Recycling Successful Rankings

Nov 9th

TechCrunch recently posted about a new company called HitTail, which helps webmasters discover potential post titles they should write about based on past success.

HitTail is essentially log file mining made easy with an algorithm to determine what’s most valuable in the long tail of your search driven traffic. Search queries are considered valuable based on four factors - the number of words in the search, how many pages deep into search results the site visitor dug to find your site and two factors the company won’t disclose.

It is important to cast a fairly wide and deep net before placing too much weight on the feedback or else you can corner your site by letting the feedback keep feeding into itself.

What happens when most people have access to free tools which shows them why and where they are successful? And how they should write copy?

As everything that drives toward efficiency ultimately the channels that will remain successful in saturated markets will be those which have insider information, are able to cover topics others are not covering, have well established authority, or those which evoke emotional responses.

Published: November 9, 2006


November 10, 2006 - 12:59am

You forgot to mention that this service is free (at least for now). I've been using it for about 3 months and it's a great way to get ideas for blog postings.

It;s almost like having a conversation with the peeople using the search engines.

November 10, 2006 - 1:06am

Interesting, especially nice that it's free. It's a concept that a lot of people just don't grasp (that your long tail results are a great place to find new things to write about).

For someone new to the concept I'm guessing it'd be great. For those of us that've been doing it for a long time, I'm guessing going through things manually will produce much more reliable and successful results.

November 10, 2006 - 2:21am

You forgot to mention that
states that:

"Q. Are you planning to continue the free service after the beta is over?

A. Yes, for all websites whose traffic is under a certain limit. For sites that exceed that limit, we will offer hearty congratulations, and various reasonable options to continue using HitTail."

November 10, 2006 - 3:12am

I signed up and tried it. It's interesting but unfortunately it's only possible to use via a javascript code. No downloadable application with which you can analyze your log files.

November 10, 2006 - 3:45am

I actually thought the exact same thing when I first saw it, if you only have a couple of pages on your site it won't help much - but if you do have a lot of established traffic then it can help pinpoint where you can further optimise.

November 20, 2006 - 8:05am

Especially, if you remember that a human-powered analysis beats a tool-powered any time.

Sure, a tool can spit out a list of topics. But only a human will be able to choose the one to use (which will drive traffic, conversions and, possibly, word of mouth).

November 10, 2006 - 1:04pm

I just installed it. To see how it works for me.
I've noticed that I get visits from searches that I never planned on. Not that I'm complaining. ;)

It does seem that the combined total of all the long tail searches seem to outweigh the one BIG traffic source I've got right now.

November 10, 2006 - 4:35pm

> It is important to cast a fairly wide and deep net before placing too much weight on the feedback or else you can corner your site by letting the feedback keep feeding into itself.

Totally agreed! HitTail is a tool that kicks in AFTER you have done your basic job. HitTail won't replace a good brainstorming session about what content belongs on your website and why. But it will help you keep your writing momentum up over time with some good inside information to ensure you're not wasting your time. And thanks for the mention, Aaron! I love SEOBook.

July 9, 2007 - 2:54am

I love using HitTail. Since utilizing that, I am getting more than 1,000 visitors a day more than I was before.


November 14, 2006 - 7:50pm


I've been using HitTail (formerly MyLongTail) since June of this year and I can confirm that it is a valuable analysis tool.

It's surprising what the SE's rank you for!


August 2, 2007 - 9:48pm

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