Automated Rules Made Easy, Google Swims In Privacy Hot Water (Again), A Ranking Famine Washes Over Demand Media, & More

Automated Rules Made Easy, Google Swims In Privacy Hot Water (Again), A Ranking Famine Washes Over Demand Media, & More

This Week’s Industry News

Compiled By Rocket Clicks Staff

Automated Rules Now Extend Across All Accounts

Google has updated My Client Center to allow you to apply Automated Rules across many different accounts. The move was geared towards saving time and effort when managing multiple clients. Google’s AdWords support has a helpful tutorial to guide you through the setup.

Source: Google Inside AdWords Blog

Google Is Tracking Your iPhone, Privacy Policies Be Damned

Despite Apple’s best security efforts, Google has managed to hack into Apple’s Safari browser and install a tracking code that monitors iPhone user behavior. Safari is set up to strictly prohibit these practices. Once the Wall Street Journal and a Stanford researcher caught on, Google disabled the code and went into full PR mode, claiming Safari functionality was at fault for accidentally enabling Google ad cookies.

Update: Google’s been served with a lawsuit.

Source: Mashable

The Big Three Search Engines Join The White House In Developing A Track-Free Browser Plugin

Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, and AOL have joined forces with the Obama White House to work on the development of a “do not track” browser plugin that would allow users an easier way to control their privacy settings. The Federal Trade Commission holds ultimate authority to penalize any of these companies, should they disregard the user-based request. The “Do Not Track” technology is expected to be rolled out in nine months or so.

Source: Search Engine Watch

INFOGRAPHIC: People Love Mobile Internet, But The Internet Hasn’t Got The Hint

The title of this article, “Less Than 10% Of The Web In 2012 Is Mobile Ready,” says it all. Consumers prefer mobile website instead of mobile apps because of price comparisons, but the web doesn’t seem to be getting the picture. If one of every four searches is coming from a mobile device, only 9% of sites are considered “mobile ready,” according to Mongoose Metrics data.

Source: Search Engine Land

Matt Cutts Explains How Google Filters Paid Directories

Editorial discretion. Submission reviews. Maintenance work. Those are a few big pieces of criterion Google uses to differentiate between quality and crappy paid directories. Matt Cutts expands on this in a two minute YouTube video, adding that these directories will display a lower toolbar PageRank to help you determine whether it’s worth your money.

Source: Search Engine Journal

Congress Isn’t Happy The U.S. DHS Is Spying On Social Media

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security drew the ire of both Democrats and Republicans during a Congressional hearing on their surveillance of social media. According to a report, the DHS paid $11 million to monitor public interactions on Twitter, Facebook, and comment threads on news websites.

Many members of Congress involved in the hearing felt the practice violated civil free speech, but representatives from the DHS argued the monitored posts were public either way, and the practice only occurred after disasters or in situations to help law enforcement.

Source: Mashable

Content Farm Cash Crops Have Been Ravaged By Google’s Panda

Google’s Panda Updates seem to be working, in regards to trimming the content farm fat from their search results. According to Demand Media, the company’s revenue plummeted $6.4 million in the fourth quarter of 2011. After the first Panda update, Demand Media claimed they were experiencing no traffic/revenue losses, but it’s obvious the algorithm change has been the SEO equivalent of Atophan for the company.

If anyone wanted a perfect example to illustrate how SEO results rarely produce instant gratification, point them to this story.

Source: Search Engine Land

Google Starts Using Those New Domains

Last week, we covered Google’s recent domain purchases. This week, we have the first notable redirect, courtesy of the Google AdWords Help Forum. You can now find the forum at, and visitors to the old website are now greeted with a big yellow banner indicating the forum’s new location.

Source: Search Engine Land

Americans Are Constantly Using Social Networks Throughout The Day

According to a recent comScore study, 64.2 million Americans are engaged on a social network website through their smartphone, and 38.2 million visit Facebook, Twitter, etc. at least once a day. Those figures have increased a staggering 77% and 88%, respectively, over their positions a year ago.

The research indicates 84.6% of mobile social network aficionados read friend updates, and 73.6% of these users are posting personal updates. Around 58% of these users interact with companies/brand pages, either through reading content or otherwise, and 32% are open to clicking ads during their browsing session.

Source: Mashable

Braille On Your iPhone

Georgia Tech researchers have developed an iPhone app that looks like the fastest texting/typing technology available for visually impaired people. Called BrailleTouch, the app positions three keys on each side of the iPhone, and audibly relays the letter to the user. BrailleTouch is only available on Apple devices, but it will soon make its way to other platforms.

Source: Tuaw

U.S. Army Orders A Boatload Of Sweet Mini Recon Robots

The U.S. Army must’ve really loved the Transformers saga, as they recently placed an order for 1,100 Recon Scout XT micro-robot kits from ReconRobotics, Inc. (soon to be renamed “Cyberdyne Systems”). The “army” of robots cost $13.9 million, which is roughly $12,636 per device. The video in this story has a simulation that shows how these cool pieces of technology work.

Source: Mashable

Facebook Learns To Chillax With Name Policy

Facebook’s Real Name Policy has been demolished. They’ve lightened up enough that celebrities who use pseudonyms can do so without penalization. All Eminem-lovers out there no longer have to search “Marshall Bruce Mathers III” to find him on Facebook; now they can just search “Eminem” and limit their risks of developing carpal tunnel.

Source: Search Engine Journal

Google Glasses Will Deliver Information Straight To Your Cornea By The End of 2012

Google has been developing a set of glasses that, through various Google technologies and databases, will provide wearers with real-time information without the use of a phone. The glasses will (obviously) work on the Android platform, will cost between $250-$600, and include such features as a GPS, motion sensor, and sensor that detects and relays information about nearby buildings, friends in the vicinity, and current locations.

Source: Search Engine Land

Another Apple Product Saves A Life

Apple products are the new age version of Teddy Roosevelt’s famous, novel-thick 1912 speech. In 2007, an iPod took a bullet for a soldier in Iraq, slowing it enough to protect his vital organs. Recently, an iPhone prevented a bullet from reaching a Netherlands man’s heart. We probably should all line our pockets with Apple products just in case.

Source: Tuaw

Windows 8 Logo Fail

Before releasing their re-designed logo for Windows 8, Microsoft stated a desire to strip out the flag look that had become synonymous with its product. In an ironic twist, the new logo looks remarkably similar to the Scottish flag, the former Icelandic flag, one seen often on Greek Naval ships, the official flag of Calais, a French city…well, you get the idea.

Source: Read Write Web

Notable Commentary

With No Tracking Cookie

Yelp Reviews Are Correlated To Successful Siri-Optimized Local Searches

Gregg Stewart outlines a Siri experiment designed to judge the weight Apple’s Siri program gives to Yelp local reviews. Stewart’s conclusion is they have a direct relationship, and exposes some of the reasons for this interesting (and useful) discovery.

Analysis By: Gregg Stewart, Search Engine Watch

Content And SEO: It’s Not As Simple As A Blog Post

It’s no secret good links and good content are the best ways to improve a website’s SEO profile. Daniel Burstein has some insight into what readers really want out of your content, and why focusing on the medium for your content often hinders its message.

Analysis By: Daniel Burstein, Marketing Sherpa

Customer Tracking Isn’t Confined To The Internet

Everyone has walked into a department store and used their credit card, filled out a survey, used a coupon, called a customer service line, or mailed in a refund. When you did, you were unknowingly being tracked by that store. Charles Duhigg has a startling article in the New York Times that focuses on Target’s efforts in this marketing area, and explores some of the neuromarketing strategies that guide their initiatives.

Stephen Colbert also had a great take on this unfortunate, yet commonplace, issue.

Analysis By: Charles Duhigg, New York Times

Google’s Subtle Remapping Of Public Transportation

Google wants to organize the world’s information, but it can’t do so without changing the knowledge category in the process. That’s the central theme of Wade Roush’s look into Google’s move to re-make the public transportation system and how people obtain information before using it.

Analysis By: Wade Roush, Xconomy

INFOGRAPHIC: A Guide To Keyword Research

Keyword research is the bone structure of any Internet marketing strategy, but there are a ton of different directions you can take, depending on the industry and your client’s needs. Search Engine Journal has a cool infographic providing a general step-by-step guide to conducting the most effective keyword research possible.

Analysis By: Roman Viliavin, Search Engine Journal

All PPC Analysts Should Be Zen

Hard work is a constant in any PPC campaign build out and/or construction. However, Joseph Kerschbaum gives some top-notch advice of how to achieve a Zen-like state of focus when analyzing data. By setting specific goals and building a hypothesis, PPC analysts can make their lives a whole lot easier.

Analysis By: Joseph Kerschbaum, Search Engine Watch

Kanye’s New Workout SEO Plan

SEO is entering a new stage of life. The industry has reevaluated some problems with the old process and acknowledged their disregard for market research, disregard for audience, disrupted digital strategists, and poor link building. Michael King explains how the new SEO process ends up classier than Kanye West.

Analysis  By: Michael King, SEOmoz

New Link Building Prospects Without Google

Google is great, but sometime it’s not the only source of link research out there. We all know the power of a good search query report, but it’s not good to be reliant on search engines every time. Through blog rolls, curated lists, recommended sites, social media platforms, and more, new prospects can be hunted down without the help of Google.

Analysis By: Erin Everhart, Search Engine Land

Kickstarter + Stumbleupon = KickStumbler

This is a really cool app that allows you to just browse all the videos on Kickstarter. You can view new projects, almost funded projects, most popular and by categories. For all those Kickstarter lovers out there, it’s a really cool way to browse through.

Analysis By: Fred Wilson, AVC

YouTube: Kind Of A Big Deal

YouTube is the 22nd century personified, or it at least makes what defines the 22nd century visible to everyone and anyone. Despite YouTube’s sporadic copyright violation issues and eye-popping influence, ranging from its role in the democratic elections to making up 10% of all Internet traffic, it’s hard to imagine a world without it.

Analysis By: Kaiser Wahab, Mashable