Weekly SEO news: 9 October 2007
Welcome to the latest issue of the Search Engine Facts newsletter.

This week, we're taking a look at search engine optimization for new web sites.

In the news: selling links can hurt your Google rankings, an interview with Google's Matt Cutts, a small German company seems to rival Google and more.

Table of contents:

We hope that you enjoy this newsletter and that it helps you to get more out of your website. Please pass this newsletter on to your friends.

Best regards,
Andre Voget, Johannes Selbach, Axandra CEO

1. How to overcome Google's filter for new websites

It's easier to get high rankings on Google with older websites than it is with new websites. Why is this so and what can you do to get high rankings on Google if you have a brand new website?

Why is it easier to get high rankings with older websites?

Brand new domain names are often used by spammers to make a quick buck. These spammers buy hundreds of domains, fill them with automatically created scraper content and hope to make some money with the ads that appear on these sites.

In addition, some webmasters use new domains to test new search engine spamming techniques.

As it is difficult for Google to find out whether a new domain can be trusted or not, Google invented a set of filters that downranks new websites until Google thinks that they can be trusted.

What can you do to overcome Google's filters for new websites?

It's very difficult to get high rankings before Google trusts your website. For that reason, do things that make your website trustworthy:

  1. Start with the right keywords

    It's not possible to get a top 10 ranking for highly competitive general search term such as "cars" for a new website. However, it is possible to get high rankings for terms such as "used car dealer atlanta".

    It's not just easier to get high rankings for more specific search terms, these terms are also much more likely to convert to sales. Take some time to find the right keywords for your site.

  2. Get links to your website

    It is not possible to get high rankings on Google without good incoming links. Try to get as many links from related websites as possible. If the right websites link to your site then Google will trust your website more quickly.

  3. Optimize your web pages

    While more links to your website greatly increase your chance of getting high search engine rankings, you must also tell search engines for which search terms you want to have high rankings. Optimize the content of your web pages to make sure that Google lists your website for the right search terms.

    Search engines should be able to parse the content of your web pages easily. Consider this when creating a new website from scratch.

  4. Wait

    A website that has been online for several years is much less likely to game Google's ranking algorithms than newer sites. For that reason, your Google rankings will also increase just by waiting (given that you followed the steps 1 to 3).

If you do it correctly, getting high search engine rankings for brand new websites is possible. It's important that you do the right things in the right order.

Take a look at our free SEO eBook that will guide you through the complete search engine optimization process from finding the right keywords to checking the results.

2. Search engine news of the week

Official: selling paid links can hurt your PageRank or rankings on Google

"Google says that most people hit with a PageRank decrease will likely notice this, and then they can request a review. [...] If Google traffic is important to you, don't sell links."

Google: Don't worry about spam sites that link to your site

"I wouldn't really worry about spam sites hurting your ranking by linking to you, as we understand that you can't (for the most part) control who links to your sites. However, there is some action you can take if you come across spam in Google's index."

Internet advertising revenues continue to soar

"Internet advertising revenues (U.S.) for the first six months of 2007 were nearly $10 billion, setting yet another new record and representing a nearly 27 percent increase over the first half of 2006. Internet advertising revenue totaled nearly $5.1 billion for the second quarter of 2007, exceeding the $5 billion mark for the first time in a quarter, a 25.4 percent increase over the same period in 2006."

Search engine newslets
  • Ask.com pushes into TV show integrations.
  • Yahoo! result pages embed API RSS feed.
  • Public transit directions in Google Maps.
  • Google Desktop beta 5.5 is available.
  • AdWords Ads: what's your location?
  • Bernstein's Yahoo break-up plan: search, display, subscriptions
3. Articles of the week

Eric Enge interviews Google's Matt Cutts

"Let's talk about different kinds of link encoding that people do, such as links that go through JavaScript or some sort of redirect to link to someone, yet the link actually does represent an endorsement. Can you say anything about the scenarios in which the link is actually still recognized as a link?"

Tiny start-up rival to Google?

"Should Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin be losing sleep about a tiny German company called Proximic?

While the notion may at first seem ridiculous, given Google's strengths and cash hoard, computer scientists at some of Silicon Valley's biggest Internet companies have been struck by the firm's promising new search technology."

Microsoft's Ballmer: Google reads your mail

"Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer took a knock at one of his chief rivals during a speech to an audience in the U.K., saying Google reads customer email as part of a failed bid to drive ad-based revenue."

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4. Recommended resources

"Our website has gone from not being seen on Google to the #2 spot ."

I am so excited because of your optimization program our website has gone from not being seen on Google to the #2 spot for our main key word. It has taken some time (10 months) but with your suggestions it worked. I deeply appreciate all you have done for us. [...]

I really appreciate your news letters. It was in one of those you mentioned duplicate web pages. I had made duplicate pages changing the URL's without deleting the old pages. This by itself kept our web page at about the #8 position for a long time. As soon as I deleted the duplicate pages we went to #4 and the #2. I'm now gunning for #1. "
Mike Bieganski, www.pilotvials.com

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