Thursday, September 23, 2010

Evidence for Long Tail Search being Dead : Google Instant changes Search Trends

Google Instant kills Long Tail search. Yes, you heard it right. Lately, many of SEO gurus were complaining about long tail search being killed by this so called Google Instant.

But, what's new in me saying that again. I have something beyond just the NEWS, I have got the evidence. When I tracked my Google Analytics, I can easily figure-out how many of the long tail searches that were yielding me decent hits has gone down to ZERO. JUST ZERO, which in turn reduced my overall traffic by 15% (huge loss). Below shown is just one among them.

What Google Instant mean for public?

It means FAST for any common searcher. It may be fascinating for them, as anything that happens fast really pulls your eyes. For them, it seems like Google understands their intent. But, they can't seem to understand how it kills their thinking ability or distracts them or been pushed to receive ONLY what Google offers. It simply looks adorable for them.

So, what should a SEO expert do ?

Don't SEO for Long Tail key phrase: Years back, SEO experts advised on not to target just the highly competetive generic key phrases as there are people in the world who search for specifc questions or for a specific problem. But now, everyone have to run for those highly competetive generic ones again. Fight for it..

I agree, the traffic couldn't vanish and go away - my lost traffic could be gained traffic for others- - for websites that tops for popular key phrases. But I am on the loser side. 

SideWiki: What does Long Tail mean? "Matt Bailey" of Search Engine Guide explains it "The Long Tail is used to describe the hundreds to thousands of keywords and key phrases that a website is found for, yet rarely noticed or exploited by owners of the website or in Layman's terms it is just "Non-Popular keywords".

Friday, September 17, 2010

Why could my Facebook Page not Public: Dig What? E1

Recently I came across a simple, yet silly problem which had every chance to create big impact. When I tried clicking one of our client's FaceBook page that was showing up in Google Search Results landed me to Facebook homepage - which means that page is turned to be not-to-public view. And when I tried to find the root-cause, found that it is all because of the Age Restrictions set to "People above 17+" (that was reset recently unknowingly by one of the page admins).

This age restricted Facebook page will be shown to viewers' whose identity is assured to be above 17 yrs i.e., only if you are logged in and if you stated your age us above 17 yrs - OR otherwise you will be landing to Facebook homepage.

AddOn: The other chance for your FB page being going non-public suddenly could be setting the Published option to "Unpublished".

So what impact could it have created?

- lose all potential traffic from Google and so lose 'Fans' who are not logged in.

- get de-indexed by Google eventually - lose a listing in SERPs for business name search.

- losing the chance to introduce the page to non-facebook viewers.

Dig What? E1 Lesson:

However, I couldn't think of this Age Restriction setting could be the cause, when I first traced the non-public view. I was looking for some major pitfall that could be lying behind this - and this insight did give me a newer perseverance

"When you are given with a problem, look into every single bit of information, elements in front of you - small or big - the solution can be behind anything that you wouldn't have thought off"

PS: BTW, I have to explain what does this Dig What? E1 mean? - I am planning to dig problems that I come across in my everyday professional life and try to share them. So this is my Dig What? Edition 1 . Watch this space to get the latest editions.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Naihaa goes Social in Facebook & Twitter - Does it Really?

In the recent edition of Ananda Vikatan (Tamil Monthly Magazine), I got to see a fabulous advertisement from Naihaa on the backside of the cover page - being in SEO web promotion and social media industry, I was pulled just to the bottom of the page. 

Wow! Naihaa is being SOCIAL! great news! That triggered me to still dig in what is Naihaa into? Did they make best use of their Social space? how well has it made its SOCIAL impact etc.,

Let me dig...

My first focus was for Facebook, as Facebook is the place that I think every business in this world should have their identity marked - atleast until anyother giant like Facebook evolves. Facebook Page is a good selling point for any business that likes to go social and comparatively it performs better than Facebook profile or groups. 

Two identities could be confusing:

When I searched for Naihaa in Facebook, I got two official results for Naihaa

-> profile:

-> Facebook Page:

pretty confusing.. The presence of Naihaa with 2 different identities can confuse consumers/users.

Promote Facebook Page rather than profile:

As FaceBook page has more advantages over the profile (flexible to add applications, multiple admis etc.,), it would be better to pull all profile friends to Facebook Page and maintain the page as their official social space and promote that identity. To take this point further, I noticed in the official website of Naihaa ,  Facebook button links to the profile identity - promoting both the identities can dilute the promotional values. Being consistent and promoting FaceBook Page should yield much better credibility.

Also, in the Naihaa website, the Facebook & Twitter button doesn't standout nor it is placed in a prominent way.

Google hasn't indexed this page, as there were no external web links mentioning about this page  - worse, the official website itself doesn't have a link to FB page.

Naihaa Facebook Page Analysis: What does the Naihaa Page lacks?

  • The 'About Us' column wasn't used.
  • I could only see text allover the Wall posts which is not so engaging. They can add store events, popular products, their ads 'behind the scene' photos - or anything visually appealing, as photos attract more than text. And videos could impress consumers to large extent.
  • The 'Info' box is not well used - doesn't include address, company overview, or mission info.
  • Naihaa has missed to take this page as an opportunity to express the humanity of their business.
  • The most important is - Naihaa didn't integrate promotional valued FBML application.FBML page can engage visitors and having best 'Call to Action' items in it can perform better. I like the Basics Life FBML - what an engaging presentation!

World is revolving with social today and getting social with 'Word of Mouth' reviews/promotions through social space is what consumers look for before any purchase - Naihaa should MAKE BEST USE of Facebook Page to achieve it.

Being in competitive Retail industry, using Social Medium should be beneficial. 

Will dig their Twitter and SEO in my next post.