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David Kutcher
Making websites earn value
Making websites earn value

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When poor data analysis is used to justify your theories incorrectly

Data analysis is hard. +Google Analytics can be so full of data and chart and graphs that your brain can often project your theories onto your data... for better or worse.

And unfortunately it seems that's what might have happened to +Larry Kim in this article for +Search Engine Land.

In the article, Larry tries to make a correlation between the above-average dwell time in his data and those same page's performance in search. He has segmented for Organic Search as a way of seeing that performance.

The important thing to keep in mind, when looking at his graphs, is that you're focusing on the "average time on page" (as compared to the site average)

Site Average, meaning that there are as many pages below that average as there are above it.

Looking at this chart, what it says to me is this: yes, all of his top-performing pages from organic search have an above-average dwell time because there must be thousands of sessions and pages with below average dwell time. There is most likely so much "junk performing" content (in regards to dwell time) to offset these above-average performing pages from search.

Forget Rank Brain and other fancy SEO stuff. Forget "Dwell time will be the death of your low-quality pages" ... you know what's the death of your low-quality pages? Being Low Quality

Focus on the basics of creating valuable content for your target audiences. Focus on helping your visitors achieve their goals rather than things like bounce rates and dwell times.

Make their visit successful for them, and then work at making it successful for you as well.

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New site launch! Brick & Ash in Newburyport MA!

"Comfort food, craft beer, lively banter and local company — all in one place."

Built on +Blogger by +Confluent Forms LLC. 

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100 headstones in a Jewish cemetery were damaged. Muslims came to help repair the damage

#LoveTrumpsHate #Solidarity

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This might be my new favorite antique map from my client, +Boston Rare Maps Inc

A "Porcineograph".

Needs more #bacon.
The Porcineograph … one nation, united in pork, 1876

A triumph of the imagination with a place on my personal “top ten” list. This Porcineograph brings together in one image considerable wit, stunning design, hygienic hog farming, and post-war reconciliation between the Union and Confederacy. It is also one of the earliest American pictorial maps and a considerable rarity, particularly in such marvelous condition.

The Porcineograph features a central map depicting the United States as a pig, with the snout at Maine and two legs represented by the peninsulas of Florida and Baja. A third leg rests on Cuba, drawn in the shape of a sausage, and the fourth on the Sandwich Islands, drawn of course as a cluster of sandwiches. The “GEHOGRAPHY,” as the author refers to it, is surrounded by the seals of the states and the names of their favored pork-based dishes. Two vignettes at lower left and right illustrate events—both involving pigs–that resulted in litigation or legislation that changed the course of American history.

The map was designed as a keepsake by one William Emerson Baker (1828-1888),

“whose successful Grover & Baker Sewing Machine Company produced accessibly-priced units for home use, retired in 1868 at the age of forty. He moved to a large farm in Needham, Mass., which he transformed into an amusement park full of attractions and exhibits that expressed his radical political viewpoints.

“In the mid-1870s, Baker’s activist heart turned to the nascent Pure Food Movement, which lobbied for stricter regulations on food producers…. Baker became obsessed with hygienic farming. In 1875, he held a big party, with 2,500 attendees, to launch his “Sanitary Piggery,” a new kind of hog farm featuring ultra-clean housing and controlled diets. Because Baker was a man of many causes, the get-together also celebrated the centennial of the battle at Bunker Hill, and, through the invitation of Southern guests, advocated reconciliation of North and South.

“This map, which focused on the porcine aspect of the party, was a souvenir for his guests.” (Rebecca Onion, “An Eccentric Millionaire’s 1875 Pork Map of the United States”)
The souvenir seems must have been a hit, as Emerson went on to issue a variant edition for sale to benefit charitable causes. This variant, of which the present map is an example, features different typography and can be readily identified by the addition of a note in the lower margin:

“Yielding to numerous requests, the Author has decided to publish this as a good-cheer offering to all. Gains from its sale will be devoted entirely to charity.—Recognised organizations in different States, desiring its sale in aid of Centennial or other charity, may address “Aquarium, 13 West street, Boston, Mass. Copyright secured.”

As of February 2017 OCLC locates five institutional holdings of the Porcineograph (Harvard, Library of Congress, Massachusetts Historical Society, Ohio State, Peabody Essex Museum.) I know of at least five examples in four private collections, none of whose owners are minded to sell!

See all the pork:

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It hasn't stopped snowing here in New England. we strapped on our snowshoes and went for a hike! 
2 Photos - View album

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A case study in custom development: building an #AMP proxy for a large and high traffic +Blogger website

From the blog of my business partner, a recent example of truly custom web development.

More and more web development is becoming a matter of "there's a plugin for that", using existing materials to get you 90% of the way there, and then living without the 10%. We refer to that as the Module Mindset:

But sometimes you need something unique, something completely custom developed. A few times a year we get those types of projects, projects that we believe we're uniquely qualified to undertake, because our history is in custom development.

This is the story of one such project recently undertaken for a client.

We had a customer with a unique problem: they are using Blogger and needed to implement an AMP version of their website to keep competitive.

I was recently fortunate to dive deep into this technical project that was unique in a few ways. It would be delivering web pages in AMP format: a recent specification for fast delivery of web content to mobile browsers. This is relatively new and there are not many implementations yet in the wild. The source for the data would be of the equally rare sort: Google's Blogger platform.

The customer for whom we were building this project is a niche focused news website that has been on Blogger for a decade. They are easily one of the top traffic sites on the service with 50,000+ posts getting 3-5 million sessions and between 7-10 million page views a month. While, technically, their content consists of Blogger "posts" functionally they are much more like a standard news article: think specialty journalism. As most of their competition is using AMP to deliver mobile results, they too needed to implement AMP to keep relevant in the increasingly growing mobile space.

This project has novel endpoints: a new mobile development target environment, AMP and Blogger as a data source.

Read on for the entire story:

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Always be on the lookout

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"In resisting the abuse of the vulnerable, prompted by President Trump’s Executive Order, do all American Jews now have a religious duty of civil disobedience?"

Opposition to the executive order banning refugees and Muslims should be visceral for Jews. Even if the Exodus was not our foundational story, with its resulting commandment to love the stranger, our collective historical experience demands it.

But was the arrest of 19 rabbis for protesting President Trump’s refugee ban in front of the Trump International Hotel in New York City, an appropriate way to make the point?

As one of those 19 rabbis, I believe it’s important to understand the internal decision-making process that goes into determining whether to risk arrest.

by Rabbi Justin David, the spiritual leader of Congregation B’nai Israel in Northampton, Massachusetts.

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I think we're all familiar with that stare... his first time playing a video game and it's Super Mario Bros. on #NES classic.

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This is what solidarity and multiculturalism looks like. What America should always be about. 
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