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How Edmunds.com got 55,000 pages into search engines
In my last two issues, I've written about steps that Google.com and other search engines are taking to downgrade the rankings of Web sites that use "doorway pages" and other tricks. Doorways are Web pages that have supposedly been optimized to score well in search engines, but have a "click here" link at the bottom that leads to the "real" page. This may or may not be the content that a surfer was looking for.

By This week February 05, 2002  

Edmunds.com is a well-known business based on the decades-old auto-pricing publications of the same name. According to the site, it contains more than 700,000 pages of information and is accessed by more than 200,000 people each day.


One problem the site experienced until recently was that, like many large Internet sites, its content was served up to surfers by a database. The Web addresses of the resulting pages contained a question mark ("?"), rendering the pages invisible to many search engines.

I spoke with Frederick Marckini and Amanda Watlington, who are respectively the CEO and director of research of iProspect.com, the consulting firm that last year helped Edmunds.com solve the issue. One result of the project is that Edmunds.com now has more than 55,000 of its pages directly accessible through the Google.com index. You can see the exact number by clicking the following link and reading the first line in blue:

http://www.google.com http://bri.li/?61d5

"It's a massive Web site that's all quality content," Marckini said about Edmunds.com. "The pages existed, they just weren't available to the search engines." By redesigning the database, it was possible to create Web addresses that are just as indexable as "static" pages.

"As people have built bigger and bigger sites," added Watlington, "they've tended to ignore the fact that if they make their strings indexable, they get much more visible on search engines."

For more information, contact iProspect at the link below.

iProspect.com (consultant to Edmunds.com and others)

http://www.iprospect.com http://bri.li/?4e4d

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Sony recently announced that it plans to release a version of Linux for PlayStation 2 as early as May 2002. The Linux kit -- which is expected to include a 40GB hard drive, network adapter, and other add-ons to the PlayStation units -- will sell for $199.

The offer, much sought after by Linux aficionados, will allow users to run Linux programs on the speedy little Sony units as well as develop their own games.

Linux for PlayStation 2 with hard drive and networking http://www.twomobile.com http://bri.li/?755d

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1. Priceline.com almost makes a real profit online

http://ecommerce.internet.com http://bri.li/?415

2. Broadband not broad enough to sell movies on-demand

http://www.reuters.com http://bri.li/?7fd

3. Which profitable e-commerce niches are still left?

http://www.ecommercetimes.com http://bri.li/?be5

4. TheStreet.com launches its 10th paid newsletter

http://www.atnewyork.com http://bri.li/?fcd

5. Why content management software is inadequate

http://www.content-wire.com http://bri.li/?13b5

6. SEC dupes 1 million surfers with fake Web business

http://www.pcworld.com http://bri.li/?179d

7. "Best Merchandise," other Bloggies winners announced

http://www.fairvue.com http://bri.li/?1b85

8. Watch just the Super Bowl ads (Yahoo, etc.) at iFilm

http://www.ifilm.com http://bri.li/?1f6d

9. HTML tips: How 5 Web standards can affect your site

http://www.webmasterbase.com http://bri.li/?2355

10. "Bot" makes it onto the 2002 Banished Word List

http://www.lssu.edu http://bri.li/?273d

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No sooner had I renamed this section Wacky Web Week than I discovered a site worthy of the name: CapnWacky.com. And the special feature at the site this week is a good one: the actual experiences of Stick Figure-Warning Man, the guy who poses for all those warning signs you see everywhere. You know, the ones that implore you not to sit on chainsaws or tip vending machines over onto yourself.

I admit I felt waves of sadistic glee as I read Stick Figure-Warning Man's hilarious descriptions of being zapped with bolts of electricity and mashed by descending truck tailgates -- all so a photographer could get a good shot to warn the idiots who put themselves in harm's way. The rest of Cap'n Wacky's site, produced by two guys who call themselves Amalgamated Humor, is pretty good, too.

The deadly follies of Stick Figure-Warning Man http://www.capnwacky.com http://bri.li/?c37d

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E-BUSINESS SECRETS: Our mission is to bring you such useful and thought-provoking information about the Web that you actually look forward to reading your e-mail.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: E-Business Secrets is written by InfoWorld Contributing Editor Brian Livingston (http://SecretsPro.com). Research director is Ben Livingston (no relation). Brian has published 10 books, including:

Windows Me Secrets:

http://www.amazon.com http://bri.li/?0764534939

Windows 2000 Secrets:

http://www.amazon.com http://bri.li/?0764534130

Win a gift certificate good for a book, CD, or DVD of your choice if you're the first to send a tip Brian prints: mailto:Brian@SecretsPro.com.

Brian Livingston , an InfoWorld contributing editor, has published 10 books, including Windows Me Secrets and Windows 2000 Secrets. Win a book free if you're the first to send a tip Brian prints. Send in your tips today, at tips@secretspro.com.
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