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:: Google Increases Search Share

Extending its dominance in the search market, Google grew its share of queries in April at the expense of rivals Yahoo, Microsoft, AOL and

Google U.S. search query share in April grew to 61.6 percent, up from 59.8 percent in March, comScore announced  last Thursday. Google accomplished this although the number of search queries dropped 2 percent overall in April to 10.58 billion, compared with March, comScore said.

:: Online Reviews a Source of Business

Picking up on a trend started by the travel industry, business-listing sites by Google, Yahoo, and others including Yelp and Citysearch let customers rave about their favorites, or complain about poor service. That helps consumers get real-life opinions about local businesses and services. For businesses attempting to reach consumers, the feedback spreads the word in a way ads can not. But perhaps more important, the reviews can dramatically raise a websites visibility in search engines.

Online Reviews

:: Online Sales Tax Problems for eBay

The outcome of the case could have far reaching implications for taxes on online sales:

The city of Chicago is suing eBay and its subsidiary StubHub for failing to collect city amusement taxes on concert and sporting event tickets sold through the Web sites.

Chicagos amusement tax ordinance includes Internet sites that resell tickets, but eBay, which bought StubHub last year, says the 8 percent tax does not apply to it.
It is not clear how much money is at stake, but when the city first floated the idea of going after taxes for online sales in 2006, Alderman Edward Burke estimated the city could be losing $16 million a year in taxes on Internet-based sales by ticket resellers.

complete article

:: CBS Buys CNet

Television company CBS has agreed to buy technology news and entertainment website CNET for about $1.75bn. CBS said that the purchase of CNET, which owns sites such as ZDNet and Gamespot, would help to boost its online presence.

complete article

:: A Perfect Link

Webmasters are given the advice that they must attract links, but the key is not just to attract links... they need to attract good links. But what is the perfect link? The search for the perfect link need not be a quest in vain. Consider the following when attempting to attract links...

A Perfect Link

:: Attention Data Makes Break Through

Sounds like social network sites have finally figured out Attention Data:

Social networking site MySpace said Thursday it will soon enable users to quickly share profile data with Web sites operated by Yahoo Inc., eBay Inc. and others.

complete article

:: Amazon Challenges Sales Tax Ruling

This could really change things for affiliate programs and online entrepeneurs. is suing New York over a new law that requires out-of-state online companies to collect sales tax from shoppers in New York.

Officials estimated the state would gain about $50 million by requiring Internet giants such as to collect state sales tax. New Yorkers, like residents of many states, are currently on an honor system to report their online spending when they file state tax returns.

The law applies to companies that do not have a brick-and-mortar presence in New York but have at least one person in the state who works as an online agent — basically someone who links to a Web site and receives commissions for related sales.

complete article

:: The Web is Still a Baby

The World Wide Web is still only in its infancy, its British inventor said Wednesday, on the 15th anniversary of the webs effective launch.

Tim Berners-Lee told the BBC that the web, which started life in the CERN physics laboratory on the Franco-Swiss border in the early 1990s, could develop in unimaginable directions but above all should be a force for good.

complete article

:: Yahoo Patent Application

Axandra posted this in their weekly search engine news. Very interesting to consider all the factors that can effect ranking!

Yahoos patent applications provides a list of 51 web page elements that can be analyzed to determine the clutter of a web page:

Total number of links
Total number of words
Total number of images (non-ad images)
Image area above the fold (non-ad images)
Dimensions of page
Page area (total)
Page length
Total number of tables
Maximum table columns (per table)
Maximum table rows (per table)
Total rows
Total columns
Total cells
Average cell padding (per table)
Average cell spacing (per table)
Dimensions of fold
Fold area
Location of center of fold relative to center of page
Total number of font sizes used for links
Total number of font sizes used for headings
Total number of font sizes used for body text
Total number of font sizes
Presence of “tiny” text
Total number of colors (excluding ads)
Alignment of page elements
Average page luminosity
Fixed vs. relative page width
Page weight (proxy for load time)
Total number of ads
Total ad area
Area of individual ads
Area of largest ad above the fold
Largest ad area
Total area of ads above the fold
Page space allocated to ads
Total number of external ads above the fold
Total number of external ads below the fold
Total number of external ads
Total number of internal ads above the fold
Total number of internal ads below the fold
Total number of internal ads
Number of sponsored link ads above the fold
Number of sponsored link ads below the fold
Total number of sponsored link ads
Number of image ads above the fold
Number of image ads below the fold
Total number of image ads
Number of text ads above the fold
Number of text ads below the fold
Total number of text ads
Position of ads on page

According to the patent application, Yahoo might also consider the presence of animated and flashing ads and the average ad luminosity.

:: How To Avoid Google Filters

Avoiding Googles sandbox can be a challenge for even the most experienced webmasters. Considering the volume of traffic and number of searches conducted each day in the search giant, appearing in the top search results for critical keywords and phrases can make or break an online business. Take care to avoid Googles sandbox, so your business can benefit from Googles traffic.

How to Avoid Googles Filters

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