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Old 12-29-2004   #1
clarkmurray
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Positioning by Press Release

I have received emails recently from several companies promising to get my site in the Google top 10 by publishing press releases. I responded to one and they showed me examples of sites that came up Google's top 10 for a particular phrase based on a press release they issued.

Quite independently I have noticed several times that my site will be in Google's top 10 for a couple of weeks because some other site has picked up a press release that I have issued.

So I don't pretend to know what's going on here, but obviously Google must be emphasizing current news these days. Are these "positioning by press release" strategies a good bet?
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Old 12-29-2004   #2
dannysullivan
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Google News allows a number of press releases to flow freely into its indexing system. Once a release gets picked up, if the release carries the URL of your web site, many people find you'll get a temporary boost. That's because the release is featured within Google News, which Google web search indexes and gives a lot of credit to since it is, after all, Google News.

So yep, press releases have become sort of a "trusted feed" for a quick ranking boost into Google, it seems. However, my understanding is that the effect is short-lived. After a week or two, as the old news moves out of Google News, so does your ranking boost.
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Old 12-29-2004   #3
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I have tried this out and I have a small case study at my blog. That might be useful to you. You can do it yourself.
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Old 12-29-2004   #4
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http://news.google.com/robots.txt (same as google.com)
Disallow: /news

it may have more to do with the many sites picking them up and leaving them there for ages...

Quote:
Originally Posted by dannysullivan
Google News allows a number of press releases to flow freely into its indexing system. Once a release gets picked up, if the release carries the URL of your web site, many people find you'll get a temporary boost. That's because the release is featured within Google News, which Google web search indexes and gives a lot of credit to since it is, after all, Google News.

So yep, press releases have become sort of a "trusted feed" for a quick ranking boost into Google, it seems. However, my understanding is that the effect is short-lived. After a week or two, as the old news moves out of Google News, so does your ranking boost.
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Old 01-05-2005   #5
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I don't believe the releases get into Google search as a direct result of Google news inclusion, but as part of normal indexing of the newswire web site.

Services like prweb.com and prleap.com distribute many releases per day and get indexed by Googlebot more frequently. I've seen releases show in Google search results the same day the release was distributed via a wire service.

As ThouShaltSeo points out, a certain search ranking is achieved for a press release document for the same reasons a web page ranks well - link popularity. (plus keyword content)

Typically when a release is distributed, it will get temporary and permanent pickups on other websites. Temporary pickups are sites that syndicate the newswire feeds as content and this info updates as new releases are distributed. Eventually your release is dropped. But until then, the release and your site will benefit from the increased inbound links.

Permanent pickups are when a site publishes your release as a permanent web page. The more sites and blogs that pickup your release, the more links to the release.

It's not unrealistic to see situations where a new site with very few inbound links distributes several newsworthy and keyword optimized releases that end up with hundreds of permanent, one-way inbound links in a very short amount of time. If the release is not newsworthy, there will not be as many pickups.

While releases live for about 30 days or less in Google News, they can remain in the Google search index indefinitley. We have releases sent out in 2003 that still rank top ten for our target keywords.

rustybrick does a nice job of documenting a first experience with prweb on his blog.
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Old 01-06-2005   #6
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Yahoo News and Google News

While getting your press release picked up by Google or Yahoo is a wonderful "extra" benefit, don't forget the primary benefits of getting your press release picked up by Yahoo News or Google News. According to Nielsen/NetRatings, Yahoo News had a unique audience of 21 million visitors in the U.S. in June 2004 -- more than the number of unique visitors to AOL Search (20.3 million). And Google News had a unique audience that month of 6.3 million, smaller than Ask Jeeves (10.5 million), but larger than any of the second tier search engines. We've been optimizing press releases for the news search engine since March 2003, and in our experience getting your press release indexed by Google or Yahoo isn't something that you can count on or turn into a reliable marketing program. Besides, focusing on the occasional side effects downplays the growing importance of the news search engines themselves.
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Old 01-06-2005   #7
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Quote:
We've been optimizing press releases for the news search engine since March 2003, and in our experience getting your press release indexed by Google or Yahoo isn't something that you can count on or turn into a reliable marketing program.
It's interesting that you would say that Greg, since the PRWeb Direct site says:

"We are so confident of our service that PR Web™ is the only newswire service to guarantee the inclusion of your press release in major search engines."
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Old 01-06-2005   #8
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Paid inclusion

PR Web's guarantee is backed up by its use of paid inclusion -- which ensures that press releases get picked up by Yahoo, AltaVista, AllTheWeb, Excite, Dogpile, Metacrawler, and Webcrawler. This is a great feature -- and we use it for every press release, because it supplements the pick up by news search engines like Yahoo News, Google News, MSN News, Lycos News, AskJeeves News, Feedster, Topix.net, and Excite News. But I wouldn't want to "guarantee" that Google's main search index will pick up every press release -- because it doesn't happen every time. Now, it does happen with enough regularity that this is a wonderful "side" benefit. But there is no need to over-hype what is already a pretty powerful story.
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