Top Indian Websites in the US March 2010 March 3, 2010Posted by simarprit in USA, websites.
Tags: Top Indian Websites, Top Sites, Top US Websites, US Websites
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Here goes the list of Top Indian Websites in the US. I am very proud of the fact that http://MyDearValentine.com is climbing up very nicely. MDVC as it is referred to within Compare was founded at Compare Infobase, it is now owned by one of our joint ventures. http://Mapsofworld.com continues to be the No1. Indian website in the US and it is still 100% owned by Compare.
|Rank||Top 50 Indian websites in US||Quantcast Rank 3/2/10|
Top Indian Websites in the US Oct-09 October 2, 2009Posted by simarprit in websites.
Tags: Indian Site, Indian Sites, Indian Websites in the US, Popular Websites, Top Indian Websites, Top Sites, Top US Websites, US Websites, Website, websites
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Here we go again. Our own site http://Mapsofworld.com again tops the charts of Top Indian Websites in the US for the Month of October 2009. We capture this data on 1st f every month and we use Quantcast as our source.
|October 1, 2009|
|Rank||Top 50 Indian websites in US||Quantcast Rank 10/1|
Microblogging and Specification Document January 22, 2009Posted by simarprit in Microblogging, Uncategorized, websites.
Tags: Agile Development, Agile Software Development, Dil Khol Ke Bol, Microblogging
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Look, look who’s talking now – Ha! Ha! After all the talk about agile development (AD/ ASD) platform and microblogging, I have finally got down to preparing specifications document. Our Cycle Zero is over, we have made whatever we desired in http://www.DilKholKeBol.com under ASD platform now it is our turn to set our house in order. At this stage we are zeroing down on the right SDLC school/ methodology to be followed to make our microblogging platform a robust multipurpose, easily deploy-able, inherently agile core.
So here we go on what all we have and what all we desire in the Version 3.0 of our microblogging platform.
- We wish to cover 20% of all mobile instruments available in the market. We hope these 20% would be the top 20% in usage thus allowing us to cover 80% market.
- You can do picture upload from mobile through GPRS
- You would be able to video upload through GPRS
- You can do text through GPRS, you would be able to do text through SMS
- Person Search
- Blog Search
- Refresh Indicator
- Uploading from indication
- Seamless integration with blogging site
- Trending topics
- Twitter RSS feed integration
- Picture archiving and Personal/ Public
- Video archiving and Personal/ Pulblic
- Registration features
- Audio integration
- Podcast integration
- Short URL interface
Most of the above is already there, we are going to go ahead and make it to order form made on the fly – what we have done so far.
Please suggest more features…
Christmas Carnivals December 16, 2008Posted by simarprit in Christmas, Festivals, websites.
Tags: Christmas, Christmas Carnivals, Domain Ideas, Domain Name Selection, Domain Names, Review, websites
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How do you name a site, Simar? Why did you name your Valentine site – MyDearValentine.com? Why did you name your Christmas Site Christmas Carnivals and why not Christmas XYZ or XYZ Christmas http://christmascarnivals.com – Questions like this are put at me very often> My answer – There is a lot to naming a site and I take my job of naming a site seriously.
Let me be in the spirit of Christmas and state the story of naming of Christmas Carnivals and why it is plural and not singular.
Every year since 1941 the downtown New Delhi, referred as Connaught Place plays host to a Christmas Carnival and is all decked up for the Christmas. To us the festival of Diwali is associated with Mela, so Compare went ahead and developed a site DiwaliMela.com and as Christmas had a strong association with Carnival we desired to keep the name Christmas Carnival, however the registrar’s representative did a mistake and booked ChristmasCarnivals.com instead. By the time we realized what had happened, the name was gone. We did go ahead and block other extension .net but decided to stick with ChristmasCarnivals.com – we worked further to evolve CC as we refer it to, as the single largets place for information about Christmas. There was a big learning to do, and we did go through the whole exercise of understanding Christmas and the festivities around it.
Though the site came up in 1999, it was only in 2007 – did I actually get to see the real Christmas Carnival when I was in the United States around Christmas time. The inputs I gathered were put by the team to great use and we worked on improving CC.
I am proud of the fact that ChristmasCarnivals.com has emerged as the leading Christmas site and about a million souls from all over the world stop at ChristmasCarnivals.com.
So there is a lot to a name provided you can live to it.
So my 2 cents: Keep the domain name exactly what you want the site to be.
What is SEO? September 28, 2008Posted by simarprit in Internet, Search Engines, SEO, websites.
Tags: Keyword Stuffing, Landing Pages, Organic Search Results, SEO, SEO Basics, SEO Best Practices, SEO Essentials, SEO Keywords, SEO Tips
SEO – Search Engine Optimization Basics
- What is SEO? – To make your website cut through the clutter and deliver business is SEO.
- What is this clutter all about? - Everyday hundreds of thousands of web-pages are born, each with an expectation to deliver results and be on the top. This is the clutter. Fifty five million pages on Google respond to the words – What is SEO and over 136,000 pages are working precisely to be on the phrase “What is SEO?”. This page, once posted would add yet one more page to this clutter.
- How does a website deliver business? - If you know your business, half the job is done. Congratulations! Now for the other half, you need to cut through some jargon’s and face several challenges. SEO is one of the many challenges and definitely not the only challenge. SEO only helps you to get the eyeballs to move to your website, for your website to deliver business, you would have to attend to those eyeballs to convince the rest of the body to do business at your website. You would also need to get the RIGHT EYEBALLS and not yet any eyeballs. Landing Page is the page where your SEOed eyeballs land. SEO job ends and the landing page’s job begins. Many SEOs (the individuals who do the SEO) consider Landing Page as a different subject, however, no SEO strategy can succeed without a functional landing page. Landing Page is a marriage between the two half’s of online business – your business knowledge and your website’s effectiveness, it is the place where the SEO meets business and each order is an offspring of this marriage.
- So who should do the landing page? - The landing page should always be done by the business, it should have inputs from sales, marketing, production, dispatch, finance and every-other department which keeps your business running. The business should ask the SEO company or the inhouse SEO professionals - zillions of questions and incorporate SEO essentials to the landing page. An SEO firm doesn’t know your business, so take their inputs, look at the landing pages of your competitors and write down your essentials for the landing page. You may also study specific challenges on Landing Page Optimization.
- What do we mean when we say Organic Search Results? - Let us step back and understand the origin of this phrase. As per Wikipedia – “Organic farmingis a form of agriculture that relies on crop rotation, green manure, compost, biological pest control, and mechanical cultivation to maintain soil productivity and control pests, excluding or strictly limiting the use of synthetic fertilizers and synthetic pesticides, plant growth regulators, livestock feed additives, and genetically modified organisms”. Now let us check what Wikipedia has to say about Organic Search – “Organic search results refers to those listings in search engine results pages that appear by dint of their relevance to the search terms, as opposed to their being adverts”. I would phrase it very differently: Organic Search Resultsare the snippet listings from those webpages which are most likely to focus on the searched term, the order of organic search results is reflected by the user friendly projection of the relevance of the webpage to the various automated programs (robots/spiders etc) which visit the page periodically, organic search results explicitly exclude cloaking (projecting what you are not to the robots/ spiders), paid link building and Black Hat (Illegitimate means of projecting your page) SEO techniques. So what do we call those results which show up in Organic Search results using Cloaking, Black Hat and Paid Linking – They are fakes.
- How important are Keywords to SEO? – To understand SEO Basics well, it is important to understand and underline the difference between Keywords and Key-phrases. Keywords are essentially the words on which you would like your site to come-up on SERPs (Search engine Result Pages), for instance if your business is all about selling birthday favors, your keywords would be, amongst others, birthday and favors. However your key-phrase would be “birthday favors.” Coming on Birthday favors as a phrase should be everything to you, as it is 100% business relevance. All the leads which this key-phrase would get you would be a potential sale. So Keywords are important but in many cases the key rests with the key-phrases. Literally.
- What is Keyword Stuffing, and does it hurt? -The act of populating disproportionately your content or meta tags with one particular or few keywords or key-phrases is referred to as Keyword Stuffing. Keyword stuffing is gross, it is bad for your site, bad for your business, bad for your client/ surfer, bad for the search engines and bad for the internet on the whole. It is a malpractice. As it hurts all concerned, it hurts you too, directly and indirectly. Directly it hurts as search engines are becoming smarter to identify keyword spammers, surfers report keyword stuffing more often, Indirectly as the surfer who lands on your website, discovers that you indulge in malpractices may decide not to do business on your website.
- Do you SEO a site, or you SEO individual pages? – You SEO individual pages, and if you SEO all pages on your website, your whole site is done. Having said that, you do SEO your website. You define the focus of your website and ensure that every page contributes and reflects that focus. Let us say, you have a hotel website which covers all the 50 states of the United States of America and over 600 cities, it would help you to use your anchor words and phrases on every page when you are optimizing them. If you come on say “Hotels in San Jose”, “Hotels in San Francisco”, “Hotels in Sacramento”, “Hotels in Los Angeles” there is a good opportunity to come on “Hotels in California”. Similarly if your site comes on “Hotels in Texas”, “Hotels in California”, “Hotels in New York”, “Hotels in Washington” and “Hotels in Florida”, it would be easier to make it perform on “Hotels in the US”, “Hotels in the USA”, “Hotels in the United States of America”, and on “Hotels” itself. So, work multi-stage – Stage I: Focus “Hotels in San Jose”- Stage II “Hotels in California” – Stage III “Hotels in the US” – Stage IV “Hotels” – Where Stage I is your web page focus and stage IV is your website focus.
- Is SEO genetically modular, or is SEO genetically absolute? – SEO is anything but an absolute exercise, it is totally modular in nature. You can work on Optimizing your site part by part.
Much More coming…
Agile Web Design September 19, 2008Posted by simarprit in Design, Web 2.0, Web 2.0 Expo, websites.
Tags: Agile Design, Agile Software Development, Software Development Processes, User Experience, Web Design, Web Development
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Agile Web Design and User Experience in Web 2.0 Environment – Jackson Wilkinson’s session
- Agile web design developments core has to be building a window for failure, and a window for bypassing conventional software development process.
- Agile process has a lot to do with iteration a work cycle approach where you keep on entering and exiting the cycle as you tweak and tune. You handle challenges as you move on. Agile processes are largely collaborative.
- Embedding quality in agile processes brings a better product after each iteration cycle
- Time to do really good design work has no alternative, path of least resistance makes for decidedly inferior products which are likely to be similar to many around
- Cycle Zero must have defined receivables, mood boards or dummies should be handled during cycle zero or phase zero whatever you call it.
- User stories stage and cycle planning is critical to cost and time management
- Collaborative UX meeting and Collaborative UI meetings help in thinking out of the box and get everyone on the same page. Designers get a time to figure how the site is going to look like and what the challenges would be.
- Stand-up stage of just an update and plan for the day helps in monitoring agile development and measuring it over various stages.
- Testing, Validation and Public Demos are parts of the cycle and are looked at at-least once in eavery cycle/ phase
- Be rapid through your cycles and don’t justg et stuck at a point, move on, there are going to be other stages of iteration
Advertising in Web 2.0 September 18, 2008Posted by simarprit in Advertising, Live Blogging, Marketing, Marketing Strategies, Online Advertsing, Web 2.0, Web 2.0 Expo, websites.
Tags: Advertising, Blogging, Digital Advertsing, Indian Blog Writer, Online Advertising, Simarprit, Web 2.0, Web 2.0 Expo
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David Kidder is talking about Challenges on Advertising 2.0
- Automating of advertsing has to be multistage
- Analytic Vs. Creative Challenge
- Cost Optimization challenge has moved over to simplicity challenge and time optimization holds the key
- Decision making speed is rewarding
- Semantics hold the key to success
- Execution enabled but strategy focused approach is working
- Unified accounting measurements is mission critical
Panel Discussion Max Kalehoff, Jim Barnett, Mike Kelly and Tim Hanlon
- Forecasting accurately in digital world is a challenge
- Last 10 years have made things complex in advertising space, talking about simplicity is it real….
- Fundamentally machines just cant solve problems’, it is the quality of human resource which would continue making the difference, complex marketing needs would require complex marketing solutions and complex advertising solutions… so there is no easy way out Brands is a billion dollar issue and is bound to be complex, machines or no machines
- Objective of automation is and should be measurement of every single impression, strategic success rests with computing down to each and every impression released in the digital space.
- User experience needs to be measured to add value to any campaign
- Automation of cource leads to transparency, what is working and what is not, you can’t bull any longer. Transparency is what is creating to complexity and data overload
- Inventory is increasing every minute and new options are emerging simultaneously, which is adding to the complexity, at no point you have clue to the whole offering market has to offer
- Performance of fresh inventory available is very unpredictable, transparency is fine but what to do about the performance.
- Business models need simplicity too, complex advertising options for media buyers can create its own challenge
- Driving leads versus driving revenue, driving global traffic versus driving local traffic and linking them together is also a challenge
- Marketers dream is to make automation give a great flexibility, to ease moving around geographies and medias, and mediums
- Creativity can’t be automated, but at the same time the audience complexity and commonality pushes creative team to try it harder
- Advertisers have a choice and they know it, advertising agencies have a challenge in delivering to their expectations
- Interactivity and measurement would also strongly influence success
- Personal relationships have always driven advertising industry and automation doesn’t change that.
- Relationships are not replaceable but restructuring of relationships is bound to happen, better persons and better processes can be the differentiators
- Non premium inventory is growing and piling up, that is something which doesn’t require personal relationships that can be handled by automation very well
- Most of the automation are aimed at publishers making more money out of what they think is required, which maynot mean much to advertiser and marketer and the advertising company.
- There is a big talent gap which has emerged due to the digital challenge, new products in the market need new marketing approach
- Feature obsession may not be helpful, being choosy in mastering features for your own use is important
- Lot of inventory which has no buyers goes in for house ads, ad networks are not yet working to expectations, it may take some more time for action to happen.
The session concluded with couple of unexciting questions…
Reinvention of Marketing the Web 2.0 Way September 17, 2008Posted by simarprit in Blogging, Business, Education, Internet, Marketing, Marketing Strategies, Web 2.0, Web 2.0 Expo, websites.
Tags: Marketing Strategies, Online, Online Advertising, Online PR, PR, PR 2.0, PR Tips, Public Relations, web marketing
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Brian Solis on Web 2.0 and its role in PR and Marketing, my 2 cents are all over (Brian may or may not agree)
- Customers are moving online, PR and Marketing needs to move beyond 1.0 which it looks like it is stuck in’
- Are you an influencer, or do you know influencers, bloggers are influencers and they are at it
- Perception is important and social web has a role in how you are looked at
- Defining and measuring influence can help in decision making
- Are you everywhere… Traditional media, Events online and offline, New Influencers, Social Networks, Blogs and Comments, Forums, Content Creation & Curation
- Composite strategy can work for you, all encompassing approach to PR and Marketing would help
- Engagement is important in PR now, not just a look or a hit.
- You need to be hybrid PR professional in today’s world
- A PR professional needs to be all it takes he has to be octopus
- PR today all about Public
- A PR professional needs to be participative a good Press Release may not lead to anything
- Common Sense rules the day
- Rules of PR are influenced by rules of Blogging, which has no rules
- Relationship of trust with a lot of guys
- Be incremental in approach, keep sharing and communicating as you go on, let the story build up fast enough
- WOMM (Word of Mouth Marketing) is what every thing leads to.
- PR today has to be organization wide
- Are you everywhere, exclude none
- Do you know where-ever you are, you just have to be everywhere. Look at all of the key networks and measure your performance on all active networks
- Become a resource for people
- Participation is the key and not initiation
- Web Analytics holds the key to how you are doing
- Creating special landing pages for your various activities can help
- Quantification and tying the activity to sales helps
- WEB 2.0 is not frozen, there is a lot more to come so keep learning
- You are the brand you project
- Some resources – Future-works, SocialMediaClub, sncr.org, nowisgone
White Hat Vs Black Hat SEO August 24, 2008Posted by simarprit in Blogging, Internet, Search Engines, SEO, SES 2008, websites.
Tags: Black Box SEO, Black Hat SEO, Search Engines, SEO, SEO Best Practices, SEO Tips, SES, SES 2008, White Box SEO, White Hat SEO
Which hat do you wear, Black, White, Grey, Red or None?
The question should rather be:
Which kind of head do you carry over your shoulder – Black, White, Grey or Red?
It looks like everyone has been changing/ exchanging hats. If it is the color of head we talk about, it would be more exciting and entertaining
Continuing with my series on SES 2008, San Jose, this post incorporates the Gyan acquired during the session – Black Hat, White Hat: Playing Dirty with SEO
Let us define:
Black Hat: You do whatever it takes to be on top of SERPs. Good. Bad. Ugly. Whatever. Period.
White Hat: You do whatever search engine (read Google) guidelines for webmasters tell you to, you don’t try to outsmart search engines.
Grey Hat: You are the border guy, you know the stretch, and you think you know what you would getaway with, you live white, but you know black and you use it on the side.
Red Hat: You know what it takes to hurt your competitor and you know how to getaway with it.
No Hat: If you don’t wear any and you are still an SEO, maybe you an incompetent SEO. Don’t worry, you are not alone 95% of the SEOs within the industry are plain incompetent.
The session was to debate Black Hat vs. White Hat, but the debate didn’t happen. it looked like the whole panel was wearing Grey Hat and tended to remain on the border and just didn’t want to be drawn to the controversy. Important observation were made:
- Established sites have much more restrictions, they can’t risk exclusion from SERPs.
- Just made for adsense is crap. Content needs to be good. Nobody wants trash, and for sure not the search engines.
- Searcher needs good results and most of the top results very close to each other, if Search Engines intermix the top 5 results, it wouldn’t;t matter to the surfer.
- Buying excessive links can hurt, it is Red Hat.
- Good SEO to me is Knowledge about Search engines and the subject.
- Meta Keyword stuffing hurts.
- Everything in the title hurts too.
- Hidden content is black.
- Short and focused titles are good.
- Paid unrealted blogging can hurts.
- Vague and self promoting descriptions with repeat words hurts
- Paid link buying from link farms hurts badly.
- Search engines hate doorway or gatway pages, they hate being misled
- Serach engines hate carse optimization: They are bound to hate something like this – www.example.com/HOTEL/hotel/googleCityNameHotel.html - Which may go with the title <title>CityName Hotels | Hotels in CityName |Budget CityName Hotels| Luxury CityName Hotel| Cheap CityName Hotel| Discount CityName Hotels</title> This is a live example of carse black hat, “We will do anything even put Google’s name in our URLs, hundreds of them but we need to get on the top, we don’t care what happens to our site if Google doesn’t like it.” I picked up this example as it was succeeding in ranking high up. I have kept the URL intact except removing the site name and substituting it with example.com and substituting the actual city name with CityName.
- Great generic domain name helps
More to come…