A Super Tech-Friends Display Ad Alliance Forms, Google Tests Its SERPs, Twitter Unveils Analytics, & More

A Super Tech-Friends Display Ad Alliance Forms, Google Tests Its SERPs, Twitter Unveils Analytics, & More

This Week’s Industry News

Compiled By Rocket Clicks Staff

AOL, Microsoft, And Yahoo! Join Together On Display Advertising

Google is starting to dominate the display advertising market (shocker, I know), and in response, AOL, Microsoft, and Yahoo! have announced a partnership to sell display ads on each other’s sites. The deal is not exclusive, so people can advertise on all three sites plus Google, but it’s main goals are to streamline ad network inventory and prevent Google from taking the lion’s share of the display market.

Source: All Things D

Google Administers Multiple Search Results Page Tests

Google is currently testing multiple minor tweaks to its search results pages. These tests include the elimination of the vertical sidebar icons, a red “Search” below the logo, more white space between the SERPs and search box, a less prominent “About x results” line, and just four lines in the Google Instant suggestions.

Google Search Tests

Source: Search Engine Watch

Google SERP Sitelinks Integrated Into Search Containing Social Media

Google has recently introduced expanded sitelinks for brand searches, and Portent’s Ian Lurie recently discovered a new integration of sitelinks into search queries concerning social networks. Ian also noticed that Twitter and Facebook searches only include sitelinks if the account in question provides unique content and a lot of authority/activity.

Twitter Google Search ResultsSince Google has not commented on this development, it’s likely this is just a test, in which case we can only expect a standard “we’re constantly testing things to improve the search experience,” answer from Google.

Source: Conversation Marketing

STATS: Mobile Will Soon Dominate Desktop Usage

According to a recent IDC report, mobile Internet use will overtake usage on PCs and laptops by 2015. The report also found that, by the same year, Internet users will grow from 2 billion (2010) to 2.7 billion (40% of the world’s population), and global business-to-consumer commerce will skyrocket from $708 billion in 2010 to $1,285 billion in 2015.

Source: Search Engine Land

Bing Adaptive Search Aims To Personalize Results

Bing recently unveiled their Adaptive Search feature, which provides an increasingly personalized search experience every time you use the search engine. The more you search, the more Bing comprehends your natural tendencies and preferences, thus adapting the whole experience to your wants and needs.

The article uses “CSI” as an example, explaining that most people that search for “CSI” are looking for the TV show. However, a person living close to the College of Southern Idaho may be looking for the college’s homepage. Furthermore, Adaptive Search looks into previous similar queries to determine which internal page may be the most relevant to the searcher.

Realistically, this is a big step forward for Bing when it comes to realizing the current personalization trend in search’s competitive landscape.

Source: Search Engine Journal

Celebrity Endorsements Find Their Way Onto Google Ads

Do television advertisements with celebrity spokespeople ever get you to buy that product or service? If you’re like me (I just had to have a Louis Vuitton man purse when I saw Mikhail Gorbachev riding with one in a limousine), you’re going to love Google’s new celebrity-endorsed ads.

Similar to when you +1 an article or website and see it show up in your Google search, pertinent Google ads will now include a celebrity endorsement in a similar format. Obviously, celebrity products will be included in this change, perhaps most prominently at first.

Source: Search Engine Land

Twitter Analytics Hits The Beta Stage In Development

Twitter has released the beta version of its analytics product, which highlights trackable data coming from clicks on its link shortener service and tweet button. The final product will be available to all websites in a few weeks, according to a Twitter blog post.

Source: All Things D

Matt Cutts Tells You To Stop Selling Links Or It Will Affect PageRank

When Matt Cutts speaks, you listen. It’s that simple. Cutts recently released a video responding to questions about some webmasters experiencing a PageRank drop. He also said that the most common reason for a PageRank drop is that the site in question has been selling links. That shouldn’t be too surprising, especially since Google comes out pretty much every day to say that good content and ethical site management are important to their algorithm.

Source: Search Engine Land

STUDY: Third Party APIs Reduce Interaction On Facebook

Third party API programs, such as Hootsuite and TweetDeck, all but kill Facebook engagement, according to a recent study from Applum. The study confirms a long-held theory that indirect navigation on social networks takes away from full engagement with all of the social network’s features.

Source: Search Engine Watch

TechCrunch Founder Steps Down Amid Pressure

Michael Arrington, the eccentric founder of TechCrunch, has relinquished his duties as head editor of the popular tech blog. His resignation comes a week after he announced the opening of CrunchFund, an investment venture funded largely by AOL, TechCrunch’s parent company. Erick Schonfeld now takes over as the main editor of TechCrunch, giving the blog a much more introverted leader.

Source: Wired Epicenter

Google Includes Location Opt-Out Clause For Wi-Fi Users

If you use a Wi-Fi connection at your home, Google will now offer you a “do not call-like” option that prevents the search engine from collecting your location information for their massive map database. This move was in response to European regulator concerns that Google’s map services violate privacy laws.

Source: Yahoo! News

Bing Takes Shots At Google With ‘Easter Eggs’

It’s no secret that Google and Bing do not like each other, unless it involves developing schemas and canonical tags. The most recent chapter in this tech rivalry involves “Easter Eggs,” which are hidden messages accessible by one specific action.

A Google software engineer discovered Bing displays thinly-veiled insults about the dominant tech company when you search for “more evil than satan himself” or “hiybbprqag.” Bing basically calls Google whiners and satanically evil.

Source: Search Engine Land

Google’s New Battle Is In Flight, Against Kayak

Kayak is a leading provider of affordable, easy to find flights to any chosen destination. As such, it has grown into a reliable online product that sets it apart from competitors. I think you know where this is going.

Google Flight Search was recently launched, and there’s some debate over how it could impact Kayak and other travel sites. Kayak itself has stated it believes they are far ahead of Google in terms of flight search technology, and Google has admitted they are still in the boarding stage of the Flight Search launch.

Source: Search Engine Journal

Promoted Tweets From Accounts Not Followed Will Now Be Displayed

If you didn’t notice Promoted Tweets in your Twitter feed before, you may now. The social network announced Tuesday that it will now show more Promoted Tweets to users, regardless of whether the account is followed or not.

Twitter said the Promoted Tweets will show up at the top of a relevant search results page, Promoted Trend search results, the home timeline, official Twitter clients, or from third-party Twitter clients. Twitter claims the ads will only show when they are relevant based on a user’s perceived intent. This is just the latest move by Twitter to show that its traffic can be monetized.

Source: Search Engine Land

Notable Commentary

From All-Natural, Organic Experts

Roadmapping SEO For A Startup Breaking Into A Tough Industry

This is a pretty good SEO roadmap done by SEOmoz for Hipmunk.com. The article offers some good insight and looks into the way that links, content, and social can help a good company break into a highly competitive space.

Analysis By: Tom Critchlow, SEOmoz

Zagat Could Be Worth More To Google Than Yelp

Here’s yet another article that offers up more analysis on the Google + Zagat deal, or GooGat for short. This article tries really hard to sway reader s in the direction of this being a clutch deal for Google.

Analysis By: Mike Moran, Search Engine Guide

PPC Tactics Can Improve Organic Search Positions

Brad Geddes offers three ways your PPC efforts can impact your organic results, in a positive way. Geddes also explains the biggest benefits of both PPC and SEO, and how they can work together harmoniously.

Analysis By: Brad Geddes, Search Engine Land

Foursquare Can Be Useful For Local Search

Foursquare is mostly thought of as a game and time waster that rewards you “badges” and bragging rights for visiting certain shops frequently. However, Danny Sullivan explains how he has started using the app as a powerful local search tool in the vein of Yelp or Urbanspoon.

Analysis By: Danny Sullivan, Search Engine Land

Google Bulleted List Snippets And You

At the end of August, Google began including bulleted lists as snippets in search results. Their explanation was that it is generated naturally when Google determines the existing on-page list’s information relevant. Peter Meyers runs down quite a few examples of this experiment in action.

Analysis By: Peter Meyers, SEOmoz

How SEO Plays An Integral Role In B2B Marketing Strategies

Despite the increasing popularity and success of SEO marketing and e-commerce, many business-to-business marketing departments don’t consider it a top priority. This could be in part because Internet marketers tend to come from different background than traditional marketers. The trick to reversing this trend, as SEOs, is to show value and speak their language. Search Engine Watch spoke to some SEO professionals on how to walk down that path.

Analysis By: Derek Edmond, Search Engine Watch

A Second 59 Things You Should Be Doing As An Internet Marketer

Ian Lurie has already provided us with a list of 59 necessary things Internet marketers should do, but probably aren’t, and he was gracious enough to create a sequel list in a recent blog post.

Analysis By: Ian Lurie, Conversation Marketing

Effective, Quality Retargeting To Maximize Your Budget

This article talks about on-site retargeting events such as looking at a certain page, but also discusses off-site retargeting events such as the user’s search query. The post also includes an infographic detailing the seven types of effective display ad retargeting.

Analysis By: Dax Hamman, Search Engine Land

INFOGRAPHIC: Social Media Growth

Search Engine Journal has compiled an infographic chronicling the growth of social media over the past 10 years. It provides some great insight into how complete assimilated social networks are into our daily lives, and where the trends may go from here.

Analysis By: Jenise Uehara Henrikson, Search Engine Journal

This Week In ‘Lessons Learned From Steve Jobs’: Successful SEO

Steve Jobs certainly had an impact on the tech world and beyond during his second tenure as Apple CEO, and Wayne Barker explains how much of his business philosophy can be related to professional SEOs.

Analysis By: Wayne Barker, Search Engine Journal