Google Chatback: New functionality added to this blog

2 04 2008

I’ve always wanted this feature for “Blog on travel” since Google launched “Google Talk”! On our Chatback page our readers are now able to request a live chat with us.

There is no need to install Google Talk as your chat client is your browser (firefox, opera, internet explorer, safari). If we are signed in to our Google talk account, the badge will show a green icon. Clicking on the badge will launch a real time chat window. It generally takes a few seconds for us to accept the chat then it goes like this:

Google Chatback system

The conversations are private and only one-to-one, so other visitors won’t be able to read them. Do not hesitate to say hello if I’m available.

- For those who want to add this free feature to their own blog (or website!), first they need to register to Google Talk and then they need to create a Google Talk chatback badge. Copy the script and paste it to the page of your choice. You’re done. Enjoy.

 PS: Blackberry owners (some of my friends and readers) might be interested in downloading the Google Talk app that blackberry released.

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500 feedburner readers and good SEO results!

6 06 2007

500 RSS Subscribers:

500 feedburner readers

I am pretty happy to announce that Blog on travel finally passed the psychological barrier of 500 subscribers to its RSS feed today (via feedburner). It has been quite a long way to achieve this, you can see this in the graph below that shows the RSS Subscribers of this blog from the very beginning:

Blog on travel RSS subscribers

Thank you very much for all readers of this blog for adding our RSS feed to their favorite blog reader! If you aren’t subscribed yet, please do it now by clicking this RSS link or by submitting your email on the right sidebar of this blog (you will receive a confirmation link by email that you have to click).

Here is another graph that shows the RSS audience of Blog on travel; 53% of the audience comes from the great RSS reader Netvibes (which I highly recommend), then 15% of the RSS audience comes from Google Feedfetcher. Google Feedfetcher represents all users that have added Blogontravel on their Google homepage or on Google Reader!

RSS subscribers through Feedburner

Note: Feedburner has just been bought by … Google!

SEO achievements:

I am also pretty happy to see that the Search Engine Optimization work I have performed for the last 6 months helped the blog to make it to the TOP 10 results of Google.com for the keywords “travel blog”; Blog on travel is now ranking 9th on the first page of results for those words.

PS: By the way thank you Google for updating the Page Rank to 4/10.

Google Travel Blog
Forbes, Bootsnall, Travelpod and Lonelyplanet still precede Blogontravel in that ranking. I will keep you posted of major changes..

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AC Hotels and Google – A learning experience

24 03 2007

There is a lot of buzz going on concerning AC Hotels and the ban of many of its websites from Google index; I have covered this issue in my previous post AC Hotels has been banned from google but there is a need for an update.

Mobuzztv on AC Hotels

Read the rest of this entry »

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AC Hotels has been banned from Google!

20 03 2007

I received 2 emails today yesterday telling me that the official websites of the Spanish hotel chain AC Hotels had been banned from Google! Well, this won’t be the first time it happens to a big company, in fact depending on the changes of Google’s algorithm during the so-called Google Dance, many websites can be left behind for usually two main reasons: Poorly designed websites (from a SEO perspective) and/or abuses of SEO techniques..

A lot of companies do not have a clue why they have been banned or penalized from Google index. That’s why I will approach the case of “AC HOTELS” from different angles that respect the following assumption: “Banned from Google= Not Spidered, Not Ranked, Not Indexed”
Read the rest of this entry »

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Google will add a click-to-call feature to its ad program

6 09 2006

I can already hear some of you saying, “Google did not invent anything launching a click-to-call feature on the internet. That’s true, Google is not innovating there BUT how many hotel’s official sites offer this type of feature for their users? Not a lot, although there are companies that already propose this type of (great) services.

Basically it consists of placing a button on a webpage to allow the internet user to be called back for free immediately. The technology being involved is VoIP (Voice over IP).

Let’s take a concrete example: Imagine you are confused with the cancellation policy of a hotel just before you validate your booking online. You will probably stop the process until you have a clearer idea of the policy (or maybe you will book somewhere else). Now imagine you find a button on this page saying that if you provide your phone number (that will remain private) you will get an immediate phone call from the hotel to support you for free..

I like the way new technologies influence the hotel industry (travel industry in general) but I clearly think that a mix of those new technologies backed up with a good old phone call simply does the trick.

Click-to-callNow let’s return to the main subject; Google has launched a Click2call feature for its advertising program. It will add a small telephone icon to the ads and will connect you with the company that advertises on google. Not a revolutionary feature since Miva already created this type of feature for its ads program (see a good demo here), but considering that Google benefit from an incredible online buzz, and since I never mentioned (on this site) this kind of features then it is the right time for me to cover the topic and spread the word.

Click-to-call

If you want to try a live demo of google Click-to-call, it is currently being tested in the UK see this basic faq. (if not living in the UK just add a proxy address located in the UK to your Internet Explorer properties and type “artisan hotel” on google.co.uk).

By the way Skype (now belonging to Ebay) powers this feature; concerning Yahoo UK, it has launched in Europe its click-to-call feature in August powered by eStara.

Source of the pictures:
http://davideichholtzer.blog.lemonde.fr/davideichholtzer/2006/09/clicktocall_goo.html

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