Verified YouTube Users Can Now Upload Beyond 15 Minutes

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YouTube logoToday, I am offline, so no video recap from me today. I scheduled this post in advanced, so people have something to read and yes, it is on the topic of YouTube.

A YouTube Help thread has David from YouTube announcing verified users can now upload videos that are longer than 15 minutes in length.

He said:

I am excited to announce that we are opening up longer length uploads to all verified users worldwide. To be eligible to verify your account, you must have no Copyright or Community Guidelines strikes, as well as no global Content ID blocks on any of your videos.

So verified and you can’t have any strikes against your account.

If you comply, click on the increase your limit link in the YouTube uploader page.

YouTube uploader page

Exactly how much longer than 15 minutes, I am not sure.

Forum discussion at YouTube Help.

Note: This story was written earlier this week and scheduled to be published today.


September 30th 2011 Uncategorized

Paid Search Conversion by Position

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It’s been a little over a month since Google added the {adposition} parameter to its ValueTrack capabilities and we were quick to implement it in order to see what insights we could gain from the ability to see the specific position of all individual ad clicks.
Position data available previously was far less granular — about the best you could easily do was see the daily average position for each keyword in your program.  This view is still valuable, but it masks the variability in position an ad might see in any given day due to a number of factors including: broad matching, day-parting, quality score calculation at auction and other SERP personalization.


September 30th 2011 Uncategorized

Google Keeps Images You Upload To Google Search By Image

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Google Search by ImageGoogle’s search by image feature is pretty cool, even though sometimes it confuses me with a porn star.

A user asked in a Google Web Search Help thread, what does Google do with the images you upload to the search by image feature?

What if you are uploading private photos just to make sure those images are not on the internet. What does Google do with those images?

The FAQs say, “When you use Search by Image, any images that you upload and any URLs that you submit will be stored by Google and treated in accordance with our Privacy Policy. Google uses those images and URLs solely to provide and improve our products and services.”

Kelly from Google answered this question in a bit more detail in the forums, saying:

When a user uploads an image or provides an image URL to search by image, we treat that image as the userâs query and will log a thumbnail sized version of it. The reason for this is that our recognition engines are trained using a large corpus of real world images. We also retain image queries for the same reasons we retain text queries: to fight spam, improve the relevance of search results, etc.

Like text queries, your image queries are not public.

Third-party vendors cannot access this data. As mentioned before, the thumbnails are fed into a larger pool of images that help us improve the quality of this feature.

So you’d have to assume the images are stored for as long as they store their log files, which is “anonymizing IP addresses after 9 months and cookies in our search engine logs after 18 months.” But there is nothing specific if those images are ever deleted.

Forum discussion at Google Web Search Help.


September 30th 2011 Uncategorized

Some Worry & Some Don’t – Go Figure

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link spam poll worryEarlier this month, we polled our readers asking how worried are you about link spammers.

The response was pretty across the board, some are worries, some are not – isn’t that just how people are?

When I asked “Do You Worry About People Link Spamming You?” the responses we received include:

  • 38% said no, not worried
  • 35% said yes, worried
  • 26% said they are a little bit worried

Personally, I am a worrier but I am not worried about link spammers hurting my sites.

Forum discussion continued at Google Webmaster Help.

Note: This story was written earlier this week and scheduled to be published today.


September 30th 2011 Uncategorized

Are Search Query Defined Dynamic Headlines Allowed?

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dynamic headlinesThere is an excellent thread at HighRankings Forum asking if it would be acceptable to change the page’s headline based off the search query the user came from via the search engine.

For example, someone goes to Google, searches for [big blue widget] and clicks on your page. The page title by default reads, “Blue Widget” but in this case, the headline would dynamically change to “Big Blue Widget” because that is what the searcher search for.

Is that acceptable?

We covered a similar topic back in 2005 about highlighting search queries based on referrer data in the document. But what about changing the actual text on the page based off of it.

I think this might be a bit in the gray area. I mean, technically, what you would be serving GoogleBot would be different from what you are serving the searcher – slightly different.

Michael Martinez responded that this wouldn’t be a high risk issue, he said, “In my opinion, as you propose it is probably not a high-risk practice but you’ll only know for sure when you try it.”

Anyway, I am not sure how Google would react to this, so if you have done this and have experience with it, do share.

Forum discussion at HighRankings Forums.

Note: This story was written earlier this week and scheduled to be published today.

Image from iQoncept/Shutterstock.


September 30th 2011 Uncategorized

5 Cheat Sheet Basics for International SEO

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International SEO 5 TipsThe growing Global Economy has significantly increased the number of companies seeking search marketing strategies to connect with target audiences all over the world. Many clients we work with at TopRank Online Marketing are either already global organizations or aspiring to deliver products and services in different countries. As a result, we routinely field questions as clients begin their journey into International Search.

Many companies don’t know where to start with International SEO, so here are 5 basic and tactical SEO considerations for companies looking at expanding into International Search:

1. Domain Name
3 common domain setups include Country-specific, Subdomain and Subfolder.

Whenever possible, a country-specific domain name is preferred. i.e. companyname.co.uk

Pros
The country-specific domain is a strong signal to the search engine and may provide better visibility for country-specific searches.

In addition, this domain typically provides better usability for the searcher as it’s the familiar and more common domain structure.

Cons
For some countries, registering a country-specific domain requires a physical address. If you are launching international ventures without a country-specific address this type of url may prove difficult or impossible to attain.

In addition, with a new domain, time and resources for marketing a new website (think content, links etc) will be required.

Subdomain (i.e.uk.companyname.com)

Pros
If a country-specific url is not an option, a subdomain is likely the next best solution.

The pros for this type of url structure include:

  • Easy to implement
  • Can be hosted separately, in native country
  • Can create a different sitemap for each country folder
  • Ability to set geotargeting in Google webmaster tools

Cons
The downside to this approach is the URL will still require country-specific promotion/links and will not have the added credibility of the country-specific domain.

Subfolder (i.e. www.companyname.com/uk)

Pros
The pros of a subfolder are that it’s easy to implement and you still have the ability to set geo-targeting in Google Webmaster tools.

Cons
As with the subdomain, this type of URL structure provides no country-specific SEO value. In addition, a subfolder set up can potentially create duplicate content issues if the content is similar across multiple countries/subfolders.

Also, a subfolder is typically an indication of content subordinate to the top-level domain, which isn’t in line with creating a unique website for a different market.

2. Where the site is hosted
Where the site is hosted is an important factor and one of the hundreds of items the search engines take into account when returning search results. Whenever possible, the site should be hosted in the target country. This is especially important if your site uses a generic Top Level Domain (TLD) like .com .net .org. In that situation, a search engine like Google will use the location of the hosting server to determine location for the site.

If you use a country specific TLD, then that will be the primary signal for your site’s location and hosting in the specified country is not as important.

3. Addresses Published on the Site
In fleshing out the on-page company information, be mindful to lead with the contact information for the target country, even if the company headquarters might be elsewhere. This is good user experience as much as it’s good for search engines. The content of the website should be explicitly clear for the geographic target audience and that means displaying location information. Think of it as good keyword optimization. If you want your UK based company to rank well in google.co.uk for geographically specific phrases, then those phrases should appear in the site’s content, internal and external links.

4. Localize and Optimize Content
As with any other search engine optimization endeavor, content and the optimization of that content is key. Best practices will hold true and include:

  • Creation of unique content for the site that is not only translated, but optimized after translation
  • Content presented in the native language of the country – Optimized English that is then translated to another language does NOT result in content properly optimized for that language
  • Optimization of content for popular keywords, according to country-specific keyword results

Whenever possible, have native speakers review (if not, write) content for the site. International SEO isn’t simply a matter of publishing a site translated into a different language. There are a host of localization issues to be addressed. There are intricacies and interpretations with any language and the content on your existing site may not translate well.

5. Inbound Links
In creating a marketing plan for the site, be sure to include content creation that will be useful to the target audience, easily shared and ultimately be something people want to link to.

Building authority for the site will be critical and plans should include the acquisition of links from country-specific and native-language sites.

Creating a website which will produce results in country-specific search takes the same planning and coordination that’s likely being invested to achieve results from Google (US) search.  Keeping the target audience in mind and delivering a site customized for the visitor is the first step to International visibility. And don’t forget, Google isn’t King everywhere – so be sure to research how/where visitors search online in each specific country.

 


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September 30th 2011 Online Marketing, SEO

Spring Cleaning Room By Room: The Bathroom

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We’ve got more bathrooms than ever, which means even more places to accumulate junk. To round out our room by room spring cleaning guides, here’s some thoughts on bathroom clutter. (more…)

September 30th 2011 Uncategorized

Yahoo’s Future – Hope Not

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IMG_4164


September 30th 2011 Uncategorized

We’ve Gone Nuts For Shopping On Our Mobiles

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There was once a time when people were nervous about shopping via their mobile phones, but it seems those days are well and truly over. PayPal Australia alone is processing more than 1,000 mobile transactions an hour. (more…)

September 30th 2011 Uncategorized

How To Fix Your Post-Grand-Final Hangover

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Whether your favoured team suffers an epic victory or a shameful defeat, large amounts of drinking often follow the grand final. Ensure you’re vaguely functional come Saturday and Sunday morning with our hangover minimisation tips. (more…)

September 30th 2011 Uncategorized