick out ads more likely to pique a person's interest. The value of that information is why Microsoft wants to process more search requests.

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer could barely contain his excitement as he gushed about finally getting Yahoo on his side — something he has been trying to do for at least three years.

"I am very enthusiastic," Ballmer said in an interview. "This is what I have basically been saying for the past 18 months: The world will be better served for consumers, advertisers and publishers, and there will be more competition for Google, if we can somehow figure out how to get Microsoft and Yahoo together in search."

Antitrust regulators plan to review the agreement to make sure it doesn't lessen competition or compromise the privacy of people who use the search engines.

Google tried to stop Yahoo from falling into Microsoft's camp. Last year it formed its own proposed search advertising deal with Yahoo, only to be forced to retreat after U.S. antitrust officials threatened to sue.

Microsoft helped spearhead the campaign against a Google-Yahoo partnership. Now many people, including Ballmer, expect Google to try to turn the tables on Microsoft by opposing its Yahoo deal.

"There has traditionally been a lot of competition online, and our experience is that competition brings about great things for users," Google spokesman Adam Kovacevich said. "We're interested to learn more about the deal."

Advertisers will probably support Microsoft because a stronger player in the search market should protect them from potential abuses by Google, said Kevin Lee, CEO of online marketing specialist Didit Inc.

"If there's only one choice in search, that's just an uncomfortable position to be in," Lee said.

Like Yahoo, Microsoft has invested billions in search technology during the past decade. Yet it remained a distant third in market share while its online losses piled up. Microsoft is counting on Bing, unveiled last month, to turn things around.

Bing has been getting mostly positive reviews and picking up slightly more traffic with the help of a $100 million marketing campaign. Analysts believe the successful debut pushed Microsoft to reopen negotiations so it could expose its search engine improvements to a wider audience.

While Microsoft and Yahoo await government approval of their partnership, there is no doubt Google will try to increase its lead by upgrading its own search engine, said Danny Sullivan, editor of the online newsletter SearchEngineLand.

Already, Google is going after Microsoft's bread-and-butter business of software for personal computers. It's working on a free operating system for inexpensive PCs, a move that could threaten Microsoft's Windows.

"Google is very paranoid about Microsoft," Sullivan said. "They are always trying to figure out what kind of `evil' thing Microsoft is going to do next."

Monday, July 27, 2009

Checkfacebook.com... a great tool for marketers





A client, I am working with on Facebook strategy and implementation work asked a great question the other day, "Is there an easy way to find out how many people are using Facebook in Australia, and what the makeup of the audience is?".

People who are familiar with Facebook's advertising console would know that it is possible to answer these questions by logging in and doing some analysis. However, this takes time, skill and some data cajoling to get it into a presentable form. I thought there must be a better way. After doing some google research, I was able to find a handy tool called Checkfacebook.com.

This free online tool enables you to click on the country of your choice to see nationwide user statistics, what percentage of the population they account for and allows you to drill into the detail of demographic information using interactive pie charts. What's more, there are tables that outline the numbers relative to other countries, showing the largest international players and growth areas.

Checkfacebook.com isn't affiliated with Facebook; however, the information presented is highly reliable as it is sourced directly from Facebook's advertising console on a daily basis.

To learn more about Facebook's local and global audiences, point your web browser to:
http://www.checkfacebook.com

Monday, July 20, 2009

OutWit Hub

Some tools are just so awesome that I can’t imagine I haven’t used them by now. My recent discovery is just awesome and I can’t wait to share it with you!

OutWit Hub is a cool FireFox addon that allows you to extract any web page information and export it to our favorite Excel for easier management and organization.


When launched, the tool shows you different kinds of data that can be extracted from the current webpage:



  • all the images on the page,

  • all page links,

  • email addresses,

  • page text,

  • RSS feeds found,


  • page tables, etc.


OutWit



Let me demonstarte its power using just a few examples:


1. Extract page lists:


Let’s try to extract the tool FAQ using two possible methods:



  • Navigate to that page and click the tool icon in the navigation bar;


  • Choose "Lists" and export it to Excel.


OR



  • Let the tool "guess" what to extract: click on "guess" and see all possible data compiled in the form of a handy table.


Outwit - extract lists


2. Extract all page images



  • Navigate to any page containing a lot of images;

  • Click the tool icon and then choose "images";


  • See the detailed table containing:

    • each image thumbnail,

    • image source URL,

    • image dimensions,

    • image alt text;

    • image file names.




Outwit - extract images



3. Scrape Google Results


This one is a bit more complicated but it demonstrates how flexible and customizable the tool can be (kindly shared by Dale Stokdyk)!


First, you will need to create your own scraper, here’s a screenshot which pretty much says that all: just do what is shown there:


Google Scraper:


snippets to create a google scraper with outwit hub


Here is a detailed info on creating your first scraper as well as the post where I found this cool tip.




  • Set Google to show 100 results per page (to have more data to export and analyze);

  • Search for any phrase;

  • Click the tool icon and click "scraper".


Outwit - Scrape Google results

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Google PageRank: What Do We Know About It?

Google PageRank


Summary: How Does PageRank Work?



  1. PageRank is only one of numerous methods Google uses to determine a page’s relevance or importance.

  2. Google interprets a link from page A to page B as a vote, by page A, for page B. Google looks not only at the sheer volume of votes; among 100 other aspects it also analyzes the page that casts the vote. However, these aspects don’t count, when PageRank is calculated.

  3. PageRank is based on incoming links, but not just on the number of them - relevance and quality are important (in terms of the PageRank of sites, which link to a given site).


  4. PR(A) = (1-d) + d(PR(t1)/C(t1) + … + PR(tn)/C(tn)). That’s the equation that calculates a page’s PageRank.

  5. Not all links weight the same when it comes to PR.

  6. If you had a web page with a PR8 and had 1 link on it, the site linked to would get a fair amount of PR value. But, if you had 100 links on that page, each individual link would only get a fraction of the value.

  7. Bad incoming links don’t have impact on Page Rank.

  8. Ranking popularity considers site age, backlink relevancy and backlink duration. PageRank doesn’t.

  9. Content is not taken into account when PageRank is calculated.


  10. PageRank does not rank web sites as a whole, but is determined for each page individually.

  11. Each inbound link is important to the overall total. Except banned sites, which don’t count.

  12. PageRank values don’t range from 0 to 10. PageRank is a floating-point number.

  13. Each Page Rank level is progressively harder to reach. PageRank is believed to be calculated on a logarithmic scale.

  14. Google calculates pages PRs permanently, but we see the update once every few months (Google Toolbar).



Summary: Impact on Google PageRank



  1. Frequent content updates don’t improve Page Rank automatically. Content is not part of the PR calculation.

  2. High Page Rank doesn’t mean high search ranking.

  3. DMOZ and Yahoo! Listings don’t improve Page Rank automatically.

  4. .edu and .gov-sites don’t improve Page Rank automatically.

  5. Sub-directories don’t necessarily have a lower Page Rank than root-directories.

  6. Wikipedia links don’t improve PageRank automatically (update: but pages which extract information from Wikipedia might improve PageRank).


  7. Links marked with nofollow-attribute don’t contribute to Google PageRank.

  8. Efficient internal onsite linking has an impact on PageRank.

  9. Related high ranked web-sites count stronger. But: “a page with high PageRank may actually pass you less if it has more links, because it’s spread too thin.” [RY]

  10. Links from and to high quality related sites have an impact on Page Rank.

  11. Multiple votes to one link from the same page cost as much as a single vote.


1.1. What is PageRank?




  • “PageRank is [only] one of the methods Google uses to determine a page’s relevance or importance.” [PageRank Explained Correctly]

  • “Google uses many factors in ranking. Of these, the PageRank algorithm might be the best known. PageRank evaluates two things: how many links there are to a web page from other pages, and the quality of the linking sites. With PageRank, five or six high-quality links from websites such as www.cnn.com and www.nytimes.com would be valued much more highly than twice as many links from less reputable or established sites.” [Google Librarian Central]

  • “PageRank has only ever been an approximation of the quality of a web page and has never had anything to do with the measuring of the topical relevance of a web page. Topical relevance is measured with link context and on-page factors such as keyword density, title tag, and everything else.” [PageRank: An Essay]


1.2. How Does PageRank work?




  • No one really knows.“No one knows for sure how PageRank is currently calculated by Google.” [Google PageRank Explained]

  • PR(A) = (1-d) + d(PR(t1)/C(t1) + … + PR(tn)/C(tn)). “That’s the equation that calculates a page’s PageRank. In the equation ‘t1 - tn’ are pages linking to page A, ‘C’ is the number of outbound links that a page has and ‘d’ is a damping factor, usually set to 0.85.”

  • We can think of it in a simpler way: a page’s PageRank = 0.15 + 0.85 * (a “share” of the PageRank of every page that links to it). “share” = the linking page’s PageRank divided by the number of outbound links on the page. A page “votes” an amount of PageRank onto each page that it links to. The amount of PageRank that it has to vote with is a little less than its own PageRank value (its own value * 0.85). This value is shared equally between all the pages that it links to.” [Google's Page Rank]

  • “The core Google PageRank algorithm “distributes” it’s established PR across all of the outbound links. Put differently, if you had a web page with a PR8 and had 1 link on it, the site linked to would get a fair amount of PR value. But, if you had 100 links on that page, each individual link would only get a fraction of the value.” [The Importance of PageRank]


  • “From this, we could conclude that a link from a page with PR4 and 5 outbound links is worth more than a link from a page with PR8 and 100 outbound links. The PageRank of a page that links to yours is important but the number of links on that page is also important. The more links there are on a page, the less PageRank value your page will receive from it.” [Google's Page Rank]

  • “PageRank [..] uses the link structure as an indicator of an individual page’s value. Google interprets a link from page A to page B as a vote, by page A, for page B. Google looks at considerably more than the sheer volume of votes, or links a page receives; e.g. it also analyzes the page that casts the vote. Votes cast by pages that are themselves “important” weigh more heavily and help to make other pages “important.” [Google: Technology]

  • Not all links weight the same when it comes to PR. So an ‘important’ page linking to you gives you more PR than a ‘less important’ one. [...] A factor in PR propagation is the number of out-links the ‘voting’ page have. So a PR4 page with only one out-link on it might give you more weight than a PR5 page with 100 out-links on it. A typical example here would be the famous milliondollarhomepage. This page is PR7 page with hunderds of out-links therefore its weight is would contribute very little to your page PR.” [Google PageRank Explained]

  • Each Page Rank level is progressively harder to reach. “PageRank is logarithmic in its calculation. In the same way that the earthquake Richter scale is exponential in calculation, so too is the mathematics behind Google PageRank. It takes one step to move from a PR0 to a PR1, it takes a few more steps to PR3, it takes even more steps to PR4, and many more steps again to PR5, and so one.” [Google Page Rank FAQ]



Google PageRank Explained

[via einfach-persoehnlich]



  • “PageRank does not rank web sites as a whole, but is determined for each page individually. Further, the PageRank of page A is recursively defined by the PageRanks of those pages which link to page A.” [The Page Rank algorithm]

  • “Google combines PageRank with sophisticated text-matching techniques to find pages that are both important and relevant to user’s search. Google examines all aspects of the page’s content (and the content of the pages linking to it) to determine if it’s a good match for user’s queries.” [What Is Google PageRank?]

  • “Google calculates pages PRs once every few months (PR update). After a PR update is done, all pages are assigned a new PR by Google and you will have this PR until a new PR update is done. New sites that were just launched will have a PR of 0 until an update is done by Google so that they are assigned an appropriate PR.” [Google PageRank Explained]


  • “Google PageRank is calculated all the time, but what we see in the Google Toolbar (or other online PR tools) is a snapshot in time which is updated every 3 months or so.” [Reuben Yau]

  • PageRank values don’t range from 0 to 10. PageRank is a floating-point number. “It’s more accurate to think of it as a floating-point number. Certainly our internal PageRank computations have many more degrees of resolution than the 0-10 values shown in the toolbar.” [Matt Cutts]

  • “We’re sure that their curve is similar to an exponential curve with each new “plateau” being harder to reach than the last. I have personally done some research into this, and so far the results point to an exponential base of 4. So a PR of 6 is 4 times as difficult to attain as a PR of 5. [..] The difference between a high PR of 6, and a low PR of 6, could be hundreds or thousands of links.” [Top 10 Google Myths Revealed]


  • “PageRank is believed to be calculated on a logarithmic scale. What this roughly means is that the difference between PR4 and PR5 is likely 5-10 times than the difference between PR3 and PR4. So, there are likely over a 100 times as many web pages with a PageRank of 2 than there are with a PageRank of 4. This means that if you get to a PageRank of 6 or so, you’re likely well into the top 0.1% of all websites out there. If most of your peer group is straggling around with a PR2 or PR3, you’re way ahead of the game.” [Importance of Google PageRank]

  • “The fact is that PageRank is based on incoming links, but not just on the number of them. Instead PageRank is based on the value of your incoming links. To find the value of an incoming link look at the PR of the source page, and divide it by the number of links on that page. It’s very possible to get a PR of 6 or 7 from only a handful of incoming links if your links are “weighty” enough.” [Top 10 Google Myths Revealed]

  • Google tries to find pages that are both reputable and relevant. If two pages appear to have roughly the same amount of information matching a given query, we’ll usually try to pick the page that more trusted websites have chosen to link to. Still, we’ll often elevate a page with fewer links or lower PageRank if other signals suggest that the page is more relevant. For example, a web page dedicated entirely to the civil war is often more useful than an article that mentions the civil war in passing, even if the article is part of a reputable site such as Time.com.” [Google Librarian Central]

  • Links don’t give PR away, they are votes. “When a page votes its PageRank value to other pages, its own PageRank is not reduced by the value that it is voting. The page doing the voting doesn’t give away its PageRank and end up with nothing. It isn’t a transfer of PageRank. It is simply a vote according to the page’s PageRank value.” [Page Rank Explained]


  • “We know from the paper “The Anatomy of a Large-Scale Hypertextual Web Search Engine” (Paper) that the PageRank of a Web page is a number calculated using a recursive algorithm in which the page receives a share of the PageRank of each page that links to it.” [Google PageRank]

  • Crawlers don’t analyze web-sites permanently. “It often takes two full monthly updates for all of your incoming links to be discovered, counted, calculated and displayed as backlinks.” [Google FAQ]


1.3. Which factors do have an impact on PageRank?




  • Each inbound link is important to the overall total. Except banned sites. “PageRank is a form of a voting system. A link to a page is a vote for that page. Higher PageRank pages are viewed by Google as more important. Their votes are given more value by Google — much more value, in some cases. In general, the more voting links, the stronger the PageRank.” [Google PageRank FAQ]

  • Adding new pages can decrease Page Rank. “The effect is that, whilst the total PageRank in the site is increased, one or more of the existing pages will suffer a PageRank loss due to the new page making gains. Up to a point, the more new pages that are added, the greater is the loss to the existing pages. With large sites, this effect is unlikely to be noticed but, with smaller ones, it probably would.” [PageRank Explained]

  • Page Rank can decrease. “You can lose some important links that are no longer linking to your site. PR loss can also occur if some of your linking partners also experience a drop in their own PR, possibly setting off a chain reaction of lower PageRank all through the immediate linking network.” [Google PageRank FAQ]


  • Links from and to high quality related sites are important. “The more closely related the pages, the higher the PageRank amount transferred.” “Linking to high quality sites shows the search engines your site is very useful to your visitors. Unless your site has been around for years and is well established and trusted by Google, this factor will have an adverse effect on your site’s overall ranking. Linking only to high quality content sites will give your site an edge over your competition.” [Let Google's Algorithm Show You The Traffic, FAQ]

  • Incoming Links from popular sites are important. If pages linking to you have a high PageRank then your page gains some part of their reputation.

  • Site can be banned if it links to banned sites. “Be extremely careful of any out-going links from your site. Don’t link to bad neighborhoods (link farms, banned sites, etc.) Google will penalize you for bad links so always check the PageRank of the sites you’re linking to from your site.” [SiteProNews]

  • Illegal activities will penalize your PageRank and possibly ban your site from Google. “Hidden text, deceptive redirects, cloaking, automated link exchanges, or anything else against Google’s quality guidelines” can ban your site from Google.


  • Myth: the higher your google PageRank, the better the results. “While pages with a higher PageRank do tend to rank better, it is perfectly normal for a site to appear higher in the results listings even though it has a lower PageRank than competing pages. [..] Google examines the context of your incoming links, and only those links that relate to the specific keyword being searched on will help you achieve a higher ranking for that keyword.” [Top 10 Google Myths Revealed]

  • Related high ranked web-sites count stronger (or don’t they?). “One-way inbound links from websites with topics that are related to your website’s topic will help you gain a higher Page Rank.” Other one-way inbound links from pages with high page rank but unrelated topics do help a little, but not nearly as much. [What Is Page Rank?]

  • Different pages from a site can have different Page Rank. “Search engines crawl and index webpages not websites, that is why your page rank may vary from page to page within your website.” [What Is Page Rank?]



1.4. Which factors don’t have an impact on PageRank?



  • Frequent content updates don’t improve PR automatically.” Although Google might send crawlers more frequently to analyze your site, what is more significant are links pointing to you.

  • “Content is not taken into account when PageRank is calculated. Content is taken into account when you actually perform a search for specific search terms.” [Google PageRank]

  • “High PageRank does NOT guarantee a high search ranking for any particular term. If it did, then PR10 sites like Adobe would always show up for any search you do. They don’t.” [What Is Google PageRank?

  • Google considers site age, backlink relevancy and backlink duration. PageRank doesn't. If backlink isn't relevant, it won't weight much.


  • Wikipedia Links don't improve Page Rank. "Wikipedia implemented a no-follow rule, indicating that outbound links should not be followed by search engine spiders." [A Survival Guide to SEO & Wikipedia]

  • Listing in DMOZ and Yahoo! doesn’t give your site a special PR Bonus. “Google uses Open Directory Project (DMOZ.org), to power its directory. Coupling that fact with the observation that sites listed in DMOZ often get decent and inexplicable PageRank boosts, has lead many to conclude that Google gives a special bonus to sites listed in DMOZ. This is simply not true. The only bonus gained from being in DMOZ is the same bonus a site would achieve from being linked to by any other site.” However, DMOZ data is used by hundreds of sites.” [Top 10 Google Myths Revealed]

  • Sub-directories don’t necessarily have a lower Page Rank than root-directories. Depending on the popularity of a web-site your subdirectories can have a higher PageRank than the root pages.


  • Meta-Tags don’t improve PageRank. “Google can sometimes use the meta description tag to create an abstract for your site, so it may be useful to you if your home page is primarily composed of graphics. However, do not expect it to increase your rank.” [10 Google Myths Revealed]

  • .edu and .gov-sites do not provide higher PageRank (or do they?).“We don’t really have much in the way to say “Oh this is a link from the ODP, or .gov, or .edu, so give that some sort of special boost.” Its just those sites tend to have higher PageRank because-because more people link to them and reputable people link to them.” [A Google Myth Busted]


No Follow Treatment



  • Links marked with nofollow-attribute don’t contribute to Google PageRank. “Google implemented a new value, “nofollow”, for the rel attribute of HTML link and anchor elements, so that website builders and bloggers can make links that Google will not consider for the purposes of PageRank — they are links that no longer constitute a “vote” in the PageRank system.” [Wikipedia: PageRank]


  • Multiple votes to one link from the same page cost as much as a single vote. “It is reasonable to assume that a page can cast only one vote for another page, and that additional votes for the same page are not counted.” [PageRank FAQ]

  • Links from one page to itself don’t improve Page Rank. “It is reasonable to assume that a page can’t vote for itself, and that such links are not counted.” [PageRank Explained]

  • Bad incoming links don’t have impact on Page Rank. “Where the links come from doesn’t matter. Sites are not penalized because of where the links come from.” [Google PageRank]

  • Dangling links don’t have impact on Page Rank. “Dangling links are simply links that point to any page with no outgoing links. They affect the model because it is not clear where their weight should be distributed, and there are a large number of them. Because dangling links do not affect the ranking of any other page directly, we simply remove them from the system until all the PageRanks are calculated. After all the PageRanks are calculated they can be added back in without affecting things significantly.” [PageRank Paper]



1.5. Ranking Factors (related to PageRank)



  • Efficient internal onsite linking is important. “Internal linking is important to your overall ranking. Make sure your linking structure is easy for the spiders to crawl. Most suggest a simple hierarchy with links no more than three clicks away from your home/index page. Creating traffic modes or clusters of related links within a section on your site has proven very effective.” [Let Google's Algorithm Show You The Traffic

  • Anchor text is important. The more specific is the reference, the better Google can evaluate it and consider it in relates search queries.

  • Google penalizes link farms. "Google is only concerned with pages of over 100 outgoing links. Google considers overly linked pages to be link farms, and they are penalized as such." [Google FAQ]


  • Headers (h1, … ,h6), strong tags and semantic content are important. (Update: But it doesn’t improve PageRank.) “Place it in the description and meta tags, place it in bold/strong tags, but keep your content readable and useful. Be aware of the text surrounding your keywords, search engines will become more semantic in the coming years so context is important.” [Let Google's Algorithm Show You The Traffic

  • "The anchor text of a link is often far more important than whether it's on a high PageRank page." [What Is Google PageRank?

  • "If you really want to know what are the most important, relevant pages to get links from, forget PageRank. Think search rank. Search for the words you'd like to rank for. See what pages come up tops in Google. Those are the most important and relevant pages you want to seek links from. That's because Google is explicitly telling you that on the topic you searched for, these are the best." [What Is Google PageRank?]



2.1. Google PageRank: Theory & Scientific Background



  • A Survey of Google’s PageRank

    Calculation of Page Rank, Page Rank Implementation, Inbound Links, Outbound Links, Number of Pages, PageRank Distribution, Additional Factors and more.

  • The Lineal Algebra Behind Google

    The $25,000,000,000 Eigenvector - The Linear Algebra Behind Google. Google’s success derives in large part from its PageRank algorithm, which ranks the importance of webpages according to an eigenvector of a weighted link matrix. Analysis of the PageRank formula provides a wonderful applied topic for a linear algebra course.

  • The Intelligent Surfer: Probabilistic Combination of Link and Content Information in PageRank

    We propose to improve Page-Rank by using a more intelligent surfer, one that is guided by a probabilistic model of the relevance of a page to a query. Efficient execution of our algorithm at query time is made possible by precomputing at crawl time (and thus once for all queries) the necessary terms.


  • Topic-Sensitive PageRank

    To yield more accurate search results, we propose computing a set of PageRank vectors, biased using a set of representative topics, to capture more accurately the notion of importance with respect to a particular topic. By using these (precomputed) biased PageRank vectors to generate query-specific importance scores for pages at query time, we show that we can generate more accurate rankings than with a single, generic PageRank vector.

  • Method for node ranking in a linked database

    A method assigns importance ranks to nodes in a linked database, such as any database of documents containing citations, the world wide web or any other hypermedia database. The rank assigned to a document is calculated from the ranks of documents citing it. In addition, the rank of a document is calculated from a constant representing the probability that a browser through the database will randomly jump to the document. By Page and Lawrence.

  • How Google Finds Your Needle in the Web’s Haystack

    Mathematical Background of Google PageRank. By David Austin, Grand Valley State University

  • A Large-Scale Hypertextual Web Search Engine

    Original Slides, by Larry Page.

  • Wikipedia: PageRank


    Mathematical Theory Behind Google PageRank


3.1. Google PageRank Tools & Services



  • PageRank Search

    Showing search results in order of PageRank.

  • Google PageRank Inspector.

    Google PageRank inspector is PHP scripts that can seek all of your website, include out linked page or not, and display Pagerank value for each of your website pages. New pages linked by high pagerank pages can be indexed in google quickly and have higher keyword rank in google search.


  • Google’s PageRank - Calculator

    The results produced by the calculator indicate each page’s PageRank share and are not equivalent to the values in the Google toolbar.


PageRank Calculator



  • Webmastereyes, Visual PageRank View

    The results will show the page given along with the PageRank of each link on that page. You also have the option to show “nofollow” and external links.

  • Smart PageRank

    Checks PageRank from multiple datacenters and sends emails automatically if PageRank is updated.


  • Google PageRank Notifier

    “This script will send you an email whenever the PageRank of the given page changes. PageRank is taken from the Google Toolbar “API” and is updated once an hour.”

  • Google PageRank™ Checker (registration required)

    You can monitor site’s PageRank via RSS and you can also be notified via e-mail when the PageRank has been changed.


PageRank Checker



  • Dig PageRank

    Checks the current Page Rank of a page in over 100 Google data centers.


  • Live PageRank Check

    The Live PageRank value may be used as an indicator of what will show when Google decides to export the PageRank values to the Google Toolbar. The Live PageRank calculator gives you the current PageRank value in the Google index, not just the snapshot that is displayed in the toolbar. Google updates its internal PageRank value continuously as the web changes and their index is updated. Only once every third month or so this value is exported to be displayed in the Google Toolbar.

  • Page Rank Widget for Mac OS X.

    Llittle Widget finds the Google Page Rank for any URL by calculating the checksum and requesting the PR from Google’s servers.


PageRank Dashboard



  • Google PageRank Prediction

    The tool analyzes the popularity of a given web-site and tries to predict its future Google PageRank. More Page Rank Tools.


  • PageRank Checker

    Shows PageRank of your backlinks.

  • PageRank Overlay (PR Mapper) (both currently offline)

    Browse your competitors website and view the Google PR of all the links at once. Also available as Firefox Extension.

  • PageRank Decoder (Demo)


    “This little tool is not too much different then a tool that tells you your PageRank, however it allows you to organize your sites (with PR information) in a visual network and then correspondingly connect them with arrows. You can move them around like cards, connect them or not, and even delete them by throwing them in a trash can.” [Search Engine Roundtable]


PageRank Decoder



3.2. Google Tools & Services



Sunday, July 12, 2009

Working of Crawler based Search Engines

Search for anything using your favorite crawler-based search engine. Nearly instantly, the search engine will sort through the millions of pages it knows about and present you with ones that match your topic. The matches will even be ranked, so that the most relevant ones come first. Of course, the search engines don't always get it right. Non-relevant pages make it through, and sometimes it may take a little more digging to find what you are looking for. But, by and large, search engines do an amazing job.

Unfortunately, search engines don't have the ability to ask a few questions to focus your search. They also can't rely on judgment and past experience to rank web pages, in the way humans can.

So, how do crawler-based search engines go about determining relevancy, when confronted with hundreds of millions of web pages to sort through? They follow a set of rules, known as an algorithm. Exactly how a particular search engine's algorithm works is a closely-kept trade secret. However, all major search engines follow the general rules below.

Location, Location, Location...and Frequency
One of the the main rules in a ranking algorithm involves the location and frequency of keywords on a web page. Call it the location/frequency method, for short.Pages with the search terms appearing in the HTML title tag are often assumed to be more relevant than others to the topic.Search engines will also check to see if the search keywords appear near the top of a web page, such as in the headline or in the first few paragraphs of text. They assume that any page relevant to the topic will mention those words right from the beginning.

Frequency is the other major factor in how search engines determine relevancy. A search engine will analyze how often keywords appear in relation to other words in a web page. Those with a higher frequency are often deemed more relevant than other web pages.

Spice in the Recipe
Now it's time to qualify the location/frequency method described above. All the major search engines follow it to some degree, in the same way cooks may follow a standard chili recipe. But cooks like to add their own secret ingredients. In the same way, search engines add spice to the location/frequency method. Nobody does it exactly the same, which is one reason why the same search on different search engines produces different results.
To begin with, some search engines index more web pages than others. Some search engines also index web pages more often than others. The result is that no search engine has the exact same collection of web pages to search through. That naturally produces differences, when comparing their results.
Search engines may also penalize pages or exclude them from the index, if they detect search engine "spamming." An example is when a word is repeated hundreds of times on a page, to increase the frequency and propel the page higher in the listings. Search engines watch for common spamming methods in a variety of ways, including following up on complaints from their users.

Off The Page Factors
Crawler-based search engines have plenty of experience now with webmasters who constantly rewrite their web pages in an attempt to gain better rankings. Some sophisticated webmasters may even go to great lengths to "reverse engineer" the location/frequency systems used by a particular search engine. Because of this, all major search engines now also make use of "off the page" ranking criteria.
Off the page factors are those that a webmasters cannot easily influence. Chief among these is link analysis. By analyzing how pages link to each other, a search engine can both determine what a page is about and whether that page is deemed to be "important" and thus deserving of a ranking boost. In addition, sophisticated techniques are used to screen out attempts by webmasters to build "artificial" links designed to boost their rankings.

Another off the page factor is click through measurement. In short, this means that a search engine may watch what results someone selects for a particular search, then eventually drop high-ranking pages that aren't attracting clicks, while promoting lower-ranking pages that do pull in visitors. As with link analysis, systems are used to compensate for artificial links generated by eager webmasters.

Comments and Queries are welcomed!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Video SEO 101

I've been lately uploading some mixes for my sites (hungama+recessiondjs+service SA) so heres some video Seo sites ive been reading up on;
Feel free to bookmark and Enjoy:



SEO for Video (hosted) Tips & Tutorials



Video Sharing & Youtube Optimization Tips



Video SEO Tips from Friends



General Tips & Techniques



Additional Resources


Monday, June 29, 2009

Meta Description – What It Is and Optimization

Using this websites meta description as an example, a meta description tag looks like this:


<meta name=”description” content=”Free Wordpress themes, Blogger themes, templates, designs & SEO basics.”>

*To view the meta description tag of a site, go to your browser toolbar or right-click anywhere on your page and choose ‘view source’. It will be in the first few lines of code.*


Optimize your META Description Tag



Optimize these tags for the Search Engines to ensure that your site has a better opportunity to rank highly for the words that you’d expect your potential target market to use in their query.


Your meta description tag describes the content of your website & pages. Search engine software scans the web to detect relevant content for search queries. These are better known as search engine robots or ‘bots’.


They gather information from various parts of your website, when indexing your pages. The meta description tag is a primary hot spot for bot love.


As you learn SEO, you learn to optimize at every opportunity, no stone left unturned.


Together with the site’s optimized visible content, the optimized meta description tag provides the information needed to match your target market’s search queries and is visible to readers beneath results.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Heres a list of all the SEO blogs , I read everyday.

http://www.yourseomentor.com/

http://www.smashingmagazine.com/

http://www.hmtweb.com/blog/

http://blog.webanalyticsdemystified.com/

http://www.seosydneyblog.com/

http://collective-thoughts.com

http://www.weboptimist.com/

http://www.brightcove.com

http://www.grokdotcom.com/

http://www.webmetricsguru.com

http://www.usereffect.com


--> join this webcast!

The Truth About Mobile Analytics

Perhaps the only thing hotter than social media right now is mobile. And with good reason — smartphones like the iPhone and Palm Pre are taking our ability to get information to entirely new levels and ushering in an era of “digital ubiquity” that is clearly without precedent. Unsurprisingly business is responding by actively exploring how they can participate in the mobile opportunity, either by optimizing their site for small screens or going so far as to build cool, new iPhone applications to support long-standing offline initiatives.

Fortunately most business owners have learned from past mistakes and are showing interest in measuring the effect of their investment into mobile. But measuring mobile isn’t easy — the sheer diversity of technologies involved and the rapid evolution of the industry has created a monsterous landscape of devices, communication protocols, and requirements.

As a result dozens of companies have sprung up, all making claim to a unique ability to measure the mobile opportunity. Unfortunately some of these companies have decided that relying on hype, hyperbole, and sometimes outright lies are a better sales strategy than building a great product with a unique value proposition. We have seen CEOs bash other CEOs, sales people obfuscate their identity and try and provide “objective” answers, and antics that can only be described as “juvenile.”

Because the mobile opportunity is so great Web Analytics Demystified started taking a closer look at measurement earlier this year. I was fortunate enough to be able to rely on the expertise of folks like Michiel Berger and Thomas Pottjegort at Nedstat, the mobile team at NBC, dozens of analytics end-users, and some of the brightest product managers in the analytics sector tasked with integrating mobile into existing digital measurement offerings.

What I found was a series of surprising truths about how mobile analytics is evolving. Nedstat was kind enough to sponsor this research — and clear disclosure: Nedstat has been measuring and integrating mobile data into their web analytics offerings for years — and I am happy to announce the availablity of this research in a new white paper titled “The Truth about Mobile Analytics.”

You can download this paper from the Nedstat web site for free (but they do ask your name, email, and company name):

DOWNLOAD THE TRUTH ABOUT MOBILE ANALYTICS

We are also holding a special webcast on the subject on June 23rd at 10 AM Central European Time (CET) which is unfortunately quite late in the evening for those of us in the U.S. but quite well timed for Nedstat’s customers. I suspect the webcast will either be repeated or rebroadcast at a later date and time.

SIGN UP TO JOIN THE MOBILE ANALYTICS WEBCAST ON JUNE 23

I encourage everyone to download the paper and give it a read, regardless of your position on mobile and mobile analytics today.

Viral Marketing Campaigns, Important Elements to Consider to Enhance Campaign Effectiveness

Viral Marketing Effectiveness, Important Elements to ConsiderViral Marketing is a hot topic, especially since the web is an incredible catalyst for getting the word out about something. Depending on your business, viral marketing can be a powerful way to drive exposure, traffic, and sales. You can get your brand in front of thousands of people in a relatively short amount of time. By the way, I’m not referring to organic Word of Mouth Marketing (WOM) or Buzz Marketing. If you want to get technical, I’m referring to Amplified WOM, or an online marketing campaign with a goal of taking your message viral, spreading it across the web like wildfire, exposing your brand on a grand level, and hopefully turning it into revenue down the line. Don't worry, I explain a few examples below. You don’t have to be a large company to utilize viral marketing. You just need to be creative and develop ideas that leverage the viral nature of the web to achieve your goals… Let’s take a look at what I believe to be some important elements to consider while developing your viral marketing campaign.

Concept Development, Make Sure It’s Fun, Memorable, and That It Has a Hook
During your brainstorming, if you read a concept and remotely think it won’t be fun, inspiring, or intriguing enough, then throw the idea away. The bar is constantly being raised, so you need to ensure people will want to take part. If it just sounds ok, then it’s probably worse. If you get goosebumps while reading it, then you’re on to something. I use this test often while mapping out creative strategies….if it doesn’t give me chills while reading it, then it’s not good enough, period.

Here’s an interesting example of a viral campaign: Weight Watchers recently hired FaintStarlite, a popular video blogger to help promote their "Stop Dieting, Start Living" campaign. There’s a myspace page for the campaign and FaintStarlite vlogs away… She is asking others to post about their diet experiences, their Weight Watchers journey, and talks about her own experiences. Right now, her WW myspace page has over 6300 friends and 430 comments. Reading through the comments, you can see the campaign seems to be resonating. Women (and some men) are talking about dieting, when they joined Weight Watchers, laughing about the craziest diets they have tried, etc. This is a good example of tailoring the campaign to your target audience. Actually, I'd love to hear from FaintStarlite about how the campaign is going from her perspective.

Another good example was the Hammer and Coop viral campaign by Mini Cooper. I won’t go into all the details, but it has ultra-high production value, it's extremely funny, and I spent 15-20 minutes there before I even realized it! Good concept, excellent creative, and got me talking about the campaign…

A Common Question I Hear:
“How controversial or extreme should we make our viral marketing campaign?” I’m a big fan of humor. It’s a great way to generate a viral effect. Think of the CareerBuilder monkey tv commercials, which spurred the CareerBuilder viral campaign "Monkey Mail". It’s a serious subject (your career), but they really took a light angle by using the monkeys… If you can weave humor into a sound marketing concept for your viral campaign, then you are off to a great start. I’m not saying that controversial campaigns don’t generate buzz…but at what price? And by the way, you can shock people with humor and not leave them writhing in their seats… Another option is taking real world experiences and using them as the basis for your campaign. Let your actual customers talk… Let the true stories of helping customers resonate with your target audience. It’s not funny or shocking, but depending on your customer stories, it could generate a lot of viral activity.

Interactivity, Participation and User Generated Content (UGC)
Don’t create a 30 second spot…please. Sure, you might get some views on YouTube, but I firmly believe you need to have people interact with your campaign (and that’s not sitting and watching a 2 minute video). I think it’s a great idea to have video as part of the campaign, but not part of a one way viewing experience. There are so many ways to have people take part in your campaign, especially with web-based campaigns. For example, let’s say you are a clothing retailer and you’re launching a new line of jeans. As part of your campaign, run a contest letting customers create their own commercial for your jeans and give them some creative assets to start with. Maybe your logo, a few snapshots of models wearing the jeans, some music you have licensed for the campaign, and a few video clips from your stores. As participants create their commercials, have them upload the final video to your site, along with supporting commentary (what inspired their idea, their bios, who helped with the production, what their acceptance speech would be if their commercial won an award, etc.) Then have visitors vote on the winners… The winner gets a $2000 shopping spree on the website. It’s a great way to have people interacting with your brand, product, etc. And since they have created intriguing content for your site that others are voting for, your brand and product are now being viewed by more and more people…and maybe on other sites like YouTube, Google Video, etc. Think interactively….and not old-school television.

Giveaways, Grand Prizes, and Runners Up
If you choose to launch a contest as part of the campaign, then I cannot emphasize my next point enough. The winners should get something really, really cool that obviously fits your target market. So don’t give away a Blackberry to a retired guy living in a 55 and older community down in Florida. I'm not saying he wouldn’t like it, but he would probably enjoy a $500 restaurant gift card from Visa. Hey, I understand this crowd well since I know several snowbirds from New York. ;-) Do you target high tech customers, give away a jacked Macbook. Target moms? Give away a shopping spree at Babies R Us. You get the point. And, if you can give away your own products, even better. Then you’ll just pay the Cost of Goods Sold (COGS) and shipping. For example, if you sell footwear, then giving away 25 pairs of shoes doesn’t cost you the retail price, right? If you’re COGS are 30%, then you are giving away $1500 on $5000 worth of footwear. If you have products that people dig, then this is a great way to go. Keep in mind the viral nature of your campaign, though…will winning a year’s supply of paper clips excite anyone??

Brand Your Campaign and Develop a Dedicated Section of Your Website
Brand your campaign! This has several benefits, including giving people an easy way to communicate the campaign to their friends, helping with natural search, tying easily with your concept and creative, and obviously making it memorable! i.e. My friend Matt tells me about the Actober campaign by Major League Baseball, so I go to Google and enter Actober. If you’ve done your job correctly (and many don’t), your site and others referencing it should come up. If you didn’t give the campaign a name, then what would people search for?? Major League Baseball? On your website, add a directory matching the title of the campaign. i.e. www.yourwebsitename.com/yourcampaignname/

Sidebar, Do not waste those precious links!
I’ve seen campaigns generate thousands of links, which will greatly help a site’s natural search power, but then the companies shut down the campaign section or microsite after the campaign ends. NOOOO!!! “Sir, please step away from your web server…” Leverage that search power by either archiving those pages or using 301 redirects. A good link is a horrible thing to waste. ;-)

Get the Word Out, Advertise Your Viral Marketing Campaign
OK, so you have developed a great campaign, it’s a killer idea, the creative looks incredible, and you are getting goosebumps like I mentioned earlier. Now what?? You need to get the word out via a range of online marketing channels. Use your email list to stir up your base, use social media sites to communicate the campaign, advertise on targeted websites, use paid search to capture targeted visitors, and use PR to send waves across the web. Also, don’t forget to advertise on your own network of websites… I think this is sometimes overlooked. Create advertisements for key traffic areas on your own websites. Hey, there’s no ad spend! Add a footer to any email that goes out (confirmation emails to buyers, your email newsletters, etc.) Have your customer service reps explain the campaign at the end of phone calls. You get the picture. Leverage your own infrastructure to help get the word out.

Have Legal Approve Everything…
You are not a lawyer, so don’t make the mistake of not having your legal team or outside legal counsel approve your campaign. Let me say this again just so I’m clear. DO NOT LAUNCH A CAMPAIGN WITHOUT LEGAL REVIEWING EVERY ASPECT OF THE PROGRAM. I’ve seen campaigns run without a hitch and I’ve also seen campaigns come close to imploding. It’s all about the execution. I’m fanatical about this stage…it’s just in my blood. Listen to your lawyers…legal is a necessary element to your successful marketing campaigns. Make changes based on their feedback and get final approval before moving forward. Believe me, you won’t regret it.

Summary
So there you have it, some important elements to consider while creating your viral marketing campaign. This obviously doesn’t cover everything involved, but I plan on writing more posts related to viral marketing in the future.

Here are a few final words of advice…
* Be sure to view your ideas from the perspective of a would-be participant. It might be a great idea to you and your staff…but might fall flat with the people who will actually be participating.
* Definitely try to inject fun and energy into your campaign.
* Use technology to make it as interactive as possible.
* Use a wide range of online marketing channels to promote your campaign.

Last, my lawyer wanted me to add a line from him:

“This blog post about viral marketing sets forth the entire blog post and understanding of the parties relating to the subject matter hereof and supersedes all prior viral marketing blog posts and understandings, both written and oral, among the parties with respect to viral marketing, amplified word of mouth marketing, generating buzz, webfire, or any other terms related to viral marketing hereof.”

See, I told you to have legal review everything. :-) Sorry, I had to poke fun of legal at least one time in this post...

Disqus for ully's online marketing

Disqus for ully's online marketing