Google Website Translator

Google Website Translator Gadget was made available to all webmasters.

Your website’s content may only be in one language (e.g. English), but your visitors’ may prefer to read your content in their own mother tongue languages. Translating your website’s content into multiple languages manually can be expensive and complicated. Google Website Translator Gadget supports the automatic translation of your site’s content in 51 languages and is a Javascript/client-based tool that operates within visitors’ browsers.

Google Website Translator Gadget detects the language of your web page and the browser settings of your visitor.

  • If your visitors’ language is different from the language of your page, they will be prompted to automatically translate the page into their own language
  • If your visitors’ language is the same as the language of your web page, no translation banner will appear

The installation of Google Website Translator Gadget requires only the insertion of the code snippet onto your site’s pages. As long as the code snippet is placed within the BODY section of your site’s pages, you can customize the placement of Google Website Translator Gadget.

Posted on October 12, 2009
Category: Google Tools | 5 Comments

Google Tests Bing Adcenter PPC

Google put up PPC ads on Microsoft Bing Adcenter. A PPC ad for Google Flight Tracker shows up on Bing’s sponsor links when you search for “flights”:

    Search
    Google Flight Tracker PPC Ad on Microsoft Adcenter

A click on the ad takes you to the introduction video of Google’s Flight Tracker:

    Google Flight Tracker Video Intro

Google Assessing Microsoft Adcenter PPC Ads’ Quality and Bing’s Search Volume

Buying PPC ads on competitor Microsoft Bing search engine allows Google to,

  • Monitor Microsoft Bing’s search volume on high traffic keywords (e.g. flights)
  • Assess the traffic quality of Bing.com’s sponsor links
  • Experiment the possibility of creating an online travel search engine (or a flight price comparison feature)

Google’s Flight Tracker

Regarding to Flight Tracker, Google Web Search can display flight details when you search for flight numbers. For example, a search on “aa 905″ shows you the flight schedule from Miami to Rio de Janeiro with departure time and arrival time:

    Flightstats.com on top Google SEO result

Google announced the launch of the flight tracker at the end of 2007.

You can also find other useful gadgets at Explore Google Search.

Posted on October 11, 2009
Category: Adcenter | Leave a Comment

How to Get Search Engine Traffic to New Websites

Once your new website is created according to the small business website tips, the next step is to get search engine traffic to your website. Search engine traffic can come from

  • Organic search (search engine optimization aka SEO)
  • Paid search (pay-per-click aka PPC)

Organic Search Traffic (SEO)

Search engines (e.g. Google, Yahoo and Bing) has potential to deliver high volume of free search engine traffic to your new web site. Before that happens, you will have to ensure:

  • The search engine’s spiders (Google’s Googlebot, Yahoo’s Slurp and Bing’s MSNBot) can crawl your site’s web pages
  • Your site is included in Google’s index, Yahoo’s index and Bing’ index
  • Your web pages are ranked “high enough” on Google’s, Yahoo’s and Bing’s search results pages

The top 3 search engines usually are able to detect and crawl your site through any external backlinks pointing from another site to one of your web pages. Check the inclusion of your website in each search engine with the command (replace with your site’s domain name):

site:www.gordonchoi.com

If your new site is not included in the search engines’ indexes (after several months of launch), you can manually submit your site to the search engines:

Ensure your site has the major factors implemented to rank well in Google’s, Yahoo’s and Bing’s search algorithms.

Paid Search Traffic (PPC)

The top 3 search engines can deliver high volume of paid search traffic to your web site through pay per click programs:

With PPC you are going to pay for every single one of your clicks that will lead to your website.

Before setting up your new PPC campaigns, run keyword research through the SEM keyword research tools to ensure you are going to be paying clicks for the keywords that are most relevant to your site.

On a regular basis, review your PPC campaign reports (for unusual and/or suspicious data) to spot PPC click fraud.

Posted on October 7, 2009
Category: SEM | 2 Comments

Baidu Keyword Research Tool

Before doing Baidu search engine optimization for your website, you will need to run a Chinese keyword research using Baidu keyword suggestion tool. Baidu has made the keyword suggestion tool available in your Baidu PPC Phoenix Nest account.

Use Baidu’s Keyword Research Tool in Baidu PPC Account

    Baidu Keyword Tool under PPC account's Tools section

This Baidu keyword research tool suggests new keywords to you in two ways:

  • Generate keywords from a “core keyword” that you enter
  • Generate keywords from a URL that you enter
    Baidu Keyword Suggestion Tool by Core Keywords

Run Baidu’s Keyword Research Tool

The keyword research tool returns a list of related keywords based on your “core keywords”. You can download the new SEO keywords as a spreadsheet.

    Baidu suggested related keywords

Understand the Correlation Among Baidu SEO, Baidu PPC and Baidu Search Open Platform

To maximize your Baidu SEO effort, you will have to understand how the two Baidu PPC Auction Systems work. Also for some search queries, universal search results (or one-box results) may show up. Baidu has made the submission through Baidu Search Open Platform available.

If you are running Baidu PPC alongside Baidu SEO, Baidu’s keyword research tool allows you to add the new keywords directly into one of your Baidu PPC ad groups and/or campaigns.

    Add new keywords directly

Get Localized Keyword Data

If you run a web site that provides local business for certain regions in China, Baidu keyword suggestion tool can narrow down by regions and/or cities and show you the “geo-targeted” keyword data.

    Baidu suggests regional keywords

Google’s Keyword Tools as Alternative

Google provides several great SEM/SEO keyword research tools in which you can discover more new Chinese keywords.

Posted on October 4, 2009
Category: Baidu SEO | 2 Comments

Submit Site to Bing

Microsoft Bing search engine was launched in June. To ensure your website is included in Bing’s index (and can be “found” on Bing), submit your site to Bing’s URL submission page.

  • You only have to submit your home page URL (e.g. www.gordonchoi.com) as Bing’s MSNBot follows links from your homepage to discover other web pages on your web site.
  • Bing uses MSN’s search algorithm. If your site is already getting organic search traffic from Live Search (Live.com) and/or MSN (as shown on your web analytics reports), you do not have to re-submit your website to Bing.

To monitor the status of your site on Bing, sign-up an account to use Bing Webmaster Tools.

Posted on September 26, 2009
Category: Bing SEO | 8 Comments

Google Search Snippets Links

Not long ago, one line Google sitelinks was introduced which are shown immediately underneath descriptive snippets for some of Google’s web search results. Google now improves the search snippets by making those links anchor-based. Clicking on one of those anchor-based search snippets links will take you directly to a section of a page. By showing you links beneath the snippet to relevant sections of the page, making it faster and easier to find what you are looking for.

    Search Snippet Links for Search Engine Optimization
    Search Snippets Links for Online Marketing

Search snippets links mostly appear on Google’s Wikipedia search results as the above examples for search queries “search engine optimization” and “online marketing”.

What happens is that Google indexes URLs that include anchors. The anchor-based search snippets links are generated algorithmically, based on page structure. Google’s Webmaster Central Blog suggests what you can do to increase the chances that the in-snippet links might appear on your pages:

  • First, ensure that long, multi-topic pages on your site are well-structured and broken into distinct logical sections.
  • Second, ensure that each section has an associated anchor with a descriptive name (i.e., not just “Section 2.1″), and that your page includes a “table of contents” which links to the individual anchors.

Search snippets links only appear for search queries that Google “thinks” are relevant.

On Google.cn, search Snippets Links also appears under Wikipedia search results, but for Chinese search queries (e.g. Ou-Ba-Ma, meaning Barack Obama in Chinese Pinyin).

    Search snippets for

A search on Google.cn for Chinese historical hero “Sunzhongshan” shows Baidu Baike (Baidu’s Wikipedia) being the top SEO result with anchor-based search snippets links.

    Search Snippets for

How other blogs talked about Google’s Search Snippets Links:

Posted on September 26, 2009
Category: Google SEO | 1 Comment

Baidu Search Open Platform

Baidu Search Open Platform (aka Baidu Aladdin) has been launched in beta to webmasters and web developers. The open platform accepts XML data submission that may appear among Baidu’s web search results.

Baidu Search’s open platform allows both webmasters and Baidu together to build universal search results. Instead of Baidu’s search algorithm trying to figure out what should be displayed as the universal search results, webmasters collectively are to submit data as “suggestions” and some of the submitted data is believed to become Baidu’s universal search results.

    Baidu Search Open Platform (aka Aladdin)

To use the open platform, sign up and verify the ownership of your website. You will have an option to either upload a file to your website’s server, or insert a verification code into your header META tag. You will also be required to submit a personal identity document.

  • Decide the keywords that you want to be included within Baidu’s universal search results
  • Choose a template
  • Create and submit the XML files

The default templates that Baidu offers, includes the one-line template:

    Baidu Universal Search One Line Template

The festival template:

    Baidu Universal Search Festival Template

And the score chart template:

    Baidu Universal Search Score Chart Template

If none of the templates are suitable for your keywords, you can even ask Baidu to create customized templates. Tencent’s QQ.com has the customized service telephone number template below:

    Baidu Universal Search QQ Phone Number

Once approved, your universal search results will be displayed above Baidu’s organic search results.

    Baidu's Universal Search Result above Organic Search Results

Baidu does have guidelines to determine the “relevance” to the universal search results, so not all submissions will show up among Baidu’s organic search results. Baidu especially requires the data being submitted to be:

  • Comprehensive
  • Accurate
  • Unique
  • Up-to-date

Another tip before submission is that you should always consider search engine user experience in general.

Posted on September 22, 2009
Category: Baidu SEO | 1 Comment

Baidu PPC Auction Systems

Baidu PPC Phoenix Nest was launched in April and has changed how Baidu PPC ads are displayed.

Baidu’s Two PPC Auction Systems – Classic Edition and Phoenix Nest Edition

Baidu’s PPC ads are served by two distinct auction platforms simultaneously:

  • Baidu Classic Edition – Baidu PPC’s old platform
  • Baidu Phoenix Nest Edition (aka Professional Edition) – Baidu PPC’s new platform

The two PPC ad auction systems have different ranking algorithms, but together they contribute to how Baidu’s PPC ads are displayed on Baidu’s search engine results pages.

Baidu’s Search Engine Results Pages (SERP)

A typical Baidu SERP first page starts with 10 Classic Edition PPC ads which are followed by 10 organic search results on the left side. On the right side, a maximum of 8 Phoenix Nest PPC ads are shown.

  • Left side: 20 search results
  • Right side: 8 search results
    Baidu SERP First Page

Another version of Baidu SERP first page without any Classic Edition PPC ad competition shows a maximum of 3 Phoenix Nest PPC ads (with a slightly different background color) on the left side (above organic results). The rest of the Phoenix Nest PPC ads continue on the right side.

  • Left side: 13 search results
  • Right side: 8 search results
    Baidu Phoenix Nest Ads on Both Sides

Before Phoenix Nest Edition was launched, Baidu tried to replace the SEO result with a Classic Edition PPC ad at position 10.

Baidu Phoenix Nest Edition

Baidu’s Phoenix Nest ranks ads by including CTR in the ranking algorithm. Baidu Phoenix Nest’s PPC Keyword quality can be optimized by improving CTR of the keywords.

Phoenix Nest’s ads are displayed on the right side of Baidu. A typical example of Phoenix Nest ads that show up on the right side:

    Baidu Phoenix Nest Ads on the Right Side

One exception is that Phoenix Nest PPC ads can also show up above the organic search results, when there is no competing keywords that are matched to the appropriate Classic Edition PPC ads.

Baidu Classic Edition

Baidu’s Classic Edition includes ads’ click through rates in the PPC ad ranking algorithm:

Ad Rank = CTR x Maximum Bid

Classic Edition’s PPC ads are displayed on the left side of Baidu and above the organic search results. Baidu will display up to a maximum of 10 PPC ads at this spot. One exception is that when the spot is competed by more than 10 ads. From the 11th ads onwards, ads will show up on the right side of Baidu after all the Phoenix Nest ads are displayed.

When Classic Edition PPC ads show up on the right side of Baidu:

    Baidu Classic Ads on the Right Side

The Classic Edition PPC ads can be distinguished from the typical Phoenix Nest PPC ads by tiny details:

    Identify and Distinguish

Baidu Huobao Text Ads

Baidu Huobao text ads previously have been sold to advertisers for fixed annual fees regardless of performance and rooms for optimization. However, Huobao text ads will be phased out.

Posted on September 16, 2009
Category: Baidu PPC | 2 Comments

Baidu PPC Keyword Conversion Tracking

Baidu PPC (Baidu Professional Edition and Baidu Classic Edition) does not offer conversion tracking capabilities by keywords. The workaround is to set up Baidu Web Analytics to track and record Baidu PPC’s conversions.

Enable Web Analytics

Enable Baidu Web Analytics for your website from within your Baidu PPC account.

    Access Baidu Web Analytics from Baidu PPC account

Insert Conversion Tracking Code Snippet

Insert the tracking code snippet of Baidu Web Analytics. Baidu Web Analytics gives you two sets of code snippets:

  • The optional code snippet that goes to the header of each web page
    Optional Top Code Snippet
  • The compulsory code snippet that goes to the bottom of your conversion success page
    Compulsory Bottom Code Snippet

To track your Baidu PPC conversions, you will only need to embed the “compulsory” code onto your conversion success page (or thank you page).

Create URL Tags

Create unique tags for each of your keyword via the Destination URL Builder. Use the constructed URLs as your keywords’ destination URLs in your Baidu PPC account.

    Destination URL Builder

With each keyword, you will have to provide values for your campaign’s source, medium, name and keyword, and tag them to your destination URL. “Campaign Creative” is the only optional parameter.

  • Destination URL: e.g. http://www.gordonchoi.com/about
  • Campaign Source (hmsr): e.g. baidufc
  • Campaign Medium (hmmd): e.g. ppc
  • Campaign Name (hmpl): e.g. about gordon choi
  • Campaign Keyword (hmkw): e.g. gordon choi
  • Campaign Creative (hmci): e.g. ad1

The successful constructed destination URL would look like:

http://www.gordonchoi.com/about?hmsr=baidufchmmd=ppc&hmpl=about%20gordon%20choi&hmkw=gordon%20choi&hmci=ad1

Keyword Conversion Tracking of Other PPC Programs

You can also track keyword conversions of other PPC programs via Baidu Web Analytics in the same way.

Posted on September 10, 2009
Category: Baidu PPC | 2 Comments

Baidu Analytics

Baidu Web Analytics was launched in Beta to Baidu.com’s advertisers and publishers.

    Baidu Web Analytics Logo

Baidu Web Analytics Reports

You can use Baidu Web Analytics to track all the web traffic visiting your web site and view reports.

  • Visitors Reports by Countries, Regions and Cities
  • Traffic Sources Reports by Search Engines and Referring Sites
  • Content Reports by Your Web Pages

Baidu Web Analytics can show you reports that include the metrics below:

  • Visitors
  • New Visitors
  • Page Views
  • Visits (only header loaded)
  • Vistis
  • Average Time on Site
  • Page Views / Visits
  • Bounce Rate
  • Multiple Pages Visit Rate

With an active Baidu PPC Phoenix Nest account, the metrics below will also show up in your Baidu Web Analytics account:

  • Clicks
  • Impressions
  • CTR
  • Cost
  • CPC

Enable Web Analytics

Access Baidu Web Analytics through your Baidu PPC account’s Web Analytics tab.

    Access Baidu Web Analytics from Baidu PPC account

Setup

To set up Baidu Web Analytics to track all the web traffic of your website, you are required to:

  • Add your website’s URL
  • Insert the code snippets
  • Validate the insertion of the code snippets

Insert Code Snippets

Baidu Web Analytics offers you two sets of code snippets. The first set of code snippet is optional and should be inserted within the header of every page.

    Optional Top Code Snippet

Only when this header code snippet is included, the metric “Visits (only header loaded)” will show values. The metrics “Visits (only header loaded)” and “Visits” together indicate how many visitors have not waited for your web pages to fully load before exiting your site.

    Baidu Web Anaytics Keyword Report

The second set of code snippet is compulsory for tracking web traffic and must be inserted at the bottom of every page but immediately before the closing of the body tag.

    Compulsory Bottom Code Snippet

Validate Code Snippets

Insertion of the code snippets on every page of your web site will be validated. You will be shown the page URLs that are missing the code snippets or have the code snippets incorrectly installed.

    Verify Code Snippets Installation

Baidu Web Analytics Intro Guide

Baidu offers an official introduction guide for Baidu Web Analytics:

Chinese Interface

Baidu Web Analytics can track web traffic for websites that are of any languages and are targeting any countries’ web users. However, the interface is in Chinese (simplified fonts) and does not yet have an English version.

Posted on September 5, 2009
Category: Web Analytics | 1 Comment

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