SEO News: Between media release and travel preparations

Time for our weekly SEO News. This week is an incredibly exciting one for us here in Berlin: Searchmetrics is undergoing a huge, highly anticipated change.  We’ll tell you more about it from the press room in the upcoming days. However, here’s a small indication to start with: The favorite app Whatsapp will finally begin requiring payment from Android users as well. The app has had more than 100,000,000 downloads in the Google app market; when every one of those downloads would actually pay 99 cents, somebody could make a lot of money. But whether Android users will really be so generous with their wallets as Apple users (who have always paid for the app) remains to be seen. That aside…

On to the SEO News of the week before we head off to Salzburg for the SEOKomm 2012. A very relaxing conference taking place on Friday at which we gladly appeared as the main sponsor. Yesterday we already took part in the Toolbattle.

  • We think that all tasks should be quantifiable. That’s why this “23 Tips on How to A/B Test like a Badass” is exactly the right thing. Some of the tips are simply common sense, but they are still worth reading and considering. It’s exactly when you have a little extra time that you can not only use our Optimization Tool but also directly do the A/B tests with us.
  • The traffic from Bing is rapidly growing among some user groups, reason being probably Windows 8 and the new Surface. A good moment to monitor Bing not only as a search machine from the couch but also to read the current Bing Webmaster Guidelines. It’s a very good summary and includes a couple of declarations of what should probably be left alone.
  • Sudan Patel of SEJ has put together a couple of good tips about how to deal with the Conversion Rate Problems. Simply read through it quickly for what applies to you and then get started with the A/B tests.
  • Amanda King has written an interesting introduction on Link Relationship Building . It also includes a lot that makes sense for a ‘normal’ business operation as well.
  • Do you want to make your website more secure and completely switch to HTTPS but feel unsure about how Google is going to handle it? Then Barry Schwartz has some good beginning information for you. According to Matt Cutts, it should work and not cause any problems, so you can get started. However, be aware that it can also lead to performance problems if your server isn’t powerful enough. That’s because the HTTPS requires machines with more capacity. By the way if you think with that you get back to your query parameter: that will not work; Barry unfortunately tried this unsuccessfully.
  • Speaking of Matt Cutts: Viktor Dite tested his blog for the best known SEO tips. And, surprise: Matt doesn’t even stick to his own tips. No ALT tags for images, no XML sitemap. Somebody has a lot of trust in his employer. Nevertheless, Matt Cutt’s presentation in Las Vegas at the PubCon 2012 is definitely worth a read: “State of the Index.”
  • And here’s a humorous story from the world of Googlers: A Webmaster at Webmasterworld reported that he broke down after receiving a penalty and registered all (!) of the links he found in Google Webmaster Tools per disavow links tool. Then, he waited for a period of time, and requested reconsideration. His answer? “We’ve reviewed your site and we still see links to your site that violate our quality guidelines.” Ooops! How can that be? He probably just used the wrong tools to identify the links  ;)

That was our SEO News for the week. I hope that you found a few interesting topics and join us again as a reader. You can follow us on Facebook if you don’t already. Information on all the new topics is there and as soon as we publish the newest ranking factors, you’ll be the first to know.

To close, here’s a story with a moral: Besides good content, honesty is always important. If you try to fool your users, sometimes it comes out and then you look pretty bad. Oprah Winfrey just discovered that personally: She tweeted about how much she liked her new Microsoft Surface, however, she tweeted from an iPad – which, duh, of course people found out.

Have a great week and if we don’t see you in Salzburg, then let’s read here again next week…

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P.S.: Who’s writing this stuff? My name is Matthias Bachor and i am leading the Searchmetrics Marketing team. You can contact me via m.bachor@searchmetrics.com, Google+ or reply with a comment.
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