John Andrews is a Competitive Webmaster and Search Engine Optimization Consultant in Seattle, Washington. This is John Andrews blog on issues of interest to the SEO community and competitive webmasters. Want to know more?  Competitive Web & SEO
January 17th, 2007 by john andrews

Google SERP Madness for New Jersey Web Design Firm

Some time ago I commented on the status of New Jersey Web Design in Google. I also found what appears to be a perfect example of a New Jersey web design firm in the website. I have gotten to know Allie and Hans at CyberXDesigns, and they are very high quality, and almost more New Jersey than NJ Transit or Princeton.

The site is all about New Jersey, it’s fun and lively, and their web design work has mostly involved New York and New Jersey clients, including such New Jersey staples as the pharmaceutical companies. They proudly proclaim their New Jersey heritage on the site, list their New Jersey address and New Jersey phone numbers, along with an assortment of New Jersey trivia. Their’s is not an SEO’d website, by any means. It is a genuine honest New Jersey creative design firm show piece. If one had to pick the most “New Jersey” of all web design firm web sites on the web, I bet would be it. Having lived in New Jersey for over 10 years, I’d list it with Wierd New Jersey and as “classic” New Jersey websites (utexas? wtf?).

But if you search Google for New Jersey web design firm and related, you get stuff like this: and The former is yet another “directory of design firms” optimized for New Jersey terms, without a single New Jersey entity in the directory. Not one. Not one free listing, and not one paid listing. I say “optimized” because it has been seo’d to the point of 3rd page rank for an unrelated term (because there is no New Jersey web design firm listing or information). I suspect that CyberXDesign’s web site probably looks spammy compare to the empty directory site, in Google’s eyes, because of all the “New Jersey” references (as does this blog post, I bet). The marketingtools site is, well, as we all know, old and highly SEO’d to rank. And it does list several New Jersey firms, although I note they are likely paid inclusions, and that the directory includes embedded generic jump listings programmed to go to what I presume is the current high bidder (which, for the New Jersey listing, is a design firm on Staten Island, in New York).

Does Google still blame SEOs for these poor quality SERPs? Is that really acceptable?

During the Gold Rush days, everyone wanted to “find gold”. Each of the relatively few lucky lottery winners who struck a MotherLoad were heralded worldwide as evidence of the fact that “there’s gold in them thar hills”. But history shows us that the ones who made the millions were not the gold miners, but the savvy merchants who set up the shops that sold picks and shovels to the gold rush dreamers.

I could sell Hans an SEO package promising to help him rank for “New Jersey Web Design Firm”. You know, the Google way… the “White Hat” way… make good content, promote your niche or specialty, do quality work, serve your visitors, keep it technically correct, be sure to clearly identify yourself and your corporate identity, blah blah blah. I could even follow the more ridiculous suggestions, like “choose a local hosting firm” because, well, CyberXDesigns is a New Jersey web host (with servers located in geologically and climatically safe regions of the US… far from New Jersey… as is good practice).  Would it help? Would rank on the first 3 pages of Google for New Jersey Web Deisgn Firm? No. Gosh there must be at least 60 web design firms in New Jersey, competing for those 60 slots, right? Right? No. There are less than that.

The current bid for “new Jersey Web Design Firm” in Google’s AdWords system is……… ??


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January 16th, 2007 by john andrews

To Rank in Google, Be Specific: To Blog Spam, Be Generic.

Most of us get tons of blog spam. Akismet does a good job of dumping most of it, but it’s based on human input. What if the humans are wrong? Well, 53,200 “people” have left this blog spam in place on their blogs because, like a good horoscope, it’s so generic it just about seems to fit no matter what the context:

Strange things happens too many times to be just an occasion


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January 15th, 2007 by john andrews : A Windfall for ?

Yes, it’s UTube vs. all over again, except this time the beneficiary of our broken domain name system is a parked page domain name monetizer, Eastwind Groups, Ltd.

According to CNET,

The two Danes want people hungry for Internet entertainment to roost at Joost. Company executives had referred to the new company for months by the codename “The Venice Project.” They chose Joost because they like the ring of it, according to a spokeswoman. The word doesn’t have any meaning in Danish. The plan, according to Joost CEO Fredrik de Wahl, is to offer studios, cable stations and anyone else who wants to distribute high-quality video over the Internet, a fast, efficient and cheap distribution method. To do this, the company will rely on the peer-to-peer technology that helped Friis and Zennstrom build Skype and Kazaa.

So now we will have a (not competitor named (pronounced and no doubt encountering the same traffic confusion that Universal Tube hasn’t handled very well. This time, is already a parked page, so no need to destroy an existing corporate image with steamy erotica, eh?

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John Andrews is a mobile web professional and competitive search engine optimzer (SEO). He's been quietly earning top rank for websites since 1997. About John




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