The Best of Google Tricks & Search Results

Google is always releasing new products and features, even different versions of their logo on a regular basis. A very small part of their releases include tricks and entertaining search results.  Many of these tricks and results have been around for some time, while others are relatively new, nonetheless if you haven’t seen these fun results, take a minute to browse our top 10 examples.

And the drumroll please…

1.    Google “Do a Barrel Roll” – Type this phrase into Google and don’t look away! This was developed by an advanced Google programmer who wanted to show how advanced browsers are today.

2.    Slay The Dragon  – In Google Docs, open any spreadsheet and when you press Shift+F12 (Shift+Function+F12 on a Mac), a message will pop up announcing “Dragon slain! Congratulations, you’ve slain the dragon!”

3.    Google “Askew” or “Tilt” – I wonder how much more traffic “TILT” branded products and locations are receiving these days?

4.    Gravity Trick – Visit MrDoob.com, do a search and have some fun watching your Google page crumble due to gravity.

5.    Creative Google Map Recommendations – Get directions from Bejing, China to Tokyo, Japan. You won’t be able to read most of the results but check out number 30!

6.    Google “The Answer to Life the Universe and Everything” – If you are ever feeling lost visit Google and they will help point you back in the right direction.

7.    SPAM – This is an oldie but a goodie. Log into your Gmail account and visit your Spam folder to find the latest and greatest recipes for, you guessed it, SPAM.

8.    Google ”What is the Loneliest Number” – We all know the answer but in case you forgot, Google will blatantly point this out for you.

9.    Pig Latin – Although Google can change settings to many popular languages, this one just seems so much funnier than all of the rest. Anyone know how often this is used by people that can actually read Pig Latin?

10.    Google “Recursion” – Recursion by definition is the process of repeating terms in a self-similar way. Very witty, Google.

All but one of these tricks were developed directly by Google, the exception being the Gravity Easter Egg that was too cool to leave off of this list.

There are a lot more of these tricks and Easter eggs out there, even some that are seasonal like “let it snow,” which I hope will return next holiday season. We would love to hear about any Google related tricks that did not make our list, post a comment below!

Cats vs. Bears vs. Sharks vs. Darth Vader – The 2011 Video Link Bait Smackdown

2011 may forever go down in history as one the best years ever for online “best of” lists… there were a lot. However, amidst the kerfuffle of “best of’s 2011″ banter that pervaded the online space this season, there was a particularly insightful piece run by Adweek about the top 10 commercials of 2011. Aside from essentially being an aggregated list of the top viewed YouTube videos of the past year, the Adweek post gave a pretty comprehensive rundown on the best of the best in anthropomorphic viral phenomenons of 2011. From bear skin rug French directors (RSCG), to cats with thumbs forming street gangs (W+K), to sharks with a taste for “peanut butter Snickers” flavored humans (BBDO), the best of advertising in 2011 was dominated by animals with human like characteristics… and a diminutive Darth Vader (Deutsch L.A.).

And, of course, being a link builder, I could not help but first wonder: “How many drugs are the dudes at BBDO on?”. But then I wondered, “hmm… which (if any) of these respected advertising behemoths is screwed together tightly enough to actually maximize such a ridiculous amount of user engagement into bonafide links?”

First up to the competitive analysis gallows is Cravendale and their excellent “what if cats grew thumbs video” (Wieden Kennedy London).

Aside from the fact that W+K may have done the impossible and made a cat video worth watching, the capable crew did the smart thing and embedded the video into a landing page on the Cravendale site, complete with Facebook and Twitter accounts so you can follow the online exploits of “Bertrum Thumbcat,” the rather formidable looking tabby who is undoubtedly well on his way to becoming the leader of be-thumbed feline world domination.

YouTube Views to Date: 5,128,330
Inbound Links Gained: 762
*Link Leverage Score: A-

Next up on the chopping block is Snickers and the admittedly awesome “Shark’s in a Focus Group” (BBDO, New York).

Now, while the concept of sharks eating humans is nothing to laugh about, the concept of sharks eating humans because they taste like a Snickers is downright vaudevillian in its comedic genius. And while this video and concept certainly both deliver in their promise to make you crave a four by four of peanut-buttery goodness… it ain’t doing nothing for Snickers.com’s link equity. In fact, the Snickers video page on their website has a re-direct in place that sends you to YouTube!

I for one would be appalled that no one took advantage of this sensational piece of link bait if I hadn’t stumbled upon this page on the BBDO website proudly showcasing all of their clients’ videos. All I can say is thank goodness somebody at BBDO knows something about SE… Oh wait… the URL is hidden from search behind a hashtag… nevermind.

YouTube Views to Date: 1,056,877
Inbound links Gained: For BBDO? probably a few… none for Snickers… sorry Snickers.
*Link Leverage Score: D

Next up to be taken to the off site SEO woodshed comes all the way from France with Canal+’s Epic “Bear Rug Director” (BETC Euro RSCG).

Now I love this. A stupendous piece of content that is just dying to be shared all over the bloody place created as a promo spot for what is now essentially the French version of YouTube, Canal+. They had to have leveraged the links here a bit for themselves, right?

Wrong… mostly…

The majority of any relevant links (I counted 2,500 going to the player via Majestic) go straight to the Canal+ video player which sorts all of the videos behind a hashtag and a bunch of ugly numerical permalinks. Basically that all boils down to this:

Well that’s a crying shame. According to the search engines (i.e. according to Google) this Canal+ video doesn’t even exist… and we all know you can’t link to something that doesn’t exist… just ask Yahoo Site Explorer. (ooohhh burn!)

YouTube Views to Date: Hundreds of Thousands over Several Different YouTube Versions
Inbound links Gained: No Idea. Could be substantial, probably isn’t… definitely not utilizing best practices for link bait. 
*Link Leverage Score: D-

Finally we come to what was indubitably the gold medal winner in terms of Super Bowl halftime brand recognition, ladies and gentlemen… a video which hardly needs any introduction… I give you “adorable little squirt in Darth Vader costume” (Deutsch L.A.).

Millions of views, hundreds of thousands of likes, a handful of dislikes (seriously? who on earth could dislike a kid dressed as Darth Vader using the force on his dad’s Volkswagen?), this video is literally the “Star Wars” of big brand viral videos. And since it was a video for a car company, and we all know car companies love their search results, there is no earthly way this opportunity could have slipped through the cracks, right?

Wrong! Very Wrong! Like, dark side of the force wrong. More wrong than replacing C-3PO as a comedic sidekick with Jar Jar Binks wrong.

Volkswagen did house this video on their website. But their efforts were anything but stupendous. It was on a subdomain, blog.vw.com (link juice lost)… within a blog post (archived within days)… without using “the force” as a title tag (eliminating any good SERP positioning).

And considering that (even now, months after the spot has run) people are still actively searching for the video…

That means the opportunity for missed traffic by not ranking for their own video is an ongoing problem for Volkswagen… and probably always will be. They aren’t even on page one for either search term. (Insert “clever ‘Star Wars’ pun about totally dropping the ball with the words ‘the Force’ in it” here)

Youtube Views to Date: Approaching 50,000,000
Inbound Links Gained: I found 16 going to the blog post…  and that’s probably being generous.
*Link Leverage Score: F+ (the + is for the effort and because I can’t totally blame them… it’s tough to outrank YouTube, but definitely NOT impossible)

So there you have it, a sample of the 2011 major advertising link bait winners and losers. More losers than winners this year, but hey… there’s always next year, right?

*Link leverage score is based on integration of campaign into web property, and promotion of said web property with SEO in mind… and also from a magical excel spreadsheet that I will never share with anyone… and also from science.

How To Increase Your Clickthrough Rate (CTR) For PPC

It’s a brand new year and if one of your New Year’s resolutions is to whip your online advertising presence into buns of steel-like shape, you’ve come to the right place. Wpromote will be here all year long dishing out valuable, free tips of the trade to help you get your online marketing strategy ripped.

2012 is already ticking by, so let’s get started. In this article, we’ll talk about different ways to improve your PPC Clickthrough Rate (CTR). CTR refers to the number of people who click on your ad out of the overall number of people who view your ad (CTR = Clicks/Impressions x 100). This rate gives advertisers an idea of the effectiveness of a particular ad.

So, What is a Good CTR Score?
What is considered a “good” CTR will vary widely across industries, keywords and campaigns. This question does not have a simple nor exact number. We’ve seen CTR’s range from below 1% up to 30% and higher. Rather than fixating on finding this “good” CTR score, it is more important to find out what CTR you need in order to have a profitable campaign. If you determine the ROI you can earn from each click, then you can work backwards to find what CTR’s you will need in order to achieve profitability.

What Affects Your CTR?
Before getting to the tips, let’s talk about some of the factors that affect CTR. There are several factors that can contribute to your CTR; things like how well your ad is written, how targeted your keywords are, and where your ad is placed.

Competition is also one of the biggies. If you are selling iPhone cases and you use the keyword iPhone Cases, you’re going to have a lot of competition. You may get a lot of impressions, but there will be so much competition that you aren’t likely to get very many clicks. And, if you focus on common words, it’s more than likely that you will have to pay much higher bids to have your ad placed somewhere it will be seen, like the first page of search results. Focusing on your keyword strategy is a good way to start improving your CTR.

What Are the Benefits of a good CTR?
Having a good CTR has a number of advantages, the main one being that when you have a high CTR, your cost per click will be reduced. When your CTR is high, search engine ad platforms recognize this and will rank your ad higher at a lower cost per click to reward you for a quality ad. And if your CTR is high, there is more likelihood that those clicks will turn into conversions.

How to Improve Your CTR:
Here are some good ways to improve your CTR.

Focus on your Keywords – As we mentioned above, one way to improve your CTR is by avoiding common keywords that are highly competitive. Instead, use targeted keywords that actively describe your product or service. For the iPhone case example you could try something like, Pink Sparkly iPhone Case. You may get fewer impressions, but your CTR will be higher because you are targeting people looking for a specific product. And, your bid for more specific keywords will be less, which means cost savings. Creating your ads around highly targeted keywords is a good way to start improving your CTR rate.

Rewrite your Ad – Make sure your ad is written clearly and includes a strong call to action. This can be done by using words and phrases like: Save Today, Buy, Sign Up, Order Now or Book Now, depending on what you are wanting your customers to do. Using incentive-based words helps encourage people to go from passive viewers of an ad to active clickers.

Know Your Goals – Just like getting in shape, getting a higher CTR is easier if you keep your goals in sight. Take the time at the outset to define your PPC goals, evaluate the clarity of your landing pages, know your keyword strategies and then be ready to track and test different variations of your ad.

Happy New Year, here’s to keeping those resolutions!

Best Blackout Sites For SOPA Strike

A day without Wikipedia??? How will I ever fact check that my homemade recipe for moonshine is accurate, I’m trying to run a speakeasy here for goodness sake!

Yes, today is finally the day you’ll actually have a reason to dust off those Encyclopedia Britannicas folks. If you are still in the dark about the blackout protest that is going on today, I will simply refer you to the SOPA Strike page.  For the rest of you that are well aware of the censorship strike, Wikipedia is just one of 100’s of protesting SOPA and PIPA Internet censorship bills by blacking out their websites for the day.

Instead of getting into all the nitty gritty details of the politics behind the SOPA and PIPA bills, which will be going before congress on the 24th, we thought it would be fun to show you a few of our favorite sites of blackout Wednesday supporters.

Wikipedia

Not only is it blackout Wednesday, today has also become a “snow day” for college students as they won’t be writing any research papers without their trusty online resource Wikipedia.  Wikipedia site’s simply shows the clean phrase “Imagine a World Without Free Knowledge” which exemplifies precisely what could take place with Internet censorship bills in place.

 

Google

A simple, yet bold censorship statement can be found on Google today.  Google has also made it simple for blackout day supporters to sign a petition against the SOPA and PIPA bills, and share this information with friends on Facebook and other social sites.  SOPA beware, Google is not a force to be reckoned with.

 

Wired

Wired also went with the censorship theme, but took it to the extreme.

 

Mozilla, Buzzfeed & Twitpic

 

While Mozilla, Buzzfeed and Twitpic didn’t shut down completely, they showed their support by adding censorship bars over their logos.

 

Reddit

Reddit joined in with a true blackout, blacking out their site for a full 12 hours.  Their blackout page is also a great resource for more information on the Bills and upcoming events around them. Note the time clock next to the logo, indicating when their site will be live again, a nice added touch.

 

The Raw Story

 The Raw Story posted a creative video on their blackout page comically depicting their thoughts on censorship.

 

The Daily What

And because we have a slight cheeseburger obsession here at Wpromote, I had to include TheDailyWh.at on this list and their fight to keep Cheezburger uncensored.

 

Those are just a few of the blackout Wednesdays sites that we came across, and it appears their support is already having an affect.  A few of the Bills co-sponsors have already backed out in their support, and with protestors such as Mark Zuckerburg speaking out, these Bills are going to have a tough time come January 24th.

 

 

Hang Out With David Beckham On Google+

You think you can cross a ball and bend it like Beckham? You may get a chance to tell him! All you need is a Google+ account!

In an effort to increase awareness of the new social site, Google+ announced some exciting news for all you die hard Galaxy fans (and those of you who just enjoy a little eye candy).  International superstar David Beckham is taking a day off from the soccer field to hold an exclusive Google interview, which will be streaming live on YouTube this Thursday, January 19 at 9am PST.  Fans who have a question for the soccer player/model can now post it on his Google+ profile and include the hashtag #googlebeckham. And if that wasn’t enough, you can also “hang out” with him on his Google+ profile at 10:30am PST.

What questions would you ask him?  If we had a chance to interview David Beckham, here are a few questions we’d ask him:

– How would one bend it like Beckham?
– Do you say “football” or “soccer” in America?
– What’s your favorite Spice Girls song?
– Where’s your favorite English pub in LA?
– Would you ever consider coaching a professional team?

To find out more about the interview and hangout, watch the video below:

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8E-rlXdv0Kc

Be sure to check out Wpromote’s Google+ profile and add us to your circle!

Client Profile – EagleRider: Established Fan Base And Increased Sales Through Social Media Profile Optimization

Situation:
EagleRider, the world’s largest motorcycle rental and touring company, came to Wpromote looking to further optimize their social media campaigns in order to grow sales and expand brand awareness. With 45 rental facilities worldwide, EagleRider was also looking to make their campaigns more cohesive and consistent.

Challenges:
The biggest challenge in bringing an overall cohesiveness to EagleRider’s social media profiles was that a Facebook user and a Twitter user had already obtained the name “EagleRider.” The Facebook vanity URL, www.facebook.com/EagleRider and the Twitter URL, www.twitter.com/EagleRider, needed to be reclaimed by the company.

Strategy:
To begin, Wpromote was able to reclaim the EagleRider vanity URL for their Facebook profile by reaching out to a contact at Facebook. This way a consistent brand name could be maintained to enhance search results across the web. A new badge was designed including more information, utilizing maximum space and effectively branding the page. A fan gate was created which does not allow non-fans to view content without “Liking” the page. Daily engagements were posted, including posts that coincided with current tours and bike events. To ensure positive reputation management, all comments and posts by fans were responded to in a timely manner. An event page was created to project the number of people interested in attending this year’s EagleRider Customer Appreciation Party in Birmingham, England.

Other Facebook efforts included Facebook Advertising. Two ads, both with an estimated reach between 400,000 – 600,000 Facebook users, were ran to supplement organic growth on their profile page. The goal was to target the company’s core demographic that had not yet connected, with the potential to become fans.

An audit of EagleRider’s Twitter profile uncovered additional opportunities for optimization.  Wpromote’s first step in optimizing EagleRider’s Twitter profile was requesting to reclaim their username. They were successful in obtaining the name and establishing an official account by providing the proper trademark documents. Next, they implemented a new avatar and skin to keep cohesive brand identity. Daily engagements were posted and friendly and informative responses were generated for all those tweeting about EagleRider. To optimize the profile, a reciprocal follow policy was maintained, which means that a 1:1 following to follower ratio is kept.

Although a branded YouTube channel had already been established, Wpromote utilized this feature properly by redesigning the banner and adding links to EagleRider’s official website, Facebook fan page and Twitter profile. All YouTube videos were also promoted on their other social media profiles to encourage views.

Results:
In the first 3 months of EagleRider’s social media campaign, there were tremendous improvements across the board.

Through daily engagements on their Facebook profile, the number of impressions increased which created more fan interaction. This led to an astounding 80% increase in fans. This was also due in part to the advertising campaign ran on Facebook. An impressive 90% of users who clicked on the first advertisement made a connection, and 89% of users who selected the second advertisement made a connection.

EagleRider went from not having a Twitter presence at all, to establishing a solid foundation of loyal followers and brand ambassadors. Through this outreach we have been able to hone in on valuable conversations and supply direct links to EagleRider’s website, respond to inquiries, and encourage friendly interactions between EagleRider and other Twitter users.

EagleRider’s branded YouTube channel was optimized, which facilitated additional traffic to their official site and social media profiles. New videos were added and disseminated across Facebook and Twitter in order to increase views and encourage fan engagement. Within the first three months, their total views had increased to almost 14,000.

Due to the overwhelming success of their social media campaign, EagleRider was recently honored with the prestigious award of “Most Improved Business” for their social media integration in 2011 by Heartwood Digital at Motorcycle Live. Heartwood Digital recognized that before EagleRider had partnered with Wpromote, their site had no social media integration whatsoever, and now their profiles are above average in their levels of activity, fans and followers.

About:
EagleRider offers the world’s largest selection of adventure vehicle rentals. EagleRider was founded in 1992 by four long-time Harley-Davidson owners and enthusiasts who wanted to build a business that was an extension of their own passion for riding and adventure. They now market the “American Dream” to destination minded vacationers, adventure travelers and motorcycle enthusiasts by offering over 2,500 dirt bike, ATV, motorcycle, watercraft and snowmobile rental vehicles, as well as full-service tour resources.

Google Update: Google’s Most Significant Recent Algorithm Changes

Google is constantly making changes to its algorithm, and every couple of months or so they release a major update to this complex puzzle that delivers us our results on the search engine.  With this past week’s release of ‘Search Plus Your World’, we thought it would be interesting to highlight some of the significant algorithm changes that have occurred over the recent years along with our key takeaways from each to help you stay on top of your SEO.

 

VINCE (2009): Placed an emphasis on brand signals and social engagement with the site users, leading to more perceived authority for large brands.

TAKEAWAY: If you are a brand that is socially engaged with your users, those ‘social signals’ will help your SEO and the ability for pages from your site to be found easier in Google.

 

MAYDAY (2010): Lots of content alone no longer guarantees rankings for long tail keywords.

TAKEAWAY: In order to be found in Google, your content and the link anchor text must contain related terms and phrases to support a themed contextual

 

CAFFEINE (2010): Page load time and site speed are more important, also pages across the internet are indexed more rapidly.

TAKEAWAY: Rewards site that publish new unique content, “ie: Articles, Blog Videos and Images” on a regular basis because the perception is they are staying current with their market and their users.

 

SCRAPE AND PANDA (2011): Duplicate content is even more detrimental than before. Google is identifying and filtering out low quality pages and sites. This is more of a filter than an algorithm update. Google has ran this filter seven times starting on February 24th, 2011 with the last time it was ran on September 28th, 2011.

TAKEAWAY: Repurposed or reused content is not as valuable as unique content which is well themed and aligned with the sites contextual footprint. Sites that do not provide valuable informative content to their users will be filtered out of the index.

 

GOOGLE+ (2011): Builds upon personalized search and recommended content.

TAKEAWAY: A sites social graph, “the global mapping of everybody and how they’re related”, has an influence on what a user seeing in their search results. If the site is socially engaged with their user base, they will see more results from that site. This also means, that a sites user’s friends will see more results from sites that their friends are engaged with.

 

FRESHNESS (2011): Part of the Caffeine Update, this will impact roughly 35% of search queries, so that current content, topics and events that are updated

TAKEAWAY: Fresh content is a must, site must continually publish content.

 

SEARCH PLUS YOUR WORLD (2012): Google’s algorithm now finds both the content that’s been shared with you privately along with matches from the public web, all mixed into a single set of listings.

TAKEAWAY: Personalized search is the new “normal”. Social signals play a much bigger part in Google algorithm. This move was done to defend against spam and reinforce quality content as the driving force for SEO. Content that is of quality and pertains to target markets will now get extra lifts in Google based upon your social networks and recommendations.

Wpromote Participates in Olive Crest Holiday Toy Drive

Wpromote Olive Crest toy drive results - 30 toys!Wprovide (Wpromote’s philanthropic division) decided to celebrate the holidays by organizing a children’s toy drive. After doing some research, we decided to work with Olive Crest. What makes Olive Crest unique is that they match each participant with an abused child or teen, and participants receive wish slips with the name, age and gender of the child that they’ll be shopping for. The wish slip describes what the child wants – this makes the effort feel a bit more personal, because you’re not just blindly purchasing a toy and assuming it’ll be paired up with someone who will enjoy it.

 

Our efforts were not in vain. Wpromoters were able to make Christmas a little brighter for 30 children this year!

Wpromote Olive Crest toy drive group shot

Aside from the Olive Crest toy drive, I was involved in a Toys 4 Tots toy drive, and I purchased a Transformers toy (Optimus Prime) that I know I would have loved when I was younger. Did you participate in a holiday toy drive this year? If so, what did you buy?

If you’re considering organizing a toy drive next year, be sure to keep Olive Crest in mind. Happy holidays!

How To Improve Your Google Quality Score

The popularity of Google as an internet search tool is so pervasive that in 2006, the verb ‘to Google’ was added to the Oxford English Dictionary.  In the following years, Google’s hegemony over the world of search has persisted.  But Google is more than just a search engine – it’s also the force behind AdWords, a powerful tool for businesses looking to advertise goods and services to Google search users.  Because Google Quality Score is one of the leading indicators of an ad’s performance under AdWords, we’ll use this article to explore the ways you can improve your Google Quality Score and attract more business in the process.

How are ads triggered, and what determines their placement?
First, a quick recap of the basics of AdWords: When web users search for something on Google, their search results are accompanied by a series of advertisements on the top, right and sometimes bottom side of the page.  These ads are populated with keywords related to the web user’s search terms, so that only ads relevant to the user’s search appear on screen.  Over the years, factors that determine ad rank have changed.  Previously, the most coveted ad positions simply went to the highest bidder for a given keyword. Today bidding still plays a role, but ad position and cost-per-click are determined in much larger part by the Google Quality Score, which evaluates ads on a broader and more complex set of criteria to provide better results for viewers.  Things like keyword clickthrough rate, ad clickthrough rate, and account clickthrough rate are taken into consideration, along with the historical clickthrough rate of the display URLs within the ad group and the quality of the landing page.

How do I improve my Google Quality Score?
Google Quality Score (from here on referred to as QS) is based on criteria as broad as the long-term history of the account, at intermediate levels like performance of groups of keywords within a specific ad campaign, and down to specifics like the relevance of individual keywords.  With so many levels to consider, improving QS becomes a question of prioritization.  Here are a number of first steps that can be taken to strategically and effectively improve QS.

1.) Improve Your Clickthrough Rate
Clickthrough Rate (CTR) is considered by many experts as one of the primary factors influencing QS.  Since poor CTR numbers are a result of inaction by potential customers, here is how you can increase customer interaction with your ads:

  • Target customers most likely to click by calibrating keywords: try to target only those customers who are likely to click on your ads.  Hone in on select groups of potential customers by using targeted keywords sorted by time, location, and phrase constraints.
  • Write compelling copy: Be sure to fill your copy with strong calls to action, which have been proven to attract clicks results in higher CTR.

When focusing on CTR, keep in mind that some observers have found they cannot predictably surpass a QS of 7 even with CTR optimization.  Thus, instead of shooting for perfect 10‘s across the board, it is more important to focus on achieving a high average QS across ad groups.

2.) Make Ads Relevant to Keywords
High-quality and/or enticing ad copy is important, because even a perfectly targeted keyword may miss the mark if it’s written in a bland or robotic style.  When working on optimizing keyword relevance, when possible you should embed the primary keyword in the ad title, ad text, and/or display URL.

3.) Provide a Good User Experience
The user experience starts with good ad copy and ends with a transaction on your landing page.  In order to bring this process to completion, you should:

  • Start by making sure your keywords and ad copy are targeted to specific customer groups based on your keyword research.
  • If these are good enough to entice users to click through, then make sure users get what they’re looking for in a landing page.
  • The content of landing page should contain content coordinating with the keywords and ad copy.
  • Use clear calls to action and unambiguous site layout to seal the deal.

Overall, try to make the user’s experience on the landing page simple and easy so that they can follow through on their initial interest and turn that click into business for you.

Why should I care about my Quality Score?
Achieving a high QS sets a virtuous cycle in motion: it gives your ads higher placement in search results, it lowers the cost you pay per click, and it’s all happening because the user finds your content relevant.  The user rewards this relevance by clicking through and patronizing your business.  High Quality Score begets high exposure and low cost, which in turn lead to improved ROI.

At the end of the day, it’s all about your results.  If you have a low Quality Score and your ROI and results are great, then don’t obsess too much over it.  If there are ways you can improve your Quality Score without sacrificing results, then it’s something you should by all means work on.

 

Wpromote.com Through The Years

As 2011 draws to a close, we thought it would be fun to take a little trip down memory lane. In this case, we are going to have a little fun looking at the evolution of Wpromote as seen through our Wpromote website over (believe it or not) the past decade, using an addicting (and mind boggling) tool called the Wayback Machine. The site literally takes snapshots of websites and stores them indefinitely. If you are looking to waste a little time checking out how your favorite websites looked way back when, look no further.

Our fun begins a decade ago in 2001, when I built the very first Wpromote website, which was born as a service that automated submitting websites to the morphing list of search engines (189 of them in the very beginning, as you can see).

Of note, the original Wpromote logo which I created myself (and was admittedly a blatant rip-off of the W Hotels logo) with the “bold” marketing text (“relentless” might be a stretch for a search engine submission service) was pretty corporate sounding to hide the truth that it was all a 20 year old in a dorm room. Just in case you were curious, yes, Wpromote was a subsidiary company of Webbingedge, which did web design for local realtors.

In 2002, I dropped the aggressive but vague “tour” entrance and just dropped users directly onto our “Customer Guarantee”. Pretty simple and effective, and check out those archaic lists of websites you get listed in: HotBot? LookSmart? Oh how things have changed.

2004 Really marked the birth of today’s Wpromote. After graduating college and returning to Southern California, I knew that Wpromote had to adapt or die, since the concept of a monthly search engine submission services was becoming archaic: there was massive consolidation in the search space, Google was gobbling market share, and simple submission was not nearly enough for SEO. But with the rapid ascent of Google’s AdWords and Overture (bought by Yahoo!), I saw a market for help in managing these pay-per-click campaigns, and launched Wpromote Solutions as one of the first PPC Management services (and kept the original service dubbed “Wpromote Classic”).  Also in 2004, our first professionally made logo (which is still around today), and a snazzy vanity toll-free number. Onward!

The evolution continues with our first website that – finally – wasn’t built by hand by yours truly (and I am far from a good designer). Here we see a revamped doorway page, as we still had these two very distinct services and had no choice but to force users to select which one was the right fit for them and then entered two self-contained sites. Also of note, the first use of our tagline Superior Search Engine Marketing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A look inside the two sections of our 2005 website, green for Search Engine Submission and blue for PPC Management. Its funny to look at the list of search engines we touted advertising management for, and think about the Google-centric world we live in today.

January 1st 2008 marked a number of big changes at Wpromote. We now have a truly integrated website across all services, we launched our SEO services as we expanded our expertise outside of just paid search, and we completely rebranded our “search engine submission” services as QuickList. Fun fact: the home page shows a quote from one of our very first PPC Management clients ever, AmeritekID, with us since 2004 and still with us today.

Our current website launched in February 2011 after almost a year in the making. Here we see the collection of our small business offerings under “Small Business Solutions” and our higher-end suite of services now branded “Agency Services,” which include Social Media, Conversion Optimization and Media Buying.

Now just weeks from 2012, we have added two new Small Business services, SocialBoost and GoSEO, to complete our suite of products, as well as launched our Government Services division on display in the top navigation. Each month we grow the site, and case studies, white papers, and blog posts abound.

As 2011 draws to a close, we look forward eagerly to what 2012 will bring, and can hardly fathom what this walk down memory lane would look like a decade from today.

Happy Holidays and a Wonderful New Year!