Trip Advisor Assuming I Can Speak Thai #Fail

Whilst having a browse around today, specifically on their Bangkok hotels page, I noticed that they haven’t quite got their multi-lingual content implemented correctly. 



Whilst I would love to speak fluent in another language (I’m testing the waters with Mandarin at the moment :-) ) I can’t quite speak Thai just yet. 

This is quite a big fail by Trip Advisor here, I can’t imagine many UK people who are looking to book a Bangkok hotel can actually speak Thai. If they did, I’m sure they would simply go to the Thai version of Trip Advisor. 



Googles Landing Page Guidelines #Fail


Google is always talking about making sure the landing page is relevant and useful for the user when they click through from the search results. Yet here is a nice page when Google are totally getting this wrong. 

The image below is showing when I searched for Google Webmaster Guidelines


Then when you click through on the first link this is the page you are presented with the following page which is not useful

My browser language is set to English, yet apparently the page is not available in my language – even though it is listed in the list below. Not sure exactly what is going on here, but it seems that Google is getting confused with some settings on one of my browsers since when checking on another machine this works fine and links through to the normal Google Webmaster Guidelines

Just to throw this controversial theory out there, what if Google doesn’t apply the same rules to their own products as they do to the rest of the web? 😉 


Fail – Location Based Advertising from LivingSocial

Now I know Leeds is a nice place, but I have never seen a woman going snorkeling – in a bikini – on a beach – with white sand – and clear blue water. Is there a part of Leeds I haven’t been to before….? FAIL

I’m sure the other 47 things mentioned will be accurate though….. 😉

Source: Display advert on Hotmail.


Amusing Google 404 Error Page

Nice 404 page from Google that is much better than just showing “404 – Sorry there has been an error”.

In an ideal world, users should never see any 404 error pages as the site should be 100% perfect and working. Although it is always worth having an amusing 404 error page as it turns the annoyance of these pages into something memorable and will hopefully keep the user on the site to try and find the content again. Otherwise, bye bye visitor as they go back to the SERPs to find a competitor.


Double Fail in Meta Description

School boy error! Everyone who has been online for the past 10 years knows not to use frames when designing a website, iframes are just an extension of this. It makes it harder for Google to crawl the pages and index them correctly, along with the very bad usability and inability to link to the correct page.

I can imagine a meta description like “Your browser does not support iFrames” doesn’t have a fantastic click through rate, just a gut feeling!

Hotmail Failing

A site which boasts it is “The biggest email service in the world” should at least have this error covered.

For that one time when the Google Bot decides to crawl your site when it has an error, ensure you have a correct 500/503 error page set up.

It is important that the server passes the correct status error code in the header of 500 (Internal server error) /503 (Service unavailable) when the page is requested, as a page which just contains the text “500 Error” yet passes a status code of 200 (OK) is not sufficient for Google.

This way you won’t end up with what Hotmail did above. For a competitive website, this could have caused a drop in rankings for a few days which could have lost a lot of money.

This is what the normal meta data should look like for Hotmail

And whilst we are on the topic of Hotmail and its failings I decided to look at their twitter account,

It looks promising, until you visit their page…

What! No content?!?!

The largest email service in the world has not figured out the benefits of Twitter yet. I find it hard to believe, but the screen shots tell the truth with a total of 0 tweets.

After hearing a speech from a guy (who I can’t remember the name of!) who is the head of Microsoft Advertising about how to calculate a RIO for social media this is quite surprising. Either I have found a ‘fake’ Hotmail Twitter account or Hotmail hasn’t picked up the benefits of social media just yet.

In case anyone from Hotmail decides to read this post, a simple equation;

Followers on Twitter => More traffic to your site => more income generated by the adverts!