Yahoo! Research Labs Releases Yahoo! Mindset (Beta)

Source: Yahoo! Next Web Site
June 9, 2005

Dave’s Comments (Digital Marketing Tutorial Blog): Sort the first 100 Yahoo! search results for your search term to reflect whether you’re ready to buy now (commercial) or you want to learn more about your search term (research/information-oriented). It’s really a neat new feature! Here’s what Yahoo! has to say about it.

“What is Mindset? A new twist on search that uses machine learning technology to give you a choice: View Yahoo! Search results sorted according to whether they are more commercial or more informational (i.e., from academic, non-commercial, or research-oriented sources).

Sometimes you want to buy stuff and sometimes you just want to do research. In a typical search page, results point to commercial pages that are mixed together with non-commercial pages, so it’s harder to find the type of information you’re looking for. Mindset is our attempt to help solve that problem.

Through the use of machine learning for text classification, we try to classify each web page in the top 100 search results for a query. Then we sort those results according to the preference you set. Mindset uses an intuitive slider in the interface, so you can set the bias for commercial vs. non-commercial results. Often, we come across a web page that hasn’t been classified yet. In those cases, Mindset tries to classify that web page in the background, so it’ll be classified along with the rest of the results next time you do the same query.”

To try it out, go to Yahoo! Mindset

Detecting Click Fraud – A Fast-Growing Cottage Industry

Source: Wall Street Journal
9 June 2005

Dave’s Comments (Digital Marketing Tutorial Blog): “Click Fraud”?! Just when you were getting ready to dip your toes (and budget) into the world of search engine advertising, you hear the dreaded phrase, “click fraud”. What’s a marketer to do? Here are some words of wisdom from the Wall Street Journal.

“The search-ad market is estimated at around $4 billion in the U.S. in 2004, and the vast majority of Google’s revenue comes from search and similar keyword-triggered Web-site ads. But there is increasing evidence that some people are clicking on such ads either to run up fees for competitors, to boost the placement of their own ads or to make money for themselves.

The Web-search companies concede that click fraud is an issue but decline to quantify its scope; some outside estimates run as high as 20% of all clicks. Many companies complain that Google, Yahoo and other search engines are vague about how they are tackling the problem, unresponsive to questions about suspect clicks and ineffective when advertisers point out possible abuses.

Sensing a business opportunity, entrepreneurs have built up a cottage industry to capitalize on search-advertiser discontent. Their services, with names such as Clickfacts, ClickDetective, WhosClickingWho, and PPCTrax.com, generally monitor records of visitors who come to their clients’ Web sites via search ads. To sniff out fraudsters, they rely on such clues as the numerical addresses that computers provide when they connect. Advertisers can take that information to the search companies to request credits to their ad budgets for fraudulent clicks.”

Thomas Register Ends Print Directories, Turns Exclusively to Online Listings

by Dave Ingalls
Digital Marketing Tutorial Blog
June 1, 2005

In a move that truly demonstrates the impact the Internet/Web has had on the business-to-business (B2B) marketplace, Thomas Information Network has announced that it has discontinued the print versions of its Thomas Register of American Manufacturers and Thomas Register Regional Buying Guides. The information contained in these is available, free of charge, at www.ThomasNet.com.

The last hard-copy edition of either of these publications will be the 2006 edition of the Thomas Register of American Manufacturers, which along with its sister tome were known as the Big Green Books. During the last ten years, Thomas has been making a transition to the Internet.

“As an Internet marketing company, all our energies and investments are directed to serving our clients — where and how they can best reach customers, ” said Eileen G. Markowitz, president of Thomas Industrial Network, in a statement.

Markowitz continued, “To do this, we provide Internet marketing and Web site and content management solutions, including online catalogs, e-commerce capabilities, and CAD drawing distribution.”

As a marketer who has his roots in the B2B world, this transition by the Thomas Register to an Internet/Web-only format is a truly significant event. It underlines the importance for ALL companies to not only have access to the Internet/Web, but to also have a truly professional Internet/Web presence. That presence (Web sites, search engine visibility, email newsletters, blogs, etc.) is rapidly becoming THE “Front Door” to your company for the entire world!

Reciprocal Linking and Text Link Ads

by Dave Ingalls
Digital Marketing Tutorial Blog
May 31, 2005

Reciprocal Linking has been a particulary important element of Search Engine Optimization since the rise of Google. As you can review on my Linking Strategies Web page, reciprocal linking is a mechanism you can use to create inbound text links pointing to your Web site from other Web sites containing content relevant to yours. This is accomplished by offering to provide a (reciprocal) link back to those Web sites that link to you.

Another way to achieve the same goal, and if done properly, potentially outperform traditional reciprocal linking programs, is to buy inbound text links to your Web site from other Web sites with content relevant to yours. This form of linking, dubbed text link buying, has been around a long time, but it has recently picked up momentum because of the value these links can have to Google search rankings, and the emergence of “text link brokers”.

Patrick Gavin, President of Text Link Ads, Inc., has authored an excellent overview of this subject titled, “The Definitive Guide to Link Buying”. Click on the link below to download/save this very informative guide:

(no longer valid)

I urge you to download and read this guide. In 30 minutes, you’ll be an expert in text link buying – well, at least you’ll know what you’re doing when you go looking for text links to buy!

Web Site Stats

by Dave Ingalls
Digital Marketing Tutorial Blog

Everyone says you should keep track of your Web site statistics, but why and for what purpose? I give several examples of how and why I use NetTracker Web log analysis software on one of the Web sites I manage in a recent post to my Internet Marketing Course site.

If interested, please click on this link to read more: Web Analytics

Google Suggest

by Dave Ingalls
Digital Marketing Tutorial Blog
May 15, 2005

Google has launched it’s (beta) version of Categorized Search. Named “Google Suggest”, I think it’s better/cooler than the other versions previously discussed in my Internet Marketing Course (click on this link to review: Categorized Search).

Try it out for yourself: Google Suggest (link no longer valid)

To Blog or not to Blog?

by Dave Ingalls
Digital Marketing Tutorial Blog
March 5, 2005
One of the hottest Internet Marketing topics these days involves the use of “Blogs” on business Web sites as a traditional “What’s New” page combined with a conversational “How ya do’in?” look and feel, and also incorporating recent FAQ info. It can also incorporate feedback from Web site visitors.

Read more on my Internet Marketing Course about Blogs and Blogging