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Archive for April, 2009

South West Business interviews Dr Search Principal Consultant at the Search Clinic

April 29, 2009 By: Dr Search Principal Consultant at the Search Clinic Category: Uncategorized

South West Business website has published an interview with Dr Search the Principal Consultant at the Search Clinic.

South West Business interviews Dr Search at the Search Clinic

Online business is still growing at a rapid rate but companies small and large can do much more to capitalise on the opportunities delegates at the forthcoming Growing Gloucestershire event on June 25 will be told.

Website expert Simon Dye, one of the seminar speakers at the forthcoming giant networking event to be staged in Cheltenham at the University of Gloucestershire, will tell delegates some of the secrets to generating more on-line business.

Mr Dye, from the Cheltenham based Search Clinic, said: “The seminar is going to be about on-line marketing. I have been helping people with their websites for 12 years now through the CIM (Chartered Institute of Marketing). I am going to be talking about low-cost things they can do to improve their websites.

“It is applicable for small and large business. They are all making the same mistakes to some extent and on-line business is still growing an a rapid rate. It is something you have to be up to date with.

“The credit crunch has made people suddenly wake up to the fact they are not making enough money from their websites and they need to improve them and the way they are marketing them.”

According to event organiser Penny Richards Good, marketing and operations manager from the Centre for Enterprise & Innovation at the University of Gloucestershire, 164 delegates had so far booked places and 66% of exhibition space had been sold.

You can read the full interview at:
http://www.southwestbusiness.co.uk/news/Business-capitlise-internet-trade/article-946357-detail/article.html

Google’s Local Search boosts your rankings

April 27, 2009 By: Dr Search Principal Consultant at the Search Clinic Category: Uncategorized

With Google now displaying local results for businesses where the search query does not include the location, Google Local has become an even stronger short cut to the top of the organic results.

Google Local Search ResultsSearch Clinic suggest some things you can do to aid in obtaining a high Google local ranking.

Keyword Rich Business Name
Businesses with their business type in their names are recommended from a ranking perspective. For example if you are a wedding photographer, it is in your interest to have the term “wedding photographer” in your business name.

Adding the location in it would also be of benefit, however this is not often possible for practical reasons. e.g. when comparing wedding photographers in the New York area, the business name “New York Wedding Photographer” will usually rank better than “Gold Wedding Photographer” which will in turn rank higher than “Premium Pics”

Business Type Keyword Rich URL
Similar to ranking in the organic area, a keyword rich URL with your business type can also be beneficial. Businesses with established business names often see this as a problem as they have an existing customer base which may know them by their non keyword rich business name and URL.

If this is an issue, consider building a different website with its sole purpose being its ability to generate leads from. As long as your content is unique to your main website, this practice can be a good way to rank well for your chosen keywords without having to change your main URL.

Enhance your Local Business Listing
Most business listings contain only basic data. Enhancing your listing provides additional information to Google which will in turn help you with your ranking. Fields you can provide to Google include products you sell, payment options, opening hours, areas you service etc.

The more descriptive you are, the better the chance Google will elevate your listing when someone is searching for a specific query. For example the search query for “Vermont 24 hour Vet accepting Visa card” will promote the listing which contains that information.

Add Testimonials
Have a happy customer? Ask them to submit a testimonial through on your Local Listing. This is quite easy to do by your customer yet can provide some good ranking benefits. Never forge testimonials as Google can look at factors such as which IP lodged the recommendation, frequency of growth etc.

Getting into Google Maps can be easy. Ensuring you gain great ranking from it involves many factors as can be seen above. We recommend using a professional to help you get the most out of Google Local Listings

Google revenue drops, but profits are still rising

April 22, 2009 By: Dr Search Principal Consultant at the Search Clinic Category: Uncategorized

The hotly anticipated Q1 Google earning results was released this week and it highlighted the search giant was also feeling the economic pinch.

Google's profits continue to growGoogle has reported record revenue and profit growth since inception many years ago. On this basis, industry analysts were keen to see whether Google could weather the economic storm that has already battered several other high profile companies’ earnings.

Google Q1 2009 Earning reports. Below is a copy of the slide presentation of their earnings report. 2009 Q1 Google Earnings Slides

As you can see, the company has experience the first drop in revenue since it launched back in 1998. It earned US$5.52 billion in Q1 2009, which represents a 3% decline from Q4 2008, but a 6% increase on Q1 2008.

While revenue dropped, Google posted a net profit of US$1.42 billion, a growth of 9% in Q1 2009. The profit growth was due in a large part to prudent cost management. This was evident in the termination of several unsuccessful services over the past few months.

Google CEO Eric Schmidt prefaced the earnings report with the following statement:

Google had a good quarter given the depth of the recession–while revenues were down quarter over quarter, they grew 6% year over year, thanks to continued strong query growth. These results underline both the resilience of our business model and the ongoing potential of the web as users and advertisers shift online,” said Eric Schmidt, CEO of Google. “Going forward, our priority remains investing for the long term to drive future growth in our core and emerging businesses.

While this presents a small bump in road for Google, they are positioned well to ride out the storm. Continued cost management and continued investment in long term strategic search and advertising improvement will see them come out the other side of this crisis as one of the few corporate success stories.

Dr Search is not surprised that Google’s profits are still increasing. So profitable is Google that for every £100 which you donate to Google’s Pay Per Click AdWords campaigns £85 goes towards buying the bubbly at the shareholders’ AGM.

Ask brings back Jeeves for good in the UK

April 20, 2009 By: Dr Search Principal Consultant at the Search Clinic Category: Uncategorized

Ask brings back Jeeves for good in the UK
Ask brings back Jeeves in the UK
After partially coming out of retirement last year, Ask have decided to fully reinstate Jeeves as their search brand in the UK. Visiting the URL uk.ask.com should take you to the new Jeeves character which has been completely redesigned from the old 2D character.

Jeeves also gives an explanation of why he has returned:

I popped out three years ago to travel the world in a quest for knowledge and I’ve returned to Blighty armed with answers. During my sojourn research showed the public wanted me back, which I found jolly touching.

According to Cesar Mascaraque, managing director of Ask Jeeves Europe, Ask polled their UK users and saw that Jeeves still had a brand awareness of 83%, even after retiring over three years ago.

When you compare this to the 72% awareness of Ask.com, bringing Jeeves back for the team was a smart move.

Ask will return to its original name “Ask Jeeves” with a multi million dollar advertising campaign across the UK. Jeeves will also be given his own facebook fan page and twitter account to help drive the message that he is back for good.

Search Clinic points out that the Ask marketing initiative which it took some years ago to raise the awareness of Jeeves obviously has an enduring return on investment value.

Google search results shows more local listings

April 14, 2009 By: Dr Search Principal Consultant at the Search Clinic Category: Uncategorized

Google has just made local business listings even more important!

They are now showing local search results for generic keyword searches, even when they don’t include a location. For example, take a look at my search for the generic keyword “electrician” below:

Google local search results
As you can see, Google has recognized that my search has some form of local intent and shows me local business listings based on the geographic location of my country.

If your match does not match your exact location you can always click on “Change Location”.

From the limited testing I’ve done local listings are appearing for many generic terms such as:

* Plumber
* Dentist
* Doctor
* Lawyer
* Electrician

Local Business Listings are Now Essential for Every Small Business!

Ranking on the first page for these hyper competitive keywords used to be almost impossible without spending big bucks on SEO.

This now gives your business the chance to rank on the first page of Google for generic terms like “plumber” or “dentist” – simply by creating and optimizing your local business profile!

For example if you’re a florist based in London, you can now get traffic from local residents searching for “florist london” and much more generic terms like “florist” or “florists”. This is sure to have a huge impact on the number of people visiting your business.

If you’re a local based business there has never been a better time to create a local listing for your business. If you’re not sure where to start, Search Clinic can help boost your coverage with a local profile today.

Dr Search to speak at the University of Gloucestershire

April 08, 2009 By: Dr Search Principal Consultant at the Search Clinic Category: Uncategorized

Dr Search the Principal Consultant at the Search Clinic Simon Dye will deliver a lecture at the University of Gloucestershire at the Gloucestershire Professionals Conference in June 2009 on the subject of cost effective online marketing.

Dr Search to lecture at the University of Gloucestershire
The Growing Gloucestershire professionals conference, now is it’s fifth year has asked Simon Dye to present a seminar on the subject of Cost Effective Online Marketing.

“It”s a subject that I have been helping companies and websites with and the University asked me to help the professionals in Gloucestershire.”

You can find out more about the Growing Gloucestershire professionals conference, please see details on: http://www.glosprofessionals.co.uk/seminar_speakers.htm

The Gloucestershire Professionals Conference is back for its fifth successful year on Thursday 25th June 2009 and takes place at the University’s Park Campus in Cheltenham.

Yahoo! Update rumors- rankings algorithm changes

April 06, 2009 By: Dr Search Principal Consultant at the Search Clinic Category: Uncategorized

There has been speculation across various search marketing blogs that Yahoo! has recently updated their ranking algorithm.

Yahoo! search engine rankingsAccording to reports on Webmaster World and Digital Point forums, many different webmasters have noticed a change in their Yahoo! rankings.

The update appears to have started around the 29th March and resulted in a general shuffle of the SERPs with no major changes being reported. Here are some reports on the change:

“Minor moves, both up and down, for most of my keywords;

yes… this happened to me as well. one of my main keywords was number 10 in yahoo (was number 2-3 about 1.5 month ago)and yesterday and today I rank number 1 for my keywords;

I’ve also seen some drops in Yahoo SERPs for some of my main keywords from about 3rd position to 7th and now 6th. Hoping I get back to the top shortly.”

Yahoo! last updated their algorithm on the 27th Feb, so the timing of this update sounds about right based on Yahoo’s monthly update cycle.

While there has been no official word from Yahoo just yet, they still hold around 21% of the search market, so it would be a wise idea to check your ranking just to be safe.

If you’ve noticed a change in your Yahoo! traffic or rankings, let us know in the comments below!

Why Flash and search engine optimisation still don’t mix

April 01, 2009 By: Dr Search Principal Consultant at the Search Clinic Category: Uncategorized

In June of last year, Google announced they had improved their indexing of Flash files – and web designers around the globe rejoiced.

Many web designers love flash because it frees them from the creative shackles of HTML and can give them the “WOW” factor when presenting new websites to clients.

Unfortunately, while flash sites may look great, they’re a nightmare when it comes to SEO. Google’s improvements in flash indexing did help some flash sites to rank, but most of the fundamental problems with flash still remain.

Below are 4 reasons why Dr Search believes business owners should avoid building flash based websites.

1. Different content is not on different URLs
Because your content is all contained within a single SWF file, there are no additional pages for Google to index and this severely impacts things like bookmarking your site, analytics etc.

2. Basic SEO tags are still missing
While Google can read text from within SWF files, most of the time, basic SEO tags will be lost. Examples of these are link anchor text, H1/H2 tags, image alt tags and bold text. Missing these tags is going to have a negative impact on your ranking.

3. Not all browsers have flash installed
If the user does not have flash installed, or is using a device that doesn’t support flash (eg: Apple’s iPhone) the content is going to be lost completely.

4. Flash sites don’t receive a lot of links
There are a number of reasons why flash sites don’t earn as many links as HTML pages. Some of these reasons include:

* Less social media links because users can’t link to content within your site.
* Less blog/news links because users can’t easily quote your text.
* Less one way links from resource websites because specific content is not on a separate URL

Overall, Dr Search believes the benefit of building a slightly more interactive flash based website is far outweighed by the negative SEO impact it can have. If your website designer is determined to use flash, ask them to use it sparingly rather than designing your entire site with it.