Here is a recap of what happened in the search forums today, yesterday, and Monday, through the eyes of the Search Engine Roundtable and other search forums on the web.
Search Engine Roundtable Stories:
- How Google Handles Duplicate Content Scrapers
A Google Webmaster Central blog post by Sven of the Search Quality Team addresses underlying concerns regarding how Google handles scraped content. In the two scenarios discussed, one (duplicate content within your domain) can be controlled. The other cannot. However, he recommends that you offer a link back for syndicated content: In cases when you are syndicating your content but also want to make sure your site is identified as the original source, it's useful
- Google Trends Features New Numeric Scales and CSV Downloads
Greg Sterling reported earlier this week on Search Engine Land that Google Trends has had an update. You can now download the Google Trends in CSV format (for later research) and can view the data on a numerical scale (on the Y-axis). Google explains that the numbers aren't exact search, but that these results scale to size: These numbers don't refer to exact search-volume figures. Instead, in the same way that a map might “scale”
- Google Offers Stock Screener for Investors
If you're interested in watching stocks rise and fall, the new Google Stock Screener is a tool for you. Here's a screenshot: You're able to see dividends, P/E ration, 52 week price changes, and more. It's a great way to get a bird's eye view of what's happening to your favorite stock. Forum discussion continues at DigitalPoint Forums.
- Gmail Offers Experimental Features with Gmail Labs
Gmail users can now take advantage of a lot of cool new features (all experimental) in the new Gmail Labs offering. Log onto your account, click Settings, and you'll see a link to the new Labs with a lot of cool features and ways to customize Gmail: Some of the features include a game of Snake (remember that?), a randomized signature, mouse gestures, and more. Forum discussion continues at DigitalPoint Forums.
- How Does Google Handle The HTML <base> Tag?
There is an interesting Google Groups thread discussing how Google handles the <base> HTML tag. The base tag specifies a base URL for all the links in a page. But how does Googlebot or Google handle indexing this tag? Google Groups member, Webado said you should be "careful using the base tag". Why? Google's cache adds a base tag set to your own domain root url. If your page is using a different base tag
- Many Webmasters Notice Major Traffic Loss From Google
A weekend WebmasterWorld thread is reporting dozens and dozens of webmasters noticing a major traffic drop due to Google. Some of these webmasters reported traffic declines in the 90% range. Many of the issues seem to be that Google has dropped hundreds or thousands of pages from these webmaster's sites. But it isn't only large sites. The five page WebmasterWorld thread has several theories on which sites this may impact. I won't list them all,
- Tools to Analyze Backlink Anchor Text
Search Engine Journal writer Ann Smarty talks about how exploration of competitors' backlinks can give you an idea of your competition's link building strategy and help you with keyword research among other things. She provides some tools for how to do this. The details are in the Search Engine Journal post, but the tools outlined are: BacklinkWatch Smart Backlinks Analyze Backlinks Link Diagnosis What's your favorite link analysis tool? Forum discussion continues at Sphinn.
- Losing Trust in Google?
Of course we would never lose trust in Google. This topic has to do with sites seemingly losing the trust of Google from an algorithmic perspective, and if there is any sort of SEO analysis that could be used to offset the apparent losses. Whitey over at WebmasterWorld Forums explains: "Two sites in our network have been behaving strangely recently, and I'm wondering if they signify how Google handles "Trust Rank" where entire sites fall
- Google Updates SEO Documentation
Last week, Matt Cutts told everyone at SMX Advanced that Google has updated its SEO documentation. He blogged about the changes on his own blog. There's new documentation on the robots.txt protocol, how Google accounts for user feedback, issues revolving around IP delivery and cloaking, updates to nofollow, and more. Matt also is quick to note that web pages should be designed primarily for users, because the lack of the word "primarily" used to cause
- The Six Laws of Ethical SEO
My good friend Adam Audette wrote a great post on the 6 principles of ethical SEO. In his article, he explains: Don't do any harm and engage in aggressive techniques. You don't want to hurt their brand. Focus on the community and provide valuable information for them. Fix problems, even if that means to give your clients the cold, hard truth and information they don't want to hear. Internet marketing requires a combination of smaller
- A Googler's Sage Advice on Absolute vs. Relative URLs
A common question in the SEO space is should I use absolute or relative URLs. Absolute URLs are when you link a URL by using the domain.com portion as well, so linking to my authors page would be a link like http://www.seroundtable.com/authors.php. The relative URL for that authors page would be a link like /authors.php. As you can imagine, there are pros and cons. JohnMu, a Googler, has an outstanding post in a Google Groups
- Do We Need SEO Forums?
John Carcutt wrote at Search Engine Journal that "real SEOs don't go to forums." That said, we here at Search Engine Roundtable cover only forum discussion, so we ask the question: are SEO forums really needed? After all, blogs have replaced forums (but this blog is a combination of both!) After reading through his detailed analysis of whether SEO forums are needed, one can come to the conclusion that SEO forums are useful to unite
- How to Write Search Engine Friendly Code
- Google Releases AdWords API Starter Kit
AdWords API Advisor has posted on Google Groups that a new AdWords API Starter Kit is available. The goals are to teach new developers about the Google AdWords API and to provide a flexible/modifiable codebase for a variety of AdWords applications. The Stater Kit also includes a demo to see how it the API be used. One developer has so far chimed in on the Google Groups thread and says that the API is simple,
- YouTube Annotations in Action
The other day, I mocked Matt Cutts, by editing a video that caught him saying, "I watch porn all day." I did the video editing while sitting in the session, so the editing is subpar, to say the least. How can I improve it? Well, I can annotate the video. YouTube now allows video annotations and here is how it works. (1) Upload your video (2) Wait for it to be processed and live (3)
- An Updated List of Google's Data Centers
The folks over at WebmasterWorld are continuously watching everything about Google, including every data center. In a thread, they are compiling a list of current data centers that Google operators. Here is the list, as current as June 5, 2008 (when this post was written - although scheduled to go live on June 9th):
- Google Says, Yahoo Directory Does Have PageRank
On Thursday, we broke the news that the Yahoo Directory had no PageRank via a WebmasterWorld thread. Matt Cutts of Google quickly commented saying that the Yahoo Directory has a PageRank of 8. Matt was referring to the home page, which we said did have a PR value but not the internal pages. Since then I have been tracking the discussion to find out that Matt added more details to the WebmasterWorld later on June
- Programming Note: Offline Monday & Tuesday
Monday, June 9th and Tuesday, June 10th, Tamar and I will be offline and not posting, in real-time, to the Search Engine Roundtable. We do have several articles scheduled to be posted throughout the two days, but they were all written the previous week. I have asked some of the guest authors to contribute to this site, as they see fit. So they may stop by and change things up while we are gone. If
Other Great Search Forum Threads:
- Google's Marissa Mayer Explains The New Favicon, WebmasterWorld
- Should my sitemap include images?, Google Groups
- Client Not Paying Money Owed, HighRankings Forums
- Does Google Use Click-Thru Rate (CTR) in their Organic Listings too?, Sphinn
- Google Updates List of 3rd Party Ad Providers, DigitalPoint Forums
- Must Read WordPress SEO, Sphinn
- Stuffing, Google Groups
- Yahoo Shareholders Want To Cut Severance Plan, WebmasterWorld