I have recently seen a site under a month old rank for some rather short query sets.
New SEO / SEM Blogs:
maybe not new, but at least new to me. Got Ads? - seems to be more focused on the ad / ppc side of the search game. have not read it a ton yet but have seen John contribute many good posts on Andrew Goodman's SEM 2.0 Wolf Howl - should have mentioned and found this one a while ago as multiple friends have recommended it to me. his most recent post references Flatland, so it must be a cool blog :)
the conference I am at:
ended today. I could blog about a bunch of stuff but now find myself headed toward the closing party, which I suspect may give me more stuff to blog about.
How to Be a Consultant:
Create The Warm Fuzzy Feelingâ„¢. Reading it certainly takes much longer than 10 minutes, but it is well worth it if you are considering becoming a consultant.
The list is great, but on the web / marketing front I would also add create affiliate and content sites to help build a stable income stream when down periods occur.
Even when you have few clients you help shore up your technical understand by creating things. If you create great sites then they will make money and you will be able to better filter what work you are willing to take on. If you create lousy sites then they will make for great research and will help you identify symptoms of a lousy site when prospective customers contact you.
As stated in that article, it can't be overly stressed
how important it is to be easily available; &
how amazingly well syndicated articles act as sophisticated salesmen
Of those consumers who converted on a trademark keyword, 91 percent did so after starting with a different term type. A full 80 percent started with a generic search term. Trademark searches, meanwhile, accounted for 20 percent of all online searches.
As for conversions, an estimated 92 percent of all computing and consumer electronics purchases occur offline. Meanwhile, 7 percent of conversions occur in the form of latent conversions. Only 1 percent of conversions occur in the same session online.
While Asking Jeeves...
MicroSoft has not publicly stated any great interest, but
Ask Jeeves President Steve Berkowitz suggested he might be open to deal if it was in the interests of the company's shareholders, although he did not comment directly on any offers coming from Microsoft. - source
New MSN Search Features
In addition MSN has added a drop down box to allow people to search for specific things such as movies or news. Elsewhere MSN added its search technology preview to the MSN sandbox.
Paid Inclusion is Garbage
MSN also decided to filter out their paid inclusion search results. (time to edit my ebook again) "We really we want customers to feel the best about the results being served," MSN's Grothaus said.
Google"It's hard to be sure that the end result of the algorithm would be the same and that everyone is being treated fairly," Google's Silverstein said of allowing paid inclusion.
Ask Jeeves"We will continue to get better at crawling," said Jim Lanzone, vice president of product management at Ask Jeeves. "The value proposition of Site Submit has ceased to exist."
More Paid Inclusion is Garbage / Bad Press for Yahoo!
Recently a person I consulted in the past had some of their Yahoo! listings disappear overnight (and from my talking to many other SEOs this is becoming somewhat common). After paying for inclusion into Overture Site Match, my friend's site still does not show up for terms he has shown up for ever since the inception of Yahoo! Search.
He sent them a request question and they gave him a complete crap form letter response that suggested he visit WebmasterWorld to learn more about SEO.
There horrific customer service and near complete disapproval toward the program from SEOs and webmasters has Yahoo! considering dumping or changing the program. (or at least that is what credible sources say)
Just a reminder to those who do not have good Inktomi placement that MSN is to be dumping LookSmart in about a half a month (Jan 15). Some speculate that MSN may want to eventually shift to Ask Jeeves until it gets its technology in order.
I presume that MSN will stick with Inktomi until it builds its own technology. With Yahoo desiring to part ways with Google it is certain they will be investing heavily into making Inktomi a competitive product.
MSN will become competitve and remain so by the natural market forces of competition between Yahoo and Google... until it creates its own search product... You can check your Inktomi placement using Hotbot on its default setting, or by useing Pure Search provided by PositionTech.