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The Analytics Gap - how free tools affect the industry and company strategy

The trend towards free analytics technology, accelerated by Yahoo's acquisition of IndexTools and plan to make it a free service , raises interesting questions both for vendors and for organisational planning, writes Lynchpin's Andrew Hood . 

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What will the end of BPF mean for advertisers?

Believe it or not, there once was a time when Google still had to convince large advertisers that online marketing (and more specifically search engine marketing) was a very cost-effective channel to acquire customers.  

Initially Google provided discount to advertising agencies to encourage the adoption of its Adwords platform but in 2006, since this model wasn’t really fair towards other advertisers, Google replaced it with the Best Practice Funding (BPF) Programme.

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Monetising and measuring social media - some basic principles

Over the last few months more companies have started to experiment with a whole host of new media channels, including social networking sites and microblogs.

When planned adequately, social media can provide an effective means of reaching new customer segments, forming closer relationships, and building online reputation.

However, it was clear from E-consultancy's Social Media: Measurement, Managing Reputation and Monetisation event last week that marketers face a range of different challenges as the social media landscape continues to evolve and grow. 

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Q&A: Brian Clifton on Google and web analytics

Brian Clifton is a search and web analytics expert. From 2005, Brian was Google's Head of Web Analytics for Europe, Middle East and Africa.

He recently left Google to become Senior Strategist for Omega Digital Media. We caught up with Brian to ask him about his experiences at Google, his views on web analytics and his new book.

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Ten things Thomas Cook can do better online

Booking and researching holidays and flights online has become more and more popular over the last few years. In 2007, the online travel market in the UK was worth £11.2 bn.

Booking a holiday online can be a complicated process, so it's important to make it as easy to use and understand for customers. Many travel websites are frustrating to use, so how does Thomas Cook fare? It's pretty good, but we have nevertheless suggested a few improvements after the jump...

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When crowdsourcing backfires

Crowdsourcing has been touted by some as a revolution.

Popularized by Web 2.0 and the concept of "the wisdom of crowds," the idea that businesses and organizations can leverage a "crowd" (often for free or at minimal cost) to perform all sorts of tasks that would have otherwise been done by employees or contractors is one that is naturally appealing.

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Q&A: Dominic Yacoubian of 247electrical on online fraud

Here, we ask Dominic Yacoubian, MD of 247electrical , about the continuing problem of online fraud, how his company is affected by it and what he feels needs to be done to better combat the problem.

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Retailers not taking advantage of trademark bidding

This week has seen the introduction of new rules allowing Google Adwords customers to bid on other peoples trademarks but is anybody doing it?

Initially on Tuesday (the day the policy change was enforced) we saw a large number of adverts for brand name terms but these ads are no longer showing.

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Why The Guardian, and I, love Twitter

Micro-blogging service Twitter launched back in March of 2006 and was thought by many to have 'tipped' at last year's SXSW tech conference in Austin, Texas.

But a slew of recent articles, including one in today's Guardian, suggests that it might be about to tip again. And this is why you should care.

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The importance of knowing who you are

Perhaps one of the most challenging questions for an entrepreneur to answer is 'what does my company really do and what is its true role in the marketplace?'

It's a simple question. But it is difficult for many entrepreneurs to answer realistically, because there's a natural tendency on their part to think their companies do more and have more potential than is actually true.

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Site review: 'visual search engine' Viewzi

Viewzi offers an alternative to the traditional text view of search results. It recently launched in beta, so we've taken a look.

Viewzi search

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Upgrading a website? Four key SEO tips for web design firms

As many web design firms take on the remit of upgrading a client’s website, it is important to integrate best practice SEO techniques into the web design process.

This will ensure that your client both maintains and benefits from the free rankings available in the organic listings of the major search engines.

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