What to Expect from the New Google+ Local Listings

Atlanta SEO Company, Interactive Search Marketing, knows that when Google starts playing around behind the scenes, business owners get nervous and with good reason. If you are in business right now you have spent time improving your online reputation, and becoming as prominent as possible in the search engines. It is just the cost of doing business these days and no one wants to hear about a change that might damage all their hard work.

Google+ Local | Atlanta SEO Company | Google PlacesThe good news is that there is nothing to fear just yet. Essentially Google has gotten rid of their local search pages called Google Places and replaced it with Google+ Local. They are working on taking all of the existing Places pages and converting them into Google+ Local pages so the business owner does not have to request the conversion, it is automatic.

For the moment, Google says that the change will not have an effect on local search but that doesn’t mean it won’t in the future. In fact, it is a pretty sure bet that the new pages will become a major factor in local searches. One of the biggest changes that they have made to the process is the introduction of Zagat reviews. On the previous Google Places pages everyone utilized a five star rating for a company. The new pages will use a zero to thirty Zagat rating that has been integrated directly with Google+ Local.

Business owners have a lot of questions about the recent changes and we will address a few of the most common ones below to help clarify some issues.

  1. How do you verify your Google+ Local profile? If you have already claimed your business through Google Places then you will not need to do so again under the new system. If you have not claimed your profile then you will do it the same way as you did with Places. At the moment there is no way to see if a business has been claimed or not but Google is supposed to implement a fix for that soon.
  2. What will happen if my company already has a Google+ page? Google is working to merge the Google Places pages with the existing Google+ pages so the integration is happening internally.
  3. How do we manage our Google+ Local profile? You will work through your regular Google Places interface like you always have.

Bing Makes Some Big changes, Here’s What to Expect

Atlanta SEO Company, Interactive Search Marketing, talks about the newest changes to Bing.  With all the changes that Google has been implementing it should come as no surprise that Bing is also trying to shake things up. For awhile now Microsoft has been trying to gain some ground on the search engine leader (Google) and they are now leveraging their investment in Facebook to offer something that Google cannot.

Bing will soon be rolling out a brand new interface that incorporates your social media contacts into your search results via a sidebar. In essence, it will operate just like the search engine always has but it will also show information from your social networks like Facebook and Twitter.

BingFor example, if you were to run a search for information about Georgia, the search engine will gather information from:

  • The Internet ( Just like it always has)
  • Your Facebook profile ( To find any mention of the search term Georgia)
  • Your friends Facebook profiles (To find out who may live in Georgia, vacation in Georgia or have some kind of expertise in it)
  • What you and your friends have liked on Facebook
  • Facebook Photos

Once it has gathered the information, it will give you the standard search results plus a list of social media contacts in a sidebar that may have additional information about your search term. So, if you have a friend on Facebook that said they live in Georgia or posted a picture tagged with the word Georgia,  they might appear in your search sidebar.

While many people see this as a great way to integrate social networking into search results, others are not so sure. Quite a few Facebook users feel that the social media site is already too intrusive, and they do not want to give it even more control over standard online tasks.

This may be Bing’s chance to take a few users away from Google. In essence, Google is pairing a relatively unpopular social media site with the most popular search engine to date but Bing is pairing a relatively unpopular search engine with the two most popular social media sites to date. The new Bing interface is set to launch in a few weeks and anyone interested in social media or search engine optimization will be watching very closely to see what effect it may have.

What Will a Website do for My Business?

As a Dawsonville web development company we often get asked, “Why do I need a website for my business? What will it do for me?”  The answer is actually simple, and having a great website is crucial in the expanding world of technology that we live in today.

Your Business Needs a WebsiteSo, what will a website do for your business?

  • When is the last time you looked for a phone number in a printed phone book?  Odds are it’s been a while.  Search engines like Google and Yahoo are now the main vessels of information.  Having a great Dawsonville web development team strategically build and optimize a website for your company will put you at the top of the list when consumers are looking for the products or services that you offer.
  • Once you have a website, it opens a whole new market.  It will allow customers, and potential customers or investors, to learn more about your business via web search.  That said, you can’t just throw together a website and hope for the best.  There is more to it than that.  The site needs to look professional and be optimized for search engines so that your company develops a great web presence.
  • Potential customers are looking for your services or products.  If you don’t have a website, it’s guaranteed that they will find your competitor’s site instead.  Meaning that one of your customers is now lost.
  • Having a great website will allow you to keep customers engaged in your business by allowing you to post new things about your company.  You can let customers know about sales and specials, or that you’re moving or opening a new location.

It is important to remember, however, that having no website at all is better than a poor one.  Make sure you hire a great professional Dawsonville web development team to design and maintain a great web presence for your growing business.  Don’t miss out on another customer.

Top 6 Google Updates that Positively Affect SEO

Google has a way of making SEO companies squirm with new updates and changes to their search algorithms.  This year’s updates have really made an impact on the world of SEO.  However, it’s not what you think.  Any good SEO team that creates great content that is relevant to readers will still have great rankings in Google’s search results.

Google PandaHere are six of the 50 changes that Google made in March that are the most important to SEO and marketing:

  • Update Codename: Blackboard will process autocomplete queries that include math symbols. (+, -, %, $, @, etc.)
  • Update Codename: Prof-2 allows for betting indexing of profile pages from more than 200 social network sites.
  • Update Codename: ShieldsUp allows for better handling of local intent and navigational queries, where it looks as if the user is trying to navigate to a specific site, or within a specific site that is near their current location.
  • Update Codename: Curlup is the big one that has some “black hat SEO companies” shaking.  This allows Google to crawl a webpage and rank a website based on quality, and what it brings to the user, instead of ranking for SEO alone.  This is what I mentioned before, using keywords is still best practice.  However, don’t just shove them into sentences and content that don’t fit.
  • Update Codename: Fibyen improves the algorithm that determines dates for blogs, ensuring that the newest and most relevant results are brought to users.
  • Update Codename: Lice updates the signals that Google uses related to the landing page that quality images are located on.  This means that users will find higher quality images, even if the images are on lower quality pages.

Google’s updates always seem to scare everyone on the web. Though Google isn’t setting us up for a SEOpocolypse, and as long as you have great tactics there’s nothing to worry about.  If you own a business that has a website just make sure that you have a great Atlanta SEO and web development team taking care of your web presence.  This will ensure the best rankings in Google and greater traffic overall.

Spiders on the Web: Web Crawlers and Search Engines

What are Web Crawlers? Ever wonder how your search engine comes back with endless information when you hit the search button for just about any topic? Web Crawlers, also known as Web Spiders, Bots, and Web Roots is the answer to that one. So, what is a Web Crawler? It’s a program, or script, that methodically browses the web and gathers information from web pages and indexes all of the information on the page and drops it in a main dispensary.

Web Spiders Can…

  • Provide up-to-date data (If you were to change a phone number etc.)Spider
  • Checking Links
  • Validating HTML Code
  • Help Market Researchers find the most up-to-date words and terms used today

Web Crawlers, and using them correctly, are a crucial method for collecting data on the ever expanding web. With so many webpages being added daily, and all of the information that is constantly changing, search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing would be all but useless without them. Search engines wouldn’t work at all in fact.

The Dark Side, Web Crawlers can be used for evil as well.

Some choose to use Web Crawlers maliciously…

  • Hacking Servers
  • Gathering Info for Spamming

So, how exactly do they work? When a Web Crawler visits a page it “reads” visible text, hyperlinks, tags, and keyword rich Meta tags. Using the info that it just “read” the Web Crawler will determine what the web page is about and index it.

This is just the simple synopsis of what Web Crawlers do, why, and how. Of course there are many details involved with making sure the Web Spiders read your web page correctly. Don’t have a 500 page website, make sure your webpage and domain name are relevant to your company or business, and hire a good SEO team. Find the right SEO team, and you’ll be set for excellent presence on the World Wide Web.

Google + Business Profiles – Not Quite Yet Folks

In typical headless chicken fashion social media minded businesses have rushed to jump on the Google + bandwagon for their companies.  This has led to a rash of business profiles being set up under standard user profiles…something that Google is not thrilled about.  Google has plans to create a robust business side for Google + in the future…it’s just not ready yet.  Google + for business does have a business profile sign up sheet where users can enter their business details.  Information about Google + for Business can be seen here:

So What Now?

In the meantime Google plans on removing business profiles set up using user profiles so don’t waste your time bending the rules…sign up for a Google + business profile and be patient…what else can you do!

Is Google + a Better Facebook?

Earlier this week invites started rolling out for Google + to a small group of users and later in the week to a much larger group…should you care? Did Buzz let you down? Do you need another social media outlet? Maybe…let’s look @ the finer points of Google’s would-be Facebook competitor Google +:

  1. Circles – This feature allows users to “easily” segment their contacts into groups and to share information within these “circles”.  This is much improved version of Facebook groups and is much easier to configure and administer.  Circles makes it easy to keep the pictures of you violating local ordinances out of your mom’s feed and your boss’s feed while still sharing them with your more permissive circle of friends. (note:  posting pictures of you doing crazy stuff on the internet is generally a bad idea…period)
  2. Google +Sparx – Searches centered around an interest generate results that can be aggregated to an interest list and that list will begin to generate a feed of info from across the web that is relevant to your interests
  3. Huddle – Provides group messaging capability across both apple and droid phones and SMS.  This feature allows group chat between members of the circles mentioned above.  Pretty cool…at least we think so
  4. Hangouts – This is group video chat…a new development that could really revolutionize social sharing and communication…imagine a live video chat with all your family members going over your dad’s 800 picture slideshow from their Disneyworld vacation…ok maybe that is not a great example but being able to live chat with multimedia sharing has potential…for sure.
  5. The Black Bar – this is the tie in that may make Google + a winner…you have probably already seen it at the top of Google search results.  With Google+ enabled this bar makes interacting with plus across all Google properties a snap. Of course without widespread adoption of Google + all that ease of interaction is useless J
  6. Mobile App – Google certainly has the wherewithal to develop a killer app…and they have done a pretty good job of that.  All the bells and whistles above are integrated in the app and easy to use.

How does any of this stack up to Facebook?

It’s too early to tell but Google + certainly has some compelling design and functionality features that are too cool to not check out.  Google has made a series of introductory videos to Google + for those that want a video intro the project:

To get your invite go check out the Google + page here and enter your info…it seems a safe bet to say that you shouldn’t have to wait very long!

Google Plus One

Google’s new Plus One (+1) for websites is the next big advancement by the search engine behemoth. They have had several attempts at social media fall flat on their face recently, but this one may just hang around.

Plus One allows users to effectively (to use Facebook terminology) “like” a search result. This allows others from within your Google network to see that you have already liked or “plus oned” something, therefore increasing the odds that they click on the link as well.

How does this affect SEO?

The effects of this could weigh heavily on SEO. Organic traffic is one of the most important factors in determining SE placement, so naturally if your see your friend likes one restaurant over another, more than likely you will click on that restaurant as well, therefore increasing that site’s organic traffic. Also, this is even further continuing Google’s attempt to lower the rankings of content farms. Poor guys never seen it coming.

Is this going to beat Facebook’s “Like” button?

Actually Facebook and Google’s philosophy’s aren’t much different than we think. Both companies consider themselves services and both are trying to give users content that is relevant to what they are interested in. So, with that being said, the short answer is probably no. The longer answer is that it may become a huge competitor because the button would be more generic and therefore used in more situations than a Facebook like. Also, looking back on the old Google vs. Facebook battle, we can assume that +1ing is naturally going to increase SE placement more than liking a page.

Google vs. Facebook

To sum up…

Google’s +1 will not more than likely immediately pose a huge threat to the like button. However, seeing that +1ing will have a “social feel” as well as working in the search engine, it will be more widespread and more relevant overall to the user experience.

Google is Using Social Networks to Change Internet Search Marketing

Today Google is using social networks to change  internet search marketing.  Currently this leader in Internet searches is teaming up with many social networking outlets to make search engine results more comprehensive and individualized. The only site that’s not joined the team is Facebook who refuses to grant Google permission to access its members’ search data.  Yet, this hasn’t stopped Google from including practically every other social networking outlet to make Google’s function far more “social”. Google is Changing the Face of Internet Marketing.

Now, when an individual logs into their Google account to run a search on any given topic, this internet juggernaut now includes results that closely fit a member’s social networking interests. Instead of a standard, blind set of results, the ranking is influenced by ones’ interactions with:

1)      Twitter

2)      Blogger

3)      Flickr

4)      LinkedIn

5)      And more as Google expands their reach.

By doing this, Google has effectively caused internet marketing based in using keywords alone obsolete. It is no longer important to dwell on keywords because Google is cross-referencing everything with an individual’s or company’s social networking connections. What this translates into is that web results will be different from person to the next.

What will be important in any web search from here on are factors like:

1)      Place of residents

2)      Searches run previously

3)      Social networks of which they are already a member

4)      Businesses, products or services one has used before

To make the most of this new development, the best internet marketing companies are working to improve their client’s web presence by including them in such social networking groups as Twitter, Flickr and Facebook. This is not simply to put a client at the top of a search results page, but to increase their web presence as a whole.  Whether or not Google finally incorporates all social networking outlets into their sphere of influence, in today’s world adding a more comprehensive social networking presence is just good business.  Today there are few, no matter their age, that don’t actively use one or more of these sites to stay in touch with family, friends and business.  To succeed in this growing .com business trend, being increasingly visible in the social networking world is a major priority.

In the past it has been the central focus of internet marketing companies to cram as many keywords as possible into content in order to rank higher.  Now it is far more important to write interesting, relevant, and sometimes humorous blog articles or videos to get the desired results.  This includes creating quality work (not redundant quantity) and spread it out over several social networking sites.  What this means is that it’s crucial that a business, whether large or small, to hire only the best internet search marketing company who doesn’t only keep up with the curve, but stays ahead of it.

Social Media Experts Make Facebook Work for You

Social media experts make Facebook work for you in ways many still don’t know is possible.  In the fast-paced world of business, there no time to waste on advertising that’s outdated and obsolete when much more effective tools are out there.  Websites have become perhaps the most popular new means of getting a company’s name out there, and there are excellent SEO companies to make those websites even more profitable.  Yet, professionals in the SEO business have yet to see all the advantages of using social networking tools to make the best even better.  Some of these social media tools include Flickr, Twitter and Facebook.  All of these can be included in a Facebook profile if the social networking team hired knows how to incorporate them.  SEO experts learn to use every avenue open to the public to give their clients an edge. 

Leaders in the SEO Know How Facebook Can Help Business.

Many businesses and companies now have a Facebook page, but there are features added often that those preoccupied with the daily tasks related to running a business may miss.  That’s why a social media team who make it their business to know these things is a fantastic friend to employ.  Testimonials from satisfied customers, photos of previously completed projects, and videos of the owner speaking to the public are all possible on Facebook.  These are simply free advertisements that save a bundle from going to local television stations.  In an economy where every penny counts, why not make the best of what’s even better – getting advertising for FREE!

SEO experts know that you can’t put all a company’s eggs in one basket.  A social media staff can build a Facebook page at an affordable price and can be included in packages that involve these same professionals building a website as well as all the SEO requirement to stay ranked at the top of Google, Bing, and Yahoo.  Imagine having all these benefits to increase sales, and is maintained by the same company!  This takes the confusion out of who to call for what and the ability to easily contact one person for ALL answers.  Technology doesn’t have to be scary when there is an excellent social media team out there to make Facebook bring even more profits to the front door.  So don’t miss the boat, get on board today and find out what a social media company can do with all the fantastic features found on Facebook.  Contact a leader is SEO today and find out more about how social media experts make Facebook work you.