March SEO News Wrap Up
Around here, we call it “The Scallion.” It’s a play on The Onion, but slightly less clever. Every month I gather together the news that I’ve found around the web about SEO, the search engines, and the internet in general. I put it all in small, easy-to-digest niblets that I send around in a newsletter to the whole company – web designers, writers, account managers, etc – so that they can keep up without having to spend hours reading the same articles over and over.
This month, I’m sharing it with you.
Leeking you the latest information in SEO
Volume 1, Issue 3: March 29, 2010
Google vs. China
First, Google stopped censoring results in China due to an alleged attempt at a server hack. China did not like this, so Google attempted to circumvent the Chinese government by redirecting Google.cn to Google.hk. The Chinese government blocked Google.hk. China also delivered new rules on the media coverage of the Google fiasco. There is an interesting power struggle unfolding in front of us…We’ll keep you updated with the latest as it comes in.
Real Time Search
Twitter was already showing in the real time search results on Google, but they recently added MySpace and Facebook Fan Pages. On both sites, you must have a setting enabled for your status updates to show in search results.
Google killed the SearchWiki(which allowed people to edit their own search results) in favor of adding stars next to links. Turns out, people didn’t like reordering their results, but enjoyed marking a few for later consideration.
The Need for Speed
Google says speed matters. This is something we’ve known for a while, and this article has a few new tools that we hadn’t been using. The idea here is that faster loading sites provide a better user experience, and Google’s results are aimed to help people find the best sites for their needs.
Google WAVE got a few updates this past month. Email updates are now available, so you can get an email when you have new waves waiting for you. This is pretty much against the whole premise of wave, but they finally realized they have to include them to make the transition easier. They also attempted to give it another push with a new extensions gallery.
Can You Trust Review Sites?
Yelp has managed to get themselves into somewhat of a legal pickle. Allegedly, they are posting false negative reviews to business pages and posting them at the top. When the business owner calls to have them removed, they offer up advertising and refuse to remove the reviews unless the owner buys. If they refuse, the reviews stay and other negative reviews are pushed towards the top. For now, I’d recommend going elsewhere for your reviews, until this is sorted out in court.
Is Google’s next stop your television? Rumor has it that Google’s got your TV in their sights. They are working in conjunction with Dish Network. It is currently running in a testing phase, and appears to be run on a set-top box. Keep an eye out for this, coming to your TV soon.
Google Maps just went green - bicycle directions have just been added to the map. They are currently only available in limited areas, and not accessible via mobile devices. They do, however, avoid highways and busy streets in favor of paths that are more bicycle-friendly. Boulder and Denver both have bicycle directions available.
Facebook became the most visited website recently, overtaking Google’s long time hold on first place. The SEO community let out a collective, “So, what?” This number doesn’t include hits on Google’s other properties, including Maps or Gmail, and isn’t going to affect the community very much.
Bing, always looking for a way to one-up Google, has added FourSquare to their Maps results. They’re pulling in quick tips data from FourSquare, which means you’ll be able to see what users have to say about various places, who has unlocked specific badges, and who is mayor of a certain location.
And there you have it, the March issue of The Scallion. Tune in next month for another exciting issue!