Wednesday, August 24, 2011

A New Dimension To Ecommerce And Online Shopping

Author : Bharati Ahuja

TESCO has been adjusting to the local Korean market and had to compete with the numero uno company in Korea that is Emart .

For this they had to find an answer to the question - Could we become no. 1 without increasing the no. of stores?

And they did find a unique, enterprising innovative answer which has brought them to the 2nd position in Korea.

View the video for the answer:

Main Takeaway:

Don’t wait for people to come to your store or wait for them to find you on the internet and search engines. Go one step ahead and take the store to the people.

Make it available wherever you think people can squeeze in some time to use their smart phones to shop.

Don't wait for them to find and search for your store. Create Virtual Stores to blend into their everyday lives.

A true blend of virtual and real time life.

Innovative Indeed.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Google+ Verification Badges For Profiles

Google Is rolling out profile verification badges for celebrities, public figures, and people who have been added to lots of circles.  

Google says that this is just the beginning and have not stated that how a profile can be applied for a verification badge.

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Thursday, August 18, 2011

Google Testing Infinite Scroll On The Search Results Page

Author : Bharati Ahuja

There is an article on today that Google has confirmed that they are indeed testing a form of infinite scroll web search results.

I have not seen this feature live on Google as yet but, if this feature goes live then I think it is going to be a quality improvement on the search results page.

It will be win-win situation for all, the user, the website owner, the search engines and SEOs.

The User Perspective:

If the scrolling is fast and easy then then user will surely scroll for more for a wider range of search results before taking a decision.

Website Owner Perspective:

The website owner will be less obsessed for getting his website ranked on Page 1 and focus more on quality aspects of the website.

The SEO Perspective:

The statement “SEO Is Beyond SERPs” will get its true meaning and SEO discussions will be beyond Page 1 rankings finally. Making the site stand out with a perfect title and description will be the main focus for getting a high CTR for the site.

The Search Engine Perspective:

The search results page will get a quality and meaningful update and will add more speed to the search activity. The user will be able to search more in less time. The search results page will become truly mobile friendly.

Overall it is going to be a smart move by Google if this gets finalized as I do not think there can be any reason why the user will reject such a development on the search page. After Google Instant this infinite scrolling feature will add the instant factor to the whole search process when searched from the desktop, tablet or mobile.

Hope Google makes the Infinite Sroll Web Results feature go live instantly.

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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Matt Cutts Webmaster Video On “Underscore v/s Dashes In Urls”

Matt Cutts in this video explains how Google interprets the underscores and dashes in the URLs.

I was under the impression that there is not such thing like an underscore in the English language and the dash being a hyphen would separate the words and take each word separately , but there is more to it.

Dashes are preferred over an underscore in the URL as a dash does separate out each term and each term gets indexed separately but an underscore joins the terms and indexes it as one term.

If you already have a site which has used an underscore in URLs you need not bother to change all the URLs as it is not very much a ranking factor. But incase you are developing a new site then opting for dashes in the URL is the correct option.


Sunday, August 14, 2011

Niche Social Networking Sites - Connects Cancer Victims Through Social Media

Niche social networking sites are sites focused on a specific cause, issue or a topic and target a specific audience. These kind of networking sites offer a more meaningful platform for sharing and offering solutions related to that niche.

This kind of segmentation proves the point that people want to find solutions and share on the internet but want to be away from the meaningless noise and want to find a targeted audience where a meaningful, focused and helpful interaction is possible.

One great example is an initiative by by Mailet Lopez (a cancer survivor) and the team at Squeaky Wheel Media in New York City. I Had Cancer allows cancer survivors, fighters and those newly diagnosed and their supporters, the friends & families of those affected to connect with one another and share their stories and experience of dealing with the deadly disease.

Related Links:

Friday, August 12, 2011

Matt Cutts, Ben Gomes and Amit Singhal From Google Give You An Inside Look On How Search Works

This video is about Google's search leaders Matt Cutts, Ben Gomes and Amit Singhal who give you an inside look on how search works, they share stories on what it has been like to work together over the past decade, and discuss where they see search heading in the future. Moderated by Search Engine Land's Danny Sullivan.

It is a must view for all the people who are passionate about search and want to have an insight about how Google deals with search and search algorithms.

Some of the points discussed in the video are:

Amit Singhal introduces himself and says that academically he has done Masters In Search and a PhD in search – (Well he says yes there is such a thing but this back when search was the sleepy domain for the librarians)

Ben Golmes shares that when he joined Google his previous Boss had asked him “Do you think Google will ever be 1/10th size of Altavista?”

Matt Cutts introduces himself and says that he was a graphics guy and wrote the first version of safe search at Google and in the process found out that there are bad guys on the internet and since then he has been dealing with them now as the head of the web spam team of Google.

We take simple principles of how language behaves and build algorithms based on those principles in an environment of the modern web.In the real world these algorithms are challenged with all its complexities and the most relevant pages have to be produced for the query made by the user.

Danny Sullivan asks Google how do you decide what is not working and what is broken and how to fix it?

Amit Singhal says all their algorithmic changes are based on one principle that is - So what is best for the user, they develop science around it and then measure what is best for the user.

He further says that there is rigorous testing done before they finalize on any ranking algorithm update. There are approx. 500 changes to algorithm every year and Google runs around 20000 tests every year.

The answers to the following questions are considered along with many other considerations before deciding to go ahead with the new algorithm.

  • Is it good for the web eco system at large? 
  • Would it benefit authors? 
  • Would it benefit high quality content? 
  • Would it keep the Google system simple so that it can be maintained much longer? 

Ben Golmes adds that being very rigorous for testing is essential to the speed of moving fast so that they are constantly sure that they are the best for the users at any given point.

Matt Cutts says that at times under certain circumstances they may take manual action.

Matt says at Google we are obsessed about speed and we would like to give the most relevant result as fast as possible to the user.

All search in the future seems to be mobile and Danny Sullivan adds that we will not even be searching but it will be happening to us.

Some Related Links:

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Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Is There A Limit To How Many 301 (Permanent) Redirects I Can Do On A Site? Video - By Matt Cutts

Matt Cutts recently posted on Google+ that Google has recently recorded ~30 new in-depth videos and ~60 new quick-answer videos. This is the first in-depth video, and it's about 301 (permanent) redirects.

Is there a limit to how many 301 (Permanent) redirects I can do on a site?

According to this video:
  • There is no limit to the no. of 301 redirects that a site can have. 
  • Instead of redirecting every 301 to the root it should be redirected to the actual URL of the new site. 
  • Its ideal to do a redirect in one hop instead of having more no. of hops as the bot may lose track
  • Use this 301 redirect only if the URL shift is permanent. If it is a temporary one and you would like to get back to the previous URL after some time then the 302 redirect is the correct option.

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Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Having A Schedule And Being Organized – A Personal Perception

Author : Bharati Ahuja

DCTC Business EntrepreneurImage via Wikipedia

I work as an independent entrepreneur and have a very different approach towards having a team. Instead of developing a team in-house I prefer co.ordinating with professionals and execute the project by allocating the relevant aspects of the project to the identified experts in that field.

And over a period of time some professionals become a necessary part of your organization. This way you get to work with professionals who are passionate about their work and the clients also get high quality results.

One does not have to bother about the team management issues and one can focus on upgrading the quality of service so that satisfied customers generate a WOM which accelerates business opportunities without much direct marketing methods. This in a way encourages entrepreneurship further.

I do not have any qualms about a 9 to 5 job but to each his own. As a job entails a different set of responsibilities and demands a different approach to work as compared to working as an entrepreneur.

Just the other day a business associate after observing my way of working asked me so you do not have any schedule for the day?

The chuckle in his voice made me think – Is this a good thing or a bad thing?

After giving thought to it I realized that yes if you are working 9 to 5 then you need to have a schedule as you are a part of the team and reaching at a fixed time and having a certain way of working according to the systems of the company become very important.

But as an entrepreneur even if you do not have a schedule does not necessarily mean that you are disorganized as the priorities of the day become your schedule.

· If you have a presentation then everything else may take a back seat.

· Especially when you are in online business the working hours can be 24/7 .

· If you need to give quality time to your children at a certain time of the day due to their busy schedules then that day working till late at night   becomes something unavoidable.

· That is the plus point of working independently as you decide what is the priority of the moment and work according to the need of the hour which gives a lot of spontaneity of thought and eliminates the element of the boredom which arises due to having a strictly fixed schedule.

· Of course the challenge is of meeting deadlines by repeatedly working on the progress of the project and co-ordinating efficiently with proper communication becomes the focus of every decision .

· As Liz Strauss has mentioned in her article It takes commitment to become your own boss — a commitment to yourself, to the people you serve, and to the value of what you offer. That commitment has been in every success you’ve won. Make the commitment and you’ll become an irresistible force. 

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