Google Chairman’s Predictions Hint at AuthorRank

Excerpts from an upcoming book by Google Chairman Eric Schmidt were published by The Wall Street Journal last week. In the article, Schmidt laid out his seven predictions for the future of the digital age, but for marketers one sentence stood out from the rest:

“Within search results, information tied to verified online profiles will be ranked higher than content without such verification, which will result in more users naturally clicking on the top (verified) results.”

To many, this seemed less like a prediction and more like a veiled confirmation of what marketers had long suspected: AuthorRank is coming.

Great AuthorRank graphic by Mode Digital.

Great AuthorRank graphic by Mode Digital

The AuthorRank saga began in 2005 when Google filed a patent for something called “Agent Rank.” The document described how the search engine could use a number of metrics to determine an “agent’s” position within a subject area. By outlining a way to consider an agent’s popularity and authority within a given subject area, marketers inferred that Google was looking to supplement the cold statistics of search with human factors.

Traditionally, Google had not had access to enough data to warrant using social interactions as a direct ranking factor. The company found a way to solve this problem in 2011 with the introduction of Google+. With its social network providing access to a trove of qualitative data, the logical next step was to incorporate it into search. Thus, AuthorRank became a reality.

Simply put, the goal of AuthorRank is to determine the credibility and popularity of an individual and the content they publish. Many factors that will likely have an impact on AuthorRank are old-hat for SEOs, such as: the number of followers on social networks and the frequency of shares, as well as the number of links, Likes, tweets, etc. The difference, however, is that Author Rank ties these metrics to the individual who publishes the content – not the website that hosts it.

This change has huge implications in the SEO world, but the first step for anyone marketing online is to claim authorship of their content. Any content a marketer has created should be tied to a verified Google+ profile. This means an author’s Google+ profile must have a link to the pages that host their content, and vice versa. Once this is done, the long climb to dominant Author Rank begins.

Everyone in the SEO industry is anxiously awaiting Google’s Panda Update 25. It is not yet known if this specific update will further the push from Page Rank to AuthorRank, but Google is clearly headed in that direction. The web strategists at The Search Engine Guys have been preparing for the move to AuthorRank for some time. If you have questions about SEO, AuthorRank, and how to prepare your website, please contact us today.

Google to overtake Facebook in Display Advertising

According to research firm eMarketer, Google is likely to exceed Facebook in selling online display ads in the United States.  Google is expected to have a 15.4% share of the U.S. market. eMarketer said  Google is projected to make $2.31 billion in revenue from online display ads. These are more profitable than the text-based ads that appear next to search results and account for the bulk of Google’s revenue.

This lead in online display ad marks a historic day for Google. This is the first time ever that it will be the leader in three different modes of online advertising: display ads, web-search ads, and mobile ads.

eMarketer calculates that Facebook will hold 14.4% of the market this year with $2.16 billion in U.S. revenue. Back in February, eMarketer predicted that Facebook would be on top with 16.8% of the market and Google with 16.5%.



(Graph from The Wall Street Journal)

eMarketer estimates that the display ad market to grow 21.5% to almost $15 billion in the U.S. this year, compared to last year’s $12.3 billion. Collectively, Google and Facebook will have nearly 30% of this year’s display ad revenue. In the year 2014, eMarketer predicts the two companies to have 37% of the market.

Google continues to make it easy for advertisers to use one source for all of their online marketing needs, via traditional desktop Adwords, Mobile adwords, display ads and re-marketing – both within their search network and on thousands of partner websites within Google’s content /display network.

Contact us at The Search Engine Guys if you would like to explore options for PPC advertising on Google’s network.

TSEG Contributes Small Business Tip for

The Search Engine Guys were featured on yesterday in the Small Business section. Every day, the publication’s web site features a tip for entrepreneurs on ways to improve how they do business. TSEG’s Joe Devine composed a tip about the benefits of search engine optimization and it was published on January 24, 2011.

Check it out here and please feel free to share with anyone you think may be interested:
Optimize Your Website for Search Engines

Austin Business Journal Introduces Cloud 8 Sixteen, Inc.

Cloud 8 Sixteen, Inc., which includes The Search Engine Guys, Ngage, Inc., and most recently, Big Momma Apps, was featured in the Austin Business Journal (ABJ) and its sister publication, ABJ Entrepreneur.

ABJ’s Christopher Calnan interviewed CEO Joe Devine, who shared news about the companies’ growth and how the Cloud Family of Businesses came to be.

The article was published in the print edition of the Austin Business Journal on January 7, 2010 and on its web site as premium content.

To read the full article on ABJ Entrepreneur, click here: Austin tech founders on Cloud 8.

TSEG’s CEO Joe Devine Featured in Visibility Magazine

Our very own CEO, Joe Devine, has been featured in Visibility Magazine, a leading SEO-focused publication.

In his CEO Spotlight, Joe talks about his role in the company, ideas about the future of SEO, and what makes The Search Engine Guys different from all of the other web marketing firms in the industry.

To read the full interview, click here:

This article will also be featured in the Winter 2010 print edition of the magazine.

Search Engine Mix and Match

Google has long dominated the search engine market, but now that Bing has been introduced, people are starting to wonder whether or not it works better. The short and simple answer is: probably not. As search engines go, it’s difficult to get much better than Google already is. On the other hand, every user has different needs and preferences.

Because of this, there have been several mashup sites for search engines.  One of the foremost is called Blind Search. Made by a Microsoft employee, the program lists three columns of search results from Google, Yahoo and Bing in a random order. You then vote on the column that is most useful to you, telling you which search engine fits you best.

There are several other sites out there as well performing similar functions. In the end, however, the search results on the sites tend to be fairly similar. From an SEO standpoint, this means that optimizing for Google is still the best choice.

If you would like to know more about search engine optimization, contact The Search Engine Guys at (512) 394-7234.

Google Caffeine

Google has announced its new “Caffeine” architecture and has had testers using and reviewing. So far there have been both good and bad reviews, but one in particular stands out. Caffeine seems to be more of a changed algorithm rather than a totally new architecture. If this is true, it is really no different from the old Google.

While a final version of Caffeine has not yet been launched, some are speculating that it is more of a diversion to keep people from engines like Bing. Even so, however, placement on Caffeine is different and could affect SEO to some degree. For some searches, placement dropped several spots between the two types of Google, something that could happen with every change in algorithm on the old engine.

If you would like to know more about optimizing for Google, contact The Search Engine Guys at (512) 394-7234.

Apple Search?

The possiblity of an Apple search engine is floating around since the resignation of Eric Schmidt from Apple’s board of directors. Schmidt also works for Google, giving some credence to the idea. While Apple would certainly have an immediate customer base for its engine, it is difficult to say whether or not it could compete with Google.

Approximately 5% of the computer market is devoted to Apple and would go immediately to their engine, leaving Google. However, Google currently pays Apple to put a search bar in Safari. While this amount is not known, some say that it is enough to fund development of Mac OS X. Direct competition with Google would likely put a damper on those funds.

In the end, an Apple search engine would likely take more business from Microsoft’s Bing than from Google. Even if it does become a contender, however, the search results will likely be very similar to Google’s. This means that optimization aimed at Google would still work for the other engine.

If you would like to learn about search engine optimization, contact The Search Engine Guys at (512) 394-7234.

Aesthetic Websites

Search engine optimization for your website is incredibly important if you want to be found on the internet. However, it is not everything. When you have a website, there are certain things that you have to do to keep your visitor from clicking away.

Having a website that is aesthetically pleasing is one of the top priorities. Your visitor has to believe that you know what you are doing on the website. In addition, you have to make the site easy to navigate. These two simple steps can mean the difference between a visitor clicking away within seconds or staying on the site long enough to contact you.

If you would like to know more about website design and how it can supplement your SEO campaign, contact The Search Engine Guys at (512) 394-7234.

Consumer Buying Habits

There are four basic habits that people follow when they purchase any product or service. Those habits are:

Competitive: Consumers want the best of the best when making their purchases. These are the consumers who are willing to pay almost any price as long as they see higher quality.

Spontaneous: These consumers buy what they see. Grocery store checkout lines operate on this type of consumer by showing them small items that they might have interest in.

Humanistic: These consumers generally want service. A humanistic consumer might pay more for the same product because he or she is treated better somewhere else.

Methodical: The methodical consumer researches all of his or her purchases to a great extent. In the end, he or she will go with the product or service that gave the best information.

It is important to appeal to every one of these consumer types in your website. If you do not, you are missing out on a large portion of the market that might have purchased your product or service.

If you would like to know more about consumer buying habits and how to use them in your website, you can contact The Search Engine Guys at (512) 394-7234.

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