Sep 28

China Watch Blog has learnt that Google has quietly retooled the closely guarded formula running its internet search engine to give better answers to complex questions posed by Web surfers.

The overhaul came as part of an update called “Hummingbird” that Google has gradually rolled out in the past month without disclosing the modifications, AP reports.

The changes could have a major impact on traffic to websites. Hummingbird represents the most dramatic alteration to Google’s search engine since it revised the way it indexes websites three years ago as part of a redesign called “Caffeine,” according to Amit Singhal, a senior vice president.

He estimates that the redesign will affect the analysis of about 90 percent of the search requests that Google gets.

Any reshuffling of Google’s search rankings can have sweeping ramifications because they steer so much of the internet’s traffic. Google fields about two of out every three search requests in the US and handles an even larger volume in some parts of Europe.

The changes could also drive up the price of Google ads tied to search requests if websites whose rankings are demoted under the new system feel they have to buy the marketing messages to attract traffic.

The search ads and other commercial pitches related to Web content account for most of Google’s revenue, which is expected to approach US$60 billion this year.

Google disclosed the existence of the new search formula Thursday at an event held in the Menlo Park, California, garage where chief executive Larry Page and fellow co-founder Sergey Brin started the company 15 years ago.

Google celebrates its birthday on September 27 each year, even though the company was incorporated a few weeks earlier.
Google’s renovations to its search engine haven’t triggered widespread complaints from other websites yet, suggesting that the revisions haven’t resulted in a radical reshuffling in how websites rank in the recommendations.

Hummingbird is primarily aimed at giving Google’s search engine a better grasp at understanding concepts instead of mere words, Singhal said.

The change needed to be done, Singhal said, because people have become so reliant on Google that they now routinely enter lengthy questions into the search box instead of just a few words related to specific topics.

Besides Hummingbird, Google also announced a few other updates to existing search features aimed at providing information more concisely so people won’t need to navigate to another website. These changes are part of Google’s effort to adapt to the smaller screens of smartphones that aren’t well suited for hopscotching across the internet.

The additions primarily affect Google’s “Knowledge Graph,” an encyclopedia-like box that increasingly appears at the top or alongside the search results, and Google Now, a virtual assistant that tailors key information suited to each user’s habits, interest and location.

Besides providing informational snapshots of famous people and landmarks, the Knowledge Graph is now capable of comparing the attributes of two different things, such as olive oil and coconut oil. It will also be possible to ask the Knowledge Graph to sort through certain types of information, such as the creative evolution of various artists.

An upcoming update to Google’s search application for devices running Apple’s mobile operating system will ensure notifications about personal appointments and errand reminders are also delivered on a smartphones or tablets running on Google’s competing Android software. Google Now also will start flagging new developments and information about famous people that have previously piqued a user’s interest.

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Dec 07

China Watch Blog came across this blog – blogkori.com – and found this writers 7 Blog SEO Tips to Gain Bulletproof Search Rankings is the last item when one searches for SEO tips at google search.

But your truly thinks this writer is good and is worth reading, especially his comments on SEO being a new marketing tool.

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Nov 17

China Watch Blog brings to you a report from CNN which exposes how the tangled David Petraeus scandal highlights how easily the U.S. government can access citizens’ private e-mails.

CNN said the FBI’s request to access Paula Broadwell’s personal Gmail account was one of 7,969 similar requests Google received from the U.S. government in the first half of 2012, according to Google and news reports. The company said it complied with the requests, either fully or partially, 90% of the time.

According to the latest Google Transparency report, Google fielded 20,938 requests for private account data from governments around the world between January and June of this year. That’s up from 18,257 such requests during the last half of 2011, the company said.

“One trend has become clear: Government surveillance is on the rise,” Dorothy Chou, a Google senior policy analyst, writes in the blog post announcing the latest report — the sixth Google has released in the last three years.

Google stores huge amounts of data and personal information about its users. In addition to the wealth of information in e-mail and Google Drive accounts, the company also has users’ IP addresses, which can be used to determine locations.

Beginning in May of this year, the FBI accessed Gmail accounts used by Broadwell to communicate with Petraeus, the former CIA director, during their affair, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.

The bi-annual Google Transparency report is Google’s attempt to “shine a light” on how often governments around the world ask to access user data as part of criminal investigations.

The company also publishes data on how often government agencies request that public content be removed from Google services, such as YouTube videos or blog posts on Blogger. The most common reason cited for wanting content taken down is defamation.

U.S. law enforcement agencies seem to be the most curious. The country continues to top the list for the most requests for user data in the world, followed at a distance by India. While Google is admirably proactive about releasing data on government requests, in the majority of cases it does turn over the requested information. The company said it cooperates with U.S. government requests more than any other country.

Outdated laws have created loopholes that allow government and law enforcement agencies to request information and conduct electronic surveillance without warrants. The piece of legislation at the heart of the issue is the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, passed in 1986.

Technology has changed radically in the past 25 years. E-mails, cellphones, location information and data stored on cloud services weren’t considered when the original law was drafted.

Google is an active member of the Digital Due Process Coalition, which has been pushing for reform of the ECPA. The group’s members include Apple, Amazon, the ACLU, Facebook, Google and Twitter along with a slew of other big-name tech companies and civil liberties groups. Other technology companies, including Twitter and LinkedIn, are joining Google and releasing their own transparency reports.

The United States Justice department is against any updates to the law that would require more warrants.

Revising the ECPA wouldn’t prohibit the government and law enforcement agencies from requesting the information, it would just require they go through an approval process to get the warrants. In a bit of circular logic, the Justice Department has argued that the electronic evidence gathered without warrants is necessary to build enough of a case to later get search warrants.

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Jul 31

China Watch Blog regularly gets emails from so-called SEO managers who are marketing their services, and some of these emails makes yours truly really laugh.

Many of Search Engine Optimisation experts have their own websites, which are ranked miserably by Alexa.com, running into the millions, and they want to help China Watch Blog, which is ranked (89,567 by Alexa.com as we write this blog).

Oh yes, I am sure they could help us improve our website ranking further, but shouldn’t these SEO experts be putting their house in order first before trying to help others to organise their households.

But anyhow, from time to time, the tips by some of these SEO experts can be very helpful.

According to David Leonhardt, 10 of the top 52 tips on how to optimize your website for its turbo-charge rocket ride up the search engine rankingsl are:

Be bold. Use the tags around some of your keywords on each page. Do NOT use them everywhere the keyword appears. Once or twice is plenty.

Deep linking. Make sure you have links coming in to as many pages as possible. What does it tell a search engine when other web sites are linking to different pages on your site? That you obviously have lots of worthwhile content. What does it tell a search engine that all your links are coming in to the home page? That you have a shallow site of little value, or that your links were generated by automation rather than by the value of your site.

Become a foreigner. Canada and the UK have many directories for websites of companies based in those countries. Can you get a business address in one of those countries?

Social bookmarking. Make it easy for your visitors to social bookmark your website, creating important links that the search engines value. There are plenty of free social bookmarking widgets available.

Newsletters. Offer articles to ezine publishers that archive their ezines. The links stay live often for many years in their archives.

First come, first served. If you must have image links in your navigation bar, include also text links. However, make sure the text links show up first in the source code, because search engine robots will follow the first link they find to any particular page. They won’t follow additional links to the same page. You can see this in action at the link to the home page on this web site monitoring page

Multiple domains. If you have several topics that could each support their own website, it might be worth having multiple domains. Why? First, search engines usually list only one page per domain for any given search, and you might warrant two. Second, directories usually accept only home pages, so you can get more directory listings this way. Why not a site dedicated to gumbo pudding pops?

Article exchanges. You’ve heard of link exchanges, useless as they generally are. Article exchanges are like link exchanges, only much more useful. You publish someone else’s article on the history of pudding pops with a link back to their site. They publish your article on the top ten pudding pop flavors in Viet Nam, with a link back to your site. You both have content. You both get high quality links. (More on high quality links in other tips.)

Titles for links. Links can get titles, too. Not only does this help visually impaired surfers know where you are sending them, but some search engines figure this into their relevancy for a page.

Not anchor text. Don’t overdo the anchor text. You don’t want all your inbound links looking the same, because that looks like automation – something Google frowns upon. Use your URL sometimes, your company name other times, “Gumbo Pudding Pop” occasionally, “Get gumbo pudding pops” as well, “Gumbo-flavored pudding pops” some other times, etc.

Site map. A big site needs a site map, which should be linked to from every page on the site. This will help the search engine robots find every page with just two clicks. A small site needs a site map, too. It’s called the navigation bar. See how the second navigation bar at the bottom of Last Minute Florida Villas is like a mini-site map?

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Apr 05

China Watch Blog wishes to announce to readers that its ranking at Alexa.com today is 90,446 in the top 100,000 websites ranking out of the 30 million websites it ranks around the world.

China Watch Blog wishes all readers and visitors a Happy Easter and hope they can find something nice to read when they visit our website.

Blogging is not easy, and it is highly competitive to keep readers coming back for more.

Please tell your friends about us as we are here to provide the highest level of service that blogging can offer.

Our website offers good advertising opportunities, and we also welcome serious sponsorships.

Times are hard and we are having difficulty in continuing this service. Kindly go to our home page and donate generously. You will see a cup of coffee, click on it and follow the instructions.

Thank you for your support in advance.

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Apr 05

China Watch Blog wishes to inform readers of the benefits of doing Search Engine Optimization (SEO)?

By doing so, you can get millions of impressions and thereafter clicks, for FREE!

You also don’t have to engage in a bidding war with your competitors; and,

Finally, SEO enhances your brand value in the long run.

According to iClick Media, which offers Search Engine Optimization (SEO) services, SEO are customised so that you can meet your company’s marketing objectives and goals. Basically, SEO providers apply the most effective and ethical SEO techniques to ensure their client’s website is ranked highly.

What will be checked during the Website Audit?

- Title Tag

- Meta Description Tag

- Language Meta Tag

- Heading Tags

- ALT Attributes

- 301 ReDirects

- URL Formats

- Etc

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Feb 29

China Watch Blog has learnt that whether or not you have a brick and mortar presence, your company’s website serves as your online storefront, giving potential customers an opportunity to learn about your company, products and services.

Search Engine Optimization is the strategy that leads new customers to your business by helping your site appear higher in the rankings.

Hiring a Search Engine Optimization company is the best way to make sure your site is found by the clients you want. National Positions (www.nationalpositions.com) claims to be the top SEO company in the industry with the results to prove it! Anyhow it is ranked 73,376 by Alexa.com compared with GCTL8.com/blog’s 104,716 ranking and therefore should be ok. Check it out.

Why is Search Engine Optimization crucial to your long-term success? Consider these stats:

97% of consumers research online before purchasing and are impacted by an SEO company’s work
92% of potential clients contact a company immediately after searching
Search Engine Optimization and Internet marketing offers better leads, with the smallest cost-per-lead
Internet marketing drives $6 of in-store sales for every $1 online
92% of Internet users have researched a product or service online
and then purchased offline from a local company at least once

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Nov 23

China Watch Blog has learnt that Online marketing and small business experts, Ajax Union, best known for helping small businesses increase their web presence via online marketing, are giving companies a huge boost to not only keep them viable but make them successful in the lagging US economy.

To help companies stand out from the crowd they are devoting November 26, calling it Small Business Saturday, to helping small businesses increase sales and take full advantage of one of the busiest shopping weekends of the year.

Ajax Union, founded by Joe Apfelbaum and Zevi Friedman, is proof that companies can thrive in a down economy. One of the few businesses actually hiring these days. They provide companies with methods for increasing their web presence and brand marketing. Their success record is undeniable. They have helped troubled companies not just survive but actually thrive in our current poor economy.

Joe Apfelbaum and Zevi Friedman, co-founders of Ajax, were recently featured on FOX News, discussing how small businesses can benefit from targeted online marketing and advertising. In fact, they are offering their proven, effective advice to small business owners on November 26, as a way to help them increase their web traffic and take full advantage of one of the busiest weekends of the year.

This dynamic duo’s expertise includes methods for effectively increasing and utilizing Search Engine Anatomy, Search Engine Optimization Basics (SEO), and Google Places Listing and Optimization.

Ajax Union is a Brooklyn, New York-based search engine agency offering a diverse array of services created to suit the needs of small businesses. Since 2007, they have been serving their clients with an effective blend of industry-tested internet advertising services, plus a little something extra.

The result has been a unique search engine marketing strategy for every campaign – no nonsense, no budget-breaking expenses, and no work that you can only assume is getting done.

Ajax Union presents a better business marketing model that offers 100% transparency, 100% flexibility and zero contracts. In other words, a better kind of online marketing designed for small businesses.

Their approach is simple – they become experts in each business. They study the company, the industry, the goals and the competition and if any of those factors change, they adjust each campaign to match. This approach has enabled them to realize measurable results in improved search engine rankings, greater traffic to websites, and targeted social networking to connect each business to its key demographics.

Joe Apfelbaum and Zevi Friedman are the co-founders, and CEO and President respectively of Ajax Union. They possess years of experience in online marketing and by combining their entrepreneurial talents and hands-on approach with those of their hand-picked team, they are able to develop innovative business strategies that are tailored to the individual needs of their small and medium-sized business clients, ensuring them of maximum success online.

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Sep 06

China Watch Blog has picked up a white paper by Software-as-a-Service marketing technology provider, Hydra which warns digital marketing channel specialists, who continue to work in silos, that they are taking a risky approach.

Titled “Natural Search Specialist, should Paid Search matter to you?”, the white paper highlights why it is in the natural search specialist’s best interest – be they in-house or agency-based, to plan and execute campaigns with other disciplines in mind, as opposed to working in isolation.

“Today, it is simply unacceptable for Natural Search specialists to plan budget optimisation without considering Paid Search”, says Ruth Zohrer, solutions consultant at Hydra. “If Natural Search specialists want to be successful in improving returns, it is imperative they move away from looking at Natural Search metrics alone and start looking at the big picture.”

The white paper focuses on five key points from keyword research, competitor benchmarking to budget optimisation, two of which include:

Omitting to consider the Paid Search competitor landscape in natural search competitor analysis is a mistake

Few channels are driven by competitor activity as much as Natural Search*. A competitor’s overhaul of their pages or back-link profile can lead to dramatic changes in the composition of search engine results pages (SERPs) and cause movements up or down the web rankings for other sites.

Hence competitor research is an integral part to successful Natural Search campaign management. By regularly monitoring competitors, Natural Search specialists assess the success of their strategies, identify new methods and benchmark performance fluctuations.

Few Natural Search specialists, however, consider the Paid Search** competitor landscape in their Natural Search competitor analysis and therefore only get a fraction of the overall picture that they must consider. Zohrer points out strong brands are increasingly running campaigns on both channels, and historically, most brands have used Paid Search to substitute for Natural Search performance when not in the Top 10 SERPs.

“Natural Search specialists should supplement their competitor list with cross-channel key performance indicators (KPIs) to identify true leaders in their industry, as well as uncover weaknesses of vulnerable competitors,” says Zohrer. “This information is particularly useful in choosing which battles to fight: if a site is considerably difficult to outperform in Natural Search, resources could be allocated to another keyword instead of wasting them in pursuing a rank that is not realistic.”

In Natural Search, sudden drops in performance can often be puzzling. Are competitors boosting their pages to outperform rival sites? Or might this drop in performance have resulted from recent changes implemented? Has the search engine released another update to the algorithm? Is this caused by other issues like industry-wide trends? Without the appropriate frame of reference, Natural Search specialists can spend a lot of time trying to answer the unknown. In worst case scenarios, misleading evidence can result in corrective measures that worsen performance further, another aspect the white paper raises for adding Paid Search into the equation.

Natural Search specialists should make the evaluation of both Natural and Paid Search data a permanent habit when evaluating performance

Natural Search specialists should take a step back and analyse Natural Search performance in conjunction with Paid Search performance. According to Hydra’s Zohrer, this will help pinpoint if any sudden drops might be a channel-specific issue or a wider phenomenon affecting performance such as seasonal variations or industry-wide trends. Additionally, since search is experienced as one channel by users (Natural Search + Paid Search), a sharp performance improvement in Paid Search paired to a sharp decrease in Natural Search performance may also hint at potential strategy cannibalisation between channels.

“None of the above alternatives can be properly considered without incorporating Paid Search into the analysis, which is why Natural Search specialists should make the evaluation of both Natural and Paid Search data a permanent habit when evaluating performance.”

Hydra undertook a survey*** of over 300 UK-based digital marketers focussing on how digital marketing teams currently operate, based on collaboration, use of technologies and competitor analysis. A resounding 90% said they would see an advantage in using a common reporting and campaign implementation platform, indicative of an innate need for greater collaboration between these disciplines within digital marketing teams. The survey also highlighted that those firms with multiple digital marketing disciplines whose teams interacted regularly, displayed greater confidence in their success.

The One platform from Hydra aims to encourage this positive cross-pollination of ideas between the two disciplines by allowing Natural Search specialists to easily, efficiently and accurately derive insights from Paid Search campaigns. Its live data reports uncover the most important search terms and trends – from the largest keyword opportunities to the top performing companies across multiple sectors in Natural and Paid Search.

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Aug 24

China Watch Blog has learnt that many readers had difficulty in accessing our RSS feed, if so, kindly try again by going to:

http://www.gctl8.com/blog/feed/

Any inconvenience is highly regretted.

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