We only scratch the surface of the search engines when it comes to news on our blog here at iePlexus, and I think we need to devote a little more time to such a broad and important subject. From here on out, I’m instituting a weekly search news recap, a place where we can review and discuss the most recent developments in search engines, ranking, optimization, and technology. Although we don’t directly provide search engine optimization here at iePlexus, it’s vital to consider the engines in any online marketing campaign, and news relating to that subject is just as significant. Also, with any social media advertising or web 2.0 marketing campaign, greater exposure in the search engines is often a byproduct of effective work, so it makes perfect sense to be stay informed. I’ve always been an advocate of a comprehensive, all-inclusive approach to internet marketing, so despite the additional work, I’m just going to have to create a new blog category and start sifting through the archives for relevant posts. Sympathy is definitely appreciated.
InLinks Walks The Line
MediaWhiz, an advertising firm based out of New York, recently launched a new product called InLinks. Here’s how it works: Advertisers looking to rank higher for a specific keyword phrase buy ads for that phrase from InLinks. Publishers of blogs or websites then install a plugin on their site, and every time they publish content with that certain keyword phrase, the application automatically links the phrase to the advertisers url. These aren’t ghost links or nofollows, but 100% juiced anchor text links, meant to boost ranking in engines. So what’s the problem you ask? Google, and Matt Cutts specifically, have denounced paid text links, saying “Google has been very clear that selling such links that pass PageRank is a violation of our quality guidelines.” It remains to be seen if there’s any way to detect these links and what will happen with InLinks, but for now there’s a big buzz about it at SEOMoz, WebProNews, and TechCrunch.
Google SearchWiki Launches
If you have a Google account, you may have noticed some new icons next to the individual results in the SERPs (search engine results pages) when performing a keyword search while you’re logged in. These are part of Google’s newest pet project, SearchWiki. Essentially, this addition allows those with a Google Account to edit and comment on the results for keyword searches, customizing the rankings to their liking. You can remove results, promote results, and comment on results, with the option to make your edits public. All the info is stored in your Google account. Although Google has stated this will not effect the results for typical searches, in the future this kind of feedback could provide a basis for a new component of the ranking algorithm. SearchWiki has debuted with some harsh criticism, but it sure is nice to rank iePlexus.com #1 under “blogs“, even if I am the only one who sees it.
The Future of Search
I’ve talked before about my strong feelings in regards to the direction of search. We’re seeing a swift transition in the search engines, especially Google, towards customized, user-specific results. These could be based on locality, search history, web history, or an unlimited number of other factors that are available for analysis. Fact is, search engines will continue to stay in the game by providing these kinds of results and refining search in the years to come. This idea includes the concepts of Web 3.0, the Semantic Web, and artificial intelligence, all contributing to a rich, intuitive search experience tailored toward the end user. When you type in “orange”, the engines will determine whether you meant the color, the fruit, the amp or the European telecom. In one of his recent speaking engagements, Bruce Clay talks further about this revolution in search, and how the industry could be in for a big change.