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Google's 'little' announcement

Author: JLB

Published On: January 10, 2010

What were you doing on Dec. 4, 2009 at 3 in the afternoon? Maybe getting some Christmas shopping done? Maybe tidying up a work project, getting ready to go home? Or maybe, because Dec. 4 at 3 p.m. was a Friday afternoon, you had already started your weekend.

While we were all busy with life and getting ready for the end of 2009, Google posted an innocuous-looking, 267-word memo in its official blog. And while this short message went relatively unnoticed on the Web, the content of Google’s post is extremely significant. The gist? Personalized Search.

the logo for google's official blogEssentially, Google announced that all users of its search engine are, by default, going to be served personal results, based on “180 days of search activity.” It’s tracked by “an anonymous cookie” in each user’s web browser and is completely separate from an individual’s Google account. In other words, you don’t have to be signed in to Google to receive these custom (tailor-made-for-you) results. You just have to Google.

By default, the new Personalized Search monitoring is turned on. Yes, it can be turned off — but the off-button, as it were, is fairly well hidden. You can learn how to turn it off, by going here. And you can get more details about Personalized Search, here.

The main reason (Google stated in its announcement) that the search engine is serving up Personalized Search results is to receive “the most relevant results possible.” If, for example, a user tends to search for a particular term over and over, Google will “remember” if a particular link is clicked more often than another. In future searches, Google will place that link higher than the others to that individual user.

What does this mean for companies interested in Search Engine Optimization? It’s a mixed bag. Initially doing well on SERPs matters more now than ever before. If you do well in the organic results, your site is more likely to be clicked on by a user, and thus more likely to show up higher for his/her Personalized Searches.

It also means that paid-for search ads (Google Adwords, aka “Sponsored Links”) will also play a more prominent role. Sponsored Links will appear on search results, regardless of Personalized Search, which means you can keep your site in front of viewers if you’re willing to run an AdWords campaign. It also means that paid-for search ads will become a more competitive (and subsequently, expensive) endeavor. More sites will advertise because they want to be sure a viewer sees their site’s link, regardless of Personalized Search.

This latest move by Google is extremely strategic with far-reaching implications. Team JLB will be monitoring and reporting more on this issue as it develops.

It’s remarkable working with the team that treats your business they would their own with drive, innovation, humility and a shared love of bringing great things to the wonderful Franklin & Nashville community.


RED DOG WINE & SPIRITS – Nashville Web Design


“In the search of looking high and low for a Ecommerce website design firm, we came across JLB. They are now like a part of our family and strive to do all they can to take our sales and growth to a whole new level. We recommend JLB to everyone we come across looking for a solution to their website needs.”


Chad, BOWADX – Franklin TN Web Design

“JLB has been the driving force  that has launched our company into the media spotlight, gaining us publicity through a broad cross-section of business related media including new apps and interactive activity for our clients. We are moving forward with our second web design with JLB and will continue to make them part of our team.”


John, The Perch – Brentwood TN Web Design

“I started with JLB when they first opened fifteen years ago, when they redesigned a website for me.  They are my go-to company for anything to do with web sites. These guys are professional, talented, creative and an energetic team. I will always go to JLB first for my web design work. Thanks JLB.”


Phyllis, Carneros Winery – Nashville TN Web Design

We were having problems with our online brand and digital marketing. JLB was great. Worked through it with us, created an amazing presence and business is great. The staff at JLB is fantastic too. Friendly and always there for you.


Life Line Repairs – Nashville TN Web Design

I and all of us at Sports & Entertainment Nashville TN have been thrilled with the website you guys did for us, and especially the professional service and communication you guys have shown.


Sports and Entertainment – Nashville Web Design

We interviewed several web design firms, but found that JLB’s talented team was the most creative, innovative, and professional. Choosing JLB has been a great decision! We are fortunate to have JLB be a part of the BMC Metalwork’s future as we continue to enhance our business.


Jimmy, BMC – Franklin TN Web Design

“There were a number of website design companies in Nashville that would have done an adequate job for our company. The difference was that JLB wanted to be our partner and has been for 11 years. STAR Physical Therapy has been blessed to have them as a teammate.”


Regg Swanson, STAR – Franklin TN Web Design