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The Continued Importance of Link Building
Sunday, October 31, 2010
As we  close out 2010, there are many of us that have been in the search marketing for a number of years, some even into their second decade.  We all realize the importance of quality links to a website.  Yet many go about “link building” in different ways.  Some purchase links, some buy and sell links, some submit to directories, some outsource and let others purchase links on their behalf.  Some even outsource and let others submit to free directories and participate in link exchanges.  Of course some focus on a combination of the above, while yet others simply create content in hopes of acquiring quality links.

The fact of the matter is that links still matter.  The search engine algorithms continue to place a heavy weight on link popularity.  While we are starting to see this change, a quality link still goes a long way.  Many of you may be familiar with the work of Eric Ward who is a bona fide expert in link building.  Eric had a great piece over at the Search Engine Land yesterday where he discussed how to take control of your link building in 2010.  The part of the article that I found most interesting is what prompted him to write the piece in the first place.  Here is an excerpt:
There is a website I know of, devoted to a very popular hobby. This site has been live since 1997. That’s twelve years. If I mentioned the company behind the site you’d probably know it. This site enjoyed very high rankings for many years, largely due to having such an early presence on the Web, which meant it also had a significant and healthy link profile. Their links were all natural, and they had never engaged in any sort of link building activities at all. A classic case of an older site with a perfect link pedigree.
A while back, they noticed that some of their rankings were slipping. Sites that were much newer, and not as robust, were outranking them. It’s a fairly common thing that many older sites experience. Because they never had to seek links in order to rank well, they didn’t spend much time on it. But the newer sites, knowing what they were up against, were actively seeking links, hiring link builders, doing all the SEO/SEM things that new sites do to fight an established brand site.
The older site responded but made a tactical mistake. They panicked. They hired link builders who used the type of tactics anyone reading this column would cringe at. The older site didn’t do this on purpose. They just didn’t know any better, because they were content experts, not search engine marketers or link builders. Not only did their rankings not improve, they worsened.
Nothing bothers me more than when an old site with a perfect linking pedigree and outstanding content ends up tarnished due to a simple lack of information about link building. While the damage can be undone, it never should have happened in the first place.
Sound familiar?  I too have seen this happen with sites and as Eric mentioned while the damage can be undone, it never should have happened in the first place.  Take some time to map out your link building strategy.  Examine the various link building resources that you have access to.  If you are involved in partnerships, sponsorships or vendor relations look at any linking opportunities within those avenues.  Link building continues to remain important from an SEO or organic search perspective.  You can optimize your site all you want, but without quality external links to your pages, you simply will not perform as well as you should in the results of major search engines.

Is link popularity overrated?  Well it is not like “he with the most links” wins.  The IBL (In-bound Link) Quality  is always more important.  Link building is not easy (although there are many who might refute this) but link building is still important.  Creating a plan for your link building strategy is where many online marketers need to start.  The online space is a vast universe that is hyper-competitive in nature.  As you think about where your online marketing strategies are going in 2010, you might want to revisit your link building strategies and the tactics that you’ll want to employ to improve the quantity and quality of the links that are pointing back to your site pages.

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posted by Jody @ Sunday, October 31, 2010  
Does Blended Search Optimization Work for B2B?
Saturday, October 30, 2010
Since May 2007, we have been hearing about Universal Search and Blended Search.  Google was the first of the major Search Engines to unveil blended results as part of their main search results in May 2007 with Universal Search.  ASK was second in June of 2007, followed by MSN in July 2007 and Yahoo in October 2007.  Yet here we are two years later and the discussions have died down a little.  When’s the last time you heard someone in your office discuss blended search?  Of course there are exceptions and early adopters, but in discussions that I have with many, they are not yet leveraging blended search optimization.  How is blended search affecting B2B websites?  Should B2B sites be optimizing for blended search?

What is Blended Search Optimization?

Blended Search optimization is simply the process of developing relevant content in a format other than a typical web page so that it appears as part of the different types of search results within the major search engines.  There are numerous types of blended search results that are now being featured as part of a search engines main results.  Types of blended search results include videos, shopping results, images, news results etc.

Why is Blended Search Important?

The short answer is that searchers (i.e.. users of Search Engines) are expecting richer experiences.  They are looking to find relevant information that answers their questions and their need for timely, relevant information.  In the past, this need was satisfied by newspapers, print, radio and television.  With the digital age and with the emergence of digital natives (More on Digital Natives here) and millennials, people are looking for dynamic types of content.  Not just a blue link with a somewhat relevant description.  Hence the need for blended results.  Some users relate better to articles and press releases, others to podcasts, images or videos.  The fact of the matter is, depending on the nature of the searcher’s query, the type of results that they are looking for will vary.  This is why blended search is important.  Someone looking for a new CMS solution may be more tuned in with a video demo as opposed to a webpage that describes what a CMS is.  Blended Search results provide a richer experience and search landscape for the user.  Searchers are looking for this.  They are no longer satisfied with ten blue links on a results page.

Does Blended Search Work for B2B?

The short answer is that yes blended search optimization can work for business to business websites.  It depends on your blended search strategy.  For example, we know that unlike a B2C site that may feature a large variety of products, for B2B sites things such as optimizing shopping feeds to improve visibility with shopping results may not be the best avenue to pursue (for the simple facts that a typical B2B site may not have a series of  "products" to submit).  However, things such as video optimization, news release optimization, image and blog optimization can all help increase the visibility of a B2B site on a search results page.  From an SEO perspective, blended search optimization can work well for B2B sites.

The SERP landscape has become hyper-competitive over the past three or four years.  Being found in Google, Yahoo, Live Search or even other vertical search engines is becoming increasingly difficult.  While it is not necessarily about the rankings, it is about the visibility and about the click.  A 2008 study on blended search from iProspect outlines, the continued importance for marketers to ensure that their digital assets are found within the first three pages, if not the first page, of search results. Blended Search provides an opportunity to accomplish this and in some cases effective blended search optimization can allow an organization to dominate the real estate of the Search.  We have clients who actually represent 30-60% of a Google SERP for a given key phrase as a result of strong blended search optimization.

The secret with blended search optimization for B2B sites is that there is no secret.  You simply need to understand your audience and the type of content that they prefer to engage with.  For B2B sites, this means testing the type of content that you feature on your site.  Do users engage with videos better than PDFs?  Or is your audience looking for news updates and articles describing your service/product offering?  Perhaps they are looking for content that is updated frequently such as blog posts or maybe they are simply looking for user reviews and testimonials about your brand.  This is where a social network result such as Facebook or Twitter may prove beneficial.  While technically not a blended search result, social network results for your brand are a different type of result that elicit a specific response (participating in a community setting) from the searcher which is why we classify social network results as a "type of blended result".  The fact is, the searcher may be looking for a different type of result when searching for your brand or related key phrase.

Past search research dating back to 2004 shows that typically users will not look past the third page of search results, in fact many might not even click through to the second page of results.  As a B2B site, having the ability to "own" multiple results (and multiple types of results) on page one of Google or Yahoo for a non-branded key phrase can provide a great return in terms of intercepting your audience.  This is what blended search optimization can do for a site.  You can have a traditional website result as well as a video result or perhaps a news result to intercept these clicks and gain this traffic.

Three Types of Blended Results That B2B Sites Should Focus On

While the following is not specific to B2B sites, here are three types of blended search optimization that B2B sites should focus on:
  1. News/PR Optimization – optimizing articles and press releases is a great way to find your site within the blended results of Google, Yahoo or MSN.  The Engines (and searchers) tend to treat news results as more relevant due to the timely information that is within them.  Launching a new version of your software or a new strategic partnership can provide useful information to your target demographic.  As a result a well optimized press release can show up in Google News and in the blended search results displayed by Google.  Not to mention that in Google, News results tend to appear above the top organic results of the SERP or after the first one or two organic results meaning that they often occupy prime real estate within the results page.  Furthermore, deeper analysis from the above mentioned iProspect study indicates that search engine users click "news" results more than twice as much (36%) within blended search results as they do when they use the vertical "news search" (17%).
     
  2. Video Optimization – for whatever reason video results seem to appear more often than other types of blended results such as image results, book results etc.  All B2B sites should feature some video content on their site and/or on a video aggregator site such as YouTube that demos a product, explains their service, communicates their unique competitive advantage etc.  Video may resonate better with certain demographics and as a result create more engagement with your brand from the SERP.  The messaging in the video can be more targeted than say the information that a user receives once they click through the "blue link" result from the results page.  Perform a search in Google for "supply chain management".  Depending on the data center that you hit you should be returned with a couple of video results (as well as a couple of image results) in addition to the typical blue link text results that would normally appear.
     
  3. Blog Optimization -blogs, love them or hate them are garnering more trust as a resource than typical web results.  Optimizing your blog posts and posting regularly can be a great way to tap into the blended results for a topic specific keyword query.  Blogs that feature relevant and informative posts about a specific topic have been known to show up in the main search results of Google.  The thing with blog results are that they can appear "blended" in within the normal results, meaning that they look like a typical result, or they can be labeled as a "Blog Result" indicating that they are in fact a blended result.  A search for "online marketing" or "Susan Boyle’ in Google returns both.
Blended Search is all about content and the type of content that you optimize for your audience.  Does it apply to B2B?  Yes of course it does, for blended search optimization is simply another way to gain visibility in the organic/natural search results of a search engine.  So while rankings may be dead, visibility is not.  Blended Search allows you to optimize content and different types of content in order to intercept your audience to begin or build a relationship between the searcher and your brand.  So while they may not convert on this initial visit, they will at least engage with your brand and become more aware of what your organization has to offer.

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posted by Jody @ Saturday, October 30, 2010  
Keyword Research When You’re in a Niche Market/Industry
Friday, October 29, 2010
One of the difficulties in online marketing deals with finding the right keywords, at the right time that are being used by the right people.  In any field, keyword research becomes further complicated when your company is in a new or niche industry. Maybe your business consists of something like email authentication, price management  solutions or the like.  Newer services in newer industries can make it difficult to progress with an effective online marketing campaign.  In the past ten years, with the rise of the Internet and Search Engines, we have seen numerous companies emerge in niche markets.  Quite often these companies are looking to address a need for a product or service for another business that is not currently being met.  There has been tremendous amounts of innovation with some of these start-ups while others have come and gone with but a small flicker.  As a result, finding the right keywords for companies in niche markets can be extremely difficult and frustrating.

The question is then, how does one go about finding relevant keywords to position for?  From an organic search perspective, how does an organization determine which keywords they should be found for in Google, Bing, Business.com, YouTube, or other search engines?  Well before we dive into how you should go about your keyword research, we must first visit the issues that are at hand.

Issue #1:  My Industry is new and we’re not sure which keywords are specific to our business consumer - This is the whole reason why you perform keyword research.  To identify terms and key phrases that can be used to intercept your audience or your consumer.  Developing a keyword strategy is critical at this point for your business to be able to intercept your targeted audience in hope of generating fresh and qualified leads.  One of the greatest assumed practices of online marketers is that keyword research is a one time happening.  The fact is that it is not.  Keyword research is something that is on-going and is something that will need to be continually refined as you progress with your online efforts.  This is a key point to remember:  Keyword Research needs to progress and evolve.

Issue #2:  Using industry jargon that people may not be aware of – Marketers are the worst for this are they not?  We continue to see this all of the time.  We get a client who comes to us after working with another SEO vendor or marketing agency and the messaging on their site is full of industry terms… terms that may or may not be being used by people looking for their service or for information about their service.

Issue #3:  Our Industry is so niche, that there are only a few phrases that people use - While this may be the case, this gives you an exciting opportunity to define the language of your industry.  You can help mold the language of the industry and build a foundation of relevant keywords that your audience will quickly adopt and use.

Issue #4:  Getting over your ego and thinking that you already know which keywords to focus on – Have you heard this before:  "We don’t need to do keyword research, we’ve already established our keyword list…"  Even in 2010 I continue to hear about site owners and webmasters who declare that they have already defined their keyword baskets.  Yet if we reviewed these keyword baskets, we would most likely see that they lack search volume (i.e. nobody is searching for them in the search engines) or they are branded phrases which they already rank for in the engines.  Developing a proper keyword strategy sometimes means trusting someone other than yourself to identify relevant keywords for your online marketing efforts.

Issue #5:  Lack of online marketing activity - Would you believe that there are still companies that are still not allocating sufficient marketing budget to online initiatives?  It becomes difficult to establish a keyword strategy to promote your online properties, if you do not have budget to do so.  We are starting to see a shift, as SEO/organic search marketing has proven to provide great return with minimal investment (when compared to traditional forms of advertising and promotion).  Keyword research is part of a total online marketing strategy.  Companies, especially new companies in niche markets cannot afford to neglect online marketing efforts.

How to Approach Keyword Research in a Niche Market/Industry

Keyword research can be challenging, but it can be even more challenging when you are in a niche market or a fairly new industry.  So what do you do when you are involved in a new industry where there may be a lack of relevant terminology and potentially a lack of competition?  Businesses in niche markets need to work at keyword research and selection.  In order to do that there are a few items that should be considered and practiced:
  1. Understand your Business - not to state the obvious here, but you need to understand your business and which key phrases are relevant to your business.  Of course branded phrases play a role, but chances are you should be ranking well for your branded phrases anyway.  In a niche market, you should be able to determine a core basket of head type key phrases.  These are phrases that are more general in nature and tend to have higher search volume.  By understanding your business and online goals, you should be able to establish a list of head and torso phrases that you can optimize your web properties for.
     
  2. Understand your Audience - this is huge.  The better you understand your audience or your target consumer, the easier you will be to intercept them as they proceed through the purchase cycle.  Whether they are in the research phase or are close to making a purchase.  An effective keyword strategy will ensure that your brand and your business is up for consideration throughout the various phrases.  Learn the language of your customer.  Frequent environments that they frequent.  This is where social networking serves some benefit for niche companies and online marketers.  Understanding the buzzwords of your audience will go a long way in shaping your keyword strategy.  Keep in mind that your audience will be changing and the terminology being used will also be changing.  Remember, Keyword Research needs to progress and evolve.
  3. Keep it Simple - Depending on the nature of your business, you do not need to have baskets and baskets of keywords.  This is especially true for niche sites.  Avoid focusing on too many keywords.  Select a core group of phrases and build from there.  Especially if your website is smaller (in terms of pages that it consists of) as you cannot effectively optimize a 100 page website for 10,000 keywords.  It just doesn’t work that way.  Remenber that ideally a webpage should be optimized for a single key phrase.  The search engines cannot treat a single page as an authority if the page consists of nine or ten different key phrases.  When it comes to keyword research for organic search initiatives, keep it simple.
     
  4. Seek Assistance of a Reputable SEO Firm – keyword research is vital and while it’s true that anyone can technically do it, you should seek out the assistance of an SEO firm that has experience with keyword research strategy.  Sure every SEO firm offers keyword research or keyword analysis, but few focus on overall keyword strategy.  Especially for companies in niche markets, bringing in a third party with a fresh set of eyes can provide great insight into keywords that you should be positioning your web properties for.  For companies that are fortunate enough to have experienced SEO staff on hand, having the understanding of search experts can be a huge benefit when it comes to keyword research and keyword strategy.
     
  5.  Evaluate Online Competitors - another helpful resource for constructing niche keyword research is to examine your online competition.  While in niche markets this is more difficult as there may be less competition, there is always some competition lurking around whether direct or indirect.  Examine their websites to see what keywords they are focusing on.  Compare this to what you know about your target audience.  Are these same key phrases relevant for your business, for your site, for your audience?  If available, competitive insight is a great source of keyword intelligence that companies in niche markets can leverage as part of their keyword research process.
     
  6. Specialize but don’t Overwhelm - the great thing about being in a niche or newly emerging market is that the area of focus is smaller.  As a result you have the opportunity to define new terminology that can become mainstream in your industry.  You have the ability to contribute new buzzwords. You have the ability to create "niche key phrases" that are relevant solely to your industry.  The trick here is not to create an entirely new environment of industry jargon that no one other than businesses operating in the industry use.  There is a fine line in that, industry related terms must be adopted by the audience in some manner.  So while you can specialize and create your own relevant industry terminology, try not to overwhelm the audience.  Allow them to adopt these phrases and begin utilizing these key phrases as part of their vocabulary.
Keyword research when you are in a niche market, may take some extra work.  You just have to keep at in and ensure that your messaging incorporates the language of your audience, not necessarily the language/jargon of your business.

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posted by Jody @ Friday, October 29, 2010  
Duplicate Content: Myths, Mayhem and Making Sense of it All
Thursday, October 28, 2010
We have not discussed duplicate content recently.  Still there are mixed reports as to whether duplicate content is still that big of an issue or not.  The fact is is that if you utilize the same content that exists elsewhere and are malicious with regards to search, you can be "penalized" for this.  While Google says that you may not get penalized but a "filter" might be applied.  Penalty... filter, let's be honest, Google will control your online destiny, at least in terms of Search.

When you are a company that is trying to organize the world’s information (Read: Google), relevancy and duplication are big concerns.  With all due respect to Google’s advertising platform, Google is in the business of Search and all about providing the world’s informaiton to those in search of it.  Google’s mission: to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.  If you have been in the Search industry for some time, you will of no doubt heard the proverbial “content is king” statement.  A bit of a more accurate statement might read “unique content is king”.

Some of you might remember Google’s Supplemental index where Google placed older pages or perhaps “duplicate pages” in limbo in a separate index from their main index.  The supplemental index still exists, Google just does not communicate to us the supplemental results.  Is this where duplicate content ends up?  Perhaps, but over recent years, there has been conflicting reports about Google and their duplicate content penalties.  Google more recently has stated that they do not penalize sites for duplicate content.  So what’s the deal with duplicate content?

Myth #1:  Google penalizes sites for having duplicate content
Technically Google does not penalize a site if there is duplicate content.  According to Greg Grothaus of Google’s Search Quality Team, “this is not the case. That’s not to say that duplicate content can’t have a negative impact on your rankings, but Google itself is not penalizing you for it. “   Having said that if you are blatantly scraping content from another site or resource, Google will deal with it.  The algorithm is smart enough to factor in the age of the content or longevity (based on link popularity etc.) as to the authority of the content.  Chances are if there is duplicate content, Google will pick an authority and that authoritative piece of content is the content that will be placed in the index and be found in the search results for a given keyword query.

Myth #2:  There is a certain percentage of duplicate content that is acceptable
Think of it this way, Google is like a library and they are trying to organize books (i.e. web pages) by topic (i.e. relevancy).  A duplicate entry does not necessarily provide a richer experience, so Google rather than serving up  multiple copies of the books decides to serve up a single copy that is the most relevant to the user.  With Google, duplicate content is simply a factor on a “by query” basis.  Experience suggests that if you have multiple web properties with the exact same content, only one of the web properties will show up in the search results for a given query.   However that’s not to say that if you modify your query, your other web property may in fact show up.   The fact is duplicate content creates “noise” and pollution on the Web.  There is no magic percentage as to what amount of content could be duplicated between your web properties.  The fact is that if you want users to find your site, make your content:
  1. Unique
  2. Informative
  3. Useful
By addressing these three issues you will be able to provide your audience with the information that they may be looking for.  In addition, other sites will start linking to your content which can only help from an SEO perspective.

Yes it is true that Google has certain guidelines that they would like Webmaster’s and site owners to follow.  In fact you can view those guidelines here: http://www.google.com/support/webmasters/bin/answer.py?answer=35769.  The fact is that duplicate content can be caused inadvertently and some site owners may not even be aware of it.  According to Google, duplicate content can be defined as:

… substantive blocks of content within or across domains that either completely match other content or are appreciably similar. Mostly, this is not deceptive in origin.

Myth 3:  Google  will not remove a site from their Index for duplicate content practices
Here’s where some of the confusion often arises.  Contrary to myth #1, Google will remove a site from the Index for duplicate content practices if  after Google’s review of your site indicated that you engaged in deceptive practices, Google reserves the right to remove your site from the Index.  According to Google’s Webmaster Guidelines on duplicate content:

Duplicate content on a site is not grounds for action on that site unless it appears that the intent of the duplicate content is to be deceptive and manipulate search engine results. If your site suffers from duplicate content issues, and you don’t follow the advice listed above, we do a good job of choosing a version of the content to show in our search results.

However, if our review indicated that you engaged in deceptive practices and your site has been removed from our search results, review your site carefully.

Google also suggests that there are times when duplicate content is not deceptive in nature:
  • Discussion forums that can generate both regular and stripped-down pages targeted at mobile devices
  • Store items shown or linked via multiple distinct URLs
  • Printer-only versions of web pages
A common example used when describing duplicate content is with a homepage.  A while back, Greg Gothaus from Google used the following to illustrate examples of URLs that are all different (and thus duplicates) in the eyes of Google.
duplicate-content 
Dealing with Duplicate Content
A common issue we come across with clients, is large stores featuring content generated from a shared database or duplicate content generated by a CMS system.  Frankly there are a number of ways to deal with duplicate content.
  1. Create Unique Content – authoritative, informative and useful
  2. Utilize a separate database for specific web properties – avoid populating the same content from the same database on different sites
  3. Canonicalization – informing Google and other engines of your preferred URL using canonical tags
  4. Using Robots.txt to block content from the Index – guide the engines to the content that you want treated as the authority
  5. Use 301 (permanent) Redirection
  6. Consistent Interlinking
  7. Set a preferred domain in Google Webmaster Tools
  8. Utilize a search engine friendly CMS
Google’s Webmaster Guidelines on Duplicate Content: http://www.google.com/support/webmasters/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=66359
Google on Duplicate Content and Multiple Site Issues: http://googlewebmastercentral.blogspot.com/2009/09/duplicate-content-and-multiple-site.html

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posted by Jody @ Thursday, October 28, 2010  
A Couple of Quick SEO Reminders
Wednesday, October 27, 2010
I am a big advocate of SEO 101.  A lot of people these days are all about Web 2.0 or Web 3.0 and it shows.  Have you seen some of the "crap" that is on the Web these days?  Sure it might be flashy and fancy… from a design point of view, but quite often, it sure does not help with the user experience or with the ability to find relevant results in a given search engine.  I guess by title, I am an organic search strategist.  I have focused on SEO initiatives to help my clients intercept their target audience.  I help them provide content that is useful, informative and relevant to their audience.

I have been lucky to work with some of the world’s most well known brands some of which happen to have large commerce sites.  As we move into 2001, I am amazed to see just how much fundamental organic optimization so many sites lack.  Even worse is the fact that some (many?) in the Search industry also overlook the fundamentals of SEO.  So while this may be a refresher for many of you, I do know that there are some out there who will find the following SEO reminders useful.

A Couple of SEO Reminders
  1. Site Architecture is important for SEO success - guess what?  If you cannot map out a search friendly architecture and layout of your site, you are simply not going to do well in the search results of the engines.  Some key points to remember:
     
    • Structure your site in a logical manner
    • Avoid burying important content 4 or more folders deep in the hierarchy
    • Create search engine friendly URLs 
    • Use canonical URLs
    • Use the canonical tag to address duplicate content concerns
    • Keep it clean!
       
  2. Create Unique Content on your Product or main information Pages - avoid adding vendor provided content.  Every other site that sells the same product will also feature this content.  The engines are looking to index useful, informative and unique content.  Help them out by continuing to publish fresh and informative content.  You will also receive the benefits of link value from other site and blogs that link to this content.
     
  3. Use an SEO friendly CMS (Content Management System) - ensure that your CMS system allows you to populate fundamentals such as unique title and meta tags and that you are able to add any necessary SEO fields as required.
     
  4. Avoid Using Java Script in Navigation - while the engines are getting better at reading JS, they are still not there just yet.  Make sure that the search engines can follow your links and avoid placing your main navigation (top nav, side nav, footer nav) in JS.  Consider using CSS and include files as a way to create your site navigation.  Again this is just SEO 101 best practice type of stuff.
     
  5. Create and Update Your HTML Sitemaps – as you push out new content to the web make sure that you add it to your HTML sitemap.  Have a ton of pages?  Leverage multiple sitemap-like pages.
     
  6. Create and Update XML Sitemaps – as you continue to add content to your site, your site can quickly become fairly large in terms of pages.  One way to ensure that your content is being crawled and indexed efficiently is to create and submit XML sitemaps to Google (and Bing).  Remember that via XML sitemaps you can actually set the priority of which pages you consider to be the most important as related to other pages on your site.  Communicate this to the search engines to ensure efficient indexing of your site.
     
  7. Avoid hiding your content from the search engines – things like Flash, JS and frames might be useful from a design perspective but really they can wreak havoc from an SEO perspective.  Help the engines find your content and make it easier for them to crawl and index. 
 I understand that to some of you this may be elementary SEO, but why oh why are so many sites neglecting these fundamental practices.  Whether you have an an e-commerce site, a blog, a directory, start with the basics.  Trust me, if you have failed to address the fundamentals you will be limited in your ability to place well in the results.  The longer your wait to address these issues the harder it is to overcome them.  In case you have not yet noticed the Web is a hyper-competitive environment.  Failure to address the fundamentals can most definitely have an impact on the bottom line that you generate from your online marketing efforts.  Why restrict yourself?  The need for fundamental SEO should be the first place you start when trying to optimize your web properties.

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posted by Jody @ Wednesday, October 27, 2010  
Google is giving away 10,000 Google TVs
Yesterday, Google announced that they are giving away 10,000 Google TV devices. In fact Google already gave away more than 3,000 Google TV devices to attendees of the Adobe MAX conference.  One of the things that makes Google TV different is that it has an Internet browser built-in so users have full access to the entire web on their television screens. 

According to Google, "Google TV is a new way to think about TV: it’s a platform that combines your current TV programming and the open web into a single, seamless entertainment experience."  It looks like Google TV is gaining some tremendous interest as Turner Broadcasting has been hard at work optimizing some of their most popular websites for viewing on Google TV, including TBS, TNT, CNN, Cartoon Network and Adult Swim, available anytime through Google TV. Google has partnered with some of the leading premium content providers to bring thousands of movie and TV titles, on-demand, directly to our fingertips.

Check out the Google TV Guide: http://code.google.com/tv/web/
The Official Google TV Blog: http://googletv.blogspot.com/
Google TV Web Forum: http://groups.google.com/group/googletv-web
Update on Google TV: http://googletv.blogspot.com/2010/10/here-comes-google-tv_04.html

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posted by Jody @ Wednesday, October 27, 2010  
The ABC's of Google Instant
Sunday, October 24, 2010
So now that Google Instant has been out for a few weeks, what are your thoughts?   I still find it annoying and opt out of using it personally.  Professionally I check it out to see if Instant is displaying more relevant results.  I am still not sure that Google Instant results are more relevant than "normal" Google results.  Yet as Google always does with any of their releases they tested out Google Instant prior to launching.  I'm not sure that I would consider those tests all that successful.  See for yourself as we go through the ABC's of Google Instant.

ABC's of Google Instant

A is for Amazon
B is for Bank of America
C is for Craigslist
D is for Dictionary
E is for eBay
F is for Facebook
G is for Gmail
H is for Hotmail
I is for Ikea
J is for JC Penney
K is for Kohls
L is for Lowes
M is for Mapquest
N is for Netflix
O is for Orbitz
P is for Pandora
Q is for Quotes
R is for Realtor
S is for Skype
T is for Target
U is for USPS
V is for Verizon
W is for Weather
X is for Xbox
Y is for Yahoo
Z is for Zappos

So as you can see Google Psychic now known as Google Instant is trying to predict what I am looking for as I type a search query.  The above items appear for me as I type each letter of the alphabet in a Google search bar while using Google Instant.  In terms of relevancy, about 23% of these results are remotely relevant to my interests.  Even if I were searching for brands, a number of these are not applicable to me at all.  Sorry Google, but while your "psychic" search seems cool in theory, in reality it is just annoying.

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posted by Jody @ Sunday, October 24, 2010  
Top SEO Lists of the Week: October 18th, 2010
Friday, October 22, 2010
There were a lot of great SEO posts this past week, it was tough to narrow it down to our five favorite lists but we managed to find five great SEO lists that you too might find benefit in.  Of course, if you missed last week's top five, you can check them out here:  Top 5 SEO Lists - October 11th.

Top SEO Lists of the Week:  October 18th, 2010

#5.  The Five Elements Of Social Media Alchemy - Jordan Kasteler had an interesting post over at Search Engine Land with his thoughts on validity of social media-driven linkbait campaigns and their ability to aid SEO efforts.  From content development to distribution and social buzz, Jordan discusses how linkbait works in a social media world.  http://searchengineland.com/the-five-elements-of-social-media-alchemy-53083



#4.  5 Quick Google Analytics Hacks - Tom over at SEOmoz posted a great little piece on a couple of Google Analytics hacks that can be handy.  Included is 5 Ways to Segment your Funnel as well as how to track SEO variables In Google Analytics.  Great stuff!  http://www.seomoz.org/blog/5-quick-google-analytics-hacks



#3.  5 Website Changes That Will Hurt Your SEO - a great post from Eric Enge at Search Engine Watch.  I wish that I thought of the idea for this post.  Eric is a pretty brilliant guy when it comes to search.  His opening comment in this post sets the tone nicely: "One of the biggest factors in the traffic you get from search engines is the inbound link profile to your site. When you make a significant change to your site, one question that the search engines need to consider is whether those links are still valid."  We agree entirely with the five items that Eric pointed out that can have adverse effects on your SEO efforts.
  • Domain
  • URL Structure
  • Content
  • Whois Data
  • Theme - modifying various content themes on your site
Great post.  http://searchenginewatch.com/3641466



#2.  Universal Search – 29 Other Ways To Achieve Search Engine Visibility - we have always had strong feelings about optimizing for blended / universal search.  Here is a great post from the folks over at the Search Engine People blog featuring 29 tips to gain a presence in the search results via universal search, you know things like video, images, press releases etc.  There are various types of universal search results that can be leveraged to give you a greater presence in the search engines.  This post examines a few of those options. 



#1.  SES Chicago 2010: The Full Recap - as always Barry Schwartz puts together a tremendous recap of various search engine conferences.  This week, SES Chicago took place in the windy city and Barry has compiled a great list of some of  the sessions that were covered.  It is a pretty extensive list.  A couple of the sessions that were covered that we might recommend include:
  • Why Content Creation 3-Ways Are 1 Smart, Sexy Strategy
  • Advanced Keyword Research – SES Chicago - Top Rank Marketing 
  • SES Chicago: Killer Facebook Marketing Tactics
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posted by Jody @ Friday, October 22, 2010  
Marketing Jive's 1000th Post
Wednesday, October 20, 2010
Roughly four years ago in October 2006, I started a little blog called SEO-Space.  I was working as a search strategist at Enquiro and we were beginning to recommend blogging strategies for some of our clients.  I felt that the best way to learn about blogs and blogging was to start my own blog and low and behold here we are today with our 1000th post.

I must say that I really enjoy blogging.  It has become difficult to find the time for blogging, but I fit it in when I can.  SEO-Space has now become Marketing Jive and we are doing quite well in terms of traffic and have built up a loyal following.  Not bad for a one-person operation.  We have had some guest bloggers over the past few years, but for the most part, the vast majority of the posts have come from yours truly.  Having said that, if you are interested in contributing to Marketing Jive, please and we will see what we can do.

Over the next few months, Marketing Jive will be going through some back end changes to help update some of the functionality of the site.  Sadly we're limited by our blogging platform, but look for that to change.  To the readers and subscribers of Marketing Jive, I wanted to say thank you.  Thank you for checking out my little piece of the Internet, whether you have visited a single post or are a regular reader.  I know that you are busy and appreciate the time that you take to check out Marketing Jive.  If you haven't yet, feel free to follow us on Twitter @marketing_jive.

In the past we have posted some of our milestones, we thought that we would provide an updated list of some of our favorite posts.

Marketing Jive's 50 Favorite Posts

50.  Sorry Google Lately I've Been Cheating on you With Bing
49.  Local Search: Organically Speaking
48.  B2B Content Development: Auditing Your Existing Content
47.  2007 Forbes Billionaire List - The Rich Get Richer...
46.  Don Rickles: The King of Entertainment even in 2008
45.  Google Algorithm Changes & Updates 2010: Part One
44.  In-Bound Linking Vs. On-Page SEO
43.  Online Reputation Management in 2007 Part Six: Controlling Your Online Visibility with Optimization
42.  The Importance of Benchmarking in SEO
41.  Search Behavior: Inside the Mind of the Searcher 5 Years Later
40.  Superbowl Snack Facts:
39.  Top Search Stories of 2007 Part Two
38.  Image Optimization Reminders
37.  7 Ways to Analyze Natural Search Web Analytics Data
36.  Search Engine Market Share Over the Past Three Years
35.  11 Business Benefits of Using Facebook Applications
34.  Planning a Website Redesign: Thinking About SEO
33.  14 Tips for Image Optimization for Blended Search Results
32.  Top 5 Twitter Resources
31.  The "Five Whys" of SEO and Organic Search
30.  ASK.com The Second Coming of Search Means Personalization
29.  SES NY Day Three Session of the Day: John Gerzema Keynote
28.  Marketing B2B Websites: 20 Organic Ranking Factors to Consider
27.  Building External Link Inventory: 11 Things to Look for in a Good Link
26.  Keyword Strategy in 2008: Focusing on Head, Torso and Longtail Keywords
25.  15 Business Benefits of Using Twitter
24.  URL Structure and SEO
23.  Optimizing for Blended Search: What You Need to Know
22.  SEO Education & Knowledge Transfer: 21 Ways to Share SEO Knowledge
21.  Interlinking Strategy: Establish an Interlinking Process
20.  Homepage Optimization Best Practices
19.  Website Re-Design: A 21 Step SEO Checklist for Planning a Website Re-Design
18.  Happy Birthday Chuck Berry! Chuck Berry Turns 81
17.  SEO Keyword Strategy: Why There is More to Keyword Research than Search Volume
16.  10 Years of Google Part Five: Top 100 Google Moments Part IV
15.  Mobile SEO Tips: The Ultimate Guide to Mobile Search Optimization
14.  14 Best Practices and Tips for Video Optimization SEO
13.  The Facebook Years: Everything You Need to Know About Facebook
12.  High Bounce Rates Are Not Necessarily a Bad Thing
11.  Mark Messier Greatest Leader in the History of Sports
10.  What If There Was No Google?
9.   The Importance of On-Page Optimization
8.   5 Stages of the Organic Search Marketing Maturity Model
7.   NHL Team Worth 2010: List of NHL Team Worth
6.   Planning a Content Development Strategy
5.   SEO Roadmaps: Building an SEO Roadmap to Guide Your Online Marketing Focus
4.   37 Things To Keep in Mind When Writing Web Content
3.   Content Development: 11 Must Reads from Marketing Jive
2.   Google Blogs - Google's Top 50 Blogs
1.   Top 100 All-Time Coolest Search Engine Features

Those were just some of our favorite posts, thanks again for taking  the time to check us out.  We hope you enjoy our next 1000 posts. - Jody Nimetz, Author of Marketing Jive.

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posted by Jody @ Wednesday, October 20, 2010  
Pubcon 2010 Only a Couple of Weeks Away
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
I'm looking forward to attending Pubcon 2010 in Las Vegas in a couple of weeks.Pubcon Las Vegas takes place from November 8th through to November 11th at the Las Vegas Convention Center.  PubCon Las Vegas 2010  will for the first time feature an entire track of search and social media sessions that offer expanded time for many key industry speakers.  It will be a busy couple of days and Marketing Jive will be live blogging a number of sessions throughout the week.

Some of the sessions that we may take in include:

Smart Organic Keyword Research and Selection - Keywords remain an integral part of any SEO campaign. You can have the prettiest pages in the world, with wonderfully-written copy; but if you don't have a grasp on what your core keywords should be, you are losing out. Better your rankings and increase your relevant click-throughs by thoroughly landing your keywords.

How Do You Optimize For Universal and Personal Search? - we probably should be speaking at this one, but never-the-less, we are always interested in hearing what other industry experts have to say about blended/universal search.  Greg Boser is one of the speakers for this session, so it should be entertaining.

Cool Tools for Search Marketers - it's always great to learn about new tools or learn which tools others in the industry are leveraging for link building and SEO.   This session hopes to cover a variety of tools including SEO tools, link tools, and PPC tools as well as keyword and competitive intelligence tools.

Top-Shelf SEO: Hot Topics and Trends - this one is dubbed as "an expert-level session". There will be brief coverage of on-page items such as titles, tags, text and URLs. But the focus will be on the real money of SEO: off-page criteria. Links, links, links.  We will check this out and see what expert level tips come out of it.  Stay tuned.

May Day SEO for Google Caffeine - This spring Google updated their algo. It included tweaks for "page load speed" and "long tail" searches. This session will look at specific issues with what WebmasterWorld called, the "May Day" update.  Looking forward to this one for sure.

Navigating The Complex Social Media Marketing World - great roll call of speakers on this one.  This session will cover the latest topics and trends in the world of Social Media. This session should be good for tips about how to use Social Media as part of your online marketing strategy.

Super Session : Search Engines and Webmasters - Bing - Google - Instant - these types of sessions are usually my favorite with heated discussions and passion about search marketing.  Matt Cutts will be there and so will we.

These are but a few of the sessions that we will be attending, be sure to say hello if you bump into us.

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posted by Jody @ Tuesday, October 19, 2010  
Top 5 SEO Lists: Week of October 11th 2010
Monday, October 18, 2010
Last week's top five can be found here: http://www.marketing-jive.com/2010/10/top-5-seo-lists-of-week-october-4th.html

#5. A Few Things You Should Know about Link Building - it is always a good idea to work on your link building. Here are a hand full of reminders that you should all know by now.
http://dailyseotip.com/a-few-things-you-should-know-about-link-building/1118/


#4. Dave Naylor “The Three Pillars of SEO (Advanced) – a great post from the a4u Expo in London with a list some of Dave's favorite tools and SEO practices from on-page factors to site structure. A good point on setting keyword targets; "Check existing traffic for converting keywords and page 2 terms with the volume for these terms. Try to push these page 2 terms on through to page one."

http://www.distilled.co.uk/blog/reputation-monitor/dave-naylor-the-three-pillars-of-seo-advanced-a4u-live-blogging/


#3. 7 Fixes to Communication Problems with SEO Clients - a nice piece on how things can get lost in translation when it comes to SEO. Included in this post are a list of seven points to help reduce confusion and reduce communication breakdown. http://www.seo.com/blog/7-fixes-communication-problems-seo-clients/



#2. Are You Making One of These Common SEO Mistakes? - over at bluegrass.com, they featured a post on common SEO mistakes from tings like hiding anchor text to neglecting your content, a brief but important list. http://www.blueglass.com/blog/are-you-making-one-of-these-common-seo-mistakes/


#1. Ranking for Keyword + Cityname in Multiple Geographies - another great post from Rand Fishkin over at SEOmoz. GEO optimization is often neglected and is a great way to help your website gain presences in the search results for long tail geo appended key phrases. With the arrival of mobile, GEO optimization is quickly becoming more important than ever before. Rand points out that ranking for keyword + cityname in multiple geographies is one of the most challenging tasks in SEO. He's right. However in his post, he offers some insight into best practices and resources for getting into maps and local search.


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posted by Jody @ Monday, October 18, 2010  
SEO and Punctuation: 7 Things to Remember About Punctuation and Search Engines
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
This is an interesting topic that can easily get confused by Webmasters and site owners.  We're hoping to clarify as opposed to add to the confusion with this post on SEO and punctuation.

First, we need to make one thing clear.  Optimize for your users first and the search engines second.  Following this one principle can lead you to great success.  With that said, there are a lot of questions floating around regarding the use of punctuation and the impact on SEO.  When the discussion about punctuation and SEO comes up, there are a couple of different areas in which the confusion comes from:
  • first are we talking about the use of punctuation in URLs? or
  • are we talking about using punctuation in title tags? or
  • are we talking about using punctuation in other page elements such as meta descriptions?
What adds to the confusion about this subject is that the search engines have not been entirely clear on what is acceptable and what is not.  This much is clear, the only punctuation that should be used in URLs is either the underscore "_" or hyphen "-" as word separators.  While both are accepted, we recommend that you use the hyphen as word separators in your URLs (i.e. www.marketing-jive.com as opposed to www.marketing_jive.com).  Google has offered some helpful information with their basic search help from their Webmaster Guidelines.  According to Google, in terms of Search:

  • Every word matters. Generally, all the words you put in the query will be used.
  • Search is always case insensitive. A search for [ new york times ] is the same as a search for [ New York Times ].
  • Generally, punctuation is ignored, including @#$%^&*()=+[]\ and other special characters.
 There are exceptions to this rule however.  Google also communicates:

Punctuation that is not ignored
  • Punctuation in popular terms that have particular meanings, like [ C++ ] or [ C# ] (both are names of programming languages), are not ignored.
  •  The dollar sign ($) is used to indicate prices. [ nikon 400 ] and [ nikon $400 ] will give different results.
  • The hyphen - is sometimes used as a signal that the two words around it are very strongly connected. (Unless there is no space after the - and a space before it, in which case it is a negative sign.)
  •  The underscore symbol _ is not ignored when it connects two words, e.g. [ quick_sort ].

7 Things to Remember About Punctuation and Search Engines
  1. The use of the pipe "|" is fine in title tags - providing that you do not over-do it.  A well written title can incorporate the use of the pipe to separate elements of the title.  For example a title using the pipe might appear such as: Marketing Jive SEO Tips | On-Page Optimization What you want to avoid is utilizing the pipe to stuff and separate keywords in the title. Primary Keyword | Keyword #2 | Keyword #3

  2. The use of  commas, colons and hyphens are all fine within the title - " , " " : " " - "I typically make use of the colon in titles and have not experienced any issues with the major search engines.  Similar to the example above:  Marketing Jive SEO Tips:  On-Page Optimization.

  3. Avoid Excessive Punctuation in Titles and Meta Description Tags - again focus your optimization efforts for your users not solely for the search engines.

  4. Be aware of punctuation that is not ignored - Punctuation in popular terms that have particular meanings, like [ C++ ] or [ C# ] (both are names of programming languages), are not ignored.  The dollar sign ($) is used to indicate prices. [ canon 400 ] and [canon $400 ] will give different results.  For additional information on punctuation that is ignored see this great post from Search Engine Journal.


  5. The majority of punctuation marks are not valid characters for a domain name (URL) - the exceptions are hyphens and underscores.

  6. Google ignores a lot of punctuation - using exclamation marks in your title tags will not buy you any extra points with Google as the search engine will simply ignore it.  Google doesn’t recognize special characters such as exclamation points, question marks, or the @ sign.  Barry Welford over at searchenginepeople.com probably created the definitive post on punctuation and search with his post Watch Your Punctuation Online.  Barry identifies other characters that re ignored as well as where and when it is appropriate to use punctuation in your URLs, titles, meta data and page copy.  Great post that is worth bookmarking.

  7. Keep your titles, URLs, meta descriptions and on-page headings clean - simply put, don't over-do it with punctuation.  Do not go overboard with the use of acceptable punctuation.  Be consistent with your naming conventions (i.e. do not use both underscores or hyphens in your URLs, avoid overusing pipes and colons or dashes in your titles).
Conclusion

For whatever reason there is still a lot of confusion over punctuation and which characters can be used and which ones you should not use.  Following the above practices can help, but at the end of the day, create clean content, clean URLs and clean titles for your pages.  Use punctuation where required and where it makes sense to do so.

Related Resources

Watch Your Punctuation Online - searchenginepeople.com
How Punctuation in Keywords Affects Google Results - webmasterworld.com
How Does Punctuation Effect SEO - cre8asiteforums.com
Do Pipes in title tags hurt Rankings? - Search Engine Watch Forum

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posted by Jody @ Wednesday, October 13, 2010  
Sorry Google Lately I've Been Cheating on you With Bing
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
 With news that Courteney Cox and David Arquette have split amongst rumors of Arquette cheating on Courtney, I thought that it was time for me to come out and tell Google that recently I have been cheating on you with Bing.  And I may not be the only one.  Bing has been gaining market share, albeit slowly, on Search's league leader in Google.  Do they have what it takes to overtake Google?  Well the answer is no, but there may be some cracks in Google's stranglehold on Search.  Earlier today, Google's Marissa Mayer, vice president of search product and user experience resigned from her position ahead of a major re-launch of Bing on Tuesday, which will fully embrace HTML 5.  She is apparently sticking around Google working on the local aspect of their search offering.  I recall Mayer saying that she was a fan of Google's simple interface a few years back, well apparently users of Search are beginning to want more out of Google.  Google has responded by focusing on things like real-time search and the like.  Innovations from Facebook, Twitter and now Bing have Google testing and trying out new search features as a means of trying to stay on top... and stay on top they will, but I have to say it, I've been cheating on Google with Bing.

Yes it is true.  I have started using Bing search a little more.  I'm not necessarily proud of this fact as I have never been a big fan of Microsoft's search products, but I must admit they are getting better.  In the past I have felt that Bing results have lacked the relevancy that I require as a searcher.  Over the past year their results have gotten better, but make no mark about it, there is still a long way to go in the relevancy department.  Which by the way is one of the reasons why Google has lost some of my interest.  I'm not sure if it was a result of the change in Google's results from their MayDay update but I do know that I find Google Instant totally annoying and frankly do not see any improvement in the relevancy of Google's results.

Google I'm Just Not that Into You

While Google currently holds a 65-70% market share in Search, I have been finding that the relevancy of their results has not really improved over recent months, and with all of the changes that they have lost, as a user of their search engine I expect more relevant results.  I understand the difficulty in semantics, and perhaps that will be a downfall of Google Instant, but I do expect relevant results which does not always mean showing me the big brands or the typical sites that tend to populate the search results.  Google has recently decided to show multiple listings for brands which I guess if you are doing a search for a particular brand can be useful, but I surely do not want to see big brands dominate my search results if they are not the most relevant.

Maybe I'm just not that great with change and with Google, recently there has been a lot of change.  Google I love your culture and I think that you have a pretty cool product, but I still want something more.  Maybe it's consistency, maybe it's more blended results  (I am a big fan of Google's Universal Search).  However, Google lately I'm just not that into you.  Maybe it's because I miss Yahoo (Bing now powers Yahoo search results) but Google your recent updates have not necessarily helped me out with my search activity.  Google maybe you need to send me flowers, or perhaps give my blog some more love in your search results, I'm not sure I just know that Bing continues to be more and more attractive.  Bing has a more attractive homepage, maybe that's it, while we don't want to judge a book (or search engine) by it's cover, a pretty face is nice to look at.

So Google although lately I have been cheating on you with Bing, you are still my favorite.  I just need you to give me what I want, literally in terms of what I am searching for.

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posted by Jody @ Tuesday, October 12, 2010  
NHL Team Worth 2010: List of NHL Team Worth
Sunday, October 10, 2010
For those that know me, you know that while my background is in marketing and while I currently work in the field of search engine and online marketing, my true passion is hockey.  I have played hockey, officiated hockey, and simply been a fan of the greatest game on earth since before I can remember.  I'm known for having an uncanny ability to rhyme off the most obscure stats, mainly about the Edmonton Oilers, but I've also known to pull out stats from all eras of the NHL.

Two areas that I have always been interested in are business and hockey, so it makes sense that I have a fascination with the business of hockey.  I believe that it is in my destiny to be owner of a professional sports team at some point, that is if I put my mind to it.  We'll have to wait and see, as being a fan of the sport is, at times, more than enough to keep me occupied.  I'm currently working on a book about my favorite team which I hope to have out by next Christmas.  (We'll keep you posted with announcements.)  In the past decade or two, as sports fans have matured, we have seen the business of sports take over.  It's not the same as when we were kids.  The business of sports has always been there, but it seems so much transparent these days.  Business has taken over in the sports arena.

A couple of years ago I had done a fun post about how much is your favorite NHL team worth?  There were some teams on the list that I was surprised at where they placed.  I mean I knew that the Leafs would be number one on the list, but I was surprised to see some of the other Canadian teams further down where they placed.  After all, reports suggest that the Canadian teams are responsible for anywhere from 28-40% of the league's total revenue.  Yes with only six out of the thirty NHL teams being Canadian, one can see where the true passion lies.  Let's be honest, there are teams south of the border in the US that are frankly dragging the rest of the team down.  Yet for years, NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman has continued to block the growth and emergence of additional Canadian teams, but alas any true businessman knows that this is not the best move for the league at this point.  Frankly, I think that we will see teams end up in Winnipeg, Quebec City with a third team in southern Ontario.  The demand is there as is the profit potential.  The fact that the current NHL owners are indirectly opposed to this (as they do not want to share revenues further) is something that will need to change because at the end of the day it is the fans who will decide which teams are successful.  The League and owners need to understand that.

So how has the business of hockey changed in the past two years?  Well let's examine the worth of NHL teams as of 2009/2010.

NHL Team Worth 2010:  How Much is Your Favorite NHL Team Worth?
  • six of the top seven teams are original six teams
  • three of the top ten teams are Canadian
  • the Vancouver Canucks are the highest valued western team coming in at a value of $239 million US (10th overall)
  • the Edmonton Oilers are the Canadian franchise worth the least coming in at having a value of $166 million US (yet their merchandise sales are top five in the league.)  The Oilers do have the tenth best operating income of the 30 teams in the league.
  • The Colorado Avalanche, Dallas Stars and Atlanta Thrashers have lost the most in value of the past two seasons.
Rank   Team  Current  Value ($mil) 1-Yr Value Change (%) Debt/Value (%) Revenue ($mil) Operating Income ($mil)
1 Toronto Maple Leafs 470 5 31 168 78.9
2 New York Rangers 416 1 0 139 27.7
3 Montreal Canadiens 339 2 71 130 31.3
4 Detroit Red Wings 337 11 0 130 27.4
5 Philadelphia Flyers 273 -1 24 101 3.1
6 Boston Bruins 271 3 44 108 11.6
7 Chicago Blackhawks 258 26 0 108 20.9
8 Dallas Stars 246 -10 81 97 12.4
9 Vancouver Canucks 239 1 46 109 20.3
10 New Jersey Devils 223 0 112 97 1.4
11 Pittsburgh Penguins 222 14 45 93 3.3
12 Minnesota Wild 210 -3 54 95 1.3
13 Los Angeles Kings 208 -1 79 92 10.6
14 Anaheim Ducks 206 2 17 94 4.8
15 Colorado Avalanche 205 -11 16 84 3.4
16 Calgary Flames 200 -2 15 95 -0.8
17 Ottawa Senators 197 -5 66 90 -3.8
18 Tampa Bay Lightning 191 -4 55 80 -2.2
19 San Jose Sharks 184 3 24 84 -5
20 Washington Capitals 183 15 37 83 -4.9
21 Carolina Hurricanes 177 5 51 82 -4.6
22 St Louis Blues 176 9 68 80 -2.7
23 Buffalo Sabres 170 1 29 79 -5.2
24 Edmonton Oilers 166 -5 60 83 9.4
25 Columbus Blue Jackets 165 5 27 77 -9.9
26 Florida Panthers 159 -2 50 74 -13.6
27 Nashville Predators 156 -5 52 71 -5.7
28 New York Islanders 149 -3 67 62 -5.6
29 Atlanta Thrashers 143 -10 46 68 -1.8
30 Phoenix Coyotes 138 -3 101 66 -18.5

As provided by Forbes.com.

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posted by Jody @ Sunday, October 10, 2010  
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