Lots has happened this month on the Web. Here are just a few things that
we are implementing, watching, and testing.
One of the biggest things to watch for the near future is the introduction
of general top level domains or gTLD's. The application process to get one
starts in January 2012 and may very well change URL's as we know them.
Another big thing we are watching is the Google +1 button. Google says that
they will use the aggregate results of click activity to impact organic placement,
so keep a very close eye on this one too if you are looking to improve your
organic search placement.
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Introducing the Google +1 Button
past month Google released access to the +1 Button. If
you have not added it to your website or blog yet, here's
a link to the code generator. If you don't know, Google has said
that +1 button votes will be used to raise your position
in organic results. Here's what Google specifically says
about that issue:
"Content recommended by friends and acquaintances is often more relevant
than content from strangers. For example, a movie review
from an expert is useful, but a movie review from a
friend who shares your tastes can be even better. Because
of this, +1's from friends
and contacts can be a useful signal to Google when
determining the relevance of your page to a user's
query. This is just one of many signals Google may
use to determine a page's relevance and ranking, and
we're constantly tweaking and improving our algorithm to improve overall
search quality. For +1's, as with any new ranking signal,
we'll be starting carefully and learning how those
signals affect search quality."
That's pretty big news! If you want to read
all the FAQ's here is a link to the help section on
now you have to sign up in Google Labs to have the
+1 results be shown in your own personal Google.com
search results. What is great is that you can +1 something right from
Google.com or if the website has the +1 button installed, you can
+1 it right from their website page.
We are encouraging all of our clients to get the +1 on their website
and blog. We've only run into one problem with installation. In only
one case it appears that there is an onLoad issue with other scripts
that are showing on the page, but that is just one website out of several
we've installed so far.
New gTLD's Are Coming in January 2012
Coming in January 2012 are new domain name endings, but don't
get excited too fast if you
don't have $185,000 for the
application fee. Yes, that is right, these new domain name endings
called gTLD or general top level domains are pricey but for the
right business a perfect solution.
A gTLD is a domain name ending that is a keyword. So for example
I might have mccordweb.webdesign with webdesign now being my domain
name ending instead of dot com. With Google stating that they are
preferentially treating keyword domain names preferentially in
the organic results (this may now cause a change in Google's algorithm)
a gTLD could be a real organic placement boon for a business.
However, the gTLD will be for the rich corporate client as the
application fee is $185,000 per domain name request and then a
hefty quarterly renewal of over $6,000. Wow, you've got to have
deep pockets to get into this game.
What does this mean for small to medium sized businesses. Well,
in the long run, I think that there will be some entrepreneurs
who will pick up the keyword dense gTLD and then resell subdirectory
domains on their domain name ending for way less than you would
pay yourself. So, in the long run you may be able to get a keyword
domain but as a shared domain with others in your industry.
This should be interesting to watch as it unfolds. The application
process starts in January 2012, so keep an eye out.
QR Codes and SEO
QR codes are a great way to interact with users of the mobile
web guiding them from print resources to your web links, but can
you use QR codes for SEO purposes? At this time my feeling is maybe
but most likely not in the way you thought.
If you generate your QR code
and then save the image to
your own server you are most
likely defeating any SEO benefits.
If you are using a generator
that saves your image on their
server and you just point to
the image there, there may
be some small benefit of link
juice you may capture or search
engine discovery, but not enough
in my mind, to warrant linking
to the image location off site.
If you are shrinking your link
and the link shrinking service
is saving the link URL and
history you may get a small
QR codes are images
and are read with an optical
device, so this means that Google cannot
spider nor read the images
and so putting QR codes on
your website will do nothing
for SEO purposes. Although
Google is not indexing QR codes,
it is embracing them.
how. Visit Google’s link
shrinker at http://goo.gl/.
Shrink your link, then paste
your link in your browser address
bar and add .qr at the end.
Go to the link and you will
see that Google has automatically
made a scannable QR code for
your link. Additionally if
you are logged into your Google
account when you shrink your
link, Google will keep a history
of your links as well as the
number of clicks recorded visiting
Although search engines can't
read QR codes, if you make
your codes with the URL shrinker
at Google, Google will keep
a history of the links and
may discover your pages on
its own, but will QR codes
improve your organic placement
like blogging content will,
no, but they are cool to use
for connecting with mobile
web users and definitely a
technology to use and keep
a careful eye on.