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Posts tagged Google

Google Goggles Creates New Demands for Optimizing Images

Today, Google Goggles app recognizes commercial brand and product images such as magazine print ads, logos and bar codes, giving its best effort to provide a consumer with “relevant” search results based on the data it receives from the images. What has your experience been with using Google Goggles? Does Google Goggles offer any value added features in your opinion? We welcome your comments.

Search engine optimization has been about creating and optimizing relevant text content, keywords, links, listings, HTML tags, and site maps. Images haven’t – until this point –  been that much at the center of focus in the optimization process. The new image recognition software especially utilized in mobile media is changing things quite rapidly and shifting the search from words and phrases to a visual object recognition. Google has tapped into this software development by launching a mobile device based web search engine tool, Google Goggles.  The app was launched in 2009, and significantly upgraded in March 2011 with new useful features such as a bar code reader. Google Goggles currently runs on Android smartphones (1.6+ required) and now also on iPhones (iOS 4.0 required). Today, Google Goggles app recognizes commercial brand and product images such as magazine print ads, logos and bar codes, giving its best effort to provide a consumer with “relevant” search results based on the data it receives from the images.

SERP Zebra tested the image recognition with the Google Goggles iOS app

SERP Zebra tested Google Goggle’s image recognition capabilities with a Google Goggles iOS app. In our testing, Google Goggles was able to recognize some products by their bar codes but many products got unrecognized in which case the software only scanned the code number without any related information. As warned by Google, images of people, animals, and landscapes merely resulted to related images of similar colors and shapes. For instance SERP Zebra snapped a photo of Hollister Co’s promotional postcard of a wheaten terrier which resulted to uneven results. At times, the software was trying to read the text underneath the image; and at other times the scan resulted to a bunch of miscellaneous images of similar colors and shapes:

Below are more samples of how Google Goggles app recognizes brand and product images. Each successful result can be tapped in the app for search results in the Google search engine.

1) Image recognition for objects with logos:

2) Image recognition of magazine ads:

3) Image recognition of bar codes:

How can your website be further optimized for Google Goggles?

Currently, from our testing, Google Goggles works best with:

  • identifying brand logos
  • recognizing known brand products
  • recognizing popular magazine ad campaigns
  • reading text from products and ads (so you don’t have to type the text yourself into a Google’s search engine bar)

For gaining SERP advantage here, SERP Zebra recommends to make sure that:

  • your company’s logo on your website is uploaded as a separate file
  • your company’s logo on your website is labelled properly such as yourcompanyname_logo.jpg
  • your company’s logo on your website contains your company name in the image’s alt tag.
  • you have close-up images of all related trademarks and brand logos related to your business, indexed accordingly (see above)
  • you have close up images of your products
  • you regard images on your website as part of content information, not just as brand building visuals

Check out the recent Google Goggles marketing video. Is the featured example of the use  relevant enough to make a strong case?

Does Google Goggles offer any value added features in your opinion? Leave your comments below.

Russian Search Engine Yandex Doesn’t Care For Lady Gaga on Twitter

SERP Zebra tested Yandex, the Russian search engine by typing in several searches of Twitter accounts such as,, and None of these popular Twitter accounts showed up in the Yandex’s English language search stream. Turns out that Yandex, that is more popular in Russia than Google, doesn’t care that much for indexing Twitter accounts including the official Twitter account of Lady Gaga with over 10 million followers.

Take a look at these four screen shots of search results for the search term by the four major search engines – Google, Yahoo!, Bing, Yandex – taken on May 26, 2011.

Google brings in most results to Lady Gaga’s official Twitter account including selected Tweets by Lady Gaga to her 10,423,008 followers.

Yahoo! also recognizes Lady Gaga’s Twitter account but does not display individual tweets.

Bing follows Yahoo!’s model in recognizing Lady Gaga’s Twitter account but not displaying individual tweets.

Searching Lady Gaga’s Twitter account does not bring results in Yandex. Odly Yandex does list a Brazilian fan Twitter page for Lady Gaga and websites that contain Twitter feeds and media associated to Lady Gaga’s Twittter account.

Yandex itself estimated in 2010 that 60% Russians use Twitter. SERP Zebra does not make any assumptions about Yandex’s policies, whether they are technical, political or under works. SERP Zebra simply wants to bring in these screenshots to remind that different search engines have different practices on how they index content created for social media sites. In the case of Yandex, the Yandex search engine sees Twitter as a walled website which has very little cracks or windows.

SERP Zebra Test Results For “Bing Translator” and “Google Translate”

Both search engines Bing and Google offer a wealth of services including language translation. SERP Zebra wanted to find out which multi-featured search engine knows languages better. Since SERP Zebra is already planning his annual conference on linguistics and etymology in Helsinki, Finland, it was only appropriate to test these two translator’s ability to translate English to Finnish. SERP Zebra typed in four sentences to both Bing Translator ( and Google Translate ( The sentences with fairly simple sentence structures were:

1) Let’s visit my grandmother next weekend.
2) My dog likes to run.
3) Your father is an athlete.
4) Is Bing’s language translator better than Google’s?

Here are the results:

Now, to be reasonable, Finnish belongs to an Ugric language group and is, for a native English speaker, a much harder language to learn and translate especially when compared to Germanic languages such as German, Dutch or Swedish. Having said this, we should not worry about hurting software’s feelings, so the game is fair. Google was a clear winner with 100% correct translations for sentences “My dog likes to run” and “Your father is an athlete.” Bing could not handle either one of these simple sentences because of its inability to translate the word “run” correctly and its inability to translate the word “athlete” at all . Google scored 5 points out of 8, and Bing 2 points out of 8.

Summary: Based on the “Translate from English to Finnish” test Google Translate had a stronger vocabulary, and would be, out of these two web software applications, SERP Zebra’s preferred language translator tool during the upcoming conference of Finnish etymology.

SERP zebra
SERP Zebra