Archive for the ‘SEO’ category

Google PageRank Update January 2011

January 20th, 2011

The big Google finally just updated its public facing PageRank metric.  Despite PageRank not having the same level of importance that it used to in SEO, people in the industry still use it as a baseline gauge of a site’s link popularity and value.  Google hadn’t updated its public toolbar PageRank since April 2010, or just over 8 months.  Typically Google updates their public PageRank every quarter or so, which makes this most recent period the longest update drought that I’ve seen since I started studying SEO about sever years ago.  Regardless, I was very pleased to see that the sites that I work on saw nice public bumps in this latest page rank update.

Google Indexes URLs Posted in Gmail Chat Status

August 22nd, 2010

I’ve been working on SEO and studying search engines since 2004.  It’s been a while since I last had a real serious ‘wow’ moment related to search engine behavior.  Today I had one such moment.

While doing some work-related searches in google, I stumbled across a URL that I 100% know isn’t linked to from any public web page.  I dug around to make absolutely sure of it, but couldn’t uncover a single link or mention anywhere of the URL in question.

Then I remembered something small, which I nearly dismissed, but am now almost certain is the cause of the unwanted URL in Google’s index.  A colleague of mine set his Gmail chat status to the URL in question in order to share it with a select group of people.  Two weeks later, the URL is in Google’s search index.  The URL is now disabled, but frankly it’s a little alarming in my opinion that Google would grab a private URL that is only shared between a small group of people, and include it in their index.

So take heed, if you don’t want Google including a specific URL in their public search index, don’t share it via Gmail chat (at least don’t set it as your status, even if it’s only shared with a few people).

Google AdWords Keyword Tool Price Data Bug

February 15th, 2010

Google AdWordsThe Google AdWords Keyword Tool is in my opinion one of the most useful tools available on the web.  When you enter one or more terms or phrases, Google returns data on approximate number of searches for the terms you entered, as well as similar terms/phrases and their corresponding search volumes.  I tend to use this tool primarily for keyword research when I’m working on SEO efforts for my various websites, but I also believe that search data is immensely powerful for other applications as well.

While doing some SEO work the other day, I stumbled across a really interesting bug in the Google AdWords Keyword Tool.  I found a stupidly simple way (no, I’m not the Chinese government and I didn’t hack Google) to extract some limited pricing data for the suggested keyword results when you enter one or more keywords or phrases into the tool.  I highly doubt Google wants this data to be public, which is why I’m assuming it’s a bug.

For example, when I entered “new york pizza” into the tool, I was able to extract the following pricing data (showing data for the first 10 results):

  • new york pizza delivery    1 – 3    $1.91
  • new york pizza    1 – 3    $0.93
  • new york pizza menu    1 – 3    $0.34
  • new york pizza restaurants    1 – 3    $0.66
  • new york style pizza    1 – 3    $0.93
  • new york pizza restaurant    1 – 3    $0.72
  • new york ny pizza    1 – 3    $0.05
  • best pizza new york    1 – 3    $1.23
  • new york pizzas    1 – 3    $0.05
  • new york pizza shipped    1 – 3    $0.05

Google AdWords Keyword Tool bug

What does it mean?

The way I interpret this data is that the average cost per click (CPC) for a sponsored search listing in the top three AdWords results will cost you the dollar amount shown next to each keyword.  For example, if you want to buy the first term “new york pizza delivery,” it’s going to cost you roughly $1.91 per click if you want to appear in the top 3 sponsored search positions.

How did you do that?

If you’re from Google, shoot me a note and I’m happy to discuss.  By the way, I just applied for a summer internship so bumping my application to the top gets a faster response ;-)