I’ve just received an email saying that I am invited to go to the Google Developer day 2008 in Munich, on September 23rd. Thanks goes to SEOFM.com for posting the news (I still need to get a little bit in sync with the Munich SEOs). If anyone else is going do let me know !
I think I will need to give the Android SDK a whirl before I go. There are quite a few interesting talks on, one being on Google’s Open Social which I am definitely going to.
As for other events I have lined up on the calander, include Affiliate NetworkxX on October 7th. This is clearly more affiliate marketing based, but it should be a good opportunity to meet some like minded locals. There is still spaces , 31 to be exact, if you are interested in coming along.
Recently I was searching for a list of all the regional google domains, and my searching failed. I was interested in seeing just how many regional versions of google, do they offer. Plus it would allow me to update my Google Global Firefox extension with a few more domains. Most people are aware that the version of the Irish Google is located at www.google.ie and that in Germany you can use www.google.de . But what about in Turkmenistan or Rwanda or Jamaica ? Searching a bit more I came across Google’s Langauage Tools page. This is the basis of their translation engine, their listing of what languages you can make google search appear in, and right down the end, a listing of all the Google regional domains.
Ranking on Regional Domains
The regional domains give preference to websites that are related to that region. Things that can influence your standing here include:
- Business address listing in Google and on your webpages.
- Domain name from that specific TLD. i.e. for google.de , using a .DE domain.
- Domain targeting on your Google Webmaster panel.
- Frequency of other locally related links.
- Server location, based on IP address targeting.
Also it is possible that language of a website and keywords in the domain have some lesser effects too.
While most people are aware of Google.com, there are also significant numbers of people using their local version of search. In fact Google will often redirect users to their local version of the search, as they know that the results which appear on regional search is typically more suited to searchers.
The net effect of having regional rankings, is that there can be different results in the SERPS for each version. Logically this makes sense, when someone searches google.ie for mortgages, it’s clear they are only looking for companies related to the Irish market, and the same is true on google.co.uk, etc. And the sensitivity tothe Irish market can be cranked up even more by selecting the “pages from Ireland” option.
For users this is great, but for a SEOs it can mean that we need to check multiple versions of google, to see the regional differences. But of course the positive side is that the competition to rank locally is a lot less
Listing of Regional Domains
As the format that google provides is rather awkward to use, I decided to put together an excel list, maybe this will be easier for people to use. In all there are 162 regional google domains, which took about 15 minutes to organise into a nice formula. The list can be downloaded from google docs and I will updated it if google adds some more regional sites.
It is also notable that google doesn’t show versions on all it’s domains, i.e. google.us redirects to google.com. And there are even some domains that they don’t own , namely Google.by and Google.cm.
EDIT : Seeing as someone emailed me and pointed out that the google docs version isn’t that easy to use, here is a CSV version of the regional google domains. I hope this works for people a bit better.
Just trawling through some of the papers this evening I see an interesting story about Ryanair. Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary has decided to block all bookings on it’s airline that were make through partner websites. O;Leary is quoted as saying
“We want to cause as much chaos for the [websites] as possible”
Websites like lastminute.com, v-tours, tui and Opodo all face a new headache come tomorrow morning, when flights booked through these sites will be cancelled.
Breaking ties with affiliates
So why is Ryanar pulling such a stunt (which apparently they are legally allowed to) ?
- is it more of the Michael O’Leary Marketing machine for news headlines ?
- is it a way to get more for these bookings, i.e. when these flights are cancelled it will possibly cost more to rebook them ? This would help the company raise a few more €€’s for their problematic fuel bills ? also sales of insurance and car rentals are lucrative things that Ryanair are missing out on for these ticket sales.
- it could also be another way that Ryanair can tackle scraper websites, who regularly send requests to flight prices to see when is a good time to buy. Services like Farecast (recently acquired by MSN) can cut into airlines profits buy profiling costs of flights.
Personally I think it is a mixture of point 2 and 3. Is normally thought that by using affiliates and third parties to drive traffic and sales, you can really grow your business, the reason for this move really confuses me.
Bouncing around TradeDoubler.com today I noticed they had an offer for a free affiliate marketing hand book. It’s right down there where you log into your account on the RHS. It’s quite comprehensive and is well worth a read , click here to download the PDF. It’s from the IAB (Internet Advertising Bureau) or it at least has their stamp of approval, so it must be along the right lines.
On page 31 there is an interesting break down on what areas of the google search page get clicked on. According to them its broken down into 4 areas:
- Area A : Top ads, normally highlighted sponsored ads, get 26% of clicks.
- Area B : Product listing, depending on the query can get up to 20% of clicks.
- Area C: Actual SERPs position, index of pages relevant for your search query, which gets 40% of the clicks.
- Area D : Sidebar Ads , on the right hand side receive around 14% of user clicks.
If you are new to the world of affiliate marketing it is well worth a read. There are plenty of people who would charge a few $$’s for such a ebook, this one on the other hand is FREE so you’ve nothing to loose by reading it.
Blackhat SEO event in Munich
If anyone has a spare USD $5k lying around and is interested in learning about about the darkside of SEO, from one of the industry leaders, QuadsZilla, then you should get yourself to SEOktoberfest. Living in Munich, I’ve had the pleasure of going to the Oktoberfest for the last 6 years, and it’s one hell of a party ! If you do ever happen to be in Munich, either at the Oktoberfest or another time, do drop me a line .