Posts

Your Invitation to ‘Connect’ with Matt

I do not run a ‘product’ based company. Doing so would cloud the line between consultant and competitor. As such I am able to uniquely leverage 10 years of experience over two software providers. that of many past & present clients, to adapt, mould processes and drive results to suit your unique business requirements.

There are a number of online channels out there that are all aimed at keeping people in touch, I’d like to virtually ‘connect’ with you and there are a couple of ways you can do so.

Note: I would have included a video with this to make it more personal, however its out on loan currently.

LinkedIn

I’m a big LinkedIn fan, its like the adults version of Facebook.

You can connect me here http://uk.linkedin.com/in/matthewogborne

Twitter

I have a few Twitter accounts, the main one I use is @MatthewOgborne and the original one is @LastDropofInk and I monitor them both most days. Also you’ll see specific messages on each account too.

YouTube

As you may have noticed, there is a distinct move on my part towards using video content more and mopre here. Its a very personal medium and you’ll literally be seeing a lot more of me!

You can subscribe to my YouTube channel here http://www.youtube.com/user/matthewogborne

Google+

I must admit, I’ve not paid Google+ much attention yet, mainly because I am focused on other sites. However the messages you’ll find here from me are both personal & business related.

Facebook

I’m also on Facebook or rather this site is.

You can find the LastDropofInk Facebook page here, I need to update it after the design change here and will be doing so later this week.

RSS & Email

Did you know that you can have the latest posts delivered straight to your inbox using Feedburner, a free Google App? No, well you do now!

Go to http://feeds.feedburner.com/TheLastDropOfInk and hit “Subscribe with Google”.

Also I have an ongoing mailing list, you can subscribe at the top of this page on the right. I keep communications to a minimum and tend to use it to grab feedback before a large article or event, like the Webinar I held last week.

You can of course just interact by leaving a comment on an article here that you’ve liked, if only yo say “hi”.

That’s it, I look forward to ‘connecting’ with you!

Matt

Google Spams its Own Adwords Communications?

Yup, sounds ironic, however while clearing my inbox down this evening, I delved into the spam folder and noticed an odd email. The monthly Google Adwords results email that gets sent out was spammed by Google Mail.

I’ve included a screenshot below and I’ve blurred out the sensitive parts as it was for a clients campaign and my prolific use of filters & labels in Google Mail is worth an article of its own. However is it just me that thinks its a little ironic that Google would identify their own mail as spam?

google-adwords-spammed

Managing Large Adword Campaigns with Google Adwords Editor

Google Adwords EditorEver wondered how search marketing companies & larger companies deal with more than a few Google Adwords campaigns? The answer is easy, they use the right tool for the job, Adwords Editor is one of them and best of all its free!

Managing Campaigns x 10,0000

A slight exaggeration, however using the Adwords Editor, you can manage literally hundreds of campaigns over several accounts using a single, free tool.

A key feature of the product is the ability to import new campaigns via CSV, you can update them via CSV for external processing and then import them back in again. Its all quite civilised and dealing with hundreds of campaigns at one time is a very simple task.

Why you should use the Adwords Editor

Here are the reasons why you would want to use the Adwords Editor:

  1. You can import and export your campaigns from Excel. That means for geeks like me I can do all the work in excel and then quickly and easily import the campaigns for immediate upload to Google.
  2. It works offline. This is brilliant if travelling or out of signal range. Just send the updates when you’re next connected.
  3. The Editor works with more than one Adwords account.
  4. Finding duplicate keywords is easy, see here for more info.
  5. This is an official tool created by Google,

So if you want one up on your competitors, you are about five up now. Or the biggest feature for me, was the import/export features. Being able to manipulate data outside of the interface and import, was a huge win.

There are other tools, mainly paid for, plus there is an API as well, which for the larger PPC based companies build their own interfaces to our use hugely expensive software to manage campaigns on an epic scale.

Helpful links:

No, No, No. Its Your Domain Name, Use It. ChannelAdvisor Not Advised?

ChannelAdvisor

Channel Advisor Seller Buy4Less

Oh this made me giggle, while researching after posting the earlier article on a ChannelAdvisor customer called ‘Buy4less’ and ‘Wasting Your Most Important eBay Marketing Asset‘ I stumbled across this chestnut.

The Search Results

Click this link and let me explain the results you’re seeing.

You are seeing two things, the first is the use of the site: command, this is very useful for seeing how many pages have been indexed for a site, while not 100% accurate by Google’s own admission (see Matt Cutts from Google explain it in this YouTube video) its a great indicator and the second is a baw-drop by ChannelAdvisor for one of their featured retaliers. Let me explain.

Errr What Happended?

Now for the first link I gave, it shows lots of URL’s that have been indexed, great, but look again, the URL’s start ‘stores.channeladvisor.com/buy-for-less-online’ whats happened to the thier domain name ‘http://www.buyforlessonline.co.uk/‘?

I’ll tell you what’s going with it

NOUT, NADA, Sweet FA!

There is a single page for this domain indexed in Google, what they’ve done is use masking on the domain name instead of setting up a CNAME alias or similar to make the server treat the real domain name properly. So then everything starts from buyforlessonline.co.uk rather than some horrid domain path like ‘stores.channeladvisor.com/buy-for-less-online/’.

Knowing…

If you’re using a third party tool such as Channel Advisor, don’t settle for a crap website setup, make sure everything is in your ‘domain’ name, don’t be afraid to ask for the assistance outside for unbiased views & guidance, automaton tools are only one part of your businesses success.

Getting Out of Such a Mess

If you’ve managed to do this this, don’t panic. Ask your provider to create 301 redirects for every page they’ve got to the new domain paths. The new pages on the correct domain name are forwarded from the old domain, so you are not penalised for what would-to-Google the entire site disappearing an popping up elsewhere.

Curiosity

I wonder how much was taken on their website last year, I wonder if anyone noticed. I suspect ‘not a lot’ of revenue was taken this year on ‘that’ site. Pity, I quite liked the visual design.

How To: Print Emails & Attachments from your iPad – Google Cloud Print

Recently I purchased a new printer, an all-in-one device, with the added bonus of it being able to be connected via wifi, the black plastic lump even has its own email address and its own apps! I was looking in the user settings of Chrome when spotted this purely by accident and realised it was super neat.

Google Cloud Print Overview

Google have introduced a service called ‘Google Cloud Print‘, which is quite similar to Apple’s AirPrint enabling you to print wirelessly from any device, including an iPad.

However unlike AirPlay, this service is triggered remotely Googles web apps, like Gmail, which means you can print from any network. Super handy for me if I’m out grabbing a coffee, by the time I get home, I can have the latest brief printed off and waiting for my arrival.

Setting up Google Cloud Print

This is child’s play, even I could do it :X Open Google Chrome and navigate to the spanner icon and then select ‘Options’. Scroll to the bottom and hit the sign-in button next to ‘Google Cloud Print’, as shown below:

Google Cloud Print Options

Next, sign in with your Google account information and you’ll see a ‘Success!’ page, you cannot miss it, it has a big green tick on it, like below:

Google Cloud Print SuccessHitting the “Print a Test Page” button is advisable to ensure this actually works and that one has remembered to turn the printer on, give it juice and ensure it has a tree to print.

If you then hit the ‘Manage Print Settings” you can alter which printers you would like available to print with and delete any that are not required.

Google Cloud Print Printers

Time to test!

Now this is the neat bit, grab you iPad, iPhone etc and open up Gmail, from the drop down menu go to print and you should see a menu similar to this:

Google Cloud Print on the iPadSelect a printer and hit print in the bottom right corner and you’ll be notified that the print job has been added to the queue.

Google Cloud Printing - QueueSummary

I tried the email address thing for the printer and wasn’t impressed, I got a load of extra junk printed along with it. This way I you get what you print and enables me to print outside of my office network.

Google Cloud Print also supports printing more than just emails, you can print Word and PDF files too. So if I ever say “The documents are on the Printer” it doesn’t matter where I am, they really are on the printer!

Google Chrome WebStore – Just Another App Platform?

App’s are everywhere these days any why not? The majority of applications extend existing platforms beyond the wildest imaginations of the original developers, just take the iPhone App store or the Android market place as examples, so finally there is a App store for Google Chrome.

Now this for me is quite interesting, as we move forwards with technology, there are chasing platforms, one of which is my favourite web browser, Google Chrome. For me it was a pure speed thing, running Internet Explorer, Firefox and Chrome next to each other, even hitting return on IE, then FF and then Chrome, Chrome would load pages faster, noting this is the person that has 50Mb broadband and anything that takes more than 1 second to load is classed as ‘laggy’.

The Introduction Video

This is from Google themselves:

Getting Users to Pay

Now this is an interesting concept, I have to date never bought an application solely for a web browser. But considering I spend some 75% using one, I suspect the chances are extremely high, especially when you consider the likes of http://www.tweetdeck.com/ have a free app and there is hundreds of them to choose from.

Take a browse today through the Chrome WebStore and see what you can find.

Google SEO Starter Guide Updated

GoogleBot

GoogleBot

Google has updated their SEO starter guide which they first released two years ago. Not surprisingly they reiterate that any optimisation decisions should first and foremost be what’s best for the visitors of the site.

Visitors are real users of the website and are using search engines to find your work. If you’re creating quality, unique content (like this post for example), then any changes are likely to small and in the report they make another good point that its the collection of lots of small changes put together over time, that give good results.

Its broken down into these six sections:

  1. SEO Basics
    This section covers creating unique, accurate page titles and how to make use of the “description” meta tag on your site(s).
  2. Improving Site Structure
    How to improve the structure of your URLs and how to make make your site easier to navigate for humans & search engines.
  3. Optimizing Content
    This section covers the offering quality content and services, how to write better anchor text, optimisation of images and how to use heading tags appropriate manner.
  4. Dealing with Crawlers
    How to make effective use of robots.txt and to be aware of rel=”nofollow” for links that you use.
  5. SEO for Mobile Phones
    A new section for mobile devices has been added, which shows how to n
    otify Google of mobile sites & how to guide mobile users accurately.
  6. Promotions and Analysis
    How to promote your website in the right manner and to make use of free webmaster tools.

You can read the full report here and I’m humble enough to recognise great guidance and will be adding a breadcrumb trail to this site in the forth coming days (page 10).

Google Does Not Use The Meta Keywords Tag

Amazon Meta Keywords HTML Tag

Amazon Meta Keywords HTML Tag

Myth, hear-say or Truth?

Truth! Google does not use the meta Keywords tag. Contrary to popular belief usage of this tag for anything meaningful was lost years ago when it got spammed & stuffed by everyone and his dog.

Offsite ‘factors’ were not being taken into account and pages were judged by search engines only on their content. Seems crazy now looking back.

Here is a YouTube video from Matt Cutts, a personal idol of mine [for his relaxed presentation style and the way he conveys his personal interest in the subject matter] on this very topic:

Although other search engines out there (no there really are) which do take the meta keywords into consideration. If your website solution already makes these automatically from other data fields, great, if not, I’d not suggest you loose any sleep what-so-ever. Spend the time on writing better content, site promotion or sipping G & T’s as the sun sets (sunrises and G&T are just wrong).

That said, if I asked myself the question “do I use the meta keywords tag?” the answer would be…
Yes, the day Amazon stops using them, I will do too. No G&T’s for me :(

Revamp of Link Reports In Google Webmaster Tools

Google Webmaster IconGoogles Webmasters blog has announced that they have updated the link reports shown in thier Webmaster tools.

Google Webmaster Tools allow users to check up and analyse lots of different information that Google house on your authentication domain names and best of all its free. If you’re not using the Google Webmaster Tools, see here and sign up today.

With the new reports, they show you three new things as a general overview:

  • The top domains that are linking to your site.
  • Samples of anchor text used by external sites as they link to your site.
  • Which pages have the most links.

You can read the full article on the Google Webmaster Central Blog

Google TV, How Neat

Google Does TV

Google Does TV

Only nerdy me would think the idea of Google TV would be fab? Perhaps not, lets look at what they’re up to and possibly why.

Before we begin, lets look their flashy website, its here:
http://www.google.com/tv/

Lets get the the key features together and spot where they are could make money:

  1. Set top boxes or integrations
    Although I very much doubt they’ll make the kit themselves, just provide the ‘software’ for the hardware to run on. Kinda like Android; maybe Android 3 ?
  2. Advertising!
    Doh, web browsing, custom application platform, hmmm… this is just another platform to deliver adverts, great. I get enough of this from channel 5 in the mornings, I really want the dumpster truck, ignoring the amount of ads that still slip through adblock.
  3. Affiliatation.
    This one really gets my goat, Mr Google apparently does not like affiliates for their ‘flakey’ sites. I’d argue differently on these, content is always king and if you got a fab site with unique content, I don’t fancy being penalised for making money from it.
    Back to the point, if you watched the slides, you notice Amazon? I bet those links are laced with affiliate links or a contractual agreement is made somewhere on conversions, hell , I’d want that.
  4. Tidy Deals with Networks
    Think about it, if I was CNN or SKY, I’d want my company promoted and I’d probably pay a fair market price for getting my company promoted at the top of the list. I see some back handers being done here.
  5. ‘Apps’ Marketplace
    Wow, what a no brainer, make some apps for use on the TV. Hell the input device cannot be any worse, using an iPhone a remote, like the screen isn’t small enough and have you really tried using it for large data input?
    I’m whittering, apps make money (ignoring their cool)
  6. TV + Web = Final use for YouTube?
    I cried when I read how much YT costs Google everyday, thats some serious wonga. But it makes utter sense now, putting the ‘Web’ and the black box in every house x 3 is a monumental idea. Everything net based (including money making schemes) in your lounge for all the family to be converted.

In a nutshell, what a neat idea. Nerdy me can get my mail on the TV, while the kids are watching some freaky animals (thats kids TV to everyone else). Will it work? Even if it partly works, it’ll be huge and probably be in beta for 10 years :D

So what do you think? Comment below for your say.