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View Poll Results: Inktomi Paid Inclusion - Worth it?

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  • Well Worth the Money

    8 47.06%
  • Just about Worth the Money

    3 17.65%
  • Not Really

    5 29.41%
  • Its is a REAL Joke

    1 5.88%
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Thread: Paid Inclusion

  1. #1
    You wanna' peice o' me! Automated's Avatar
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    Paid Inclusion

    I Am thinking about the Inktomi Paid inclusion. Could some of you that have done it tell me what you think!

    Is it really worth it?


    Thanks
    Matthew Taylor
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  2. #2
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    I don't know about them, but we finally broke down and paid Yahoo.

    We went from #12 on the two major keywords on the old grandfathered site (which was in the wrong category), to #147 our of 144 in the correct category (not a joke - 3 of the sites are listed twice).

    So, we are so far down the list on keyword searches that we will never come up on the first 10 pages. For us, it was a total waste of money, and we have no intention of renewing.

  3. #3
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    I would not have bothered with the Yahoo directory as Google now sponsers the results and i have a good rank with google. However i have never given any of the other SE's any thought so i will give them a tyr and i was just wondering the best way to go about it.

    Thanks

    Matthew Taylor
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    Serial Publisher silver trophy aspen's Avatar
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    With Inktomi losing AOL they aren't worth as much.

    I would wait until Yahoo decides if they will keep Google or go with Inktomi. If Yahoo picks up Inktomi then I'd consider it worth it.
    Chris Beasley - I publish content and ecommerce sites.
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  5. #5
    You wanna' peice o' me! Automated's Avatar
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    Thanks for that guys.



    Matthew Taylor
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  6. #6
    SitePoint Zealot Fruit & Veg's Avatar
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    A site listed in Yahoo comes before Google's back up results - so Yes, it is worth getting into Yahoo.

    I think Inktomi is still worth it as well
    USBtastic - UK Gadgets Blog
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  7. #7
    Level 8 Chinese guy Archbob's Avatar
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    Inkotmi provides secondary results, they get you listed in lots of SE's as results though. It isn't that much so I'd say yes.

  8. #8
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    "A site listed in Yahoo comes before Google's back up results - so Yes, it is worth getting into Yahoo.."

    We come up on page 15 (#147) in Yahoo search on the two major keywords for our product. Now, seriously, how much good do you think that is going to do for us?

    Personally, I almost never go past the first 3-4 pages on Yahoo before I try Google. In fact, I almost never use Yahoo for real searches anyway, since it has so many outdated entries.

  9. #9
    SitePoint Zealot Fruit & Veg's Avatar
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    That's not brilliant I grant you, but it's still before Google's backup results

    Maybe request a change of description, or try to get a a secondary placement in another category?

    I agree that Yahoo isn't the greatest research tool, but a lot of people use it.
    USBtastic - UK Gadgets Blog
    SmartGeezer - UK Men's Clothing Blog
    Individualitee - Great Tshirts
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  10. #10
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    my experience so far...

    I think Inktomi is definitely worth it. I paid for inclusion in the middle of April. From April 15 to May 28, it has generated 249 hits. Let's say you join Google's AdWords Select and paid the minimum bid of $0.05. In about 4 1/2 mths, I would have spent about $39 if my Google program generated on average 166 hits per mth (249 divided by 1 1/2 mths). That is the amt for Inktomi's paid inclusion. So technically I can "recoup" my investment in Inktomi within 4 1/2 mths and I still have 7 1/2 mths of hits from Inktomi!

    Inktomi provides the best interface to track referrals. You will know exactly what search terms your visitors typed in, how many referrals per keyword, and your average position. I've signed up with Ask Jeeves and Lycos as well and they don't provide you with such information. I don't have much success with Ask Jeeves and Lycos from what my website stats show.

    Also, if your site is new, I think Inktomi is the best since it doesn't take into consideration link popularity as much as other search engines such as Google. I'm not a search engine specialist and this is just based on my own experience. In my opinion, building links, especially the right ones, require a much longer time and $$$. Many high ranking link sites are charging! When I try to optimize my website using meta tags and of course, good relevant content, Inktomi rewards me with good rankings. Most of my keyword rankings are from 2 to 14 and these are not obscure keywords I am talking about.

    Bottomline is: I think Inktomi is great value for money.

    As for Yahoo!, it not only brought me the most amount of traffic, it brought me the most amount of sales! I'm measuring in terms of visits/sale ratio (I think there is a jargon for this). Mine is a shopping site and somehow people who use Yahoo! seem to have a greater intent to buy. It's weird but it's true in my case.

    People who grumbled about Yahoo! probably didn't make their site Y!-ready before they submit. I use the techniques taught by Michael Wong's step-by-step to getting #1 positions in Y! to prepare my site and it's highly effective. You can buy the report at http://www.search-engine-optimization-strategies.com. And it seems to me rankings on Y! don't fluctuate as much as other search engines. Since Day 1 of my inclusion, I'm ranked #1 for designer wallets, #9-#10 for mens wallets and ladies wallets, all on the first search page.

    And yes, everyones' saying that Google is great. But it takes such a freaking long time to be included if you don't submit your site to Yahoo! I submitted one of my sites to DMOZ about 2 months ago and it's still not included in the directory. I've submitted the same site to Google and it wasn't included after a month. It only appeared in their search results after I participated in Google AdWords Select. And I really suspect that they "express-crawled" my site only after I participate in the AdWords Program.

    I think I've blabbered too much already. Again, this is based solely on my own experience and observation.
    Logan Wong
    Wallet Haven http://www.wallethaven.com

  11. #11
    You wanna' peice o' me! Automated's Avatar
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    THANKS for that very detailed post, i am about to "take the plunge" and just wanted to know if, i am already listed in a few but would this be beneficial to me as i am not a content site my content is static, as i am a business.

    Will this paid inclusion help me get a higher ranking?

    Matthew Taylor
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  12. #12
    SitePoint Enthusiast cohwill's Avatar
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    Inktomi is still a major player in the paid inclusion game. They supply the results for AOL, MSN (which is the default search engine for IE), IWon, and Looksmart.

    I use it for all my clients and highly recommend it.

    I still prefer Google as a back door into Yahoo. The $299 annual fee is a killer on Yahoo and outrageous as well.
    Anita Cohen-Williams
    Search Engine Guru
    http://www.mysearchguru.com

  13. #13
    SitePoint Enthusiast cohwill's Avatar
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    Logan,

    Your comment:
    "I use the techniques taught by Michael Wong's step-by-step to getting #1 positions in Y! to prepare my site and it's highly effective. You can buy the report at http://www.search-engine-optimization-strategies.com."

    Unfortunately, many of the techniques pushed by Michael Wong in his book can get your site banned by the search engines. Cloaking and hidden links are definite no-nos.
    Anita Cohen-Williams
    Search Engine Guru
    http://www.mysearchguru.com

  14. #14
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    Would anyone mind explaining what "cloaking" is, i have seen the term used a few times but never really grapsed it.

    i am willing to learn

    Matthew Taylor
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  15. #15
    Serial Publisher silver trophy aspen's Avatar
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    Cloaking is when you detect a spider visiting your site and then serve them other information than you normally serve, usually keyword rich text or off topic text.

    Search engines want to be able to see what people see, because they are meant as tools to find information for people, so when you try to do this to them it pisses them off.

    The major method for cloaking is to detect the clients HTTP_USER_AGENT - so some search engines, like Google, sometimes send out a spider with a fake user_agent to detect any differences in your site. If they find out that you were cloaking you can expect to be permanently banned.

    There is no valid defense for cloaking, people may say "I'm just trying to give the search engine a better understanding of my content" and thats a bag of crap. You're changing your content to get a better ranking. Optimize your actual content, don't cloak. Or be happy with your ranking.

    The only time you'd even remotely need to do cloaking is if you had a feature that relied on cookies that you wanted to allow the spiders to bypass, however most people would be hard pressed to find such a situation.
    Chris Beasley - I publish content and ecommerce sites.
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    Angry

    ref: Unfortunately, many of the techniques pushed by Michael Wong in his book can get your site banned by the search engines. Cloaking and hidden links are definite no-nos.

    Anita, please get your facts right before you speak. Please do not comment on a book you obviously haven't read.

    First, Logan (thank you for the mention) was referring to my Yahoo book, A Step-By-Step Guide To Getting #1 Positions In Yahoo In 7 Days! Logan has had tremendous success with that book. He followed the techniques in my book and got over a dozen top rankings for the keywords he wanted in Yahoo.

    Second, about my other book. Would you provide conclusive proof (not hearsay) to back up your statement that cloaking and hidden links can get your site banned by the search engines?

    Let me ask you this question...

    Why is www.icsave.com ranked #3 in GOOGLE for the search term "cloaking script" if cloaking gets you banned in the search engines?

    See the search results for yourself: www.google.com/search?q=cloaking+script

    ICSave.com boast of cloaking their entire site. See this page: www.icsave.com/ICSdemo.html

    If you can't provide proof to back up your statement, please withdraw it.

    Anita, are you sure you understand how cloaking should be used???

    Cloaking can get a site in trouble, IF they used it to fool the search engines. I don't advocate that.

    Any reputable professional search engine optimizer knows that it's acceptable to use cloaking to help the engines by delivering content they can index and that is relevant to the pages you show human visitors.

    For example, search engines won't find anything to index in a site that uses Flash and minimal text. So cloaking would certainly help in this instance.

    Did you know many SEO companies use cloaking?

    Maybe I should send you a complimentary copy of my book, so that you can improve your knowledge of search engine optimization.

  17. #17
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    Originally posted by MichaelWong
    Second, about my other book. Would you provide conclusive proof (not hearsay) to back up your statement that cloaking and hidden links can get your site banned by the search engines?

    Let me ask you this question...

    Why is www.icsave.com ranked #3 in GOOGLE for the search term "cloaking script" if cloaking gets you banned in the search engines?

    See the search results for yourself: www.google.com/search?q=cloaking+script
    This, my friend, is an utterly ridiculous rebuttal. Anita is surely not talking about the search term "cloaking script". Instead, she's talking about the method of cloaking to increase your page ranking.

    Go run a search for marijuana at any of your favorite search engines. You'll find plenty of sites with marijuana all over them, even though marijuana is illegal in the States (where Google and many other engines reside). Now, are you going to tell me it's perfectly fine to have a website teaching others how to grow marijuana? Absolutely not.

    Anyway, if some of you have been wondering where I was, I'll probably be back sometime this weekend or early next week. Some important things have come up these past few months that needed attending. I apologize for leaving so suddenly with little, or no explanation. I only stopped by because Anita asked me too.

    Michael, I wouldn't mind seeing a copy of your book, please email me.
    Ryan Kuhle - A Proud Advisor - Got Questions? Just Ask!
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  18. #18
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    Ryan,

    First, I think I am entitled to comment on Anita's comments about my book. She has on more than one occassion stated (in different newsletters and sites) that my book teaches techniques that will get a site banned by the search engines. I ignored her comments the first time, but I can't stand idly by while someone says things that are detrimental to my reputation. I just wanted to get my side of the argument across. That's all.

    Second, I apologize if my post confused you.

    Anita stated that cloaking can get your site banned by the search engines. That maybe true if you use cloaking to misdirect the search engines as to the nature of the site, which I do not and have never recommended.

    I was trying to get the point across that cloaking is often used and allowed by the search engines.

    The reference to the search listing in Google was that the site mentioned was clearly not banned by Google, even though they publicly state that they use cloaking on their site.

    Anite said and I quote, "Cloaking and hidden links are definite no-nos." That is clearly not true. So I asked her to show me proof that cloaking was not allowed, period.

    Does that make sense?

  19. #19
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    Ryan,

    Sorry I forgot to reply to your last point. You can buy my books at my bookstore site:

    www.searchengineoptimizationstrategies.com

    Thanks.

    Michael

  20. #20
    SitePoint Enthusiast cohwill's Avatar
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    Mr. Wong,

    I suggest that you need to get your facts straight.

    I only learned of your book on May 20, and have not even talked about it in my own ezine. I may have posted in one other place about it, but I have been offline since the 23rd of May and just returned on the 28th. So, it would be rather hard for me to have posted on numerous occcasions.

    Since your book is on SEO, I assume that you were discussing cloaking in terms of hiding content from search engines. If that is not the case, then I do apologize.

    A review copy would be appreciated, and I will post the review in the many newsletters and lists that I am on.
    Anita Cohen-Williams
    Search Engine Guru
    http://www.mysearchguru.com

  21. #21
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    Anita,

    I do apologize. When I said, "more than one occassion stated (in different newsletters and sites)" I did not mean on numerous occassions. Like you said, you have posted on 2 places, including this site.

    Yes, my book is on SEO, and you're correct to assume that I discuss cloaking in terms of "hiding content" from search engines. But only so far as to deliver optimized "relevant" content for the search engines to index.

    Would you agree that not all cloaking is a no-no, as you put it? I may be wrong on this. By all means show me the proof. I'm open to new facts and am always willing to learn.

    With regards to sending you a review copy, I really don't feel that my book would get a fair review, considering that you have already made detrimental statements about my book, without even reading it first! Wouldn't you agree?

    You obviously have strong opinions on cloaking and hidden links. So much so that you state that I "push" techniques that can get a site banned. I don't!

    You don't even know what I said about those topics in my book. Why do you make malicious statements without first seeing the facts?

    I have achieved 1000s of top 30 rankings for my sites and my clients, without ever using techniques that can get banned and I've never been banned by the search engines.

    I would be most grateful if we could bring this discussion to an amicable end. I do feel it's very unprofessional to rubbish other people's products and reputation without any proof of wrongdoing.

    Michael

  22. #22
    SitePoint Enthusiast cohwill's Avatar
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    Proof that cloaking can get you banned can be found in an article by Shari Thurow, published in SearchDay, May 30, 2002, Number 278: http://searchenginewatch.com/searchday/searchday.html -click on Current Issue link.

    The title is The Search Engine Spam Police, Part 2, and covers the session at the recent Search Engine Strategies conference in Boston.

    The article states: "Some of the common practices that Inktomi considers spam are:...(2) Pages that contain hidden text and hidden links...(5) Cloaking, a practice in which the search engine and the end user do not view the same page..."

    Further on, "...If a webmaster is caught spamming, Inktomi will either demote the offending web page/site...or completely ban it."

    Jen McGrath, software engineer at Google, was also at the forum. The article lists what Google considers as spam, and cloaking is at the top of the list, as well as hidden text or hidden links.

    And finally, FAST (a.k.a AlltheWeb) is also mentioned in the article as considering cloaking as spam.
    Anita Cohen-Williams
    Search Engine Guru
    http://www.mysearchguru.com

  23. #23
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    Anita,

    Thank you for that article.

    It is well known that all search engines publicly state that they consider cloaking as spam. The article you mention proves that. It's a different story in reality.

    Also, what the article doesn't prove is that the search engines do actually ban sites that uses cloaking to provide optimized versions of a page.

    Can you show me some real life examples (or stories) of sites that have been banned?

    Google publicly state in the article, "Some items that Google considers spam are:

    Doorway pages, domains, and subdomains with the same or similar content."

    Do you believe that? That clearly cannot be true in reality. Doorway pages are used in lots of sites without any problems. I've used it to get top rankings.

    As for domains and subdomains with the same or similar content considered spam, that isn't always true either.

    I know of at least one well-known example of duplicate affiliate sites that aren't banned, even though they are all virtually identical. Maybe you know it too.

    My point is, what search engines state publicly is one thing. Whether they really police it properly is another.

    Michael

  24. #24
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    Anita,

    Please allow me to quote from a reputable source. These quotes are taken from the advanced search engine course created by Robin Nobles, Director of Training at the Academy of Web Specialists. Have you heard of her?

    "Google is now publically stating that they consider *all* cloaking to be spam, even if the user
    isn't being misled. However, John Heard with IP-Delivery, who cloaks over 300 domains, hasn't had any
    problems with Google and hasn't had a single domain banned because of cloaking."

    300 domains and not one single domain banned by Google because of cloaking! Need I say more?

    -------

    "Heard (John Heard of Beyond Engineering and Planet Ocean) has used the software at every major search engine in the United States with very good success
    since 1996. “None of our clients have ever gotten a site/page/domain banned because of the use of the
    software. But again, we haven't used misleading pages or content either. If you're not misleading or
    causing problems for anyone, it appears the engines take a ‘don't ask - don't tell’ policy with it. There
    are no automated systems to detect a cloaked page built correctly.”"

    6 years of cloaking and not one single site/page/domain banned!

    I hope that helps.

    By the way, I do NOT advocate cloaking in my book. I simply discuss it and offer links to resources for more info. I simply try to cover every angle of SEO in my book. If you had read my book, I'm sure you wouldn't have made the detrimental comments that you had. That is what disappoints me.

    Michael

  25. #25
    Serial Publisher silver trophy aspen's Avatar
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    Just because some people don't get caught doesn't make it right. Cloaking is the hardest thing to catch and most of the time the search engines rely on user complaints.

    http://www.google.com/contact/spamreport.html

    You seem to be so proud to state all of these sites that cloak, does someone want to report each one to google?

    Then of course you can read googles Do's and Don'ts page where they obviously state that they don't like cloaking:

    http://www.google.com/webmasters/dos.html

    Straight from the horse's mouth.

    I personally disdain cloaking, anyone who has to resort to it is am amatuer. I've gotten #1 listings on just about every major search engine and I've never cloaked.

    And like I said before, there is very rarely a validation for it. Your claim of "flash only site" isn't validation, make a text only version like most such sites do, you don't need to cloak.
    Chris Beasley - I publish content and ecommerce sites.
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