Archive for April, 2010

Use YouTube Search Stories Creator for Backlinks

Saturday, April 17th, 2010

If you have not heard yet YouTube release a new feature where you can create your own search story videos right just like the ones they have in the Google ads. The look really professional which got me thinking. Someone savvy enough could come up with some great videos that would get people to link back to them and all they have to do is you this simple video creator.

The video creator only takes a few minutes to create a video and it even adds in the music for you. Although you do have to come up with at least 6 keywords you want your story to include. I wish you could choose less but I guess that’s mandatory.

So how can you use this to get links back to your website? Well, first come up with a unique idea for a search. My personal favorites are Zombie apocalypse, Cookie Monster’s Search Story, Worth It. You can check out more on the search video creation page.

Anyways here is my search story video:

Google Can’t Add! New Webmaster Tools Impressions Data Doesn’t Add Up

Saturday, April 17th, 2010

At first I was very excited about the new Webmaster Tools impression data released this past week. It seemed very promising. As any website owner I’m sure you would love to know how many impressions (how many times) your site shows up in the search results for a given keyword/search term. And as a SEO services provider it sounded like a dream come true.

Although it would seem like this would be simple to get the data correct and you would think Google would make sure its telling you the correct data at risk of being called out on it, but I think someone at the Googleplex has got a stuck down 7 key on their adding machine.

Surprisingly or not so surprisingly, the data just does not add up with the data you find in the Adwords Keyword Tool. I ran a little study on a few websites of mine and others before coming to this conclusion. I wish it were not so but the data speaks for itself.

Here are my findings from my personal running log website. A great site by the way, if you’re looking for a free easy way to track running workouts.

Keyword Webmaster Tools Impressions Adwords Tool (exact global search)
online running log 260 590
free running log 91 260
running logs free 36 170

Some notes on how I conducted this study:
My website remained in on the first page of Google during the entire past 30 days from which the data was gathered by Google’s Webmaster Tools. I also did not show up on any other search page during this time - just on page 1 of Google. So my results in theory should be very accurate. Then when using the Adwords Tool I made sure the Search Match was set to Exact and I used the Global Monthly Search Volume.

Now I went into this knowing that the search volume from the Adwords Tool is an average from the past several months so I take that into account when I look at the data from each. But even if you’re thinking with that the data just does not add up. I can see if the data was close then there would not be much for alarm but the data is not even close - it’s off by 100s.

So my next logical thing to do was check out another website’s data on this. I figured well let’s do someone with a more higher volume keyword that way we can also see my results are just an oddity or something.

I chose to use the data Aaron Wall from posted on his site when he reviewed this new Webmaster Tools impression data. Granted I don’t have access to his account I could see his 3 top keywords and their impressions data from his image that he posted on his website. But we also have to take into account (which was different than my website), his website is getting impressions on more than just the 1st page of Google (thus some duplicate impressions). So his impression results should be just a little higher than the Adwords Tool data.

Here are his results:

Keyword Webmaster Tools Impressions Adwords Tool (exact global search)
seo 74,000 1,000,000
seo book 5,400 9,900
seobook 4,400 5,400

As you can see again the data is just completely off. The Webmaster Tools data just does not come close to the Adwords Tool data. It’s off by many 1000s.

So what’s my conclusion…? Well I think that the webmaster tools data is more accurate than the Adwords data - or so it seems. I mean it would seem to reason it would be easier for Google to display more accurate data for your website impressions rather than make some calculations based on searches - such as the Adwords data. But I think I might be wrong again! Possibly neither data could be accurate.

I decided to take this study one more step further. Let’s look at my clickthrough data on Webmaster Tools verse my Google Analytics data. Now in theory these should be the same - the number of clickthroughs are the same as the number of unique visits from that keyword in my Anlaytics data.

Here is what I found:

Keyword Webmaster Tools Visits Analytics Visits
online running log 16 31
free running log 28 89
running logs free 5 31

Shocking! That data does not match up again. So now do I really trust Google Analytics or is it just that the Webmaster Tools data is just plan wrong. I choose to trust my Google Anlaytics data since I have test it in the past verse other visitor tracking software and they seemed to match up.

So that means the Webmaster Tools data is just plan wrong but what do we do? I don’t know that there is much we can do, possibly inform Matt Cutts or submit a post on the Google Help forum but I don’t know how much Good that will do. I image we will only get a response back saying …yes it’s no accurate… Well we know that, so all we can do really is move on and use the data with a grain of salt.

The data is still useful. It’s just like the old green bars in the Adwords tool before it gave you search volume numbers. You can use the data to give you a general measure of how well that keyword does against your percent clickthrough rate. Knowing that actually can help you make better decisions on which keywords you should focus more time on optimizing your website for. Aaron Wall was also kind enough to point this out too using his own data. Thank you Aaron.