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March 2008 Archives

March 25, 2008

Hackers Forcing Sites to Cloak Search Engines with Link Spam

David Jones from PR Works is probably wondering why he gets no love from Google. Maybe he even did a site: search on the Big G and discovered that his site has been banned. If so, he’s probably wondering why.

I don’t know Mr. Jones. He seems like a nice enough guy with some smart things to say about PR in Canada. I hope he finds this article and sorts out this rather nasty situation he has. If not, at least we can use it as a learning tool later on in this article.

Let’s pretend I do SEO for Twitter and am trying to talk management into letting me nofollow the profile links. Management says “NO, we’ve checked hundreds of profile links and none of them were spammy” so I do what any logical SEO would do and perform a linkfromdomain search on MSN so I can prove that, indeed, there are over 2,000 links FROM Twitter pointing TO pages about Viagra.

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Public Relations: The Other Important PR In Link Development

Link Week

Link development, before search engines polluted the process into a currency for search engine rankings, was all about promotion. Links were simply a natural side effect of promoting your website. And one of the most tried and true methods of promotion is PR (as in Public Relations, not Pagerank).

“The American Heritage Dictionary defines PR as “the art or science of establishing and promoting a favorable relationship with the public.” A public relations firm does this mainly by promoting favorable news.” – Wikipedia

Link development is essentially an online PR campaign that promotes favorable content to the public (who are also known as the linkerati) in an attempt to foster goodwill (which, if we’re lucky, results in links as well).

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March 26, 2008

B2B Marketing Priorities 2008

Strictly Business - A Column From Search Engine Land Let’s face it, life is about priorities. There’s never enough time, money, or resources for everything. Consequently, we must prioritize. Doing so forces us to choose between what we want and what we actually need.

And marketers are anything but exempt from such choices.

When times are good—and we have a bit more money to work with—we can be creative and try some new things. But when times get tough and we need to tighten our belts, we’re often forced to determine what initiatives we can’t live without. And posthaste.

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Is Hiding Content With “Display: None” Legitimate SEO?

If you’re doing SEO on a site with thousands or tens-of-thousands of pages, it’s likely you’re working with some sort of content management system (CMS). However, CMS systems frequently cause problems with search engines. The great majority of the time these problems arise through ignorance on part of the CMS software developers. Basically, if the developers are not familiar with how search engines work, they may use coding practices that are not intended to be deceptive, but could be perceived that way by a search engine.

One technique used by many huge sites is to pre-load code, navigation or content in the background so that it can be dynamically displayed as needed. The most common technique for accomplishing this is through the use of the CSS display: none attribute. This article will look at the display: none attribute in detail.

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March 27, 2008

Diigo : The End Of Bookmarks?

Diigo is perhaps one of the web’s premier research tools – this is widely accepted. Whether Web 2.0 actually ever existed is irrelevant, but the innovation brought to us these last two years is undeniable. The big question for me has been:

“Does the innovation actually do anything for us?” I think I have tested and reviewed over 300 startups in the last couple of years, and I can honestly say that most of this innovation has been directed at entertainment or rather useless “cuteness”. Diigo as a tool, could be viewed as a much more serious innovation by comparison.


With the release of Version 3, Diigo has fairly effectively expanded its reach into the social networking venue even farther. Aside from that, the inherent tools available on Diigo as a aggregationa and research platform have been expanded greatly also. So many startups have been either hyped or constructively accentuated that it is sometimes difficult to put an actual value on them, this is not the case for any of Diigo’s faithful users.

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We Don’t Need SEO Standards!

100% Organic - A Column From Search Engine Land
Last month I attended the SMX West session in Santa Clara entitled Is it Time for Search Marketing Standards? It was an interesting session, but I wasn’t really sure where I stood on the issue at the time. Now that I’ve had a few weeks to think about it, I’ve come to the conclusion that not only would it be impossible to come up with standards that most would be happy with, I strongly believe that we don’t need them at all.

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Privacy Policies And Search Engines

Small is Beautiful - a Column From Search Engine Land A few weeks back, I started wondering about whether or not search engines might care whether or not a web site had a privacy policy. Is the content of a page less relevant or more relevant if there’s a link on it to information about how any data collected about visitors might be used? Probably not.

But it’s possible that a search engine might consider that the source of content is more trustworthy, and more authoritative if it does include such a page. And that may make a difference…

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