Posts tagged they

Bing Explains How They Choose The Title Tag For Your Web Pages by @mattsouthern

Despite your best efforts to define the title tags for your web pages, Bing may take it upon themselves to serve a different title in the search engine results pages (SERPS). Bing explains their process for choosing title tags in a blog post published this week. In the post, Bing says that their goal is to “help the user complete their search tasks as efficiently as possible.” In order to do thisTo do this, Bing will do the following things in the SERPS: Titles will be optimized based on relevance to the individual user. Entire snippets may be optimized as […]

The post Bing Explains How They Choose The Title Tag For Your Web Pages by @mattsouthern appeared first on Search Engine Journal.

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A Quick Survey Of Tech Giants Reaffirms Just How White And Male They Are

If we’ve learned anything from the numbers tech companies like Google, Facebook and Yahoo have revealed about their workforce diversity over the last month, it’s that there clearly aren’t enough women and minorities working in technology.


As if we didn’t know that already. 

The male-dominated tech culture has become a parody, with television shows like HBO’s Silicon Valley highlight the “brogrammer” culture portrayed by men in hoodies. On the other side of things, commercials like Verizon’s “Inspire Her Mind” earnestly focus on the importance of empowering young women to take up science and technology projects, instead of priming them to become lip gloss-wearing girly-girls. 

In order to bring more diversity into the technological workforce, tech companies are releasing employee data that shows just how true-to-life these stereotypes can be. With any luck, the increased transparency will help change those numbers and encourage more women and minorities to pursue careers in technology.

Facebook is the latest technology corporation to release data on its workforce detailing gender and race information, following Google’s lead last month. Yahoo and LinkedIn have also released workplace diversity numbers. 

Globally, many more men than women work in tech companies, and in the U.S., white employees vastly outnumber other minorities at work. The imbalances are even more striking in leadership positions. Let’s take a quick tour of what the companies have released so far.

Facebook

Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg is known for her outspoken Lean In campaign, encouraging women to strive for leadership within their companies while balancing their professional and private lives in a healthy, but successful, way. Of course, Sandberg has her critics, but her organization has empowered women to take control of their own careers.

Unfortunately at Facebook, women are still underrepresented, especially in senior positions. 

Globally, Facebook is 69% men, and in the U.S., 57% white. Asians make up 34% of Facebook’s U.S. workforce, and Hispanics and blacks constitute four and two percent, respectively. 

Now, about leaning in? Just 23% of senior-level positions across the globe are held by women. And almost three-fourths of senior-level positions in the U.S. are white. 

To Facebook’s credit, the company is not pleased with these numbers. 

“The challenge of finding qualified but underrepresented candidates is one that we’re addressing as part of a strategic effort across Facebook,” the company said in a blog post on Wednesday. It’s working with organizations like the Anita Borg Institute and the National Center for Women & Information Technology that aim to support women in technical careers, as well as college and educational programs that promote science, technology, engineering and mathematics for underrepresented students. 

“We have a long way to go, but we’re absolutely committed to achieving greater diversity at Facebook and across the industry,” the company wrote in its blog post. 

Google (Which Started It All)

Google was the first big tech company to release its diversity data, kicking off the transparency trend.

Google’s workforce is 70% men globally, and in technical roles, just 17% women. In the U.S., Google is 60% white, and two and three percent black and Hispanic, respectively. 

Like other tech companies, these numbers reflect an unfortunate truth about the technological workforce. But Google is aiming to change that. 

At this week’s Google I/O developer conference, the company welcomed more than 1,000 women—or 20% of attendees, up from just seven percent last year. It’s also pouring money and resources into partner organizations that focus on bringing more women and minorities into the workforce, and recently launched Made With Code to get young female students interested in programming. 

LinkedIn 

Soon after Google released its diversity data, LinkedIn followed suit

The company has a male majority, albeit one a bit smaller. Out of 5,400 employees worldwide, 61% are male, and in the U.S., 53% are white. 

To help improve that white, male ratio, the company is working with a handful of women- and minority-focused organizations that provide opportunities for education and jobs in tech, as well as Out & Equal Workplace Advocates, a LGBT organization working to end sexual orientation-based employment discrimination.

Yahoo

Yahoo got on the diversity transparency train just days after LinkedIn, and noted that 62% of its global workforce is male, while 50% of its U.S. workforce is white. 

Like other companies, tech roles are made up mostly by men, with just 15% of the jobs held by women. Similarly, the company led by CEO Marissa Mayer has just 23% of women in leadership positions. 

Yahoo, like other companies, is working to change this imbalance, and provides resources for employees of diverse backgrounds, and also works with organizations like the Anita Borg Institute (which Facebook and Google also partner with) to promote equality in tech. 

Let’s Hope There’s More To Come

These are arguably some of the most visible tech companies both in Silicon Valley and across the globe, and by releasing diversity data, they’re admitting that something needs to be done to bring more women and minorities into the workforce, and are personally taking charge of driving the change to come.

It’s an issue that impacts not just the companies who decide to make an effort to balance the gender and race ratio, but the industry itself. By being transparent about their shortcomings, Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, Yahoo, are poised to begin a sea change in technology that will—dare I say it?—disrupt the white, male industry.

Lead image by corinnepw on Flickr; other images courtesy of the respective companies

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What if…(The More Things Change, the More Different They Become) by @DuaneForrester

As you ease into your ergo chair, or settle in astride your giant yoga ball behind your computer, you face another day. Another day of gathering data, auditing web pages, digging into keyword reports, meetings with engineering, design, marketing and others. Today will most likely resemble yesterday for the most part. Maybe some tedium, maybe some excitement, and if you’re really, really lucky, maybe a fire drill, too. Big, sweeping, dramatic changes generally don’t ripple through the world of search marketing too much these days. Yes, algos get updated, and with those updates some sites see dramatic shifts in ranking, […]

The post What if…(The More Things Change, the More Different They Become) by @DuaneForrester appeared first on Search Engine Journal.

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IPv6, C-Blocks, and How They Affect SEO

Posted by Tom-Anthony

You have probably heard about IPv6, but you might remain a bit confused about the details of what it is, how it works, and what it means for the future of the Internet.
This post gives a quick introduction to IPv6, and discusses the SEO implications that could follow from the IPv6 roll-out (touching specifically on the concept of C-Blocks). A quick caveat: This stuff is hard, so let me know if you spot any missteps!

A very brief intro to IP addresses (v4) & c-blocks

You’re likely familiar with IP addresses; they are usually written in the following format:

 

Example IP address (IPv4).

This format of an IP address is the common format in use everywhere, and is called IPv4. There are four bytes in an IP address like this, with each byte separated by a period (meaning 32 bits in total, for the geeks). Every (sub)-domain resolves to at least one such IP address (it might be several, but lets ignore that for now). Nice and simple.

Now a main SEO concept that comes out of that is the idea of C-Blocks (this shouldn’t be confused with Class C IPs; a different thing people often confuse for C-Blocks), which is a concept that has been around in the SEO space for a decade or more. Very simply, the idea is that if the first 3 bytes of the IP address are identical, then we consider the two IP address to be in the same C-Block:

Two example IP addresses in the same C-Block (blue).

So why is this interesting to us? Why is this important to SEO? The old-school logic is that if you have two IPs that are in the same C-Block, then the sites are quite likely related and thus the links between these sites (on average) should not count as strongly in terms of PageRank. My personal opinion is that nowadays there are many many other signals available to Google to make these same sorts of connections and so the C-Block issue is far less important than it once was.

So, as it turns out (surprise!) the two IP addresses above are indeed related:

Disney and ABC have a near identical IP address, both in the same C-Block.

Sure enough they are both companies in the Disney family. It makes some sense that links between these two domains probably shouldn’t indicate as much trust as links from similarly large, but unrelated, sites.

Introducing IPv6

So, there is a problem with IP addresses in the format above (IPv4); there are “only” 4 billion of them, and we have essentially exhausted the supply. We have so many connected devices nowadays, and the creators for IPv4 never envisioned the vastness of the Internet 30 years from when it was released. Luckily enough, they saw the problem early on andstarted working on a successor, IPv6 (IPv5 was used for another unreleased protocol).

IPv6 address format:

IPv6 addresses are much longer than IPv4 addresses, the format looks thus:

An example IPv6 address.

Things just got serious! There are now 8 blocks rather than 4, and rather than each block being 1 byte (which were represented as a number from 0-255), each block is instead 2 bytes represented by 4 hexadecimal characters. There are 128 bits in an IPv6 address, meaning instead of a measly 4,000,000,000 like IPv4, IPv6 has
around 340,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 addresses.

In the next few years we’ll be entering a world where hundreds of devices in homes will all be capable of networking and needing an IP address and IPv6 will help make that a reality. However, we are also going to see websites starting to use IPv6 addresses more and more commonly, and a few years from now we’ll start to see website that only have an IPv6 address.

CIDR Notation

Before we go any further, it is important to introduce an important concept for understanding IP addresses, which is called CIDR notation.

IPv6 exclusively uses CIDR notation (e.g. /24), so the SEO community will need to understand this concept. It is really simple, but normally really badly explained.

As we mentioned, IPv4 IP addresses are 32 bits long, so if we were sick and twisted we could look at the IP address as binary:

Example IPv4 IP address shown in dot decimal format and as binary.

Colloquially, CIDR notation could be described as a format to describe a group of closely related IP addresses, in a similar fashion to how a C-Block works. It is represented by a number after a slash appended to a partial IP address (e.g. 199.181.132/24) which states how many of the initial bits (binary digits) are the identical. CIDR is flexible and we could use it to describe a C-Block would be /24 because the first 24 bits (3 groups of 8 bits) of the address are the same:

Two IP addresses in the same C-Block. The first 24 bits (3 blocks of 8 bits) are identical.

This can be represented in this case as 199.181.132/24.

Now CIDR notation is more refined and more accurate than the concept of C-Block; in the example above the two IP addresses are not just in the same C-Block they are even more closely related as 6 bits in the last block are also identical. In CIDR notation we could say both these IP addresses are in the 199.181.132/30 block to indicate that the 30 leading bits are identical.

Notice that with CIDR the smaller the number after the slash, the more IP addresses in that block (because we’re saying fewer leading bits must be identical).

IPv6 & C-Blocks?

Now CIDR /24 is not exactly catchy and so someone made up the name “C-Block” to make this easier to talk about, but it doesn’t extend so easily to IPv6. So, the question is, can we generalise something similar?

The point of a C-Block from Google’s perspective and the perspective of our SEO is solely to identify whether links are originating on the same ISP network. So that should obviously remain the focus. So my best guess would be to focus on how these IPs are allocated to ISPs (ISPs normally get large continuous blocks of IP addresses they can then use for their customers’ websites).

In IPv4 ISPs would own bunches of C-Blocks, and so if you could see multiple links originating from the same C-Block it implied the sites were hosted together, and there was a far greater chance they were somehow related.

Illustration of an “ISP Block” (/32); the blue part of the address is stable and

indicates the ISP. The red part can change and represents addresses at that ISP.

With IPv6, I believe that ISPs will be given /32 blocks (the leading 32 bits will be the same, leaving 96 bits to create addresses for their customers), which they will then assign to their users in /64 blocks (I asked a few people, this tends to be what is happening, but I have read that this might sometimes be /48 blocks instead). Notice that ISPs now have an order of magnitude more IP addresses (each) than the whole internet had before!

This also means each end user will get more IP addresses for their own network than there are in total IPv4 IP addresses. Welcome to the Internet of things!

These ISPs may be serving home users so each house gets a block of IPv6 addresses (for the techies: IPv6 does away with NAT for the most part, I believe – all the devices in your house will get a ‘real’ IP) for their devices. In the other scenario the ISP is for servers, and here the servers get assigned a /64 block; this is the case we are interested in.

Illustration of a “Customer Block” (/64); the blue part indicates a particular customer.

 The red part can change and represents addresses belonging to that customer.

So, I think the equivalent of a C-Block in IPv6 land would be a /32 block because that is what an ISP will usually be assigned (and allows them to then carve that up into 4 billion /64 blocks for their users!).

Furthermore, in IPv6 the minimum allocation is /32 so a single /32 block cannot run across multiple ISPs as I understand it, so there is no way two IPs in the same /32 could belong to two different ISPs. If our goal is to continue to examine whether sites are more likely related than two random sites, then knowing they are on the same ISP (which is what C-Blocks do) is our goal.

Also, if you chose /64 then each ISP has 4 billion of these blocks to give away, and that is way too sparse to identify associations between sites in different blocks.

However, there is a counter argument here. Note that a single server having a /64 block of IPs means that every website should have a different IPv6 address (even if it shares an IPv4 address).

Geek side note: indeed, the “host” http header accepts an IPv6 address to distinguish which site on the server you want.

So now a single server with multiple sites will have a separate IP for each of those sites (it is also possible that the server has multiple IPv6 blocks assigned, one for each different customer – I think this is actually the intention and hopefully becomes the reality).

So, if I am running a network of websites I’m interlinking with one another then it is quite likely that if I just have a single hosting account that all these are in the same /64 block of IPv6 addresses. That should be a very strong signal that that sites are linked closely. However, I’m fairly sure that those trying to be manipulative will try to avoid this scenario and end up trying to get in another block of addresses for each site. But if they are with the same ISP then they’ll still be in the same /32 block.

My recommendation on an IPv6 C-Block

So, if you followed all that then I’d suggest:
  • Sites in the same /32 block as before would be equivalent to the same C-Block as previously.
  • Sites in the same /64 block either are on the exact same server, or belong to the same customer, so are even closer related than C-Block level.
These need easier more accessible names, how about:
  • “ISP Block” for /32 blocks.
  • “Customer Block” for /64 blocks.
Then we would be able to say things like:
  • In IPv6 IP addresses in the same ISP Blocks most closely resemble the relationship of IPs in the same C-Block in IPv4.
  • In IPv6 IP addresses in the same User Block are likely very closely related, and probably belong to the same person/organisation.

What should I take away from all this?

As I mentioned further up, I’m not convinced that IPv4 C-Blocks are as important from Google’s perspective as they once were, as they can likely access multiple other signals to tie sites together. Whilst still useful as a substitute for those signals for SEOs, who don’t have all Google’s resources, they aren’t something that should guide your decision making. If you are running legitimate sites, you shouldn’t be concerned about hosting them on the same C-Block. In fact, I’d advise against that as it could look manipulative to Google (who will likely work it out anyway).

With IPv6, I think the “Customer Blocks” could be a very important SEO feature, as it is an even closer relationship than C-Blocks were, and this is something that Google will likely make use of. It is still going to take a while until IPv6 becomes prevalent enough that all of this is important, so for the moment this is just something to have on your radar as it will begin to increase in importance over the next couple of years.

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Facebook To Give Users More Control Over The Ads They See by @mattsouthern

In an announcement made today, Facebook is taking a cue from its users and taking two major steps to make ads better. In the first step, Facebook will be introducing interest-based advertising to users in the US: When we ask people about our ads, one of the top things they tell us is that they want to see ads that are more relevant to their interests. Today, we learn about your interests primarily from the things you do on Facebook, such as Pages you like. So, for example, if you’re in the market for a new TV and start shopping […]

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SEO and Content Marketing, and How They Work Hand in Hand – iMedia Connection (blog)

SEO and Content Marketing, and How They Work Hand in Hand
iMedia Connection (blog)
When it comes to online marketing, it is important to grab the attention of people and search engines. In order for businesses to do that right, it takes a concerted focus on both search engine optimization (SEO) and content marketing, and it is

and more »

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PPC & SEO: How They Work Together to Maximize Results – Dealer Marketing Magazine

PPC & SEO: How They Work Together to Maximize Results
Dealer Marketing Magazine
With the ongoing battle to beat the competition and climb to the top of Google's first page, a common question we hear is: “Which is more important for my dealership, PPC or SEO?” To answer this question, it's important to understand PPC and SEO have
Adwords/PPC SpecialistBizcommunity.com
Partial PPC Management is an Epidemic and it's Killing Your Businesses RevenueBusiness 2 Community

all 3 news articles »

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5 Googley SEO Terms – Do They Mean What You Think They Mean? – Search Engine Watch

5 Googley SEO Terms – Do They Mean What You Think They Mean?
Search Engine Watch
Many terms are used within the search industry. These words all have very specific meanings when it comes to search engine optimization (SEO) and how you implement your strategy. However, many of these terms are often used incorrectly. Sometimes this …

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5 Googley SEO Terms – Do They Mean What You Think They Mean?

Robots.txt. Google DNS. Penguin, Panda, and penalties. Duplicate content filter. PageRank. You’ve heard all these terms, but these words have very specific meanings and are among the most commonly misunderstood terms when it comes to Google and SEO.

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Link Building ≠ Content Marketing. But Here’s How They Fit Together

Link building has gone through a lot in the past 18 months — and when content marketing became the buzzword of the day, there were troves of articles saying that content marketing is the new link building or that content marketing has replaced link building. That couldn’t be more false….



Please visit Search Engine Land for the full article.

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