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Friday, December 7, 2007

Public Records on Google, and a new breed of Search Engines

So far major search engines like Google, Yahoo and Microsoft have not been indexing online state public records. That previously hard to locate information will start coming up in search results as the search engines start indexing the information.

So far five states have formed a partnership with Google, and their free software and consulting to support the plan, to make state public records more visable on the web.

On a related note, Search is going vertical. Check out this list of less mainstream engines that focus on either local, or industry-specific segments. How do you think this shift to smaller and more specific engines will impact the Search industry, and solutions, and current SEO best practices? Has anyone tried these or others, and found a new favorite? I tried out IT.com out of curiosity, typed in 'Affinium Model', which is an automated predictive modeling software componant of the Unica Affinium Enterprise Marketing Management Suite...one I query often enough on Google to have a comparison point with the IT.com results. Strangely enough, it provided a list of relevant links but in the fourth or so natural result slot I found the following. Somehow right back to the main search engine topic. Looks like a reminder of a good resource for staying on top of search trends...so unexpectedly rewarding search experience, if slightly off query topic.

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Sunday, September 16, 2007

SEO - Small Business Implications

I have always been a bit weary of search engine optimization. To me, the value of the internet is in a user's ability to search unbiased listings.

That said, there is a value in properly listing a webpage, such as what Nigel does for his non-profit client. The demand for a good search engine helps eliminate "black hat" SEO practices, which seems to be successful for the most part.

Does SEO increase the entry-cost for firms to get started on the internet? In order to get top listings, especially for generic product searches, a smaller business has one more cost to cover. Does anyone see this as a significant consideration? More broadly, what is the future of small-businesses online?

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Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Barak Obama on LinkedIn.com

Here's his LinkedIn Profile and an article
talks about how this represents Barak's approach to connect with the 29 + professional crowd. When his staff accepted my LinkedIn request this morning I became the 268th contact. There are over 400 now, a few hours later! Kind of amazing to watch from near the starting point, and surprising that his contact list is growing relatively slowly 3 days in to launching a profile. (It may be somewhat by design, there are a couple unspecific links on the page, if you visit the site to issue your own invitation request.) This article talks about how US presidential candidates are using the web in their campaign.

What role do you think technology will have in the presidential election? Will it be minimal or specific to young professionals, and is it critical for candidates to establish a presence on FaceBook, MySpace, YouTube, LinkedIn, Meetup.com to capture voter share in all voter segments? A quick look at the handy Google Trends site introduced below a few weeks ago gives a snapshot of relative candidate popularlity. (If this is any indication, John McCain looks like the candidate to beat overall)

What role do you think Social Networking will have and how important will Search Engine Optimization be for the candidates? What kind of impact will other emerging technologies have in this election?

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