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Engage Web » 2009 » November

Top Google Searches for 2009

Posted on November 30, 2009

As the year ends we can expect to see the TV and radio waves fill up once again with the lists of what happened this past 12 months. What were the biggest singles of the year, the biggest grossing movies, the most hate mail for an X-Factor contestant and so on and so forth.

However, the only list that really matters is the most searched for items on Google, and that list has already been published by the all powerful G.

Incredibly, or perhaps not so much given the average IQ of people in the UK, the top UK searches on Google for 2009 were mostly for well established websites that should have been found easily enough without Google… Google included!

Here are the top ten searches for 2009:

  1. Facebook
  2. BBC
  3. YouTube
  4. Hotmail
  5. games
  6. Ebay
  7. news
  8. Google
  9. Yahoo
  10. Bebo

Yep, Google was the 8th most searched for term on Google. Clearly some people couldn’t see the wood for the trees, or the Google for the Google.

Perhaps the most telling results came in the fastest rising searches for 2009, where Microsoft can claim success for Bing being the 9th fastest rising search of the year. Of course, the fact that people looked for ‘Bing’ on Google should tell them (more…)

Posted by Cheryl Mathews

Assault victim uses Facebook to find attacker

Posted on November 29, 2009

Earlier this week we wrote about insurance companies have been using Facebook to locate potential benefit cheats, and now it seems that Facebook is being used to locate criminals.

Twenty-year-old Jennifer Wilson was attacked in the Walkabout bar (an Australian theme bar) in Watford when a woman thrust a glass into her face, cutting her badly. Jennifer’s attacker ran off after assaulting her, but Jennifer knew one of her friends who was with her at the time.

Knowing that the police were unlikely to find her attacker, Jennifer set about trawling through the friends list on Facebook of the person she recognised at the bar, until finally she found her assailant.

She then contacted the police to give them the name (Ashleigh Holliman), and address, of the woman who attacked her (courtesy of Facebook).

I went on Facebook and looked at a mutual friend’s profile and searched his friends list. As soon as I saw her picture I knew it was her. She is quite distinctive, with (more…)

Posted by Carl Hopkinson

Jermain Defoe claims YouTube is secret to his success

Posted on November 28, 2009

Tonight Tottenham travel to Aston Villa, who must surely have witness Spurs’ awesome display last Sunday when they thrashed lacklustre Wigan 9-1 at White Heart Lane. England striker Jermain Defoe scored five goals against Wigan in that game, including a seven minute hat-trick, which should have Aston Villa trembling with fear for tonight’s game.

Despite his success, Defoe was quick to thank those who helped him become the prolific goal-scorer that he is today; namely Alan Shearer, Andy Cole and Tottenham legend Clive Allen… at least, videos of them on YouTube.

Just like Newcastle United’s Argentine striker Jonas Gutierrez, Defoe has been scouring YouTube, not on a fact finding mission about opponents, but in search of (more…)

Posted by Matt Jones

SEO friendly titles used by BBC

Posted on November 27, 2009

We’ve written here at StuckOn many times about how your page’s Title tag is the most important aspect of your page’s SEO. When you’re writing news stories and articles, the title you choose is essential in writing good quality content that will receive traffic from search engines, and a good title can make or break an article in terms of how many page views it generates.

The BBC is one of the best websites on the Internet for content, with thousands of new pages being added every day. Their website is cross linked thoroughly with relevant news stories appearing on the side of each article, and always ranks at the top of Google’s index for topical searches. However, all of this was done within the restraints of having a tight restriction on the character count for titles to news stories. This meant that the BBC’s content writers couldn’t craft truly search friendly titles for their news… until now.

The BBC has lifted the tight restriction it had on titles, which was around 33 characters long, and has increased it to 55 characters. This means that copywriters can create more SEO focussed titles on their news, as you can see in this image from the BBC’s own blog.

bbc-seo-headlines-001

The BBC has done this because they have admitted that around 29% of their traffic is driven by (more…)

Posted by Cheryl Mathews

Woman loses benefits for Facebook bikini photo

Posted on November 26, 2009

It’s common for benefits fraud officers to investigate claimants who they believe might be cheating the system, claiming benefits that they are not entitled to. It’s also common for people who falsely claiming benefits to be caught out doing things that they’re supposed to be unable to do, such as break-dancing while being off work with a bad back, or lazing on the beach while suffering depression.

One such woman is Nathalie Blanchard, who works for IBM in Canada. Blanchard has been off work with depression for the last eighteen months, but after staff at Manulife, the insurance company paying for her benefits, saw photos on her Facebook profile, they stopped her benefits, believing that she was no longer suffering depression.

nathalie blanchardThe photos included a shot of her on the beach in a bikini, and pictures of her at (more…)

Posted by Matt Jones

Murdoch to ditch Google in favour of Bing

Posted on November 25, 2009

As we first reported to you back on October 11th, Rupert Murdoch (the owner of News Corp) wants to ban Google from indexing the content on his websites because he doesn’t like the fact that his news content appears for free in Google News.

What seemed like the ramblings of a mad man at the time now looks like at attempt to make money from his online content at the expense of Google. Murdoch does indeed want to ban Google from indexing his websites, costing them millions of unique visitors every day, because he feels that a pay deal with Microsoft’s Bing might be better business.

You remember Bing; it launched a few months ago and was the flavour of the, well, day, until everyone realised that yes, it was still Microsoft, and the results it offered were random at best.

Despite the rather small market share of Bing, Murdoch believes Microsoft will be willing to pay News Corp for the pleasure of indexing its websites and displaying its content. Can you imagine a website that pays you to send you traffic? This is fantasy land stuff, and only Microsoft would even contemplate (more…)

Posted by Cheryl Mathews

Email marketing services gone wrong

Posted on November 24, 2009

Email marketing has been around for many years. As soon as the public started email, companies started sending unsolicited emails to them, offering all manner of products and services that they didn’t want. Over the years this has become such a problem that the majority of all emails sent via the Internet are actually spam emails.

Spam software has helped to cut down on the number of junk emails being sent, but some anti-spam software is too aggressive, and genuine emails are often filtered out when use them.

Spam email is bad. It’s annoying, it’s about stuff you’re not interested in and wastes time during your day.

Despite this, some email marketing services are decent and offer you the chance to reach people who are genuinely interested in your products. Using double opt in mailing lists means that your recipients have not only selected to receive emails of interest to them, they’ve confirmed that they are interested with a confirmation email.

This is important so that you do not foul of spam laws, which would be very bad for your company.

That said, one email we received recently for a US based retailer didn’t follow any spam laws. Not only that, but it spoofed itself as being from a friend. These types of emails serve no other purpose than to highlight how the company involved has used unethical marketing tactics online.

Here is the email received, which incidentally was formatted in (more…)

Posted by Carl Hopkinson

Use your own websites to practice SEO

Posted on November 23, 2009

You can read an awful lot of websites offering tips on SEO. You can read countless forum threads and posts saying what you should and should not do. You can even buy books, ebooks and hire consultants to tell you the best SEO techniques. However, all of this theory is fine, but without any practice, you have no idea whether any of it works.

Practicing on your own company website can be risky though. If you put into practice a tip that you’ve picked up on an SEO forum, and that tip turns out to be a black hat SEO tactic, or just hearsay, then you could end up doing your website some serious (more…)

Posted by Matt Jones
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