Thursday, January 21, 2010

Google Favourite Places - Will this damage SEO business forever?

A little over a month ago, Google announced that it was sending brick and mortar businesses decals to put on their windows, with bar codes that people can scan with their phones to bring up business listings.

These were made available to the businesses Google deemed "favorite places". Over 10,000 businesses in the US got them right off the bat, and Google will most likely expand that number in the future.

Now what's worrying is how they picked the TOP businesses:

The first hint that this is the case is the manner with which Google decided which companies would receive the decals. Their formula for the top 100,000+ Favorite Places was based largely on user interaction with local listings, including how many people searched for driving directions to a given location.

Some have argued that this may have unintended consequences: certain types of businesses are likely to receive a phone call from potential visitors rather than more-easily tracked user engagement with Google. Or, certain businesses’ clientele may be less keen on using Google Maps for directions. As a result, these businesses are unintentionally penalized by the company’s formula for PlaceRank. Like web search, the structure of the system may be limited in determining the actual popularity, community standing, or other relevant factors in determining the popularity of a given business.

Does this mean that a business with a code that is scanned more frequently will get page result preference for their search terms? Is this not a dangerous move for a "organic" / "non paid" non judgemental company like Google?

We'll have to see. What do you think?

Monday, January 11, 2010

2010 - Google Updates PR


Firstly let me start by wishing you all a happy 2010 and a very successful year to ALL.

To start the year off i thought it would e a good time to let you know about the latest Google PR update.

Just like they did at the start of 2009, Google has gifted website owners with a PageRank update to start the new year – welcome 2010.

For those of you who follow the PR indicator – chances are you’ll have noticed that your PageRank on Google’s toolbar has shifted – hopefully upwards. There was alot of HOOHAA about the the PR update around the middle of December but as of the 31st Dec 2009 – the reports started rolling in.

Whilst the results vary depending on the website and SEO activity over the past few months – “most” forum members seem to have seen some increases! The question we have is, why has their been an increase? Was this a little Christmas present from GOOGLE? And once again, the debate sparks up, DOES PR MEAN ANYTHING?
Funny thing I noticed. I got my send PR 5 site, but my rankings never shifted up. Anyone else see any good signs and changes?

Let us know.