Google Pigeon and your Local Search Rankings

by Kelly Hays | September 16th, 2014

You may have noticed some changes to your local search engine results lately. That’s because Google recently released their Pigeon update to help increase the relevancy and accuracy of its local search results. This new update places less emphasis on Google’s own local listings by allowing users to access content from other local directory sites, such as Yelp, Urbanspoon, and TripAdvisor. Not only will this update impact the way you are appearing in Google’s Web search results, but in Google Maps as well. Additionally, this update aims to improve Google’s distance and location ranking parameters.

What does the Pigeon update mean for you? (more…)

Twitter’s New “Nearby” Feature: What Law Firms Need To Know

by cjadmin | January 24th, 2014

Keep On Radar, Wait for Acceptance By Mainstream/Larger Audience


Back in December, Twitter made headlines when it began experimenting with a new feature dubbed “Nearby.”  This new timeline feature lets mobile app Twitter users see tweets from other nearby Twitter users whether they follow them or not. This feature will likely get more media coverage in the coming months. For now, law firms should be aware of this new feature but hold off on taking action until it rolls out to a wider audience.

The service appears to be in beta-mode, only available to a limited pool of mobile users who have elected to share their location information on Twitter. It seems like an obvious play from the microblogging service to gain a foothold into local marketing space and compete with services like FourSquare, Yelp and Google for local advertising dollars.

There are a number or reasons why law firms need to be aware of this service and keep it on their radar screen.

Engagement – This feature let’s users and businesses see what’s happening around them. It gives you the ability to monitor conversations, see what your potential clients are talking about. It also let’s you monitor what other businesses (and  competitors) are discussing .

Amplification – The new service lets all users near you see your tweets whether they follow you or not. This gives you the ability to be found by a group of Twitter users who may not otherwise have found you or seen your tweets. As always, make sure you have something relevant and interesting to say when expanding your audience.

Community Goodwill/Branding – This is another tool in your marketing toolbox to help you brand your firm in your community and build goodwill. Promote and retweet nearby charities and non-profits, particularly those with whom you have an existing relationship. Pay attention to neighborhood issues that affect your surrounding community. Be part of the conversation.

So what do you do next? Stay tuned. This feature is still in testing mode. As it gains traction and more information becomes available, we will keep you updated with news. More importantly, we’ll create a plan of action that will let your law firm get the most out of emerging marketing opportunities like this.

We’ll continue to monitor Twitter’s “Nearby” feature as it rolls out. Your client services representative will contact you when action is needed to begin utilizing this service.

Hummingbird: How Google’s New Search Algorithm Impacts You

by Reid Akins | October 17th, 2013

This blog post was written by Interactive Web Copywriter Reid Akins in collaboration with cj’s Search team.

Google just changed the search game again.

The company’s newest search algorithm, called Hummingbird, was announced on September 26, 2013, to coincide with the company’s 15th anniversary. Hummingbird is designed to give users faster and more relevant search results by changing the way Google interprets search queries and reads website content.

3 Ways Hummingbird is Changing SEO (more…)

Frequently Asked Questions about Search Engine Results

by cjadmin | October 3rd, 2013

This blog post was written by the cj Search Team.

In our post, “How Search Works,” we discuss search engine result pages (SERPs), how Google produces answers to user questions, and factors that determine where your website appears in the results.

If you read that post, you may have some questions about how your brand fits in the picture. Here are the answers to the four most common questions we receive about your search marketing strategy:

1.Aren’t all results the same?

No. Due to personalized results and other ranking factors of search algorithms, placement of any given website in the SERPs is always in flux.

Every day, search engines learn something new. According to Google Fellow Ben Gnomes, “16 to 20 percent of the search queries performed (each day) have never been asked before.”

This means that every day there are new opportunities for your site to rank for keywords that no one may have believed were relevant. Even familiar search terms can yield different results depending on who is doing the searching. It is part of our processes to monitor Google Webmaster Tools for these opportunities. We focus on opportunities that have relevance and volume.

2.What happens when I search to see where I rank?

When you search for yourself, Google takes into consideration your personal search history with a certain search phrase, such as “personal injury lawyer.” Depending on how you’ve interacted with the results in the past, the sites shown may differ from those shown to unique users—users who have never searched using the term or interacted with the websites in the SERP.

Example: You search “personal injury lawyer” and never click on a site.

Over time, Google will alter the SERP to show other sites on the first page because you never interacted with the first batch of sites. This also happens for sites you visit and immediately leave.

SERPs are based on a number of user-centric factors including, but not limited to:

  • Geographical Location
  • IP Address / MAC Address
  • Sign-In Status
  • Search Settings and History
  • Term(s) Searched

3.How will I know where I rank?

We know high ranks on the SERP are important, and we understand your concerns with ranking well. In many cases, the terms optimized for you by the search team may differ from the ones you feel you should rank for.

We optimize for relevant keywords that have traffic. Often, there is a “sweet spot,” where a great keyword gets lots of local searches and is relevant to the content on a website.

Our team uses a number of programs, such as Raven Tools, to identify success and, yes, ranking. But we often turn to the source—Google Webmaster Tools—to understand ranking averages.

Google doesn’t specify exactly where keywords will rank, but instead it gives us tools to show the average position where your website should rank.  We then use this information, along with on-site Analytics and conversions, to identify clear successes and opportunities for your website.

4.What about SERP trackers and scrapers?

Many SEO tools offered ranking information at one time or another. This information was provided via screen scrapers. Screen scrapers would run computer-controlled searches and record the results as displayed on a computer screen. The data these scraped results provided was the basis for SERP tracker tools.

In 2012, Google told businesses that used scraped data in their SERP tracking tools that Google would not allow access to other Google applications—such as Google’s API—if the businesses and their tools were found using scraped data.

There are still services that use scraped data, but the data is often inaccurate or a misrepresentation of what actual users see. The scraper systems don’t read like users because they avoid many of the technical elements mentioned above that are associated with user searches. As a result, the search results they scrape are not the same ones a user will see.

These are answers to four of the most common SEO-related questions our search team receives.

We hope this post has answered your search rank questions. For answers to other questions about your rankings, search engines, or SEO, please contact your Client Services team.

How Search Works

by cjadmin | August 6th, 2013

This blog post was written by Chris Turner, an SEO Specialist at cj Advertising.

Placing highly on a search is important.

There, we said it. And we also believe it.

For many of you, there is an understanding that having a top spot on the search engine results page (SERP) corresponds to increased traffic to the website. This increased traffic correlates with more conversions. In short, that is how search works to your advantage. (more…)

SEO Highlights: Issue 2

by cjadmin | May 21st, 2013

This blog post was written by Matthew Wilson, SEO Specialist at cj Advertising.

In this issue of “SEO Highlights”, we learn new tips and tools from some of the most influential figures in search. Change is a constant in SEO and it’s never too late to learn a new technique! (more…)

SEO Highlights – Issue 1

by cjadmin | April 10th, 2013

This blog post is written by Matthew Wilson, an SEO Specialist at cj Advertising.

“SEO Highlights” is a bi-weekly roundup of relevant SEO-related articles from cj’s Interactive SEO team.

With the recent Panda Update on March 15, SEO tactics and strategy are in the spotlight of many SEO websites and discussions. Catch up on the latest by reading these articles: (more…)