Today we're launching a new element of our blog: The Monday Roundup. Every Monday we are going to post our favorite stories from our previous week's blog readings, centered around in the fields of SEO and Internet Marketing, Development, Analytics, and Usability.
- This week Google launched On Demand Indexing of user submitted sitemaps. As part of their Custom Search Platform, Google has included an 'index now' feature to their CSE control panel, allowing webmasters to request immediate (well, within a few hours) reindexing of their sites.
- Google has also announced SearchWiki, a tool for customizing search results. This tool lets you customize your results by re-ranking, delisting, and even adding search results. I can hear the SEO's of the world letting out a little scream right now. Yes, user search editing. However Google assures us that these changes will only affect searches by the user, and that user preference will not affect over all rankings.
- In even more Google news, Google has released the Search-based Keyword Tool. Nothing we haven't seen before, but now it has that Google authority attached to it.
- ColdFusionJedi has written
a guide to writing ColdFusion administrator extensions. While my knowledge of ColdFusion is about on par with my knowledge of Tibetan Yak Cheese, our ColdFusion expert and Greasemonkey plugin celebrity Erik V liked it.
- Infoworld asked the question “Why are developers switching to macs?”. I didn't know they were, but then one of our developers just bought one, and so have all my old compsci friends…
- SEO Moz has a very cool whiteboard Friday this (last) week on Machine Learning.
- Kaushik.net has a great article on experimenting with your website called Experiment or Die. Five Reasons And Awesome Testing Ideas.
- invesp Blog has published another blog post on persona creation. It reminds me a little bit of my post on working with first time visitors. They don't go into much detail, but I still like to hear people talking about how we should be applying psychological concepts that have been a key part of marketing since Edward Louis Bernays published Crystallizing Public Opinion back in the 1920s to internet marketing and conversion rate optimization.
- Search Engine Journal has a nice piece on a few neat usability tools. One, called five second test, sets up a basic usability test which you can send to people in your social networks, and hopefully get data back as per what they are noticing first. Even cooler, Feng-Gui basically sets up a quick heat-map test based on some funky algorithmic analysis of your page. Not as accurate as actually using people, I'm sure, but still cool.
Miscellaneous link of the week:
- And finally, for all of you fashion conscious folks out there, Google released skins for Gmail. It's not the most revolutionary of skinning options, basically just dropping a back ground image into the infamous Google white space, but if you just have some kind of primal need to see mountains whenever you look at your email, this is a great feature for you.