Category Archives: Google

Hello! I can help you rank higher in Google. I promise!

Press One to Rank Higher in Google

I frequently get robo calls from some outfit where the pre-recorded voice starts out by saying, “Your Google business listing and website ranking are out of date” or something like that, and it then proceeds to tell me that if I press one to verify that I’d like to rank higher in Google, that someone will be able to assist me.

Today, I decided to press 1.

I was then given a second prompt to verify something or other about wanting to receive SEO ranking services to help my site rank higher. So I pressed one for that, too. My expected wait time was three minutes.

Lucky me! Within about 10 seconds of my wait, a guy came on the line.

“Hello this is Robert. Can I please confirm your name?”

Well, this was interesting. They called me. Shouldn’t they know who I am, or who they are calling?

“I can confirm my name after I know who is calling. Can you please tell me the name and address of your business?”

The man replied, “The name of our company is SEO Services.” I noted the wholly generic business name and the lack of an address that I asked for.

I asked, “And what is your company’s website?”

Robert answered, “Are you interested in having us help you rank higher in Google and to improve your business page ranking?”

“I absolutely am. So do you guys work for Google?”

Robert said, “No, we’re a contractor who works for Google.”

“OK. So you guys are hired by Google to do this?”

“Yes,” Robert said. “Google works with large companies like Sears and Walmart, and contractors like us work with small businesses.”

I responded, “Great! What is your company website?”

Robert wasn’t going to help me out there. “If you’re not interested in our service I can just have you removed from our call list.”

I told him, “I am interested, I just would like to know who I’ll be working with. What’s your company website?”

Again, Robert didn’t answer the question. “I can have your number removed from our call list if you’d prefer we didn’t contact you again.”

I tried to push on. “No – I absolutely want to improve my rankings. I’d just like to check out your site. I always do that for people who offer me professional online services. If they are going to help my website, I want to check out theirs.”

“I’ll have your number removed from our database.”

I continued to push. “No. Please connect me with your supervisor. If I can’t get the services you called me about from you, then I’d like to talk to your supervisor.”

“I don’t have a supervisor.”

What? “You don’t? Then is this your company?”

Robert replied, “Well, I do have one, but you’re not going to talk to anyone else. I’ll have your information removed from our database.”

I asked, “Why won’t you tell me what your website is? You’re offering me SEO, and I want to see who you are.”

Robert said, “I think we have a conflict of interest here. Your site says that you offer SEO services, so I’ll mark you to be deleted from our database.”

“Why is this a conflict of interest? I have clients who I like to refer to reputable SEO companies. If I could learn more about you, perhaps I could refer business to you.”

“We both know you’re not referring any business our way.”

“You’re right. And I sure hope that whatever shit you’re selling doesn’t work.”

And that’s when I hung up and started typing this.

Be careful out there, folks. There are countless SEO scammers all over the place. I was unable to get the actual company name, address, or website for these guys, but they wanted me to confirm all of my business information and give them details that I couldn’t get on them. And they wanted that BEFORE I was going to get even the slightest bit of info about them.

I was also unable to find out how much any of this would cost. My guess is that they charged a fairly small fee, told you a bunch of things you could never prove or verify if they happen or not, and then they’d take your money and you’d never hear from them again or be able to contact them.

When I tried to call the number back that came up on my caller ID, the recording said, “All of our operators are currently busy. If you would like to add your number to our do not call list, please press 1 now.”

I didn’t press one, as I wanted to see what other options I might have. The next thing I heard was, “We have added your number to our do not call list.”

And then I was disconnected.

The number on my caller ID was (402) 238-1030 from Omaha, NE.

I’d say with a pretty high degree of confidence that these guys aren’t a small business’s best option for improving their search rankings or site SEO.

Be careful out there. Only work with reputable SEO companies that you can get referrals for and that will – at the very least – explain their services, methodology, and – ideally – give you their website address.

It Always Comes Back to Hits

I’ve always appreciated and respected April Fools’ Day for the pranks, jokes and general shenanigans. Over the last several years, I’ve grown to anticipate it even more due to Google’s first-class hoaxes.

This year, they have not disappointed. There are a lot that I’ve seen already, and the day isn’t quite through.

What really impressed me, though, was the Google Analytics prank announcement. Entitled, Back to Hits, it explains that they are ditching all the fancy-pants reporting and metrics like segmentation, page views, visitors and simply going back to hits.

Why did this strike a chord in me? Well, because sooooo many people I know still refer to various things like visitors and pageviews as “hits.” I know it’s the geek in me that gags a little each time this happens, but maybe this joke by Google can do a little bit to raise awareness about what things website owners should actually be paying attention to.

Hits haven’t been a relevant metric since the very early days of the web. Most people don’t even know what it really means.

I think that’s why I like this one so much – some people will just think it’s funny. Some of us will really know why it’s hilarious.

Happy April Fools’ Day, everyone.

Lots of Activity from Google

I’ve been seeing a lot of things with great implications from Google over the past few days. The biggest things of note are their introduction of closed-captioning and auto-captioning across all YouTube videos and the completion of their DocVerse acquisition.

The implications on all of these things are huge. I already posted on Bozell Insights my thoughts about Google’s auto-captioning. With the DocVerse acquisition, we’re bound to see even more functionality come out of Google Docs.

I’ve been using Docs for more and more things simply because it’s simple and I can access the exact same docs from anywhere. My Google Docs account is becoming my remote desktop in a way. I keep a bunch of simple things there simply because I know where they will be.

What I’m impressed with is this whole ecosystem that Google is creating. I feel like they are growing cells, tissues, organs and systems in the labs and then slowly introducing them to us. What we are getting in the end is one whole Frankenstein that’s more like Superman than some bolt-necked monster.

Yeah – I’m a Google fan. But because they do things right in my opinion. They introduce useful things, make it searchable, and make it easy. Plus – it helps that it’s free.

Expect more interesting things to come out of both of these new developments. As Google works to organize the world’s information, we’re willingly giving them more and more of it simply because doing so is so easy, but it also makes our lives and jobs easier, too.

Extending Your Global Audience Through Video

According to Jason Kincaid at TechCrunch, YouTube just announced that they will be expanding closed captioning support for all videos on YouTube and rolling out an auto-captioning feature on videos featuring the English language.


The implications of this move are extremely interesting. Think about the possibilities, and what this does for Google, online content, search, and extending your online global audience.

Google will launch a service that automatically adds English subtitles to a video, if English is the language spoken in the sound track. That alone is impressive. Speech to text recognition software has been around for a long time, but for Google to have something in their pocket that they feel is good enough to add to public user videos means that they have something highly versatile. Of course, they say it will need input and scrutiny from the video owner, but that’s just a little way of asking for help in making sure they index your content correctly.

Online content wins, because previously, there was no easy and automated way for spoken words to be found in online search unless there was a video transcription. Now Google is going to attempt to do it automatically. Even if they only get it 50% correct, there’s a tremendous opportunity for them to have a handle on a significant amount of content that their competitors do not. This increases the public’s ability to find relevant information, and it also increases Google’s ability to sell contextual advertising.

Finally, when you pair what Google is already doing with offering live website text translation into different languages with auto-captioning, you have the opportunity to instantly expand one little English language video into a globally understandable piece of video content. Without doing anything more, people across the globe can find your video content via search.

Again. Woah.

Keep watching this topic. If it works, this could stir up the competitive search landscape if Bing isn’t close to doing the same thing. Another notch in organizing the world’s information indeed, Google.

New Search Engine "Cuil" Arises From Former Google Engineer

Today marks the launch of the new search engine CUIL – pronounced “cool.”

It’s supposed to be The Next Big Thing but I think they are getting slammed with traffic or having some other particular problems today. Which is too bad. The article I read says that they are supposedly doing more targets search results with fewer computers. I guess maybe there’s something to be said for gross computing power. That’s purely my speculation, though.

I’d like to see how it works, but in searching for even simple terms like “omaha web design” it said there were no results to be returned. On a few other subsequent searches, sometimes I’d get results and sometimes I’d be told that I can’t get any results because of a too-high server load.

Not very “cuil” if you ask me. Get your servers tuned and then promote the crap out of it.