Archive for May, 2010

Apple overtake Microsoft in size

May 28, 2010

Apple have just pipped Microsoft to the title of largest tech company. Now with a capitalisation of $222 Billion, they have knocked Microsoft into second with only $219 Billion value.

The popularity of Apples hardware is difficult to argue with and when compared with the relative unpopularity (inspite of it’s use) of the windows platform. With the Uk launch today of the iPad, Apples star is on the rise.

Yandex sets its sights on Google

May 25, 2010

Yandex, the Russian search engine is having a good time. Currently up to 7th in the overall search traffic stats, ahead of Ask and Facebook, Yandex is looking to capitalise on its new English speaking engine.

It has been noted that for many searches, Yandex is quietly out performing Google and delivering much more suitable results than current google search is doing.

Will this progress continue? Will Yandex be able to out perform the likes of Bing? Watch this space…..

Google Caffeine Observations

May 23, 2010

Here is an interesting thing, the speed that your website loads is now critical to your web performance. We have a page within our site that is purely a navigation pages with all our necessary links on it. It is in general one of the most used pages on our site as all staff access it many times per day.

We have recently moved offices and were without a highspeed connection for the best part of a month. Because of this, some of us worked from home, or used mobile dongle connections in the office.

Now here is where it gets interesting…….. Googles Caffeine update has added average load times into the algorithm in order to speed up the web.

This opens up several points, like where does it get the data?
It turns out we supply in via Google analytics. If you views Googles webmaster tools, you can now see a graph of your sites speed performance. The mark the top 20th percentile as being fast, and the bottom 80th percentile as being slow.

Due to the volume of searches we were conducting via mobile connections, ( in a rural invironment I might add) we saw our average load time rise from a second to over 18 seconds.

At the 18 second point, our site disappeared off the front page of Google for “Search Engine Optimization”, causing a secondary drop in traffic so that the only hits we were then getting were 18 sec average load time.

We were initially stumped as to what had caused the fall from grace, and proceeded to double check ever single element of our process in order to establish the cause.

It turned out that not only had our own visits caused the problem, but we had given Google the data to decide to drop us from the rankings.

What this has done is to force us back to the drawing board, to speed up our design to the point that our new pages load in 0.8 sec ave, while having 900 k of data, some 6 times more than many of our front page competitors. This all means that we can carry more of our message than our competitors can and so drive sales.

The good news is that once we narrowed the problem down and took steps to fix it, we returned back into the top three, as if nothing had happened!

It raised a few questions, for example if you have a site that receives mostly mobile searches, you may well be penalised….. if you use Google analytics. How do you resolve that situation?

While I commend Google for their efforts, the current system is quite bug ridden, as potentially you could affect a competitors rankings by repeatedly loading their site using a mobile device…….. it is surely just a matter of time before someone does just that?

as one of the leading Search engine Optimization companies in the UK, it is important to stay one step of ahead of the major engines, but with this update it is difficult to pre guess which way they will go with it. One thing is for certain, if you have a slow site, you should remove Analytics as soon as possible as you will start to slide in the rankings eventually.

Find out more Search Engine Optimization

Google gains more share of the search market

May 11, 2010

Google has had a fantastic April, seeing it’s share of the search market grow by 2 points in the US to over 71%. By contrast, Yahoo saw a drop of 1% dipping below 15% share and Bing dropped 2% falling back below 10% once more, inspite of the massive $100M marketing investment in Microsofts new engine.

This must be worrying news not only for Bing, but also for Yahioo who are going to be using Bing search later this year. It looks so far as if the public have not taken to Bing as much as was hoped. If you have seen the TV ads in the UK, I am not surprised, as they make no marketing sense to me at all, and seem to imply that their search engine will deliver random information, or perhaps I misunderstand the ad?

The biggest loser in all of this is Ask, who lost a massive 37% of their search volume in April, falling to just over 2%.

Where will this domination by Google end? Good question, I believe that it will require a different approach in order to topple Google and I have a feeling that the big players aren’t brave enough to risk what they have in order to create a new search model, while new players now require massive funding in order to compete.