Google said last week that it would stop sharing search query data unless the marketer runs paid-search campaigns. Needless to say, the decision started a firestorm of chatter, according to Adam Audette. He describes the impact for search marketers, clients, and consumers searching on the Web and eplains that it makes the integration of SEO and paid-search campaigns more important. There are several ways that marketers can leverage paid-search analysis to gain insights into SEO referrals, which Audette explains.
Bill Slawski tells us about a Google patent granted this week that lists Matt Cutts as one of the inventors. It describes the importance of keywords in a domain name that includes the name of the business or brand. It also provides some ways Google could potentially act to lessen the value of keywords in domain names by recognizing when queries are commercial. It might use a different ranking algorithm for those queries, according to Slawski. As always, he links to the patent, describes the approaches, and makes it clear that many of the processes are illustrated examples.
Can't keep up with the changes to paid-search engine marketing on Google, Bing and Yahoo? John Rampton gives us a rundown of changes in October from Google. He takes us hrough Dynamic Search Ads, AdWords Express, Google +1 button for display ads, and Bid Per Call. Aside from giving a description, Rampton provides links to help marketers locate more information on the topic.
Rob Young points to a study from Slingshot that examines the click-through rate for paid-search ad positions one through 10 on Bing. He tells us that the study suggests Bing's top position gets 9.66% CTRs, with the top page netting 26.32% CTR, and that the top positions have even more relative value. Young compares it with Google's CTRs and explains why click-through is lower on Bing compared with Google, according to the study.
Apparently, Alibaba and 360buy have begun to block ecommerce search engines from crawling pages and indexing content. As an example, Doug Herman points to ChinaStock.com, a Chinese consumer shopping Web site that blocked eTao, a ecommerce search engine, from crawling its pages. The linked-to article suggests the roadblock is likely the result of a "sharp drop of 360buy’s traffic." Alibaba also blocks Baidu from crawling its Taobao and Tmall e-commerce sites.
Google quietly dropped the use of the + (plus) symbol to link search items in a move the Mountain View, Calif. company says will simplify the process of Boolean searching, according to Iain Thomson. Dumping the symbol hasn't been popular with the folks in the forums. Thomson points to comments that back up his claim, and tells us how eliminating the sign will alter Boolean search results.
In a world where most kids have little downtime from being online, a group of high-tech execs are sending their kids to a school without computers. The school, computer-free Waldorf elementary in Los Altos, Calif., is educating some of the kids whose parents work at some of the best-known Silicon Valley tech companies, such as Apple, Google, Hewlett-Packard, and Yahoo, according to an article in The New York Times. Matt Richtel describes the nine-classroom school where tuition starts at about $17,000.
Yahoo's Jerry Yang assures the ad and search industries that a buyout is the only option being considered, according to Rob Young. It turns out that both Microsoft and Alibaba continue to seek support from other investors. Young points to an article in The Wall Street Journal that suggests Microsoft wants to partner with Silver Lake Partners, and the Canada Pension Plan Investment Group, as Alibaba searches for private equity groups to participate.
Last week Google announced that signed-in users would default to a SSL version of google.com for searches, but that shift changes the way most searchers find information on the engine. Unfortunately, it eliminates the ability to track referral keywords in Google Analytics. Fortunately, Rand Fishkin gives marketers a workaround for the way Google serves keyword referral data. He tell us it will have an "unfortunate impact" on SEO professionals. Fishkin analyzes the changes Google made, and provides advice on what marketers can do to ease the pain.