How Mahalo Works

Fine-Tuning Mahalo SeRPs

After a guide has found three to five great links for each section of the SeRP, he or she includes a guide note before submitting the SeRP for quality control. A guide note is a short description of the search term and a short list of facts about the search term. These facts are designed to be brief and verifiable, presenting relevant information in a user-friendly way.

Next, the guide should fill out the related searches field. This field is for search topics related to the SeRP. Mahalo encourages guides to list topics in order of relevance. Guides can even include search terms that don't have their own SeRP yet.

Another important field is the redirect box. Users can type just about any combination of words or phrases into a search bar while looking for information on a specific topic. It's up to the guide to anticipate user word choice. The guide should list every variation for the search term he or she can think of, including common typos and misspellings, to ensure that a user will find the right page.

Guides can also fill out a category field. This is a list of all the categories in which the search topic belongs. Mahalo asks that guides limit themselves to no more than 10 categories. Mahalo designates all category names -- guides should not try to create their own.

Once the guide has finished the SeRP, it's time to submit it to quality control. FTGs and Mahalo mentors -- expert users who help other guides -- review all SeRP submissions, checking them for errors, content quality, dead links, relevance and organization. If a SeRP meets Mahalo's standards, a Mahalo representative will inform the guide that Mahalo accepts the SeRP and will feature it in searches. The guide receives payment for the SeRP and can move on to developing a new SeRP for a different topic.

If for some reason Mahalo doesn't accept the SeRP, an FTG or mentor will send it back to the guide for edits. Even if Mahalo accepts a SeRP without requiring its guide to make revisions, editors may make changes to it before publishing it.

To learn more about Mahalo and related topics, follow the links below.

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  • Liedtke, Michael. "People Power Fuels New Search Engine." Associated Press. May 30, 2007.