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PageRank Update

There is currently a Google PageRank update underway. While the PageRank value itself is updated on-the-fly in regards to Google’s calculation of rankings, about once every 3 months they push the new values to the toolbar to let us all take a peek. Today is that day.

As of this writing the new values seem to be visible only to those on the west coast. In chatting with a business partner (Frederick Townes from W3 EDGE Web Design in Boston) he was unable to see the new values whereas I can see them here in Canada and they are also visible off a server we run in California.

So watch you values over the next day or so.

What this also means is that there should be an algorithm update some time in the next week-or-so. Generally Google does an algorithm update shortly after the PageRank push. There have been exceptions but this is the general timeline. Usually in these updates the aging delays on sites and links are lightened (read: the links you’ve built gain in value due to history) plus other aspects which only Google knows until they’re out.

Keep watching the Beanstalk blog for more news on this update as it occurs.

Add on info:

Because there are many on the East Coast who still can’t see the new PageRank numbers I went on a bit of a hunt and re-found a neat tool (now added to my Bookmarks :) that searches multiple datacenters and draws the PageRank’s they are showing. If you visit the site, enter in your URL you’ll see how far the new numbers have spread.

If you see some with your current PR and others with a different number, well – obviously it’s the new ones that are propagating.

You can find this neat tool at removed)

SEO news blog post by @ 1:33 pm on October 5, 2006



Beanstalk Does It Again

For those of you who visit the Beanstalk blog regularly to keep posted on the latest SEO news will remember that back on September 14th, 2006 we were honored to make PromotionWorld’s Top 10 Best SEO Companies list for September (making that the third month in a row). We just received October’s list and it appears that we have not only been included again but we’ve moved up to position 6 from position 7.

From their site they note that, “The Top 10 SEO Company Awards are based on the offered services, package diversity, value, customer service, feedback and website popularity of the selected companies.”

Once again we would like to extend our sincere appreciation to PromotionWorld for this great honor. As we noted when we first received this award:

It’s definitely great to be recognized by anyone as a reputable firm but it’s expecially nice when it’s a company you hold in high regards such as PromotionWorld.

SEO news blog post by @ 1:51 pm on October 4, 2006



Andy Hagans On Link Baiting

An article written by link-guru Andy Hagans came to my attention today. The article is on “link baiting” and it covers some unique methods for attaining links to your website. In the article Andy discusses the Google sandbox (or “Trustbox” as he calls it) and he argues that effective link baiting can help you get through this purgatory faster.

I could go through the article here in this post but rather than do that I’m going to prove Andy’s point and link right to his article. One of his points is to get links from blogs and so I’ll oblidge by giving one here with the anchor text “link baiting” just for good measure. :)

The article is both humerous and informative and is highly recommended reading for anyone interested in SEO and link building (and if you’re not – what are you doing on our blog?). I’ve even gone so far as to add it to my Bookmarks Toolbar so I can read it again later when I’ll have time to focus a bit more.

Well done Andy, you get an A+ for this one. :)

SEO news blog post by @ 2:08 pm on September 28, 2006



Putting Bruce Clay To The Test

As the new writer for SitePoint’s SEM Kit I’ve been testing out a lot of tools and services I had only peek at previously. While I’m not a HUGE fan of tools that provide feedback regarding what you should do, the service offered by Bruce Clay seemed an interesting one (generally I stick to tools that give the data and based the “what to do” on research and an understanding of what the search engines are looking for and what they want to accomplish).

As none of the tactics noted involve spam in any minor degree I decided to put it to the test with a site I know better than any other. And so we’ve applied changes to the Beanstalk homepage and some aspects of its structure to see what happens. While there are a couple portions that will likely be changing back regardless of the effect (the much longer title now for example: our old title was “Guaranteed SEO Services by Beanstalk”) I thought that it would be interesting to see what happens.

I don’t recommend this for everyone (testing on an important and live site) however with a hold currently on new clients, a temporary drop of a position or two (the likely worst case scenario) is certainly tolerable.

And so check back our valued readers, I will be sure to let you know how it goes once these changes get picked up and some affects are realized.

As a note: they did recommend to reduce the anchor text on our homepage. This would require adjusting our entire navigation system and making the site less user friendly and thus we didn’t take them up on the recommendation. That said, if the site does in fact increase in rankings we’ll definitely have to rethink that stance. ;)

Check back in a couple week and we’ll be sure to let you know what the preliminary results are.

SEO news blog post by @ 4:52 pm on September 25, 2006



Do Patents Point to SEO Gold?

There’s currently an article posted on the website titled, “Do Patents Point to SEO Gold?” The article, written by Shari Thorow, discussed whether studying the patents, whitepapers, etc. put out by search engine staff are guidelines for SEO or whether they will send those looking to use them to attain higher rankings in the wrong direction.

For those of you who are regular visitors to the Beanstalk blog you’ll know that we’re big fans of monitoring patents, studying them, memorizing them, and applying the lessons from them into our SEO strategies. For information on some of the more important patent applications we’ve used to adjust our strategies (guaranteed remember so we don’t just throw in anything we hear but rather only those that we know will work well) you can visit our blog posts on the patents for the Google Sandbox and editorial input.

The article gives a solid view of the pros and cons of monitoring the patents and discusses what SEO’s need to consider when doing so. The patent applications are not a blueprint, they cover much of what will never be done but if we understand the nature of a patent we understand what is important about such a thing being filed by a search engine. The purpose of a patent is to stop others from developing the same technology. This means that they view this specific technology so worthwhile that they don’t want others to use it.

If a technology is this valuable they are sure to integrate it in some form or another. To be sure, patents and the strict rules they indicate are not the end-all-be-all. Many functions are never introduced and others are altered before they are launched however as we discussed back in our article titled “Anatomy Of An Internet Search Engine” understanding how a search engine functions and what the end goal of the engine is gives optimizers a distinct advantage in rankings sites highly, not just today – but down the road as well by following the best practices of the current algorithms and the ones we know are coming.

The article on the SearchEngineWatch website is recommended reading for anyone who does or is interested in reading the various patents put out by the search engines and their staff. Knowing how to read them is almost as important as what they contain and Shari does a good job of outlining this. You can find the article on the SEW site here.

SEO news blog post by @ 9:24 pm on September 23, 2006



And More From Matt Cutts

Two days ago we brought you information on an interview with Google guru Matt Cutts in which he described a fairly new black hat tactic. In this interview he pointed to OneupWeb as a company that used the technology and got their clients into major trouble. Visit our blog post from September 19th for more on that topic. The next day we brought you information from Jim Hedger of SiteProNews on a pretty major issue. He received a call from the CEO of OneupWeb. They claimed that not only didn’t they but they don’t host their clients so they couldn’t have. Was Matt misinformed? Could even one of Google’s best be … cough cough … wrong? Read our post from September 20th for more on this.

Well now we have a response back from Matt himself on the issue. As it turns out, well, indeed one of Google’s best can be wrong. Here is what he said to Jim Hedger:

In this case, the simplest explanation is the right one: I made a mistake. I meant to say iPowerWeb, and I said Oneupweb by accident. I felt bad enough about the mistake that I posted a clarification on my blog at:

My apologies to Lisa Wehr and the folks at Oneupweb, who responded to my error with grace and humor.

So there we have it. OneupWeb is vindicated.

There are some other great comment from Matt on the SiteProNews blog. You can visit Jim’s post from today to find out more.

SEO news blog post by @ 7:12 pm on September 21, 2006



More On Matt Cutt’s Statements

As promised yesterday in our post on an interview with Matt Cutts and his naming of a specific SEO firm (OneupWeb) and their alleged use of black hat tactics that could seriously damage their client’s domains, we have a followup.

In yesterdays post I mentioned that a conversation with SiteProNews editor Jim Hedger revealed that their may be more to the story than meets the eye. In todays blog post he revealed what that something was. He chronicles a discussion he had with Lisa Wehr, CEO of OneupWeb, and PR Director, Rachel North. They defend their innocence as a company and bring up some decent point that, if true, would basically make it impossible for the allegation to be true.

SEO news blog post by @ 8:05 pm on September 20, 2006



Matt Cutts On A New Black Hat SEO Method

There was an interesting post on the SiteProNews blog today by editor Jim Hedger. The post chronicles an interview between Google Software Engineer Matt Cutts and Vanessa Fox, Product Manager for Google Webmaster Tools.

In the interview Matt discusses a new method that black hatters have at their disposal (or at least, did until very recently). This method uses a CGI script to determine who is entering the site (human or Googlebot) and if it’s Google, displays links to a specified domain (in the example used it was a series of adult sites).

In a chat just moments ago with Jim he indicated that perhaps there was more to the story regarding the SEO firm named in the interview. I couldn’t get too many details out of him but there will be more to the story coming soon on the SiteProNews blog.

To keep updated on what Jim has discovered you can visit the SiteProNews blog or visit us here again soon. As soon as we hear work that the next post is ready and the news is out you can be sure we’ll make mention of it. :)

SEO news blog post by @ 6:00 pm on September 19, 2006



Tips From Google Software Engineer Matt Cutts

In my general travels around the net (the only traveling I get to do at light speed :) I found a great blog post on the website. In their post they highlight some of the best specific tips that Google Software Engineer Matt Cutts has given to the SEO and webmaster communities.

The post includes the answrs to such questions as:

  • Is it better to use underscores of dashes in URLs?
  • What is the best practice if your site is built in Flash and you want to rank highly?
  • How many parameters can a URL have and get indexed properly?
  • What is the difference between a 301 and a 302 redirect?
  • and much more.

A grea post with useful information. Even if you read Matt’s blog (recommended) and know this stuff already it’s great to have it all in one place. You’ll find this post on the website here.

SEO news blog post by @ 1:21 pm on



Over 400 Pages & Pokemon Wins

We operate a small Internet directory at It’s a generally ignored directory at this point but a few years ago I thought it would be fun to start as practice. If nothing else doing so gave me a great respect for directory owners/editors and the amount of work they put in.

One day my son wanted to put some pictures of Pokemon on the Internet for his friends. I created a folder called “pokemon” on the site, built a simple template with him, showed him how to add pictures and let him go. That was about 5 or 6 months ago.

As noted, the site is not a big priority here and I haven’t really looked at it since. Well I decided to pop in and check my stats a couple days ago just out of curiosity and lo-and-behold about 80% of all the traffic the site was getting was for … pokemon related phrases !

So we’ve just gone through again, added some AdSense ads onto the pages in a profile just for him in my account (heck, it’s his pages so if he can make a few buck on it it will definitely provide a good lesson that … well … SEO pays :)

The area of the directory is called Pokemon Masters (which he truly is). As if there’s any question (which I’m sure there isn’t ;) I know virtually nothing about Pokemon but if I have to pick (which I’ve had to) then Pikachu is my favorite. :)

SEO news blog post by @ 4:12 pm on September 16, 2006



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