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News: Press Release Optimization, Google AOL, Search Usability

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             "Understanding Internet Search Technology"
Moderator:                                          Published by:
Detlef Johnson                                       SearchReturn
October 18, 2005                                       Issue #007
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                   .....IN THIS DIGEST.....


         "Press Release Optimization"
                 ~ Eric Ward

         "Google AOL"
                 ~ Andrew Goodman
                         ~ Moderator Comment

// -- ESSENTIAL NEWS -- //

         "You Can't Use What You Can't Find"
         "Changing Host Providers"
         "Search User Study"
         "Top 400 Slow To Adopt SEO"





"A number of SEOs utilize PR services to help get online "buzz"
going, (which can lead to link building somewhat naturally). This
can be done effectively but you always have to have a real story
to tell or your buzz falls flat."
-Digest #005

From: Eric Ward 

Well, not to start a riot, but optimized press releases are no
different than any other optimized page. The only reason they are
suddenly a "hot" technique is because the engines have been
stupid enough to include them in their "news" search, when we all
know for a fact that it ain't news if anyone with $100 can make
it. The time will come soon when the larger wire services will
vanish from the news results or be pushed to a secondary "Paid
News" results section below the "Real News" section.

Don't get me wrong, press releases are a great strategy, but
frankly they are being used for silly SEO reasons that just add
to the problem rather than helping.

One final point.

I've been making new site announcements now for 11 years. 90% of
my media contacts just want a paragraph from me with a few
details and some links. Editors and writers don't necessarily
want a press release. They want a tip. A blurb. A link from a
trusted source to where they can use their own brains to decide
what's newsworthy and what isn't.

Eric Ward





"Is Google solidifying its relations with AOL in reaction to a
potential Microsoft AOL partnership?"

From: Andrew Goodman 

It's funny to think of the Golden Boys this way, but about now, I
would argue that -- if talks are proceeding anyway with rival
buyers -- Google is actually fairly *desperate* to get a piece of
AOL, and eager to make close friends with a large pipeline player
like Comcast.

Two reasons:

(1) Users and access. Google can posture all it wants about WiFi
and dark fiber, but it can consolidate its user base and ensure
access to IP data and direct pipelines with those users overnight
by buying into this, not merely by "building a better product"
and hoping. If Google doesn't grow, then its rivals get stronger.
Especially if that rival is MS.

(2) Management. If Google is to mature, it needs some steady
hands not at "the" helm, but at the many little Go-Kart steering
wheels that involve running a business with multiple operating
units. It can get all the geeks it wants. And the company from
top to bottom can laugh all they like at traditional corporate
culture. But at this Big Media level, those managerial things
come in handy, freeing the core of Googlers to do what they want
to do. So they need middle and upper management. An AOL
acquisition could help with that.

It could be a fairly healthy thing for the user if Google could
help wean the diehards off dialup or even slow DSL, and into a
new era of connectivity. It would also be productive for the
economy as a whole.

MS is no doubt going to be bidding against them. Lucky AOL. They
now have a bidding war for their unimpressive company. :)

Andrew Goodman
Page Zero Media
*Now shipping*: Winning Results with Google AdWords

Moderator Comment: Yahoo! enters discussions with AOL as well.

Recent moves to open AOL's premium portal content may be behind
all the talking.



// -- ESSENTIAL NEWS -- //


==> You Can't Use What You Can't Find

Essentials: Book excerpt with rational thinking on our industry
and how it fits into the disciplines of design and usability.
"Together with form and function, findability is a required
element of good design and engineering."



==> Changing Host Providers

Essentials: Matt chooses Pair, (where SearchReturn is hosted).
Illustrates steps for successfully changing host in his post with
comments that include tips (a .htaccess 301 expression).



==> Search User Study

Essentials: "77 percent of adults who research online before
making a purchase decision use search engines. Forty percent of
those conducting online research go to search engines first."



==> Top 100 Slow To Adopt SEO

Essentials: Out of the top 100, the number of Internet Retailers
with tell-tale signs of optimization "increased from 12 sites to


Essential Headlines:


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