The Flexiss Toolbox

SEO News – Penguin Update 1.1

For many of you this might be a bit late, but I wanted to give you this update anyways. Google recently released an update to its Penguin Algorithm. Penguin is an algorithm Google released to fight webspam and penalize sites they believe are violating Google’s quality guidelines. Penguin 1.1 is the first update to the algorithm and according to a tweet by Google’s Matt Cutts, the update affects less than 0.1% of English searches. Given that last fact, the UPDATE shouldn’t be a huge worry for webmasters and SEO’s. The Penguin algorithm as a whole on the other hand, has much of the SEO world in a tizzy, and there have been many arguments over whether it made search results better or worse. If you feel you have been affected by mistake and that your website doesn’t violate their quality guidelines, you can submit this form to Google and they will take it into consideration. However, regardless of how you feel about Penguin, Google feels it helps fight webspam and if your website is unnaturally optimized for search, you will almost definitely receive a hit.

So how do you combat this? You have to shift your search engine optimization mindset. There aren’t as many loopholes in the system now and Google is getting better at seeing what’s natural and what’s artificial. Take a step back from the link building and start focusing on writing great content. Build up your blog and use social media to drive traffic so you start getting traffic and in turn, natural links. Submit articles to guest blogging opportunities with links back to your site. Start building websites for people rather than Search Engines and the results will be better with both.  According to Danny Sullivan of Search Engine Land, Good Links are Hard Links.

Check out this SEO Blog for the latest news and tips.

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A New Sheriff in Town

Change happens.  Better stated, change happens at a blinding pace!  This year of 2012 is already well underway (and just where did January go?).  Allow me to share about the dramatic changes around FLEXISS.

Changes at FLEXISS Digital Design

As our wonderful and faithful clients are aware, FLEXISS Digital Design is now under the ownership and management of yours truly, Scott Callas.  This change took place as of January first.  It is my pleasure to continue serving our clients, after having worked along side Ross for over four years now, meeting your web site needs.  Thank you for your continued support!  And, I tip my hat to Ross.  Thank you, Ross, for entrusting me with all that you have built up over the years.

With announcements and some acknowledgements out of the way, let’s talk about what changes are now in the works at FLEXISS Digital Design.

During my first month in this new role, I have been evaluating various paths to help FLEXISS keep moving forward.  To that end, my most important priority is to help those we serve meet their web site goals, to be more successful in their online presence and to better reach their clients and customers.  In short, I am finding ways to make the good parts of FLEXISS better, and the better parts of FLEXISS the best – as measured by our clients.

One of the items on my desk is a new pricing plan.  Considering the economic times, professional web development has been difficult for some Grand Junction businesses to afford.  FLEXISS will soon be rolling out our Smart Pricing Options to help enable more local businesses reach their customer base with a professional web site.  I have a few details to iron out, but this plan will be available early next week.

The most important task I am examining is how to better serve clients, both new and old.  To this end, I am investigating the needs of businesses and evaluating where FLEXISS has historically fit into that picture – where we have been successful and where we have come up short.  With many things under consideration, the bottom line is my commitment to provide the best web design services in Grand Junction and Colorado’s Western Slope.

I welcome your feed back.  Please leave a comment below!

Best Regards,
Scott Callas

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Is Facebook’s Timeline the “Final Cut”?

Is the Facebook Timeline the Social Media realization of Omar Naim’s vision of the future in his 2004 movie, “The Final Cut”?  Am I the only one who sees the similarities here?

robin williams in the final cut 2004

Robin Williams anticipates Facebook's desire to edit and present your entire life history to, well, whomever.

In the movie, which stars Robin Williams (who as usual does a great job with the role of moody, odd, quirky, withdrawn…and doomed, introvert) and is written and directed by Naim, an embedded chip called the Zoe records all your experiences throughout your life.  Although the usefulness of this would be tremendous pre-humously (yes, I made up the word in retaliation for the fact that I can’t think of an antonym for posthumously) – just think of all the marital arguments that could be settled – it appears in the movie that the primary use of the Zoe chip is to produce a 1-minute video of the highlights of your life, seen through your own, now dead eyes, and recorded in Zoe’s memory.

Robin Williams plays a “Cutter.”  The life editor who sees everything the Zoe chip saw and recorded.  He pours through hundreds of thousands of hours of memories and weeds through the chaff to display the “wheat” to the world.  Of course, the Cutter decides what is chaff and what is wheat.

Fast forward to 2011 and we have Facebook doing that with all your Social Media experiences on their new Timeline.   Facebook is the “Cutter.”  But have you noticed that you’re not dead?  So do you really want Facebook in such control?  I admit, I enabled the Timeline and I love the layout, but at the same time I’m aware of the slippery slope we’re sliding along.

Move over Robin, I think I’ll join you in that melancholy and introspective place that has the smell of doom about it.

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