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Google might be the biggest but there are other search engines, too

Most people don't want three dozen search engines, especially people who are not trained internet users. Most people want a single search engine that delivers three key features:

  1. Relevant results (results you are actually interested in)
  2. Uncluttered, easy to read interface
  3. Helpful options to broaden or tighten a search

With this criteria, several of our reader favorites come to mind. These search sites should meet 99 percent of the searching needs of a regular everyday user.

Google Search

Google Search Google Search. screenshot

Google is the reigning king of 'spartan searching', and is the single most used search engine in the world. While it doesn't offer all the shopping center features of Yahoo! or the human curation of Mahalo, Google is fast, relevant, and the largest single catalogue of web pages available today. The search giant also tracks an incredible amount of information that many people don't even know they are giving out.

Make sure you try the Google 'images', 'maps' and 'news' features... they are outstanding services for locating photos, geographic directions, and news headlines. P.S. If you don't want Google to spy on you, protect yourself.

Duck Duck Go Search

DuckDuckGo search results DuckDuckGo search results. DuckDuckGo

At first, DuckDuckGo.com looks like Google. However, there are many subtleties that make this spartan search engine different.

DuckDuckGo has some slick features, like 'zero-click' information (all your answers are found on the first results page). DuckDuckgo offers disambiguation prompts (helps to clarify what question you are really asking). Plus, the ad spam is much less than Google.

Give DuckDuckGo.com a try... you might really like this clean and simple search engine.

Bing Search

Bing Search
 Bing Search. screenshot

Bing is Microsoft's attempt at unseating Google, and arguably the second-most-popular search engine today. Bing used to be MSN search until it was updated in summer of 2009.

Touted as a decision engine, Bing tries to support your researching by offering suggestions in the leftmost column, while also giving you various search options across the top of the screen. Things like 'wiki' suggestions, 'visual search', and 'related searches' might be very useful to you. Bing is not dethroning Google in the near future, no, but it is definitely worth trying.  

Dogpile Search

Dogpile Search Dogpile Search. screenshot

Years ago, Dogpile preceded Google as the fast and efficient choice for web searching. Things changed in the late 1990's, Dogpile faded into obscurity, and Google became king.

Today, however, Dogpile is coming back, with a growing index and a clean and quick presentation that is a testimony to its halcyon days. If you want to try a search tool with pleasant presentation and helpful crosslink results, definitely try Dogpile!

Yippy Search

Yippy Search Results
 Yippy Search Results. Yippy

Yippy is a Deep Web engine that searches other search engines for you. Unlike the regular Web, which is indexed by robot spider programs, Deep Web pages are usually harder to locate by conventional search.

That's where Yippy becomes very useful. If you are searching for obscure hobby interest blogs, obscure government information, tough-to-find obscure news, academic research and otherwise-obscure content, then Yippy is your tool. 

Google Scholar Search

Google Scholar SearchGoogle Scholar Search. screenshot

Google Scholar is a special version of Google. This search engine will help you win debates.

Google Scholar focuses on scientific and hard-research academic material that has been subjected to scrutiny by scientists and scholars. Example content includes graduate theses, legal and court opinions, academic publications, medical research reports, physics research papers, and economics and world politics explanations.

If you are looking for serious information that can stand up in a heated debate with educated people, then forget regular Google... Google Scholar is where you want to go to arm yourself with high powered sources!

Webopedia Search

Webopedia Search
 Webopedia Search. screenshot

Webopedia is one of the most useful websites on the web. Webopedia is an encyclopedic resource dedicated to searching technology terminology and computer definitions.

Teach yourself what 'domain name system' is, or what 'DDRAM' means on your computer. Webopedia is absolutely a perfect resource for non-technical people to make more sense of the computers around them.

Yahoo! Search (and More)

Yahoo! Search
 Yahoo! Search. screenshot

Yahoo! is several things: it is a search engine, a news aggregator, a shopping center, an email box, a travel directory, a horoscope and games center, and more.

This 'web portal' breadth of choice makes this a very helpful site for Internet beginners. Searching the Web should also be about discovery and exploration, and Yahoo! delivers that in wholesale quantities. (By the way, here's what happened to Yahoo! avatars and Yahoo! 360 in case you were wondering.)

The Internet Archive Search

The Internet Archive SearchInternet Archive Search. screenshot

The Internet Archive is a favorite destination for longtime Web lovers. The Archive has been taking snapshots of the entire World Wide Web for years now, allowing you and me to travel back in time to see what a web page looked like in 1999, or what the news was like around Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

You won't visit the Archive daily like you would Google or Yahoo or Bing, but when you do have a need to travel back in time, use this search site.

 Source: This article was published lifewire.com By Paul Gil

Published in Search Engine

Including Clever Search Operators

If you're good at collecting emails, the Archive button in Gmail is really helpful. Fortunately, most of these archived emails are never to be seen or searched again. But others we need to get back to later. Using easy search and clever operators, Gmail lets you find emails precisely and fast.

Usually, the big search field that runs across Gmail's top border works. Sometimes, however, the number of emails returned is just too large.

Maybe you can add a further term or the name of the sender? That's possible but do it wisely. Using some clever search operators, you can narrow your search significantly and precisely. You can search in the Subject line only, for example, or combine that with a date range, a particular sender, and exclude all messages with attachments.

Search Mail in Gmail

To find messages in Gmail:

  • Type search terms in Gmail's search field.
  • Hit Enter or click the magnifying glass button.

Gmail Search Options

To specify some search criteria for narrowing results in your Gmail search:

  • Click the Show search options down arrow in the Gmail search field.
  • Search senders' email addresses and names using the From field.
  • Search direct (To: field) recipients' names and addresses using the To field.
  • Search email subjects using the Subject field.
  • Search emails' body text using the Has the words field.
    • Search for a phrase with quotation marks.
    • Search for emails that contain one word (or phrase) or another, use "OR".
      '"shepherd macaroni"' (excluding the outer quotation marks) finds all emails that contain the phrase "shepherd macaroni", for instance;
      'shepherd macaroni' (again excluding the quotation marks) finds all emails that contain both words, but not necessarily in that form;'shepherd OR macaroni' (without the quotation marks), finally, finds all emails that contain either "shepherd" or "macaroni" (or both).
  • Search for emails that do not contain certain words in their text using the Doesn't have fielded.
  • Make sure Has attachment is checked to find only emails that contain attached files.
  • Search emails' sent date using the Date within fields.
  • Click the Search Mail button below the search fields.
    • You can now narrow your search further in the main search field using the operators below.
    • Of course, multiple search options can be combined to find, say, emails from a certain sender that contain attachments and were sent during the past year.

    Gmail Search Operators

    In the Search Mail field, you can use the following operators:

    • subject: - Search the Subject line.
      Example: "subject:bahamas" finds all messages with "Bahamas" in the Subject.
    • from: - Search Gmail for sender name and email address. Partial addresses are okay.
      Examples: "from:heinz" finds all messages from "heinz@example.com", but also all messages from "This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it."; "from:me" finds all messages sent by yourself (using any address set up for use in Gmail).
    • to: - Search the To line for names and addresses.
      Example: "to:quertyuiop@gmail.com" finds all messages sent directly (not via Cc: or Bcc:) to quertyuiop@gmail.com.
    • cc: - Search recipients in the Cc field.
      Example: "cc:quertyuiop@gmail.com" finds all messages that were sent to quertyuiop@gmail.com as a carbon copy.
    • bcc: - Search Gmail for addresses and names in the Bcc field. Note this only works with emails you sent to Bcc recipients from Gmail.
      Example: "bcc:heinz" finds all messages that you sent with, for example, "hein@example.com" in the Bcc field.
    • label: - Search Gmail for messages assigned a label. (Replace whitespace characters in label names with hyphens.)
      Example: "label:toodoo-doll" finds all messages labeled "toodoo doll".
    • has:userlabels - Search Gmail for emails that have any labels except those used by default (i.e. not including labels such as "inbox", "trash" and "spam" but including Smart Labels).
    • has:nouserlabels - Search for messages that have not been labeled with any labels except those that Gmail uses by default.
    • is:starred - Search Gmail for messages that are starred.
    • Further stars:
      • has:yellow-star - Search Gmail for messages with a yellow star.
      • has:red-star - Search Gmail for messages with a red star.
      • has:orange-star - Search Gmail for messages with an orange star.
      • has:green-star - Search Gmail for messages with a green star.
      • has:blue-star - Search Gmail for messages with a blue star.
      • has:purple-star - Search Gmail for messages with a purple star.
      • has:yellow-bang - Search Gmail for messages with a yellow exclamation mark.
      • has:red-bang - Search Gmail for messages with a red exclamation mark.
      • has:purple-question - Search Gmail for messages with a purple question mark.
      • has:orange-guillemet - Search Gmail for messages with two orange forward arrows.
      • has:blue-info - Search Gmail for messages with a blue i.
    • is:unread - Search Gmail for new and unread messages.
    • is:read - Search Gmail for messages that have already been opened.
    • is:important - Search Gmail for messages that are marked important for Priority Inbox.
    • has:attachment - Search Gmail for messages that have files attached to them.
    • filename: - Search within file names of attachments. You can also search for file name extensions to restrict your search to certain file types.
      Example: "filename:.doc" finds all messages with word processing attachments.
    • is:buzz - Search Gmail for Google Buzz posts.
    • is:chat - Search Gmail for chat logs.
    • in: - Search in a standard "folder". You can search in DraftsInboxChatsSentSpamTrash and anywhere (for everything, including Spam and Trash).
      Example: "in:drafts" finds all messages in your Drafts folder.
    • circle: - Search mail sent to you from people in the given Google+ circle. (Use quotation marks to specify Google+ circles that include a whitespace in their name; escape quotation marks in the name with a backslash (\) immediately preceding each quotation mark.)
      Example: 'circle:"my \"sailing\" circle" turns up all emails from people in your 'my "sailing" circle" Google+ circle.
    • has:circle - Search Gmail for messages from somebody in any of your Google+ circles.
    • after: - Search for messages sent on or after a date. The date must be given in YYYY/MM/DD format.
      Example: "after:2005/05/05" finds all messages sent or received on or after (i.e. including) May 5, 2005.
    • before: - Search Gmail for messages sent before a date.
      Example: "before:2005/05/05" finds all messages sent or received on May 4, 2005 and earlier.
    • larger: (or larger_than:) - Search for emails exceeding the given size. (Specify the size in bytes without suffix or using "k" for kilobytes (as 1,000 bytes) and "m" for megabytes (as 1,000,000 bytes.)
      Example: "larger_than:200k" finds all messages that exceed 200,000 bytes in size.
    • size: - Search for messages exceeding the given size in bytes.
      Example: "size:500000" finds emails bigger than 500,000 bytes or half a megabyte.
    • smaller: (or smaller_than:) - Search for messages smaller than the specified size. (Specify the size in bytes (no suffix) or using "k" for 1,000 bytes and "m" for 1,000,000 bytes.)
    • deliveredto: - Search Gmail for email with a certain email address in a "Delivered-To:" header line.
      Example: "deliveredto:me@example.com" finds messages that have "me@example.com" in a "Delivered-To: header, because it has been forwarded from that address, for example.
    • rfc822msgid: - Search for the message with the — just about certainly unique — message ID. Gmail will not search for messages that refer to the message ID (replies, for example). Example: "rfc822msgid:wW28fb6uf@mail.example.com" finds the message with "wW28fb6uf@mail.example.com" in the "Message-ID:" header field.

    How to Combine Operators and Search Terms

    Operators and search terms can be combined with the following modifiers:

    • By default, Gmail combines terms with (an invisible) "AND".
      Examples: "shepherd macaroni" finds all messages that contain both "shepherd" and "macaroni"; "before:2005/05/05 AND after:2005/05/04" finds all messages sent or received on May 4, 2005.
    • "" - Search for a phrase. Case does not matter.
      Examples: "shepherd's macaroni" finds all messages containing the phrase "shepherd's macaroni"; 'subject:"shepherd's macaroni' finds all messages that have "shepherd's macaroni" in the Subject field.
    • + - Search for a term exactly as typed.
      Example: "+shepherds" finds all emails that contain "shepherds", but not those containing just "shepherd" or "shehperds" alone.
    • OR - Search Gmail for messages containing at least one of two terms or expressions.
      Examples: "shepherd OR macaroni" finds messages that contain either "shepherd" or "macaroni" or both; "from:heinz or label:toodoo-doll" finds messages that either come from a sender that contains "email.guide" or appear under the label "toodoo doll".
    • - - Search Gmail for messages that do not contain a term or expression.
      Examples: "-macaroni" finds all messages that do not contain the word "macaroni"; "shepherd -macaroni" finds all messages that contain the word "shepherd" but not "macaroni"; 'subject:"shepherd's macaroni" -from:heinz' finds all messages with "shepherd's macaroni" in the subject that were not sent from an email address or name containing "heinz".
    • () - Group search terms or expressions.
      Examples: "subject:(shepherd macaroni)" finds messages that have both "shepherd" and "macaroni" somewhere in the Subject line (but not necessarily as a phrase); "from:heinz (subject:(shepherd OR macaroni) OR label:toodoo-doll)" finds all messages from a sender who has "email.guide" in their name that either have "shepherd" or "macaroni" (or both) in the Subject line or appear under the label "toodoo doll".

    Historical Gmail Search Operators

    Gmail once included support for the following search operates that, sadly, no longer work:

    • lang: - Search Gmail for messages in a particular language. (Specify the language in English; "Chinese" worked, but "中文", "Putonghua" or "Mandarin" do not, for example.)
      Example: "lang:French" returned all emails that contain at least un peu de Français.

    Saved Searches

    You can also bookmark Gmail searches easily for later repetition.

    Source: This article was published lifewire.com By Heinz Tschabitscher

    Published in How to

    Columnist Wesley Young covers a growing storm of events that are likely to culminate in substantial regulatory change and analyzes the impact that can have on the local search industry.

    Most marketing professionals don’t give much thought to the regulatory climate. In the US, unlike Europe, privacy laws are largely industry-specific and targeted toward healthcare and financial services. Thus, marketers have largely been able to rely on lawyers to provide privacy disclosures and then go on to business as usual.

    Yet there are a number of indications that a tipping point may be near, giving way to new regulations that demand significant changes in business practice. These changes can have a disproportionate impact on small and medium-sized local businesses. And varying standards across state lines means that companies with local operations in different states may have to make multiple adjustments.

    Below, I take a look at the current environment and indicators that major changes are due in 2018. Then I cover seven ways changing privacy laws will impact the local search market.

    Deregulation on federal level driving changes on state level

    With all the news on Net Neutrality last month, you may have forgotten that earlier this year, Republicans killed federal privacy rules adopted by the FCC that would have required your Internet Service Provider to obtain permission before collecting and selling certain types of personal data (such as web browsing and app usage data). While the general perception is that such deregulation means fewer privacy laws, the practical impact may be more regulation.

    Following the repeal of the FCC privacy rules, at least 21 states and the District of Columbia filed state versions of the FCC privacy rules as a direct response. Two states passed those bills into law, while others deferred the issue to 2018 or passed bills to study the issue further. And even though bills in a number of states died at the end of their 2017 legislative sessions, it is likely that many will reintroduce those in 2018.

    The broader application is that deregulation on the federal level is causing states to take more action, which causes a number of problems. While state versions may all address the same topic, they are not identical. They are similar but contain differences unique to each state, such as different notice requirements, disclosures, consent or use requirements and enforcement mechanisms. Even using similar but different terms to describe the same principle creates problems regarding uniformity.

    Lack of uniformity amongst states means more complexity. And more complexity results in greater uncertainty, risk, and cost.

    The state reaction to the repeal of FCC privacy rules is just one example of how federal deregulation trickling down to state levels can create major headaches for business.

    The mother of all data breach cases: Equifax

    Major data breaches almost seem to be yesterday’s headline with the prevalence of the problem. Yet the Equifax data breach may finally push us over the edge in demands for regulatory action. Let’s review how bad the Equifax case was and still is:

    • Data thieves stole private information on over 145 million Americans from Equifax.
    • Data stolen was the most sensitive kind: personal and permanent information including names, addresses, social security numbers, dates of birth and drivers’ license numbers.
    • Equifax discovered the breach on July 29, 2017, yet didn’t announce the breach until September 2017.
    • Equifax executives sold millions of dollars of stock days after the breach was discovered and before the public announcement.
    • Equifax claimed that top executives of a company whose business is a protection of personal data didn’t know about the breach.
    • Equifax was notified in March 2017 by the Department of Homeland Security that there was a critical vulnerability in its software.
    • Equifax relied on a single employee to alert the company (he didn’t) to the risk of a data breach affecting 50 percent of all Americans.
    • Equifax sent customers needing more information about the breach to a fake phishing site.
    • That fake site clearly disclosed it was a fake in its headline and contained a tongue-firmly-in-cheek link to Rick Astley’s “Never Gonna Give You Up” music video.
    • Equifax is profiting from its screw-up: Concerned consumers are purchasing third-party credit monitoring services that frequently utilize Equifax services. So money spent due to Equifax’s problem is paid back to Equifax.

    Yes, all of the above really happened. It seems it can only be a matter of time before cases like this force legislators on both sides of the aisle to take regulatory action tightening privacy and data protection laws.

    Categorizing personal information to include marketing info

    But it’s not just highly sensitive personal information that lawmakers are seeking to protect. While protection against breaches that cause economic harm or risk serious personal threats such as identity theft is justified, proposals are reaching beyond financial and health data.

    States have introduced legislation that imposes reporting and notice requirements upon a data breach of personal information. But broad definitions of “personal data” have included what is typically considered to be marketing data, including search history and location information.

    The argument against the broad regulation of consumer data is that there are different risks and expectations of privacy for credit card numbers compared to shopping history for a phone case or search history for coffee shops.

    Yet broad regulation impacting all such information has been pushed through by state legislators, sometimes only being stopped by a governor’s veto.

    Location data is being targeted

    Location data that so many local search marketers rely on for targeted campaigns have, in turn, become a favorite target for privacy activists. The recent legislation specifically calls out geolocation information derived from mobile devices as requiring express consent before it may be collected, used or disclosed.

    Several states introduced similar legislation in 2017 requiring affirmative express consent after clear and prominent disclosure as follows:

    • Notice that the geolocation information will be collected, used or disclosed.
    • Information about the specific purposes for which such information will be collected, used or disclosed.
    • Provision of links to access other disclosure information.

    Failure to comply is deemed to be a violation of and subject to enforcement provisions of the state consumer protection laws. It is likely that some states will reintroduce bills that were vetoed or that died in committee, while others have carried the bill over to 2018.

    Europe is redefining consent

    Europe has already passed sweeping privacy regulation, titled GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation), which takes effect in May 2018. For example, the personal data subject to protection is defined as “any information relating to an identified or identifiable natural person.” That’s as broad as it gets.

    The GDPR also makes major changes to rules surrounding transparency and consent before personal data can be used. Consent will be an especially complex issue for businesses to figure out, as conditions for obtaining consent are much tighter. Issues will include the form of consent, the specificity of consent and what downstream matters that consent applies to.

    Some of the restrictions include prohibitions on making services contingent upon consent and on obtaining consent for multiple purposes. Consent must also be separately given, as opposed to being one clause in a lengthy terms and conditions agreement. Further, the ability to revoke that consent must be as easy to do as it was to give it.

    The impact on local search

    The above are all factors that seem to be culminating toward significant movement and changes in privacy regulation that will have a dramatic impact in the marketplace. Below are seven ways in which privacy will become a disruption to the local search and marketing industry:

    1. The cost of marketing data will rise

    Increased privacy regulation means all businesses will have to spend more resources to comply. It also raises the exposure to liability and increases the risk of public enforcement and of private lawsuits. Potentially, there could also be a decrease in the supply of marketing data if consumers respond to the notice requirements and consent requests by not giving permission to collect or use their profile information.  All of these changes would make collecting, acquiring, using or buying marketing data more expensive.

    2. Targeted marketing becomes harder

    If the supply of marketing data is throttled, accuracy declines. For example, if fewer people share their location, getting a sufficient volume of leads from targeted marketing will require casting a broader net.

    The effectiveness of targeted marketing is further hurt by the ability to determine those target audiences. Less data regarding behaviors that predict specific purchase or online actions makes forecasting less accurate. Attribution would likewise be harder to pinpoint.

    3. The competitive edge shifts back to larger companies

    I’ve written recently about how having the right data is the new competitive edge over traditional economies of scale. Good data means that smaller businesses can more equally compete against larger companies.

    But tougher privacy laws benefit larger businesses that have resources to adjust to mandated changes. Also, they will have better access to data as it becomes more expensive and potentially less available.

    4. Google and Apple will become even more powerful

    Google and Apple have great leverage over user privacy choices via their mobile operating systems. They embed many functions and apps that have a huge user base and that are critical to local search into those systems such as maps, media, and search engines. Consumers frequently treat these apps and functions as essential services and defer to Google or Apple terms for access and use.

    Android and iOS also serve as a gateway to third-party apps and control how users grant app permissions or consent to the collection and use for data such as location.

    5. Brands who control first-party data will hold premium ad inventory

    Brands have direct contact with consumers and sufficient reach such that they are able to offer advertising solutions to third parties, especially those related to the brand’s product or service.

    For example, Honeywell offers a software upgrade for its WiFi thermostats that will optimize thermostat settings. The offer to help save its customers $71 to $117 a year off of their energy bills means many opt-in. Users get customized reports with insights into energy use, comparison to similar homes and tips to help track and improve energy efficiency. Those “tips” will likely include some referrals to vendors such as insulation companies, solar energy vendors, and HVAC contractors or other marketing offers.

    Brands are well-positioned to reach their customers within the confines of privacy regulations, and targeted audiences they can reach should demand premium ad spend.

    6. The GDPR bleed-over effect

    The GDPR will affect local businesses and marketers even if they don’t have European customers. Larger companies that already have to deal with tighter European regulation may find it difficult to segment different policies for American and European customers. As a result, they may adopt uniform privacy policies companywide.

    Local businesses that rely on third-party data or do business using services of those global companies may be forced to follow stringent privacy policies as conditions of terms of use. And as discussed above, that could involve some major changes to business operations.

    7. Regulatory hurdles used as a competitive barrier to entry

    The other potential consequence of larger companies voluntarily adopting stricter privacy policies is that they would be less resistant to privacy regulations that mirror those internal policies. In other words, they may not oppose the legislation, or even publicly support legislation, undercutting the position of those who are against it.

    Some may even push for those regulations knowing that it may give them an advantage over competitors who haven’t adopted such privacy policies. Regulation that raises the cost of doing business or requires some catch-up changes may serve as a barrier to entry for new startups or others seeking to add business outside their core service area.

    Closing thoughts

    Understanding the issues and potential impacts will help identify when action is needed and provide some guidance to thinking through a business strategy.

    It’s also important to get involved on the issue. The breadth and details of legislative policy may seem overwhelming, but there are groups that will help keep you up to date and work on your behalf. Chambers of commerce, business associations and trade groups represent wide business interests in policy issues like privacy. So get plugged into a group that can support you and your business.

     Source: This article was published searchengineland.com By Wesley Young

    Published in Internet Privacy

    Google has announced that a beta version of the new Search Console, released a few months ago to select users, will now be available to everyone.

    The new Search Console will be rolled out gradually, and webmasters will be individually notified when they receive access.

    Still, in beta, the new Search Console will live side by side with the old version. Users can toggle between them in the navigation menu.

    As it was the most consistently requested new feature, site owners should be happy to know the public beta has the same 16 months of data that was available in the private beta.

    In addition to more data within the Search Performance report (previously Search Analytics report), the new Search Console has been completely rebuilt. It has been designed with a renewed focus on helping site owners identify and fix and pending issues.

    With the updated Index Coverage, AMP status, and Job postings reports, site owners will be guided through a simplified process of optimizing their website’s presence in search results.

    Index Coverage Report

    Google has added “issue tracking functionality” to the Index Coverage report, which alerts site owners when new issues are detected. Search Console will then provide information on fixing a specific issue, as well as verify when it has been fixed correctly.

    The State of Local Search 2018: Expert Webinar
    Join a panel of the biggest local search experts as we explore how the industry changed in 2017 and predict what search engines might have in store.

    Recognizing that fixing webpage issues can often involve a team of individuals, Google has added share buttons within the Index Coverage report. Now a direct link to a specific issue can be shared with whomever it concerns.

    AMP and Job Postings

    Issues can also arise when creating AMP versions of web pages, or implementing Job Postings markup. The new search console will identify issues related to these two types of “search enhancements,” with more to be added in the future.

    In addition to providing information about how to fix an issue, the AMP and Job Postings reports have two unique features. When validating a fix, Search Console will run several instantaneous reports to provide site owners with more immediate feedback.

    If you’re testing multiple URLs, then at the end of the process Search Console will provide a validation log. This document will detail which URLs have been identified as fixed, as well as the ones that failed.

    As Google works to improve on the beta release of the new Search Console it will be continuously listening to user feedback. The new version does not have all the functionality of the classic version, which is why the two will live side-by-side until the beta is complete.

    Source: This article was published searchenginejournal.com By Matt Southern

    Published in Search Engine

    OK, Google, why should I be optimizing my website for voice search?

    Whether your potential customers are asking Google, Siri, Cortana, or Alexa, trust me—you want to be the answer. Google says that 20% of all searches are voice searches and I’m certain that number will only continue to skyrocket in the coming years.

    Are you ready to claim a spot in that 20%? Are you even convinced that you should be doing whatever you can to benefit from that 20% statistic? Or perhaps—even if you’re already convinced of the importance of getting in the voice search game—you don’t even know where to start.

    Let’s talk it all out. Let’s talk the what, why, and how of voice search SEO.

    What Is Voice Search & How Does It Work?

    As far as SEO jargon goes, voice search is probably the easiest to understand. Voice search is simply any search a person performs on the internet using a voice command instead of typing or text.

    But you probably knew that. Heck, you probably already do it yourself. Maybe you’ve even performed a voice search today. (“Hey Siri, is it 5:00 yet?”)

    Even if you do know what voice search is, I’m guessing that—like most people—you’re not entirely clear on how it works.

    I don’t want to get too far into it, but I do think a basic breakdown of how things work will be handy before we dive in. Put simply:

    • A user initiates a voice search by pressing a button or addressing the device’s voice assistant with a pre-programmed voice command (“Hey Siri”, “OK Google”, “Alexa,”, “Hey Cortana”)
    • The user asks a question or gives a command, such as, “When Does SEO The Movie Come Out?” or “SEO Movie Release Date”
    • Depending on what kind of technology the voice search system uses, it’ll pick up on little packets of sound—whether those packets are individual syllables, words, or entire phrases and sentences
    • The voice search system will then translate these units of sound into text (using at least 1 of 4 methods) and then initiate that search just like it would a text search.

    Whew! The good news is that we don’t need to worry about that too much. But isn’t it cool to know what goes on behind the scenes?

    How Voice Search Affects SEO

    Voice search is changing the way we use search engines in huge ways.

    In short, voice search makes search inquiries way more conversational in nature. Which makes sense, since so many of the digital assistants who aid in voice searches make it feel like we’re talking to actual people sometimes.

    This affects our voice search strategy in a number of ways, but we’ll get more into that below.

    By 2020, voice search will account for 50% of searches

    But that’s not all—voice searches also tend to change the nature of keywords themselves, including question words like what, how, when, and why.

    Oh, and one last thing we should keep in mind: most digital assistants answer voice searches solely with—well, their voices. With the spoken word. Which means—for those of us in industries of a more visual nature like art or fashion—we’ll need to get clever about how we’re creating and describing our content.

    Let’s get into it!

    Use These Tips For Your Voice Search SEO Strategy

    So how do we take advantage of the search landscape that’s resulted from an explosion in voice search? With these 5 tips, of course.

    1. Use Microdata

    clip_image002

    Image Source
    By using microdata, your site can feature rich snippets/cards like those above and can also help Google better understand what your site/content is all about!

    Adding microdata like location, phone number, pricing, menus, and operating hours for search engines was crucial before, but it’s even more crucial now with voice search and SEO. Microdata helps search engines understand what is on any given page which is key for Voice Search.

    How do digital assistants find this information from your site? By you having an organized and easily readable sitemap. Include all this information in pages labeled on your sitemap to make sure search engines know exactly where to find your microdata. You can also test your microdata with Google’s handy Structured Data Testing Tool.

    Not sure what microdata you should cover or how to implement? Check out this guide from Search Engine Land.

    2. Talk Like Your Customers Would

    It’s not just about keywords anymore (not that it has been for some time anyway). It’s not just about robots and algorithms anymore, it’s about people and how people actually talk (Natural Language). That’s what Neil Patel recommends when it comes to voice search: “Think like a human.”

    People aren’t searching for “Amazon Echo” anymore.

    They’re searching for “where to buy Amazon Echo near me”, and “best prices on Amazon Echo”, and “Google Home versus Amazon Echo.”

    The trend is shifting from short and stiff keywords to more human, more specific, and longer-tail search terms.

    In short: phrases and longtail keywords are the way to go. Keep this in mind when you’re creating content and using keywords on your site pages. We’ll have to be mindful now more than ever to be genuine and specific in our keyword use.

    3. Ask The Questions Your Target Customers Would

    Again, it’s all about keeping language natural here.

    It’s not enough to just figure out what your target keywords are and match them up with their longer-tail counterparts. You’ve got to make sure you know what kinds of questions those keywords will be hidden in, too.

    What questions will your customers need to ask to find you? That’s what we need to figure out, and those are the keywords and phrases (or actually, questions) we need to include in our site content. (FAQ pages are great for this.)

    How do you figure out what questions your target customers are asking? I recommend by starting with a tool called Answer the Public, in which you can type in short and simple keywords and get back data on how those terms fit in with search queries around the web.

    clip_image008

    Image Source
    Let’s say you offer content marketing services. How do you find out what potential customers are asking about content marketing? Answer The Public has a few ideas.

    4. Make Sure Your Website Is Mobile Friendly

    clip_image010Image SourceWay to go Wikipedia! Isn’t it nice to know that Google really just wants to help you succeed, and at no cost to you? Their free tool will grade your site and even point you in the right direction for how to go about improving your scores.

    I mean, you should be doing this already. But the rise of voice search makes having responsive web design more important than ever.

    That’s because more voice searches are initiated from mobile devices than from desktop computers, and that’s probably because—well, what do you usually carry with you wherever you go? Right—probably not your laptop.

    Your first step is to find out just how mobile friendly your website already is, and you can use Google’s free tool Test My Site for that.

    The report you get back will help you be able to hone in on exactly what you need to do to improve your mobile friendliness. If you’re really starting from scratch on the mobile responsiveness front, I recommend tackling the basics first.

    5. Dive Deeper With Semantics

    Semantics may sound like this big, abstract thing, but all it is is the deeper “why” behind what searchers are saying.

    For example, you may just be asking Alexa how much Nike Flyknits cost, but Alexa won’t just answer your question with a price tag and leave it at that. She’ll also probably be thinking about your question and learning things about you, namely that you’re in the market for shoes and you’re willing to pay a premium price for them.

    Another way search engines use semantics is by making inferences when you ask questions, which is demonstrated fantastically by Wordstream’s in-depth study on semantics in voice search.

    To take an example from their study, using semantics in search is like asking, “What planet is Gamora from?” without first having to let your digital assistant know that you're referring to Zoe Saldana’s character in Guardians of the Galaxy.

    What does Google’s focus on semantics mean for you? It means that you should not only be focusing on the literal content of search queries but also on the intent behind the search inquiries.

    Why are people searching what they’re searching? It’s not enough to know what questions they’re asking—we also have to ask ourselves why they’re asking the questions they’re asking.

    If you can dive deeper into this why and weave it into the fabric of your website, you won’t have to worry as much about keyword use. Because—if you can offer valuable content that’ll answer your readers’ questions with authority and a genuinely helpful attitude—Google will recognize that your site is the answer on the most organic level.

    Hey Siri, We’re Ready To Win At Voice Search Now

    Do you have enough to add to your SEO to-do list now?

    I know it sounds like a lot, but trust me—the dividends you’ll get back over time are totally worth the upfront work. If you can, try adding just one of these 5 tips to your to-do list each week and tackle them one by one, starting with the least advanced and abstract (using microdata) and ending on the more complicated stuff (responsive design and semantics). And then cheers yourself with a drink.

    On that note, let me wrap us with one final question—a question not for Siri or Alexa, Google or Cortana, but for you: Hey Reader, how will you make voice search SEO a priority this week?

    Source: This article was published searchenginepeople.com By Sam Algate

    Published in Search Engine

    Google et al. are constantly getting smarter and use machine learning to break into our minds and explore our deepest, darkest secrets… well, not quite but these search engines are pretty damn clever and they are only getting freakishly more.

    Using algorithms (sets of rules) to process and rank content so we don’t have to sift through thousands of pages of copy to find the answers to our queries, search engines can even understand natural, human speech to make for a fluid service – but the web hasn’t always been this easy to work with. There was a time when you would have needed to know the exact wording of a webpage’s title to find it and you couldn’t have a “casual browse”, oh no, the internet was rife with spam.  

    Pay homage to search engine history with the timeline below.

    1990

    Archie, the world’s first search engine, crawled FTP (File Transfer Protocol) archives to create an index of downloadable files. Limited space meant that only the headlines were visible – contents were available upon clicking.

    1991

    Tim Berners-Lee launches the world’s first website, the “World Wide Web”.

    1994-95

    In order to help users navigate a steadily growing crowd of websites, four game-changing engines hit the scene: 

    Infoseek – the first to sell advertising using the CPM (cost per thousand impressions) metric. It was bought by The Walt Disney Company in 1998.

    Lycos – was a university research project that’s still going today. If you’re a fan of dogs the homepage on this search engine will get your tail wagging.

    AltaVista – the first engine to have unlimited bandwidth and allow natural language queries.

    Yahoo – at one point it was one of the most popular websites in the US but is now commonly thought of as “Google’s ugly mate”.

    1995

    Microsoft’s MSN is released on the same day as Windows 95. The web portal is still live, surprisingly.

    1996

    A search engine named “BackRub” – the first whisper of Google – goes into build. The brains behind it are Larry Page and Sergey Brin, who go on to found Google. The idea behind BackRub was to use backlinks as an indication of authority. If ranked pages were to mention another website, it counted each instance as a “vouch” and rewarded that website with improved search presence.

    Ask Jeeves, the lovable, question-answering valet, encouraged people to ask questions using everyday natural language. Now known as Ask.com, it still functions in much the same way as well as offering maths, dictionary and conversion capabilities.

    1998

    Google becomes official and sets out to improve how data is indexed and delivered.

    2000

    Baidu, a Chinese search engine, hits the market. At the time of writing, approximately 0.05 percent of the UK are active users, making it the 6th most popular search engine in the UK.

    Google launches its AdWords service, allowing advertisers to display copy on search engine results pages. Today it is Google’s main source of revenue.

    2001

    Google Images launches, allowing searches for visuals.

    2002

    The first update to Google’s algorithm is documented. We know that nowadays Google can update its algorithm up to 600 times a year in order to keep spam low and quality high.

    2003-05

    Local search engine optimisation is born, helping to connect users with valuable information close to them, from shop opening times to listings in maps.

    2008

    Privacy-focused search engine DuckDuckGo flutters to life.

    Google Suggest, the auto-complete function, is released to offer users more relevant content by suggesting search options.

    2009

    Bing (previously MSN Search, Windows Live Search and later Live Search) comes late to the party from Microsoft with a couple of new features, including its own version of Autosuggest, Explore pane.

    Ecosia, powered by Bing as well as its own algorithms, gets a mention purely for its ethics. A social business that donates 80 percent of its income to conservation organizations, this search engine is answering queries and planting trees at the same time.  

    2010

    Developers at Google begin preparing for the “mobile-first” culture.

    2013

    Interflora is hit with a huge Google penalty due to its unethical link building tactics. This move had publishers and businesses up late at night desperately revising the search engine’s Webmaster Guidelines.

    2015

    RankBrain, a deep learning system that helps generate responses to search queries, is rolled out to make search engine results even more relevant.

    2016

    Voice search explodes as more personal assistants hit the market. (Think Amazon’s Alexa and Apple’s Siri).

    2017

    Pinterest launches Lens to its 200 million users as part of its plan to dominate the visual search sphere.

    2018 and beyond

    Many brands and marketers are plowing their money into image and voice search and machine learning, and it doesn’t look like it’s slowing down anytime soon. A surge in data means it’s easier than ever to understand customer needs and use these insights to refine advertising and marketing practices.

    Earlier this year Amazon had a crack at paid voice search but nothing came of it and it’s gone oddly quiet. Expect more tests from more brands on the horizon, as well as further developments in voice search: one current line of thought is that voice search could be fundamentally flawed in its one-answer response – nobody wants to listen to a full list of results but, at the same time, if a personal assistant was to give an incorrect or displeasing answer faith would be lost very quickly.

     Source: This article was published telegraph.co.uk By Louise Merry

    Published in Search Engine

    The test was spotted on mobile over the weekend.

    Google is running a new image test in search ads.

    An image from the landing page appears to the right of the description area of the text ad. Sergey Alakov tweeted a screenshot of the ad test over the weekend.

    View image on Twitter
     
    Screenshot 1

    A Google spokesperson told, “We’re always testing new ways to improve our experience for our advertisers and users, but don’t have anything specific to announce right now.”

    Alakov is based in Toronto, Canada. I have not been able to replicate it, and it’s not clear how widespread the test is or what verticals are included besides automotive.

    Google has gone through several iterations of testing images in search ads over the years. Currently, it is beta testing images in Sitelink extensions in a feature called Visual Sitelinks. Last year, Google launched large format mobile ads for automotive makers featuring a carousel of images of car models.

    Source: This article was published searchengineland.com By Ginny Marvin

    Published in Search Engine

    As I mentioned in my look back at 2017, it seems so many of the companies talking about artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning are doing just that, talking. We’re at the early end of the curve. Further proof of that is the contest Microsoft MSFT -0.74% announced: the Cloud AI Challenge, offering a $25,000 prize for creating case studies. The contest is aimed at “university researchers, students, and employees of public and private organizations to participate. Your team will create a working, interactive software application, in any domain, as long as it’s an intelligent system using data and the Microsoft AI platform.” Notice how the initial focus is on the academic setting.

    AI will have an enormous impact on business and our lives. The key to remember is that for most of us the tense is critical. It’s “will” and not that soon. Robotics is most advanced, changing manufacturing for decades, and will accelerate. Voice systems, as shown by advanced in Microsoft’s Cortana, Amazon Alexa and others, will also move quickly into customer support and other voice response arenas. Vision technology is advancing but will rely on underlying hardware advances (in mobile GPUs that handle faster compute with less power/heat) before it advances much further.

    Two areas that could drive some business interest for the challenge are in the areas of fraud detection and high-frequency trading (HFT). Fraud is always a major risk, and it happens at multiple levels. Machine learning can help detect fraud from the depths of network packets to analyzing consumer purchasing trends. Computer trading already happens faster than humans can track, and ML can have an impact on the two sides of HFT. First, it can add intelligence to the HFT systems, helping to prevent problems such as automated runs on stocks. Exchanges have had to add trade freezes to deal with them, but ML could help lower the likelihood of those problems occurring. On the other side, ML can help regulators better track not all trades, not just HFT, in order to better ensure trust in the market.

    Decision systems seem to be likely to remain in the academic or proof-of-concept stages a bit longer, both for the more advanced analysis required and the slower pace of adoption of applications that impact strategic levels of business.

    It will be interesting to see what comes out of the competition, but it is another example of the need to separate hype from reality in so many things.

    Source: This article was published forbes.com By David A.Teich

    Published in Search Engine

    Give me someone's name, and I'll find their personal email address. Sure, it may take some extensive digging and sleuthing, but I'll find you eventually. And I'm not paying to root you out or buying your private info from a lead gen company (though sometimes that would be easier). This is just good old fashioned, organic searching, scanning and scouring the Internet like a Web gumshoe. And not stopping until I ferret out that personal email.

    How to find someone's email address [Summary]:

    1. Google Name + "Email"
    2. Google Name + Place of Work
    3. Search LinkedIn
    4. Search their company website
    5. Use Google's site search operator
    6. Use advanced Google search operators
    7. Try some "kitchen sink" queries
    8. Check social media profiles
    9. Check their personal blog
    10. Check Whois
    11. Check people search sites
    12. Message via Twitter or LinkedIn

    We'll look at each of these methods in a little more detail, but first:

    Why is it important to use someone's personal email address?

    If you're sending out an important email that you really want to be taken seriously and improve your chances of getting an actual response, you need to go directly to the source. Sending an important, personal email to the info[at]companyX.com, or dumping it into a "Contact Us" form is a virtual black hole.

    This is especially true if you're trying to get in touch with someone you don't know or you've never contacted before. Primary examples of this include:

    • Applying for a job
    • Any form of outreach, like a link request, interview request for your blog, if you're seeking media coverage for a story, etc.

    What's more, by taking this extra step and getting directly to the source, you show real initiative and will distinguish yourself from the candidates applying for that same job or requesting that same link.

    12 Tips and Tricks to Find Anyone's Email Address

    Now, when I say "personal" email address, I'm not talking about a Gmail, Hotmail or AOL account exclusively. I'm also referring to their personal company email address, Web hosting domain email, blogger mail account, or any Web property email address I can find. Because of the depth and breadth and ubiquity of content sources on the Web, you can find contact information for pretty much anyone who has an email address, even if they don't actively promote it on their website. All you have to do is search and keep refining your searches until you strike pay dirt.

    Let the Hunt Begin

    1) Basic Name Queries by Googling Emails

    You can start your sleuthing by running a generic search query for someone's name. But understand that this approach probably won't get you very far, unless the person you're seeking has a unique name, like say Jets WR Jerricho Cotchery. However, if that person's name is at all common, you'll need to add some distinguishing modifiers. Think of it as engaging in the long tail of name searching.

    Some initial modifiers you should incorporate to narrow and refine your search are:

    • [name] + email (or) email address
    • [name] + contact (or) contact information (or) contact me

    2) Name Queries with Personal Modifiers

    Now, if that doesn't work, get even more granular and add any personal information you may have already or uncovered about this person in your initial search, such as:

    • [name] + "home town"
    • [name] + "company they work for"

    You can even mix and match all the above modifiers. If you succeed here, terrific. Mission accomplished. But all too often, this is only the initial stage of your research, as this method yields results less than 10 % of the time. To really find who you're looking for, you'll need to go corporate.

    Hunting for Company Email Addresses

    3) Business Networking Search Queries

    One of the best resources for finding direct contact information is through a company email network. Anyone working for an organization has an in-house email. Now, typically if you're searching for someone's direct email for a job interview, link outreach or media coverage, you likely know where they work or conduct business already. But if you're still in the dark, ZoomInfo and LinkedIn are pretty fertile grounds for harvesting personal information.

    You can either search the websites internal engine or run queries in Google, like so:

    • [name] + LinkedIn
    • [name] + ZoomInfo

    Notice the quick success I had with a probe of ZoomInfo.

    4) Basic Company Name Queries

    Now, once you get a place of business from their profile, you should visit the company website and start running queries, using the person's name in the hope that you'll find any indexed document with their email address. Most times, generic name searches yield citations (like so-and-so pitched a gem for the company softball team), not actual email addresses. So again, get more specific with modifiers.

    • [name] + email
    • [name] + contact

    Adding these modifiers will really boost your chances of finding your target.

    5) Basic Company Search Operators

    However, if you're still coming up short, you'll need to roll up your sleeves. This is when I break out my super-sleuth hat and get creative with Google search operators. In the majority of cases, Google information retrieval yields more results than a company's internal search. If you're not familiar with search operators, read this.

    So what you'll do now is search Google, using the Google Search Operator Query "site:companywebsite.com" as your root and sprinkle in modifiers, like so:

    • site:companywebsite.com + [name] + email
    • site:companywebsite.com + [name] + contact

    6) Advanced Company Search Operators

    Pretty much every organization has a unique, yet uniform company email addresses structure, which you can leverage in your search efforts, using advanced search operators. For example, at WordStream our email structure is “first initial + This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.." But since each company has their own format, you'll need to play around with a host of possible email address structures using the root search operator.

    Note: Use the standard format here "@," I'm using [at] so as not to activate hyperlinks.

    • site:companywebsite.com + ken.lyons [at] companyname.com
    • site:companywebsite.com + kenlyons [at] companyname.com
    • site:companywebsite.com + klyons [at] companyname.com
    • site:companywebsite.com + ken [at] companyname.com
    • site:companywebsite.com + ken_lyons [at] companyname.com

    It's important to mention here that the information you're seeking with these queries will be bolded in the meta tags text snippets, like so:

    Find anyone's email site search operators

    An example search engine results page (SERP) with results displayed
    for site-search operation results 

    I'd say this method yeilds results 80% of the time for me.

    7) Random Kitchen Sink Queries

    However, if you're still coming up short, you can drop the company search operator root and pound away with random combinations of the above suggestions. 99% of the time, this is very effective. For example, here's a random query I ran for a faculty member at Boston University (note: name is blurred for privacy):

    Find anyone's email search by email domain

    Notice my query: "BU [person's name] @bu.edu." It's kind of nonsensical, but nevertheless this query combination succeeded where the other techniques failed, yielding this person's email address. Point being, at this stage, I throw everything at the wall to see what sticks.

    Even More Options to Find an Email Address

    8) Social Networking Profile Queries

    Another avenue you can explore for personal information are social media profiles. I've had the most success with social sites like Twitter. And chances are that employing the original basic queries that I mentioned above will display if this person has a Twitter profile.

    • [name] + Twitter

    9) Personal Website or Blog Search Operators

    Very often, my Web sleuthing reveals a personal website that I didn't know existed. Also, people include their personal websites or their blogs on their Twitter or LinkedIn profiles. This provides you a whole new channel to explore to find contact info for them. If you do find a personal site or blog, there's often have a contact page or even their email address listed right on the site somewhere. Even still, I prefer a direct line to that person. So if you've explored the site and come up short, navigate back out to Google and run some advanced search operators.

    • site:personalblog.com + [name] + email
    • site:personalblog.com + [name] + contact
    • site:personalblog.com + ken.lyons [at] personalblog.com
    • site:personalblog.com + kenlyons [at] personalblog.com
    • site:personalblog.com + klyons [at] personalblog.com
    • site:personalblog.com + ken [at] personalblog.com
    • site:personalblog.com + ken_lyons [at] personalblog.com

    10) Whois Search

    If you're still coming up empty after a deep dive of their personal website or blog, go to Network Solutions and run a Whois search for their domain registration data for an email address. 60% of the time, you'll find a personal email address here.

    11) People Search Sites

    Another resource for finding personal contact information are websites such as 123PeopleSearch, Intelius, and PeopleSmart. I've had great luck in the past using this type of free people search to locate the hard-to-find, and some sites allow you to search across multiple countries for personal contact info.

    However, your mileage may vary from one search provider to another, and these days, it's getting harder and harder to find reliable, up-to-date information on these sites. As the Web has matured, many of these sites have either gone out of business or offer sub-par results. Sure, you might luck out, but be prepared for a mixed bag in terms of results.

    It's always worth checking free people search sites as part of your research, but relying solely on sites like this is a mistake. 

    12) If All Else Fails

    Okay, if all else fails, you may have to resort to alternative, less "direct" methods like emailing your target through LinkedIn, or @-ting them on Twitter and asking them to follow you back so you can DM them and ask for contact information (if they're willing). For me, these are usually last-ditch efforts, which I've resorted to only a handful of times after if I've exhausted all of the other options I detailed in this post. But even though I prefer to send an email to someone's personal account, shooting them an unsolicited LinkedIn message to me is still far better than an info[at]companyX.com black hole.

    Point being, 99% of the time if you're dogged, persistent, relentless and love the thrill of the chase like me, then ain't nothing gonna' stop you from finding the personal contact information you seek.

    Happy email hunting!

    Source: This article was published wordstream.com By Ken Lyons

    Published in Others

    “Search is not just about answering your questions -- it’s also about discovery,” writes Google product manager Michael Galvez.

    Google has announced three new search updates around featured snippets, knowledge panel information and suggestions for related topics.

    According to a post on Google’s The Keyword blog, a selection of featured snippets will now include more images and related search suggestions within the box displaying the featured snippet content.

    It is also expanding the information displayed in the Knowledge Panel to include related content.

    “For example, while looking at the Knowledge Panel about skiing, you’ll see related searches for sports such as snowboarding directly inside the result,” writes Google product manager, Michael Galvez.

    Google says the expansion of related topics has not only been updated within knowledge panel information, but at the top of search results as well.

    Related...

    Using an example of searches for the famed soccer players Neymar and Messi, Google says searchers will see suggestions for related topics, “… to discover other athletes during your search session.”

    In addition to these confirmed updates, it appears Google is also testing a new feature that displays a carousel with a list of answers directly within the search results snippet, as we reported earlier today.

    “Search is not just about answering your questions — it’s also about discovery,” writes Galvez, who goes on to say the updates are meant to help searches further explore the topics they are researching.

     Source: This article was published searchengineland.com By Amy Gesenhues

    Published in Search Engine
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