Yahoo! Link Building Strategies + Advanced Yahoo! Search Operators

Mar 14th
posted in

I finally made my new page on Yahoo! Search at Search-marketing.info. This blog format is so much better than that huge evil site. I could literally work on that site for 10 hours a day and it would take me months to make it as kick ass as I would like. This site is more of a post and forget it...less maintenance.

New Yahoo! Search operators

  • site: this allows one to find all documents within a particular domain and all it's subdomains.
    Example: site:yahoo.com

  • hostname: this allows one to find all documents from a particular host only.
    Example: hostname:autos.yahoo.com

  • link: this allows one to find documents that link to a particular url.
    Example: link:http://autos.yahoo.com/

  • url: this alllows one to find a specific document in our index.
    Example: url:http://edit.autos.yahoo.com/repair/tree/0.html

  • inurl: this allows one to find a specific keyword as part of indexed urls.
    Example: inurl:bulgarian

  • intitle: this allows one to find a specific keyword as part of

Try out the new Yahoo! Search

Bonus tips on using the new Yahoo! Search for your link building needs. You can do multiple advanced link things with Yahoo! Search. For example

link:http://www.search-marketing.info inurl:partners -inurl:search-marketing.info

Would show you sites that link to my other site with parnters in their url. In addition you filter page title instead of url by using intitle: or you can change the word partners to

  • link

  • links
  • resources

or just about anything else that would show you the links are out of a textual context. This is a quick way to evaluate how and where to get some of the easiest backlinks that your competitors are enjoying. A good example for the intitle: might be a word like reciprical...

Another trick on the same concept. Using Yahoo! Search advanced features you can filter the domain to be .edu. If you have an exceptionally well thought out resource you can use the .edu filter and see who is linking to some of your competitors and search for certain words on that page. These .edu links are heavily weighted in Google search results...

An example of this trick might be that I could find out education sites that link to a search engine that no longer exist and update them. If I still get too many results I can search to see those that also have the words "Search Engine Watch" on the page, or further qualify the page by looking for more words in the URL. I could possibly help convince the professor that I know enough about search to ask him to link to me. There is no substitute for tact, but most people will not know how you came to their site. I never automate link requests, but I believe in making them easy to find.

Paid Search Survey

Mar 14th

I recently started posting again over at The Search Engine Journal. If you have not visited recently, The Search Engine Journal is working with the Kelsey Group to promote a new Paid Search Survey which your feedback will help improve. If you buy pay per click advertising, feel free to participate.

The Kelsey group is one of the main data aggregators of information about the growing local search industry, and this quick survey is looking more at general paid search practices.

Bonus: Getting Cheap Feedback

Survey Monkey is free for up to 100 responses a month. Their more full featured survey costs as low as $20 per month.

If you do not appreciate how valuable feedback is, or how hard it is to get feedback then juist look at how few comments are posted on this blog. Yesterday I had over 1,000 page views and 0 comments.

Hide Your Email Address

Mar 14th

If you look off to the right side of the home page I now have a rather simple and easy way to contact me. Instead of throwing a NOSPAM string in my email or using the [at] technique I can now safely hide my email address from spam bots thanks to this free email address hiding script.

Those who spend most of their time reading marketing books get exceptionally annoyed when they see piss poor marketing. Thus I truely appreciate this cool hiveware product. Hide your email address today!

(Yet another cool thing found at Search Engine Blog. I emailed Peter and dared him to use the word "sesquipedalian" in his blog - we will watch attentively and report our findings.)

  • Over 100 training modules, covering topics like: keyword research, link building, site architecture, website monetization, pay per click ads, tracking results, and more.
  • An exclusive interactive community forum
  • Members only videos and tools
  • Additional bonuses - like data spreadsheets, and money saving tips
We love our customers, but more importantly

Our customers love us!

Ethical Search Engine Optimization

Mar 11th

Ethical Search Engine Optimization

What does that mean?

What does it mean to be ethical? Does that mean you produce the best results for clients? Does that you mean you follow all search engine guidelines? Is it possible to deliver the best returns to your customers at the best price while following all search engine guidelines?

Certainly ethical search engine optimization can not be a "yes" to all the above questions. That my friend would be a panacea.

When refering to search engine optimization ethical is an empty tag. Ethical search engine optimization is like the empty statement "Support the troops." It is the leaders and their policy that makes the war.

How can search engine optimization companies working for companies with giant sweat shops claim they are ethical?

I have never got a single page banned, but I am not a fan of the ethical tag. Neither is Chris Ridings:

I am not ethical within the search engine related industries because within those "ethical" is a tag. It's a tag that says "I'm better than them", but never goes on to say why. It's a tag that practically never comes with a definition of exactly what ethical means within the industry. Nowhere does it say in black and white everything that is and isn't allowed. Nowhere does it define the decision process for solving the gray areas.

One could say that the tag was meaningless, but that would be wrong. For within the search engine marketing world "ethical" itself stands amongst the kings of marketing speak.

Continue the discussion on ethical search engine optimization at SearchGuild.

About

Mar 11th

The about page is the best page of every and any website you go to. It lets you know if it is a bunch of spineless corporate tirds running a site or a normal human.

I am neither...

Who Are You?
Aaron.

Could You Be More Specific
Yes.

What is Your Full Name?
Aaron Matthew Wall.

What is This Site?
A daily journal of SEO news and tips from a kid (sidebar: at least at heart a kid - old people suck) who is really interested in search.

Why Are You Interested in Search?
I am fascinated with the concept of helping people find their purpose in life. Giving people access to information does that. Search engines do that.

Do You Have Any Ulterior Motives?
Yes.

What Are They?
I would like to help sculpt social policy to increase the functionality of the world around me and the enjoyability (is that a word?) of life on Earth. For example, I would like to make available HONEST FEEDBACK about the effects of antidepressants.

Where Did You Come From?
Ask again later.

Are You Smart?
All indications say no.

What is With These Answers?
Ask Jeeves gave out a new magic Ask Jeeves Ball. I like to play. Its fun...

Is There Anything You Are Sure Of?
I have not used deoderant today (I am sure I say this most days.) I guess in a sense that means I am sure that I am not sure.

Yahoo! Content Acquision Program

Mar 4th
posted in

Recently Yahoo! announced its Content Acquisition Program. Search Engine Watch did a review of the changes.

Yahoo! is to increase the size of its search database through the use of more aggressive crawling, Site Match, and human editors looking to find ways to include portions of the hidden web.

Yahoo! recently rewrote much of the Inktomi core which will allow them to

  • better process 3 and 4 word querries

  • easily change the algorithm in the future
  • easily turn stemming on or off

AltaVista and AllTheWeb are now using the same indexes as Yahoo!, though they are still powered by their own algorithms.

When Yahoo! reviews a site for Site Match they store data that the page has been quality reviewed. These sites may receive a ranking boost for being reviewed. This move alone would make paid inclusion seem exceptionally biased. Yahoo! is offsetting this by randomly reviewing other sites in its index.

Many people are concerned as to how this website review boost will effect the purity of the index, but any bonus that may be given will not be too large or Yahoo! would earn a bad reputation and a bunch of negative press in a time period where they are trying to aggressively expand their distribution.

Yahoo! believes they can offset some of their additional charges by opperating more transparently with webmasters when issues related to search come up.

Cool People I saw at SES New York

Mar 4th

I enjoyed talking with Kevin Lee (of Did It) at lunch the first day. He is a real marketers marketer. It was great to listen to his love of paid inclusion and how it can squash untargeted affiliate marketing. He also seemed to like one of my blog ideas. His company also gave out rather large cookies...yum.

I went up and thanked Danny Sullivan (of SearchEngineWatch) for linking into my site toward the end of last year. He is a rather funny and one of the most approachable guys at the conference. I also got the free SEW t shirt :)

I sat next to Mike Grehan (who wrote one of the larger books on search engine technology) for a few sessions. He was rather mellow and interesting to talk to. I think there are few sources in the world with more info and less bs.

I met a reporter and one of the Overture reps at the Yahoo! party. I also ran into Andy Beal (of Search Engine Lowdown) there.

I also ate lunch is Greg Jarboe (of SEO-PR) and talked shop some with him. I am always interested in learning business models and techniques off of extremely successful business people. He (as a former editor) also came up with a good name for a doubious award I aim to create.

Greg also told me of the good old days when he paid for his Yahoo! Directory inclusion by sending them a pizza.

I ran into Anrew Goodman who said "in the flesh and blood" when I said who I was. Cool to see how many people know me by name.

I also met Debra Mastaler, Jill Whalen, Bryan Eisenberg, Eric Ward, Christine Churchill and a bunch of others...

Future of Search & Future of Search Engine Marketing

Mar 4th

Some good info about SEM, websites, and the future of search.

Nick Scevak of Jupiter Media recently showed a yummie pie graph which showed

  • 16% of businesses surveyed outsourced search engine marketing

  • 15% do not do search engine marketing
  • 69% do search engine marketing in house

This shows some amazing room for growth potential within the industry.
Nick also stated that his biggest fear with paid search is that we may have unrealistic expectations based on amazing performace and returns for early adoptors.

Cheryle Pingle of Range Online Media stated that a large portion of the current growth in search is due to the growth of the economy.

Michael Sack of Inceptor stated that of the term space the bulk of commerce comes from a few hundred thousand terms. He believes this year that large companies will begin to buy out markets to place them out of the reach of smaller businesses.

Geoff Ramsey of emarketer.com also had many yummie pie graphs. His graphs he showed at the SEMPO meeting showed that

  • from 2000 - 2003 the search marketing industry has increased about 10 fold

  • from 2002-2003 search engine marketing had a 145% year over year growth rate
  • 22% of US households have broadband
  • Yellow Pages currently make $14.3 billion annually, whereas paid search is currently only a 2.2 billion dollar industry.

Also at SEMPO Google announced that it is now supporting search engine marketing and sponsoring SEMPO as the rising complexity and competition in the industry is preventing many business owners from being able to functionally use the marketing systems.

Fredrick Marckini of iProspect quoted a stat from StatMarket which stated the average retail web site conversion rate is 1.8 - 2.0%

Greg Boser of WebGuerrilla also provided a few good link tips on the day. When buying links, 501 C organizations are a good place to look. He also stated that he has seen unlinked URLs in TXT files count as backlinks. Some other good link ideas offered by others include trade organizations, tools, and specialty directories.

Paid Ads vs Organic Search Results

Mar 2nd

Many people have asked what percentage of searches use ads vs non paid ads.

Total Search vs Commercial Search

Most search querries are not commercial in nature. To get an accurate indication of organic vs ad usage these non commercial searches are not counted. A recent Piper Jaffray report stated that 35% of search is commercial in nature.

Commercial Search Purchase Breakdown

Yesterday Niki Scevak of Jupiter Research stated yesterday that 5 out of 6 commercial search purchases originate from natural unpaid organic search results.

Overture Paid Inclusion
Yesterday at the SES New York conference Dan Boberg (of Overture) stated that Yahoo will be meshing its paid inclusion programs and branding them under the Overture name. He said we would be hearing more about it in the comming days and weeks.

Yesterday Overture also announced the release of Overture Site Match, which allows you to submit sites to Yahoo, AllTheWeb, and AltaVista for a $49 review fee and a category based cost per click of $0.15 or $0.30.

If your site already has great rankings for your primary keywords then there is absolutely no reason to join this program with your main pages.

Sloppy affiliate marketing has added tons of junk to search engine indexes. Overture (and Yahoo) firmly believe that using an incremental fee based inclusion program helps aid the relevance of their index. Affiliate marketing via search has essentially no cost. By introducing incremental cost to clicks, a search engine can improve the user experience. A site which is not properly targeted and smooth will not be hard to afford these fees.

Most affiliate marketers will not be able to afford these fees, and thus the index.

Got MILK Questions? Overture Site Match FAQs

Overture Daily Spending Limits

Starting in October, we're introducing "Budget smoothing", another new feature in which the Overture system makes adjustments to the frequency in which your listings are displayed based on the depletion of your specified budget amount. For example, if you have budgeted €100,00 a day, our system will display your listings just enough so that you receive clicks that will total approximately €100,00 for the day. The smoothing feature also regulates the display of your listings so that you receive clicks throughout the day, rather than burning through your budgeted amount in just a few hours.

From Overture Germany (not yet sure when the global rollout will occur. Will likely know soon...)

Overture Console Update
They now allow a daily spend budget, but I am told your account needs to be on autoreplenish to turn the feature on.
The new console shows what the ads will look like in their short and full versions and also makes some of the bid management stuff a bit quicker. You can update the max bid by category instead of doing it word by word. Overture's console is becoming a bunch more like Google's to where you can intuitively make many changes extremely quick. The additional combination of broad and phrase match makes the system quicker to use.

Pay Per...?
While still building their highly successful PPC model Overture also considers creating a flat rate pricing model.

Overture is also to place ads in RSS

Overture to Default to Broad Match Listings

Overture's new system will simply allow a choice between exact and broad matching. ...Overture advertisers were to be informed today about the change. ... An exact date for it hasn't been announced, but Overture says it will happen in the next few weeks.

Search Engine Watch has a good article explaining the new Overture broad match move. Basically the change makes gaining greater search volume easier, but more expensive.

time to go update my ebook, and about 20 pages of my websites...

Overture Search Optimizer

What is Overture Search Optimizer?

Search Optimizer users will be able to automate search campaigns based on those response metrics. It also lets marketers develop "watch lists" of keywords or campaigns and run campaigns only during certain times of the day. It will suggest potential keywords that could meet a marketer's business objectives. Marketers also can sort campaigns based on business objectives to see which are underperforming. source: DM News

Advantages of Overture Search Optimizer
Some of the advantages of the new tool are that it will allow you to:

  • Optimize campaigns based on business objectives such as cost-per-acquisition (CPA), cost per click (CPC), return on ad spend (ROAS) and others;

  • Automate keyword bidding based on performance-driven bid recommendations tied to their unique business objectives;
  • Sort campaigns by performance to quickly and intuitively determine which campaigns/keywords need additional optimization;
  • Manage thousands of keywords through features that allow them to develop "watch lists" of their most important campaigns or keywords, perform advanced searches of their performance data and quickly download large amounts of information to an outside application;
  • Define active time frames for their listings.

source: Press Release

Cost of Overture Search Optimizer
A tad bit on the expensive side... $249 - $1599, especially when compared with similar tools by companies like KeywordMax (thanks AussieWebmaster type guy).

iProspects Bid Management Tools
Jumping on the bid management press release bandwagon iProspect filed for a patent on their proprietary bid management tool.

SEO Softare = Eventual Commodity
Some of the advancements for bid management tools will command some value becuase they save money, but most of this software will eventually become a commodity though and I find the current prices to be absurdly high.

Google and third party bid management software vendors will continue to inovate and and lower costs. In about a year the competitive marketplace wil expect similar software to be included as part of the advertising system for free.

note: we merged a few short posts into this one.

Verizon SuperPages Pay Per Click Review

Many of the Yellow Pages type companies are learning that their content has value online.

On March the 1st SuperPages, Verizon's Internet Yellow Pages website, will launch a redesigned website which includes pay per click advertising. Duncan Parry previews the PPC product that will be on offer and asks James Palma, Directory of Strategy, how SuperPages aims to sell PPC advertising to local businesses. - from PayPerClickAnalysis.com article

  • Verison is planning on charging by category to help business save time.

  • The associated prices will weed out much of the advertising from the smaller unique competitors who are the ones that actually add the true value to the Verison SuperPages site.
  • A much better way to price it would be to sell as a hybrid. Offer the category listings, and also sell keyword listings in a Dutch auction. Assuming they could place the direct matches about their category listings, this would increase the quality of their product and allow them to sell more ad space.

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