Tag Archives: Google

New Youtube Video Editor

With software installations and complicated instructions, editing video can be a hassle—but not with youtube now. Today, Google introducing YouTube’s new online video editor, which makes editing your video a cinch. It’s available in TestTube, where YouTube engineers and developers test out new tools and get feedback on how they’re doing.

With this new editor, you can:

  • Combine multiple videos you’ve uploaded to create a new longer video
  • Trim the beginning and/or ending of your videos
  • Add soundtracks from our AudioSwap library of tens of thousands of songs
  • Create new videos without worrying about file formats and publish them to YouTube with one click—no upload necessary

All that, and you don’t need to install any extra software. Here’s a video from YouTube user rewboss that gives you a glimpse of how it works:


Check out the YouTube Blog for more details. And once you’ve given the editor a whirl, let us know what you think by leaving a comment on the YouTube Blog.

Google’s new search index: Caffeine

On June 9th Google announced the completion of a new web indexing system called Caffeine. Caffeine provides 50 percent fresher results for web searches than Google’s last index, and it’s the largest collection of web content which Google offered. Whether it’s a news story, a blog or a forum post, you can now find links to relevant content much sooner after it is published than was possible ever before.

Some background for those of you who don’t build search engines for a living like us: when you search Google, you’re not searching the live web. Instead you’re searching Google’s index of the web which, like the list in the back of a book, helps you pinpoint exactly the information you need. (Here’s a good explanation of how it all works.)

So why did Google build a new search indexing system? Content on the web is blossoming. It’s growing not just in size and numbers but with the advent of video, images, news and real-time updates, the average webpage are richer and more complex. In addition, people’s expectations for search are higher than they used to be. Searchers want to find the latest relevant content and publishers expect to be found the instant they publish.

To keep up with the evolution of the web and to meet rising user expectations, Google built Caffeine. The image below illustrates how our old indexing system worked compared to Caffeine:



Google’s old index had several layers, some of which were refreshed at a faster rate than others; the main layer would update every couple of weeks. To refresh a layer of the old index, Google would analyze the entire web, which meant there was a significant delay between when Google found a page and made it available to you.

With Caffeine, Google analyze the web in small portions and update its search index on a continuous basis, globally. As Google find new pages, or new information on existing pages, they add them straight to the index. That means you can find fresher information than ever before—no matter when or where it was published.

Caffeine let Google index web pages on an enormous scale. In fact, every second Caffeine processes hundreds of thousands of pages in parallel. If this were a pile of paper it would grow three miles taller every second. Caffeine takes up nearly 100 million gigabytes of storage in one database and adds new information at a rate of hundreds of thousands of gigabytes per day. You would need 625,000 of the largest iPods to store that much information; if these were stacked end-to-end they would go for more than 40 miles.

Google built Caffeine with the future in mind. Not only is it fresher, it’s a robust foundation that makes it possible for Google to build an even faster and comprehensive search engine that scales with the growth of information online, and delivers even more relevant search results to you. So stay tuned, and look for more improvements in the months to come.

Follow your football team in South Africa, with Google

Whether you’ll be in South Africa in person this month, or simply cheering your team on from back home, Google’s new tools for football fans can help you soak up the atmosphere and follow your team wherever you are in the world.

You can check out the brand new Street View imagery for South Africa which includes amazing pictures from seven of South Africa’s new football stadiums, including Soccer City in Johannesburg, Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane and Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban. Each one can be explored from pitch-level in 360 degrees, both inside and out—see a preview on the Lat Long blog. These detailed images were collected over the last few months, using the Street View Trike and some serious pedal power!


You can also zoom around the host cities and stadiums in 3D. Simply turn on the 3D buildings layer in Google Earth or switch to Earth View in Google Maps, and zoom in to the chosen destination. All ten of the football stadiums have been modeled in amazing 3D detail, as well as the South African cities of Rustenburg, Nelspruit, Polokwane, Cape Town, Durban, Pretoria, Port Elizabeth, Bloemfontein and Johannesburg.

To make it easier for people to find all these great places, South African Tourism has provided information on the most important sights. Visit maps.google.com/exploresouthafrica to start virtually exploring South Africa.

If you’re staying back home but want to find a great place to watch the match with your friends, take a look on Google Maps and look for the special football icon—that tells you that the location is one of tens of thousands of businesses who have added themselves to Google Places as a football viewing location.

Google’s first global Doodle 4 Google competition is well underway, with tens of thousands of children in 17 countries around the world sending Google their amazing designs for a doodle around the theme of “I Love Football.” The winning doodle will be displayed internationally on the Google homepage for a day on July 11, 2010.

To make it easy for you to customize your photos to show the world which team you’re cheering for, Google launched a set of football-themed photo effects in Picnik. With just a few clicks, you can add digital face paint, soccer-themed stickers and team flag overlays, customized for each of the 32 qualifying teams.

Finally, it’s not just the professional players who’ve been put through their paces ahead of kick-off. In the run-up to the games, fans from around the world have joined the legendary Dutch midfielder Edgar Davids on his Street Soccer Tour for Charity from Amsterdam, London and Paris and to eight cities in Senegal, Ghana, Kenya and South Africa. Edgar and his team of Street Soccer Legends have been competing against local players as they make their journey to South Africa and you can watch them on YouTube.

May the best team win!

Evolving from beta to stable with a faster version of Chrome

After a bit of evolution and lots of work by the Google team, they thrilled the world by introducing a new stable version of Chrome for Windows, Mac and Linux. Since last December, they’ve been chipping away at bugs and building in new features to get the Mac and Linux versions caught up with the Windows version, and now they finally announce that the Mac and Linux versions are ready for prime time.

Google Chrome for Windows

Google Chrome for Mac

Google Chrome for Linux

The performance bar for all three versions keeps getting higher: today’s new stable release for Windows, Mac and Linux is our fastest yet, incorporating one of Google’s most significant speed improvements to date. Chrome is  improved by213 percent and 305 percent in Javascript performance by the V8 and SunSpider benchmarks since their very first beta, back in Chrome’s Cretaceous period (September 2008). To mark these speed improvements, Google also released a series of three unconventional speed tests for the browser:

(If you’re interested in how Google pitted Chrome against the forces of a potato gun, lightning, and the speed of sound, take a look behind-the-scenes in this video, or read the full technical details in the video’s description drop-down in YouTube).

You may also notice that today’s new stable release comes with a few new features, including the ability to synchronize browser preferences across computers, new HTML5 capabilities and a revamped bookmark manager. For more details, read on in the Google Chrome Blog.

If you haven’t tried Google Chrome since the stone age, check out this brand new stable release. If you’re already using Chrome, you’ll be automatically updated to this new version soon. To try it right away, download the latest version at google.com/chrome.

SEO Content Distribution Linking For Newbies

The new buzz on the internet is all about getting one-way links by distributing content to other sites in exchange for back links. As with every other SEO or website promotion technique ever devised, there are plenty of newbie myths about it that can ruin your chance for success before you even start.

Newbie Myth 1: The “Duplicate content penalty.”

Some webmasters worry that if the content on their sites is suddenly on hundreds of other sites, search engines will inflict a “duplicate content penalty.” Why is this concern unjustified?

* If this were true, every major newspaper and news portal website would now be de-indexed from the search engines, since they all carry “duplicate content” from the news wires such as

Reuters and the Associated Press.

* Thousands of self-promoting internet gurus have proven that distributing content is an effective method of improving search engine rank.

* Even more thousands of content websites have proven that republishing this content does not carry any search engine penalty.

True, the first website to publish an article often seems to be favored by search engines, ranking higher for the same content in searches than higher-PageRank pages with the same content. But the “duplicate” pages do show up in the search engine results, even if lower than the original site. Meanwhile, the reprint content has no effect on the ranking of a site’s other pages.

The only duplicate content penalty is for duplication of content across pages of a single website. Meanwhile, there is a sort of “copyright theft” penalty, whereby someone who copies content without permission can be manually removed from search engine indexes out of respect for the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. But that penalty is only for flagrant theft, not minor mistakes in attributing reprint content.

Newbie Myth 2: The goal is to get in article clearinghouse websites.

There are over 100 popular, high-traffic websites that act as clearinghouses for content made available for redistribution. These websites include isnare.com, ezines.com, and goarticles.com.

Many novice content-distributors are upset when the article clearinghouse websites, with tens of thousands of articles each with a back link, pass negligible Page Rank. But the point of distributing content to those websites is for other website owners to find your content and put it on their websites–not to get a back link directly from the clearinghouse website (though this is sometimes an unexpected bonus).

Plus, to maximize Page Rank-passing links, you also have to submit articles to website owners individually. It’s not a small amount of work. But there’s no substitute for a polite, individually crafted email recommending a website owner complement his or her existing articles with one you’ve written.

Myth 3: Any content will do.

Reality: It should be obvious that many website owners, jealous of their link popularity, will only republish exceptionally high – quality content. For articles, this means a unique point of view and solid information that cannot be found just anywhere, ideally presented in compelling language in a web-optimized format by a professional published writer. You can conduct a content distribution campaign with bad content, but you’ll be handicapping yourself from the start.

Myth 4: Distributing content is easy. Just hit “send.”

Reality: Content distribution campaign requires skillful planning to target publisher websites effectively.

This is essentially a four-step process.

1. You must identify the categories of websites most likely to republish your articles. These categories range from the very broad, such as internet, business, and family, and can go as narrow as family-friendly internet businesses.

It’s a careful balance: you need to make your target category narrowly relevant to maximize the value of the link and your chances of getting your article accepted for publication. But if you target too narrow a category, you’ll lower the maximum number of links you can hope to get.

For instance, a website on web content writing has to target its content distribution to more than just sites focusing on web content. There are only so many websites devoted to web content as a topic of interest, and besides, many such websites would be competitors. Distribution should target broadly relevant categories, such as web design, webmaster issues, writing, marketing, business, website promotion, and SEO. Yet some broadly related categories, such as internet or publishing, are not relevant enough to yield good results.

2. To maximize success, you must have articles custom-created for each major category you want to submit to. “Incorporating Content in Web Design” and “Marketing with Content” would be possible titles for a web content-writing website owner targeting web design and marketing websites, respectively. An article about web design won’t appeal as strongly to marketers, or vice versa, so simply submitting to websites having to do with “the web” would not be as effective.

3. For maximum success, articles custom-written for a category then often have to be refined for sub-categories. For instance, “Incorporating Content in Web Design” becomes “Incorporating Content into Flash Web Design,” or “Incorporating Content into Accessible Web Design.” Sometimes the refinement is just a “find and replace” of one keyword for another, sometimes just in the title. Sometimes, entire paragraphs have to reworded or removed.

4. Once you’ve identified sub-categories of websites, you still have to be able to meet the requirements of individual websites. Some sites only publish articles up to 500 words, some only do how-to articles. Owners of high-ranking websites can afford to be choosey. To really maximize results within a sub-category, you need at least three different articles of varying lengths and focus specifically geared toward that sub-category.

In the end, distributing content for website promotion and inbound links is a marvelously effective way of promoting a website. But it’s not magic beans. Like anything else having to do with achieving success on the web, it takes hard work and knowledge to be successful.

Google AdSense for Mobile Applications Now Work With More Ad Networks

Google is always working to help people grow their mobile business with ads. Google made their tools even more flexible by allowing publishers participating in their AdSense for Mobile Applications beta program to use third-party mediators. Mediation lets app developers use multiple ad networks simultaneously – reaching a greater pool of advertisers, and focusing more time on building their apps, and less time managing ad inventory.

AdSense for Mobile Application beta publishers will now be able to manage their ad inventory using third party ad serving mediators, as long as their apps meet these conditions, including:

  • Using the latest version of the AdSense for Mobile Applications SDK
  • Abiding by the AdSense for mobile applications terms and program policies
  • Agreeing to Google’s privacy policy

This is great news for Google AdSense for Mobile Application publishers because it will allow them to easily optimize and fill their ad inventory. Google believe this also shows their commitment to develop the mobile advertising ecosystem by ensuring that the most optimal ad is shown to users, and enabling Google’s AdSense partners to earn more regardless of which networks they use.

To learn more about monetizing for mobile, or to learn more about how to apply for the AdSense for Mobile Applications beta program, please visit www.google.com/mobileads/developer.

Using Anchor Text Effeciently

One of the most underused things by Newbies in regards to linking is “Anchor Text”. This is the visible text showing in a link.

The prime mistake Newbies make is to put their website name into the Anchor Text. Unless your website contains your keywords this is a waste of a perfectly good link. Remember that Google puts a very big importance on those Anchor texts and they should always use your keywords.

The second mistake is trying to put every single keyword into your anchor text and give that to everyone. There are two mistakes with this technique.
1.) Google assigns weight to each word in anchor text so if there are a lot of filler words (common in long sentences), they will “dilute” your target words

2.) You should vary your text throughout your links. That is, change it every 20 or so. This just makes sense. If your links were placed naturally, there would never be 300 links all with the EXACT same anchor text.

So with all that in mind here is an example:

You sell Blue Widgets in England and want to rank first for “Cheap Blue Widgets in England”
Your anchor text could be varied between the following:
Cheap Widgets
Blue Widgets
Widgets in England
Cheap Blue Widgets

Hopefully this helps you start an effective campaign.

Why Google Indexing Requires A Complex Blend Of Skills

If it was easy, everybody would be doing it. Getting a company’s name and products, or services, onto the first page of a genuine Google search isn’t a trivial piece of work. In fact, there are four distinct skills that a search engine optimizer needs to possess. Most people possess one or maybe two of these skills, very rarely do people posses all four. In truth, to get to all four, people who are good at two of these need to actively develop the other skills. Now, if you are running your own business, do you really have the time to do this? Is this the best use of your time?

Specifically the four skills needed for SEO work are:
Web Design – producing a visually attractive page
HTML coding – developing Search Engine friendly coding that sits behind the web design
Copy writing – producing the actual readable text on the page
Marketing – what are the actual searches that are being used, what key words actually get more business for your company?

Many website designers produce more and more eye-catching designs with animations and clever rollover buttons hoping to entice the people onto their sites. This is the first big mistake; using designs like these will actually decrease your chances of a high Google rating. Yes, that’s right; all that money you have paid for the website design could be wasted because no-one will ever find your site.

The reason for this is that before you get people to your site you need to get the spider bots to like your site. Spider bots are pieces of software used by the search engine companies to trawl the Internet looking at all the websites, and then having reviewed the sites, they use complex algorithms to rank the sites. Some of the complex techniques used by web designers cannot be trawled by spider bots. They come to your site, look at the HTML code and exit stage right, without even bothering to rank your site. So, you will not be found on any meaningful search.

I am amazed how many times I look at websites and I immediately know they are a waste of money. The trouble is that both the web designers and the company that paid the money really do not want to know this. In fact, I have stopped playing the messenger of bad news (too many shootings!); I now work round the problem. So, optimizing a website to be Google friendly is often a compromise between a visually attractive site and an easy to find site.

The second skill is that of optimizing the actual HTML code to be spider bot friendly. I put this as different to the web design because you really do need to be “down and dirty” in the code rather than using an editor like dreamweaver, which is OK for website design. This skill takes lots of time and experience to develop, and just when you think you have cracked it, the search engine companies change the algorithms used to calculate how high your site will appear in the search results.

This is no place for even the most enthusiastic amateur. Results need to be constantly monitored, pieces of code added or removed, and a check kept on what the competition are doing. Many people who design their own website feel they will get searched because it looks good, and totally miss out this step. Without a strong technical understanding of how spider bots work, you will always struggle to get your company on the first results page in Google.

Thirdly, I suggested that copy writing is a skill in its own right. This is the writing of the actual text that people coming to your site will read. The Google bot and other spider bots like Inktomi, love text – but only when written well in proper English. Some people try to stuff their site with keywords, while others put white writing on white space (so spider bots can see it but humans cannot).

Spider bots are very sophisticated and not only will not fall for these tricks, they may actively penalize your site – in Google terms, this is sand boxing. Google takes new sites and “naughty” sites and effectively sin-bins them for 3-6 months, you can still be found but not until results page 14 – really useful! As well as good English, the spider bots are also reading the HTML code, so the copy writer also needs an appreciation of the interplay between the two. My recommendation for anyone copy writing their own site is to write normal, well-constructed English sentences that can be read by machine and human alike.

The final skill is marketing, after all this is what we are doing – marketing you site and hence company and products/services on the Web. The key here is to set the site up to be accessible to the searches that will provide most business to you. I have seen many sites that can be found as you key in the company name. Others that can be found by keying in “Accountant Manchester North-West England”, which is great, except no-one ever actually does that search. So the marketing skill requires knowledge of a company’s business, what they are really trying to sell and an understanding of what actual searches may provide dividends.

I hope you will see that professional Search Engine Optimization companies need more than a bit of web design to improve your business. Make sure anyone you choose for SEO work can cover all the bases.

Breaking the Myth about Page Rank (PR)

The most difficult challenge most web designers face is getting traffic to your site. There are plenty of companies who promise to send traffic your way. Sadly, most of this traffic is not qualified. Yes, your hit counter will move higher, however, if its not qualified, you may find you have unhappy visitors to your site. Unhappy visitors will not click on your ads or purchase your products.

Once you have optimized your site, consider submitting it to every search engine. If you want to get spidered quicker in Google, have a web page with a PR of 4 or higher point to your site. Your site will be spidered within a couple of days!

One myth I would like to bust is that PR is a measure of a web site. Its not. I receive countless emails offering a reciprocal link with their PR5 or PR6 site. Unless my link is appearing on the main page, or a page that has PR6, I am not getting a share of PR6. Most likely, my link will appear on a page that has a PR2!

Page rank is Google’s ranking of that specific page’s relevance. Just because the main page has a PR of 4, does not make every page on the site a PR4. Beware of sites who claim that they will exchange links with you and its to your benefit since they have a PR5 or PR6. Where is your link appearing? If its on a page that has a PR of 4 or 5 or 6, great!

Reciprocal linking, if done properly, will ensure that your keywords are at the top of the search engine. If you have a popular keyword, you’ll need to have more back links. Pick your link partners properly, and ensure that they are linking to your keyword.

For example: if your site is www.frenzilla.com, consider sending out requests to relevant higher ranking pages to start with, followed by lower ranking pages and ask web designers to link back in a manner so that your url is a hyperlink for your keyword, not your site url or site name.

Presuming their keyword is “best dining in new york”, having links pointing to your site with an anchor tag incorporating your keywords will improve your search engine rankings dramatically.

Once you have established a collection of sites pointing to your site using your keywords, you will start receiving reciprocal link exchanges from other sites. This is where you can start to be particular.

If you want to maintain an effective PR and attract better sites for linking, follow these tips:

a) Is it indexed?

While their site may be indexed, the page where they are placing your link, is it at least indexed by google? If you type in allinurl:www.sitename.com/links/right_here.html and there are no results, consider declining their offer. If the page your link appears on has not been indexed, there is no benefit whatsoever to you. If your pages have PR, they may consider placing your link on another page. If the page your link appears on is indexed, but does not have PR, consider accepting their offer. While the page today may not have PR, it will in time.

b) How many neighbors?
The value of the page rank is shared with each of the links on that page. If you are splitting that PR with several other sites, your share of PR will be small, which doesn’t help you. Reconsider accepting any link exchanges if your site is 1 of more than 30 – 40 sites that will appear on that page, unless its a very high PR. Further, if there are too many links on that page, Google may consider the page to be part of a link farm, which may end up penalizing your site.

c) Is it relevant?
Google is big on relevancy. Ensure your links pages are relevant. If you operate a site about golf, having links from cooking sites will not help you establish your page rank. It may cost you more than you get in return.

How to Find Good PR sites:

a) Do a search for them by typing in your keyword and start asking for reciprocal link exchanges. Take a look at their PR and go from there. Remember, its the number of sites that backlink to you that matters, not strictly the PR of the page. I would rather have 50 pages that have a PR1 pointing to my site, than to have 5 sites that have a PR5. Of course, if you can get 50 pages that have a PR5 pointing to your site, you are laughing!

b) Take a look at your existing link partners and check out their links pages. Its clear the people appearing on those links pages are interested in reciprocating.

c) Purchase software that will help find quality link partners.

It is important to attract higher PR sites when you are on a reciprocal link campaign. However, its not the most important thing when it comes to search engine rankings. Its the backlinks that point back at you that are key. The more of those, the better off you will be for your keyword.

Remember: every page starts off as a PR0. Just because its new doesn’t mean it wont get a higher PR once google gets around to assessing a score. If the page your site appears on is indexed, and its a relevant site of quality, consider exchanging links. You’ll grow a large list of link partners in a short period of time, and increase your search engine rankings in the process.

Foreign Language SEO

Bob is from United States and speaks English, along with some Hebrew and Spanish. Alice is from Romania and speaks Romanian, English, and some French. Why does this matter? There are concerns— Both from a language angle, as well ad some interesting technical caveats— when one decides to target foreign users with search engine marketing. Here we will discuss about the most pertinent factors in foreign search engine optimization.

The internet is a globalized economy. Web sites can be hosted and contain anything that the author would like to publish. Users are free to peruse pages or order items from any country. There are some exceptions, but in general, to enhance user experience, a search engine may treat web sites from the same region in the same language as the user preferentially.

Foreign Language Optimization Tips

Needless to say, Internet marketing presents many opportunities; and nothing stops a search engine marketer from targeting customers from other countries and/or languages. However, he or she should be aware of a few things, and use all applicable cues to indicate properly tothe search engine which language and region a site is focused on. First of all, if you aim at a foreign market, it is essential to employ a competent copywriting service to author or translate your content to a particular foreign language. He or she should know how to translate for the specific market you are targeting. American Spanish, for example, is somewhat different than Argentine Spanish. Even proper translation may be riddled with problems. Foreign language search behavior often differs by dialect, and using the common terminology is key.

Indicating Language and Region

A webmaster should use the lang attribute in a meta tag, or inside an enclosing span or div tag in HTML. Search engines may be able to detect language reasonably accurately, but this tag also provides additional geographical information. The language codes es-mx, es-us, and es-es represent Spanish from Mexico, the United States, and Spain, respectively. This is helpful, because a language dialect and region cannot be detected easily, if at all, just by examining the actual copy. Here’s an example:

Use ‘<span lang=”es-us”>CONTENT</span>’ to indicate language in a particular text region.

Or:

Use ‘<meta lang=”es-us”> in the header (“<head>”) section of the page to indicate language of the entire page.

A few examples of languages and region modifiers.

English en-AU (Australia), en-CA (Canada), en-GB (UK), en-US (United States), en-HK (Hong Kong)
German de-AT (Austria), de-BE (Belgium), de-CH (Switzerland), de-DE (Germany)
French fr-CA (Canada), fr-CH (Switzerland), fr-FR (France), fr-MC (Monaco)
Spanish es-AR (Argentina), es-CU (Cuba), es-ES (Spain), es-MX (Mexico), es-US (United States)
Japanese ja (Japan)