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January 4, 2011

Is Your Business Still Chasing Google?

If you’re still chasing Google around trying to beat out their algorithm let me give you a little tip going into 2011, STOP!

Instead, here is a suggestion from Matt Cutts that he gave during his keynote address at Pubcon this year, “Don’t look at us where we are today, but look at the direction we are moving and what we are focusing on, the big five are the Mobile Web, Local Search, Social, Blended results in the SERPS and HTML5.”

The Mobile Web:

The mobile web refers to mobile applications or browser based access to the Internet from a handheld device, such as an iPad or a smartphone.

Morgan Stanley analysts have charted the most important online trends and they forecast that by 2015 the mobile web will be bigger than desktop Internet.

Local Search:

Today, there are over 10 billion unique searches done each month within the USA and over 40 percent of these searches have local intent!

We have also witnessed how much emphasis is placed on local search by Google on October 27th of this year when they changed the entire landscape of the search results.

1. More Emphasis on AdWords – Today Google showcases their Google map on the top right of their column, pushing down their paid ads a couple hundred pixels. In return, we have also seen that Google is showing MORE paid advertising in the middle column above the local listings.

2. More Competition for Local Advertising – In Google’s new listings they are showing reviews from their Google Places but also other third party websites like Yelp and Insider. As discussed by David Mihm during his recent presentation, “How Do You Rank a Phone Book,” Prominence is one of the three major factors in Google’s new Local algorithm.

3. Claim and Optimize your Google Places Page! – I cannot emphasis this enough. To be successful in the local landscape you MUST create trust with Google by first claiming your Google Places page(s). Then optimize them and focus on these two things:

a) Relevance
b) Prominence

4. Two Types of SEO – Some will argue that there are no longer two distinct algorithms for local search and traditional SEO. I disagree 100%! In my opinion, there are two distinct types of SEO that local businesses need to focus on in today’s new search to be successful:

a) Google Places SEO – the optimization of your Google Places and website which focuses on Relevance, Prominence and Distance.

b) Traditional SEO – that still focuses on website architecture, content, backlinks and social media.

Social Search:

I can easily sum up Social Search in one word – FACEBOOK!

With more than 500 million users Facebook has emerged as the dominate player in social media and as business owners and online marketers we need to understand how our potential customers are interacting with Facebook to identify the most efficient ways to communicate with them to build trust.

In case you missed last week’s article on Facebook SEO, we reviewed how you can strategize and implement your own Facebook Social media campaign.

Traditional Search Engines like Bing, Yahoo and even Google are now including social search into their algorithms and one new search engine called Blekko has harnessed the social landscape by screening out spammy websites using their user base and integrating social mentions by trusted users in the social network.

Blended Results:

Users want to have results that are relevant to them when they search for information, a product and/or service, and that is what Blended Results or Universal Search is all about.

David Bailey, one of the investors in Google’s patent on Universal search, gave us a behind the scenes view when he related on Google’s blog “If only we could smartly place such results elsewhere on the page when they don’t quite deserve the top, we could share the benefits of these great Google features with people much more often.”

So what is this Universal Search anyway?

Well here is a quick run through:

1. Someone conducts a search. Google first looks up the query in its database and then filters this through the filters based upon the searcher’s search history profile.

2. Additional results will then be included based upon the history of the user such as: has the searcher watched videos, read news articles, or used social media sites. And has anyone in the searcher’s social circle searched for these types of products/services before and what have they recommended.

3. The scoring history is then recalculated and the result is then given to the user.

So you maybe asking yourself right now, how can I be successful in this new blended results landscape.

Well here is a very simple SEO tip, don’t put all your eggs into one basket. Diversify your online marketing efforts by implementing social media, video and the publishing of news releases.


HTML5 is the next major revision of the HTML standard that is currently under development, adding many new syntax features such as elements and SVG content that has been developed to improve the inclusion and handling of multimedia and graphic content without the need for external plugins and/or APIs. In other words, if Apple didn’t knock Flash off its perch when Steve Job’s announced that they wouldn’t support the platform in their mobile devices, it will be certainly be dead when HTML5 comes around, so try not to use it in your future web development.

Roy Reyer is the president of SEO Training SW and the Search Engine Academy SW which provides online and in person search engine optimization training workshops. For more information visit

13 Responses to “Is Your Business Still Chasing Google?

    Hey this is great piece of information if only one would take the time to sit back, digest and put it to use. I will do my best.

    Thank you.

    Great heads up on Googles future direction. The focus on richer content and blended results will keep everyone on their toes!

    avatar Federico says:

    Yes I still reading about local bussiness searches, to understand it. But I’m in a Latinamerican counttry, in this kind of technology changes, come with big delays. That’s why I don’t see when or how to do local bussiness yet.

    Federico Planas

    Some interesting piece of information here. Thanks for sharing it with us and keep up the good work.

    I have been upgrading and doing SEO on my 2 sites
    Sites that in the past have been at the top of Google and have dropped drastically (from 1500 visitors to less than 500) in the past 2 years
    I greatly appreciate your article and will apply it to my list of SEO guidelines
    Thank you
    Jacques Laurent

    avatar Joe Ramirez says:

    For more information visit
    This link takes you to Pennsylvania (SEO) Sewage Enforcement Officer?????

    avatar Joel says:

    Ok, The information here is great…. BUT… The sewer site link is hilarious. SEO with no back flow. Love it. Get your business flowing right. Please keep this type of info coming. With the right links. No disrespect for the author intended.

    avatar Joy says:

    yeah now a days basic concept of seo has changed which was minimum effort and maximum output, now a days we spend more time on seo than other things

    Google local listing, creating profiles on local business sites and doing social media marketing in proper manner helps to get better ranking on google. Now local online visibility will make difference.

    avatar hyip monitor says:

    Astonishing article . Will definitely copy it to my blog.Thanks

    Wow! This article is fantastic, and I am glad that I found it again when reviewing through the archive. After Google+ launched, one can look back a bit and see that this article was not only ahead of its time, but also a great roadmap for the future as well. Thanks!

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