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2011 has been a busy year for Google. Faced with increasing criticism about the quality of its search results and the tactics publishers use in attempts to influence them, the world's most prominent and widely-used search engine has taken aggressive steps to crack down on paid links and content farms.
But Google's tweaks may go well beyond moves to reign in black and gray hat SEO tactics. In fact, it may be looking at core components of its algorithm altogether.
When Apple launched iAds, Steve Jobs said that the foray into advertising was about more than just exploiting an obvious opportunity. "We want to change the quality of the advertising," he said.
But while Apple's successes are generally pretty clear-cut, the verdict is still out on iAd. Some of the advertisers buying in early didn't like Apple's micromanagement of creative, there were delays and high minimums, and the return is still subject to debate.
More recently, questions were raised over Apple's ability to move iAd inventory, as some developers have reported low fill rates.
People like to talk about whether a site is good or bad. I prefer to consider whether it works or not. Some amazing looking sites fail to deliver; others that are pig-ugly perform magnificently.
Of course I am biased, but I firmly believe ‘sites that work have words that work’.
Turning lead into gold may be little more than a dream, but Apple seems to have mastered the alchemy of turning an iPad containing components reportedly worth a little more than $300 into gold.
With the release of the iPad 2, consumers lined up outside of Apple Stores waiting to get their hands on the company's newest tablet.
Not surprisingly given the lines, analysts see strong sales. Some are estimating that the company sold more than 1m iPad 2s in its debut weekend.
Everybody loves to be retweeted, unless they’ve completely messed up, but it’s worth noting that retweets aren’t created equally.
Speaking from the perspective of a publisher, we love it when our links are shared. But what I really look for is the buzz surrounding an article, rather than the sheer volume of retweets a post generates.
The background chatter is more important to me than counting up the retweets. The problem is, some retweets contain little or no additional information from the retweeter.
The rise of social media has been a boon for developers. Thanks to open platforms and APIs created by companies like Facebook and Twitter, developers have been able to help grow, and at the same time piggyback on, the success of some of the internet's most popular online properties.
But is the marriage between these properties and developers destined to come to a messy end?
Recently, Google has stepped up its effort to improve the quality of its SERPs. But despite its effort, which seems as concerted as it is genuine, one thing is clear: there's only so much that can be done.
Google can't uncover every paid link, and even after cracking down on content farms, there are those who think it hasn't done enough.
Social media is increasingly changing the way individuals discover and consume the news. From Facebook to Twitter, some find that following what their friends and colleagues are liking and tweeting is more than enough to stay informed.
Professional social network LinkedIn has in many ways largely been absent from this shift in news discovery and consumption. But that changed yesterday when the soon-to-be publicly traded company launched LinkedIn Today.
Netflix is fast becoming the king of digital movies, and is one of Hollywood's biggest frenemies. But even though Netflix would appear to be sitting pretty, it may have some stiff competition soon.
The source: Facebook.
It’s been long established in marketing research circles that the more choices you give a consumer, the less likely he or she is to decide on one.
Sheena Iyengar, a professor at Columbia Business School and author of The Art of Choosing, addressed a roomful of marketers at BRITE ‘11 about how to navigate the problem. Her work has implications for selling anything online or offline.
Your web visitors come to your site to find out more about what you do. They’re looking for someone to help them. If you’re like most companies, you are willing to invest large sums in the design and build of your website but much less in web copy to make it whistle and whirr.
Writing compelling web copy is a hugely undervalued skill. Too many companies think that being able to write is all that’s required. But even people who write well for the paper page can come unstuck with website copy.
Only a very small minority of writers have a good understanding of the digital mindset.
A few weeks ago I released a mini eBook about link building for SEO titled “Becoming a Clockwork Pirate.” Although I put my heart, soul and everything I know about link building into the 30,000 word digital mini-book, that’s not what made the book most interesting.
What made it unusual was the approach I took in ‘monetising’ it.