Archive for February, 2012

What are the top 5 search engines?

February 22nd, 2012

Clients often ask on which search engines they need to monitor their rankings. So we figured we would share our thoughts on the subject, as well as those of other search professionals.

comScore recently released the January 2012 U.S. Search Marketplace figures for the top five search engines in the country. Their findings are set forth in the chart below.

US Search Marketplace

There is an interesting forum thread going on at HighRankings.com about which are the best 3 to 5 search engines at this point in time.

Of course Google is number one. But there were some other interesting answers, such as Yandex the Russian search engine and Baidu, a Chinese language search engine. Others also mentioned Ask, Blekko and DuckDuckGo.  We wrote about Blekko when it first came out, but it really hasn’t seemed to take off.

We tend to agree with the HighRankings.com forum administator, who simply said, “There aren’t 3-5. There is Google and Bing. (Yahoo uses Bing as well.)” In case you didn’t know, there is now a single Bing/Yahoo search engine.

So what are our top 5 search engines? Google, Bing, Google, Bing, Google!

List of Free Online Directories

February 15th, 2012

Make Sure Your Company is On Them

If you are a small local business, it is important that prospective customers can find you when they do a local search, ex. “farm market vernon nj or bookkeeping chester ny.” Adding your business to free online directories is a great way to enhance your web visibility.  Take a look at the graphic below.  Because of online directories, our client is in EVERY single result on the first page of Google for the term preschool pine island ny.

Local Directory Graphic

Our Top 10 – OK 13 – List of Free Online Directories

You don’t need to upgrade your listings in online directories to gain a benefit.  All of the directory listing results in the graphic with the exception of one are FREE basic listings.  Some directories play a greater role in visibility than others.  Here is our top 13 list of free online directories – not in any specific order – that you should submit your business to:

  • Google Places
    Yahoo Local
    Bing Local
    Insiderpages.com
    Citysearch.com
    Local.com
    Localeze.com
    Superpages.com
    Yelp.com
    Merchantcircle.com
    Yellopages.com
    Yellowbook.com
    DMOZ.org
  • We recommend that you also submit your business to any local, regional and industry related directories.  Some of these may require a fee, such as warwickinfo.net in our graphic, but their visibility may make the expense worthwhile.

    Google Places PO Box Update

    February 9th, 2012

    PO Boxes Picture

    As we covered in our previous post Can I Use a PO Box As My Google Places Address?, Google does not approve of using a PO Box as an address in you’re your Google Places listing. Google reaffirmed this position in an update to the Google Places Quality Guideline stating:

    Do not create a listing or place your pin marker at a location where the business does not physically exist. P.O. Boxes are not considered accurate physical locations. If you operate from a location but receive mail at a mail box there, please list your physical address in Address Line 1, and put your mail box or suite number in Address Line 2.

    Thankfully, this revision makes it easier for businesses who receive mail via PO Boxes rather than at their physical location. So while a PO Box cannot be your sole Google Places address, it can now be included in your address – hopefully without any issues.