May Search Light Newsletter: the *blame Google it’s late* edition

Search LightThe second issue of the Search Light newsletter for 2010 was published today.

Yes, it’s  our second issue even though it’s nearly June. Shut up. The delay has nothing at all to do with my procrastination skills. It’s all Google’s fault and you’ll find out why when you read it.

This month’s newsletter includes an article about Social Search – the biggest thing to hit the SERPs this year since, well, Personalized Search a week before. It also contains some of the more interesting FAQs answered in this blog and a recap of the Search Marketing Expo (SMX) Conference in Sydney.

If you’re not yet a newsletter subscriber catch it here and then quickly go and subscribe before you change from a geek into a nerd.

Google Doodle Celebrates 30 Years of Pac-Man

The iconic arcade game Pac-Man celebrated it’s 30th anniversary this month. That’s right, 30 years ago, Pac-Man was launched in Japan and it’s been a firm favorite ever since, with young and old.

To commemorate Pac-Man’s 30th birthday, Google created an interactive Home Page Doodle:  a Flash-based mini game of Pac-Man incorporating the Google logo. The “I’m feeling lucky” was replaced with a new button “Insert Coin” and you could play Pac-Man complete with 1980′s sound effects without leaving the Google home page. Apparently, it’s the first time Google have ever used Flash on their home page.

The game proved so popular with office procrastinators, that Google has kept it live so you can play it to your heart’s content. To play, you simply click that button or wait a few moments and the game will start by itself. If you click twice on “Insert Coin” then two people can play. Ms Pac-Man joins the game, with the second person controlling her movements using the WASD keys.

If you’re a Pac-Man freak, Mashable has shared how to download Google’s Pac-Man game to your PC so you can play without an Internet connection any time you like.

Happy Birthday Pac-Man.

Endometriosis Advice and Support

If you’re a long term reader of this blog, you’ll know that I had a life-changing health scare a couple of years ago that the doctors thought was ovarian cancer, but turned out to be severe Endometriosis.

This debilitating condition is often misdiagnosed and this can result in years of unnecessary pain and stress that simply increases month after month until a correct diagnosis is made. My condition worsened after pregnancy and eventually led to major surgery, followed by months of recovery. If I’d been more aware of the early symptoms of Endometriosis, I would have saved myself years of agony and would probably have avoided major surgery altogether.

I’ve recently been informed about an online support group for sufferers of Endometriosis, where volunteers and sufferers write about their experiences with the condition and participate in group discussions to help others suffering from Endometriosis symptoms. There is also the Endometriosis Global Forum. I just wish I had known about these sites years ago.

There is no cure for Endometriosis. The disease can recur at any time and up to 15 percent of women who have had a hysterectomy can experience the disease again post surgery. I didn’t know that until I read these forums. Not even my surgeon told me.

If you or someone you care about is living with Endometriosis, or suspects they may have symptoms, please take a moment to point them to these sites. Your suggestion could literally change their life.

Thank you.

Q and A: What is the best way to present keyword research to a client?

QuestionHi Kalena

Another quick one if I may. In terms of providing keyword research to a client – could you please provide an example of what this might look like?

Thanks
Trina

Hi again Trina

I generally present the client with an Excel spreadsheet which has different tabs at the bottom with each keyword theme highlighted.

Within each tab, I collate the keywords in various ways e.g. alphabetically, by potential traffic, by KEI (keyword effectivness indicator) and by SEO potential.

Some keyword research services will do this for you e.g. SEO Research Labs

We are actually in the middle of editing our online Keyword Research 101 Course at Search Engine College. It goes into much greater detail about this topic. I don’t wish to provide a sample spreadsheet here, as it will be part of the Keyword Research 101 course curriculum, but a sample keyword research spreadsheet will be included in the lesson material for that course.

Q and A: What’s the difference between free and paid keyword research tools?

QuestionHi Kalena

I have been looking into some free keyword research software and noticed there are a few out there; even Google’s free tool has gotten good kudos.

In lesson four of the SEO 101 course, you mention a few SEO tools that if we wanted we would have to eventually pay for – can you please let me know what the main differences are between the free and paid versions?

And if, I am just starting out in SEO and have a limited budget if the free versions will do what I need.

Thanks
Trina

Hi Trina

The main difference between paid and free keyword research tools is usually the number of keywords you can research. Also, some of the paid tools give you the ability to search specific databases e.g. Australia only or the last six months of search data versus the last five years of search data.

Our Search Engine Wiki has a pretty good list of keyword research tools. One great new tool I haven’t added to the Wiki yet is Ispionage. It’s particularly useful when researching target pay per click keywords for your AdWords campaigns, because it shows what your competitors are targeting.

Oh and try Raven Tools too. It’s more of a holistic SEO tool but it has great keyword management functionality.

Also don’t forget my previous blog posts about keyword research – they might help too.