2009 was a big year in the technology industry. Live search was rebranded and marketed, Wolfram Alpha (remember them?) came online with it’s “answer engine”, and social media went another step up what with Facebooking and Twittering, blogging and real time results starting to make their way into your searches.
But seeing as Google is the big fish in the waters of the web, here’s a quickly compiled list of some of their advancements through out the year.
* Offline Gmail gets released with Google Gears
* Picasa for Mac released
* Google Latitude and search by voice for Android launch
* Google Sync for your mobile phone launches
* Google Calendar goes offline with Google Gears
* Google Profiles show up at the bottom of search results
* Updated mobile Gmail and Google Calendar webapps for iPhone and Android launch
* Google Maps mashup tracks swine flu
* GV Mobile makes Google Voice the default for your iPhone (later, Apple pulled this app from the iTunes Store for reasons that are still unclear)
* Engineers demo Google Wave at the Google I/O conference, give developers access to the Wave “sandbox”
* Google Apps Sync syncs Microsoft Outlook with Gmail, Google Contacts, and Calendars (updates with push Gmail in September)
* Google Squared puts your search results into a spreadsheet
* Gmail, Google Calendar, Docs, and Talk leave beta
* FeedDemon, NetNewsWire sync exclusively with Google Reader
* Google announces Chromium OS (but doesn’t release any code, doctored screenshots and fan-made versions start popping up)
* Apple rejects all Google Voice applications from the iTunes Store
* Gmail Tasks graduates from Google Labs (where it first appeared in December of 2008)
* Gmail makes importing mail and contacts from old email accounts easy
* PubSubHubbub gets baked into Google Reader
* Google Wave Preview opens to 100,000 users
* GrandCentral closes its doors, transitions entirely to Google Voice
* Google Sidewiki launches
* Google offers voicemail storage and transcriptions for your existing phone number (part of Google Voice)
* Google Maps Navigation adds turn-by-turn GPS to Android
* Google Voice gives existing users invitations to send to their friends
* Chrome OS announced, Chromium build demo’ed and source code released (here’s how you can try out a Chromium build yourself)
* Google Chrome adds bookmark sync
* Google releases Go, a new programming language
* Chrome browser hits Mac/Linux with extensions enabled (Chrome for Windows left beta in December of 2008)
* Google’s new real-Time search includes Twitter streams
* Google Public DNS launches
* Google “lets the sun set” on Gears, moving to HTML5
* Google Goggles for Android searches the web by photo
* Google Favorite Places puts a barcode on restaurants and shops you can scan with your mobile phone
Look here, to read more of any of the above.
Google Inc. is determined to gain more influence over how the Web is used on mobile phones, even if the next step in the quest tramples some of the relationships forged during its two-year expansion into the wireless industry.
The focus on Google’s mobile ambitions is sharpening now that the Internet search leader is working on a new phone called “Nexus One.” The handset is being tested by Google’s 20,000 employees, who received the device just before the weekend.
Google declined to comment on the reason for the Nexus One’s development.
Mobile is clearly the next big business opportunity and (Google) wants to do everything possible to control its own destiny.
Google announced it’s gone realtime, meaning essetially that if they think it’s worth you knowing what was said 10 minutes ago about what you’re interested in, they’ll share that with you!
“If high quality information is coming in, then we will show it,” said Amit Singhal, a Google fellow who heads Google’s ranking systems and oversaw the development of the new real time system.
Some of the information comes to you live from :
Tweets from Twitter
Content from Google News
Content from Google Blog Search
Newly created web pages
Freshly updated web pages
FriendFeed updateearch system
Content from Facebook and MySpace is promised
How the information ranked? Singhal said only information deemed highly relevant is included. So spammy tweets, low quality pages and other content might not make it into the real time search “layer” that is used. After that, results are ranked by time.
In the end, it’s going to make all of your social media concerns, more applicable in the SEO world. Become an authority organically, maintain quality content in the socail sector, and enjoy top of the hill rankings all around.
Google has stepped up it’s bid in the quest to own the web, GoogleDNS is here. DNS servers are, in many respects, the backbone of the Internet. DNS allows you to type a domain name like www.senate.gov into a browser instead of a machine-readable IP number like http://188.8.131.52/. Google DNS will allow users to bypass their ISPs Domain Name Servers (DNS).
Google, being a huge ally in the war for net neutrality, makes throwing it’s hat into the DNS ring a bold move. Just like all software, hardware, or inteernet company, the bigger the concern, the harsher the scrutiny. The hand waving and doomsday prophesizing about Googles cloud computing capabilities anytime they have a hiccup being an example.
That being said, Google has made a couple of promises in regards to GoogleDNS. Google’s FAQ states they will only keep temporary logs and erase all the information it collects through the public DNS service within 24 to 45 hours. The company promises not to keep any information that is linked to IP addresses in its permanent logs. Just providing another option out there for those inclined to give it a swing.
Knowing the web, is about power. Those who know most, have the most power, and adding this feather in the Google cap, is just another tool in a wide assortment of available information collectors. As it stands now, who really knows the web better than Google?
One interesting.. concession that Google makes however:
..because nameservers geolocate according to the resolver’s IP address rather than the user’s, Google Public DNS has the same limitations as other open DNS services: that is, the server to which a user is referred might be farther away than one to which a local DNS provider would have referred. This could cause a slower browsing experience for certain sites.
In easy read, depending on where you are, your internet might actually get slower by using GoogleDNS, not faster.
The first criteria that are possibly going to be added are the amount of Click data. It has been noted that Google news does not use links as a ranking factor rather it uses clicks or the amount of clicks as a ranking factor.
Second Criteria is web referencing, a web reference is not a link but rather a mention of the target website in an external website. This means that the mere mention of your website from another website which you do not own is already considered as a ranking factor, not just by links anymore.
A third criterion is the presence of your website in social media networks. Social media is now considered to be the latest craze among different walks of life and the popularity of your website in a social media community will contribute greatly to your ranking.
Finally, page loading time is also going to become a factor nowadays that is why website design and web development will play an important role in the field of SEO. The rationale behind using page loading time as a ranking factor is the fact that fast page loading time improves user experience.
With these new criterias added would it help revolutionise the search engine algorithm?, we might also see another shift in terms of the SEO approaches being done by different SEO companies and SEO consultants
There are hundreds of search theories out there, stuff that the ‘SEO Guru’s’ discuss and say ‘may’ be a ranking factor, people then jump on the bandwagon and before you know it we have a new (100% fabricated) ranking algorithm.
The truth is ranking on Google is about being smart with keyword selection and implementation. If you have a site about super cars and you use the keyword “super cars” there is a good chance you will rank for it, you will not rank for “fast cars” if you never use the keyword on the basis they mean pretty much the same, it’s a myth.
If you want to rank you use your main keyword in the title tag, you create content using different ’search’ variations, you build links to all your content using varied anchor text, that’s it, read the theories if they interest you but don’t ‘read’ too much into them.
Google released their list this year for what was most popular in search. Some of the excerpts include :
Fastest Rising Search (Michael Jackson)
Fastest Falling Search (Beijing 2008)
U.S. Fastest Rising Searches by Quarter (Swine Flu #1)
Fastest Rising/Falling Searches on Google.com; Google News; Google Images; Google Maps; Google Mobile
“In the News Categories” like the All Eyes on the Senate, Keeping it Green, Bailout Nation, and More
That’s Entertaining (Entertainment-Related Searches)
Around the Home
In their blog post, Google talked about social media, music news this year, and in the fastest falling trends held some surprises as well.
So what has captivated the minds of searchers around the world this year? As millions of fans said goodbye to the King of Pop, Michael Jackson led the list of our top 10 fastest rising queries across the globe. And a new star was born, too — quirky pop singer Lady Gaga became a search sensation the world over. In addition to appearing on many regional fastest-rising search term lists, from the Czech Republic to Switzerland and Kenya to the United Kingdom, Lady Gaga also landed in the #9 spot on the global fastest rising list.
…the social web is alive and well. In a sweeping confirmation of the web’s ability to connect us, both Facebook and the Spanish social-networking site Tuenti appeared on the fastest rising searches at #2 and #3 respectively. Twitter also made our global list for the first time at #5..
A grouping of the fastest rising, and falling trends, can be found on Google’s Zeitgeist of 2009.
Google had better watch out; their foes are starting to rally together. A report today has the tech blogs in an uproar about a possible Microsoft/News Corp pact. The agreement would center around Microsoft paying News Corp to remove their listings from Google. The idea being, this would give Bing an edge over Google, as they’d be the only major engine to have access to News Corp sites.
These rumors fit with earlier info about the media giant’s plan to de-list content from Google. However, adding in the possibility of a pact between Microsoft and News Corp turns the de-listing from a business measure, to a direct attack on Google. While the talks are in an early stage, the rumor is that Microsoft is also talking to several other major content providers to ask them to de-list from Google.
Microsoft’s Bing holds nearly 10% of the U.S. search market. While they haven’t been able to pull any users out of Google’s hide yet, this could represent a major turning point. If MicroSoft can convince major content providers to leave Google, Bing could gain substantial ground on Google.
Will this new plan work? News Corp, and many other news media sites, are working to make all of their online content ‘for pay’. However, a recent survey showed that 80% of customers will not pay for online news. It’s very possible that this pact would just seal the death warrant of several old media dinosaurs. Google has already stated that news content is “not a big part” of their revenue.
If News Corp pushes the fracture between new and old media, it’s definite they’ll learn just which form of content distribution the mass of customers prefer. Sites like the Wall Street Journal have proven that paying for subscription services can work, but not for the bulk of news media sites. Refusing to adapt and pulling away from changing trends won’t save the old titans of media, and trying to cheap shot Google by getting newspapers to de-list won’t make Bing popular.
“If my Google PageRank moves up to a 3 and my competitor’s PageRank remains a 1, will that push me above them in Google’s search engine rankings?”
Unfortunately, the answer is no. PageRank and your SERPs are not related in that sense. PageRank is an authority number assigned by Google based on an algorithm associating several factors to determine your site’s trustworthiness which, indirectly affecting your rankings in Google for specific keyword phrases. It is not used by Google to determine your rankings for keywords. It is amazing, that in 2009 that some webmasters, business owners and marketers still put emphasis on Google PageRank when determining the goals of your search engine optimization efforts. The goal of your SEO campaign should be to increase relevant visitors to your website over time from the search engines.
That being said, Google does use some of the same factors in its ranking algorithm as it does in its PageRank algorithm. But there are factors used to determine keyword rankings that are not used in PageRank. Keyword placement in your URL for example, is a factor that Google may use for search engine ranking purposes, but it doesn’t affect your PageRank at all. Other factors such as quality content, internal linking, etc do not affect PageRank, but are used to determine your placement on the SERPs.
Bottom line, don’t expect advances in your PageRank to affect your search engine rankings. The two are not related at all…and focus your energy on marketing your website and business online and to become an authority in the eyes of your visitors and the search engines.
Google is the goliath in the search industry, of that there’s no question. There has, as of yet, to be any real David to come along and topple them successfully. Is it really any surprise then, that the little guys are starting to gang up on the big kid?
Bing, has setup shop with WOlfram Alpha, the latter being touted as a quantitative search engine, rather than qualitive. Bing, already marketed and pushed as the decision engine, partnering with Wolfram, being the answer engine, does seem to make sense. The Wolfram team said the new partnership with Bing would allow Microsoft to access “tens of thousands of algorithms and trillions of pieces of data” to incorporate into its results. And, as an added bonus, Bing gets limited Facebook integration and tweaks its weather results.
How does Google respond? An announcement about tweaked movie searches, and password protection for your SafeSearch settings. It may not sound like a whole bunch, but SafeSearch *is* a big deal, privacy and website/image filtering is an extremely valid concern in this era of (completely) free speech.
Between Google Wave, Bing, Wolfram, streetview, Bing maps, Facebook/Twitter integration, and the ever expanding list of features between the engines, it’s getting to be a very busy and exciting time in search.