Small Dog Creative

    Thinking Like Google

    There are a number of ways to improve your search engine results. Before we go any further, it is important to get a better understanding of search result ranking. Let's talk for a moment about Google's algorithm (that's the code used for determining which order sites appear in search results), and which search results they appear in. ...

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    What Do "AAPL" and "Mad Cow Disease" Have in Common?

    Answer: they are both currently trending on Google -- Google Trends, to be precise....

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    Did Google Catch You the Fool?

    As many people probably noticed, Google loves April Fools' Day. Every year they have the top jokes, pranks, and gags across the Internet. This year was no exception. Did you see any of the Google gags? Here are the top 7. 1) The YouTube Collection. Touted as a "whole new way to enjoy the videos you love," Google introduced a way to get any and all YouTube videos on DVDs in a Netflix-like service. 2)  Google Racing. Google announced its new partnership with Nascar to produce and race the first self-driving racer. Although there's a nugget of truth in Google working on a self-driving car, the Nascar bit is all fool and no fact. 3) Google Maps 8-Bit. Bring back the 80s with Google Maps Quest: Google Maps cartridge version. 4) Google Street Roo. Think Google Street Cars, but strapped to the head of an Australian Big Red Kangaroo. 5) Google Fiber. "Fiberlicious" nutrition bar for 100-fold productivity. Move over Red Bull. 6) Chrome Multitask Mode. Why limit yourself to one hand and/or mouse when you can be twice as productive with two? 7) Gmail Tap. Upgrade from QWERTY with Gmail Tap -- a two-button keypad: dot and dash. Morse code is back! Check out Huffington Post's video slideshow of the top Google pranks for proof of these wacky gags! Which is your favorite? Google runs the gamut every year, and manages to keep the April Fools' game fresh each time. If there's one thing businesses can learn from this, it's that innovation has no limits! After all, they say all work and no play makes Larry (Page) a dull boy....

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    Ever-Changing SEO

    The day before a recent SEO seminar, I found myself reworking my presentation yet again. This round of revisions was due to a change in Google's search algorithm called Panda (unfortunately, not as cute and funny as it sounds). This release changed the game for a lot of SEO companies and search engine marketers. It took a while for us to figure out what it would mean for the future of SEO. When we did, it wasn't pretty, but it was something many people saw coming a while ago.   Google's previous algorithm favored large, long-standing, and content-heavy websites. This may seem rather logical, but that’s just where the problem lies. This scenario created a bit of a land rush for search term ranking. If a company had a site about peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, and had been writing and optimizing for years, then a new up-and-coming site with the latest information on peanut butter and jelly didn't have a chance at ranking well on search engines. Even though the new site had the latest and greatest content, it wouldn't come up in the top searches. So if you hadn't been optimizing your website for many years, you would never have a shot at ranking highly for a new website. For better or worse, Panda changed the game by favoring current information. Fresh content is now prized and new information is king. Great for new websites and bloggers, but challenging for the SEO-focused.There is no more “set it and forget it” approach to SEO. Fresh content is king, and it’s become a full-time, round the clock job to get to the top and stay there. ...

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    Search Term Research: Choosing the Right Words

    What makes a good search engine is its ability to give you the best or most relevant results for your search. We wouldn't search with Google if, when we typed in "Banana Bread," car wash companies came up in the search results. Google needs to get a clear "picture" of what your site (and company) is about in order to more accurately position your company in the search results for that term. Choosing search terms is not as obvious or as easy as you may imagine. Terms you use are not necessarily what your customers use. It is also important to select search terms that have traffic. There is a lot of information that can be gathered on your target market and how they are searching for your products. We strongly recommend you take a step back and hire a professional company to conduct your search term research, and give you a list of terms you should optimize your website for. Sinking time and money with out doing proper search term research will cost you far more in the long run. Professional search term research is the first place you should start your website and your search engine optimization. Research reveals how many people are searching for terms, how hard it may be to get a good ranking on google for the term, and what the top companies are doing to get their rankings. It is also important to establish these numbers as a baseline for your website, so you can determine if your SEO campaigns are working. For more information read our next article... Optimizing for Your Search Terms...

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    Getting Local Search Engine Results

    Every business owner wants to see their company on the top of Google search results. But if you own a local business that doesn't have a national reach than you may only care about ranking well in your town. Competing on a national scale is expensive, so trying local SEO (search engine optimization) tactics is a much more cost effective move. Here are a few tips for ranking well in your town. Standardize Your Information The first thing you need to start with is your basic contact information. You need to standardize how you format your basic business information (name, address, phone). 

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    You Need to Think Like Google!

    There are a number of ways to go about improving your Google ranking, but before you try any of them it is important to get a larger understanding of search result ranking. Why does Google show search results in the order it does? Once you start to understand how Google looks at your website and why you are not showing up in search results, you can move to the next step of improving your website's search engine optimization (or SEO)....

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    In Second Place... Bing

    Bing came in at second place in February with a whopping 4.37% of the global search market. In case you didn't get that, Bing has a whole 4.37% of the market at second place. Who's first... I'm not sure, maybe you should "Google it". Google comes in at 89.94% of the global market! While Bing and Yahoo may be creeping up they still have a long way to go before they can really be called competition. While there are a lot of SEO companies fighting for your dollars. It's important to have a clear idea of where most of your traffic will be coming from. Investing money in listings on small search engines may be valuable, but start with the big dogs first. Why invest hundreds in getting to the top of YP.com if 90% of your traffic is coming from Google. Google Analytics will tell you where your traffic is coming from, so you can see if you are getting a bang for buck with the smaller referral websites. Keep in mind any ranking with paid advertising that is considered 'pay per click' or not natural optimization, will be lost after you stop making monthly payments. Natural optimization, may cost more upfront but it will keep you on the top long after you have stopped making payments. So take a look at your rankings on Yahoo and Bing, and consider smaller directories but I wouldn't go investing too much time and money into optimizing for any search engine other than Google....

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