Google Sympathizes With Temporarily Broken Sites, People Keep Spending On PPC, Adblock Doesn’t Block All Ads, & More

Google Sympathizes With Temporarily Broken Sites, People Keep Spending On PPC, Adblock Doesn’t Block All Ads, & More

This Week’s Industry News

Compiled By Rocket Clicks Staff

Site Down? Don’t Worry, Proselytizes Oracle Cutts

Behold, another Google prophecy hath been foretold from on high by the John Wayne of spam-busting. If your site experiences connection issues for up to 24 hours, your rankings will not change. If it drags on for more than 48 hours, Google delists the site for a temporary period of time. Google also notifies you if a site’s broken by sending a message through Webmaster Tools.

Source: Search Engine Land

BREAKING: People Spend Gobs Of Money On Search Ads (Including Mobile)

In the most surprising development since people hating Justin Bieber, global PPC spending is up 23% and mobile PPC spend rose 132% year-over-year in Q2. According to the study from Covario, smartphone CPCs are still 40% cheaper than desktop CPCs.

Source: Search Engine Land

Adblock Not Blocking Some Ads

Google, Amazon and other large web properties are reportedly paying for inclusion on an exception list for Adblock, the popular ad blocking browser extension for Firefox and Chrome. While Reddit was initially named on a list of pay-for-players, the user-generated news site claims that Adblock added them to the whitelist without their knowledge. If users of the extension want to block advertisers on the whitelist, they’re going to have to dig a little deeper into the plug-in’s preferences menu.

Source: Marketing Land

Guest Posting Ain’t All That And A Bag Of Pop Chips Anymore

As with any link building tactic, you should only chase after the highest of quality guest blog posting opportunities. But with greater adaptation among SEOs comes greater scrutiny from Google. A recent Matt Cutts video and Webmaster Central Google+ Hangout revealed some of Google’s recommendations on links within guest posts.

Specifically, they recommend no-following all links (since they are likely not “naturally occurring”). They also reiterate Google’s rising interest in only organically grown links, which can rarely be the case with guest blog posts that exist purely to pass PageRank.

Source: HisWebMarketing

Facebook Page Admins Can Monitor The Competition

It used to be that a “Like” just produced a warm, fuzzy feeling in the heart of a Facebook Page Admin. Now that the number of Likes has become a source for bragging rights, Facebook has introduced a new “Pages to Watch” tool that allows Admins to monitor competitive pages and the number of Likes they’ve received. The tool will also offer tips on how to keep up with the Joneses, undoubtedly including more ways to devote advertising dollars to Facebook’s ad platform.

Source: Marketing Land

Google Creates Databoard For Marketers

Search Engine Journal reports that Google has created “databoards” to make it easier to work with the data studies in Research Insights. They break out the studies into collections of data panels that can be exported in the form of infographics. There are a few studies currently available, but it is growing.

Source: Search Engine Journal

Instagram Releases Web Embeds For All Posts

Instagram announced the release of Web embeds for all posts on Wednesday. The process is simple: click a new icon on the post and Instagram provides the HTML needed to frame the photo on your website. The embeds automatically include proper attribution and allow you to easily view the original.

Source: Marketing Land

Twitter Adds ‘Embedded On Website’ Feature Under Tweets

One of the most unique things about Twitter is its ability to curate news and current events in real-time. The social network is now taking it one step further, testing an “Embedded on these websites” section under tweets that shows news sites that mention said tweet.

Source: Search Engine Watch

Yelp Releases New Platform For eCommerce On Local Business Pages

Yelp revealed its new tool, Yelp Platform, that transforms local business pages into a platform (hence the name) for generating transactions and eCommerce. The product is a bit like Yelp’s call-to-action tool, which was recently made available to advertisers. The launch isn’t widespread right now. Currently, it’s limited to about 100 delivery or carryout restaurants supported by and/or Eat24. The platform will handle most of the purchasing process, from order through checkout and payment processing.

Source: Marketing Land

Yelp’s WordMap Is A Jolly Good Waste Of Time

Are you a hipster, frat bro, or yuppie? Conversely, do you hate any of these three things? With Yelp’s new Wordmap, you can pick a keyword (such as those three) and the map will shade out areas of a city where business reviews most feature that keyword. Plan your vacations and bar hopping accordingly.

Source: Search Engine Watch

Google Unveils New And Supposedly Improved Maps App for Android

Google rolled out a new version of Maps for Android devices Wednesday. The iPad and iPhone versions are yet to be released. “Improvements” include more search functionality, updated navigation features, Zagat reviews and special promotions for specific locations. Among the app’s new features is the ability to search without typing by tapping the search box to see icons with food, drink and shopping options. Motorists will also be able to see updated reports of road problems along with incident details, all while creating their own potential hazards as they stare at their smartphone screen.

Source: Marketing Land

Google Maps Lost An Island, And A Distillery Took Advantage

Jura, a whisky (that’s the Scottish spelling) distillery on their namesake island off the coast of western Scotland, recently turned a Google Maps mistake into a great marketing contest. Called “X Marks The Spot,” Jura asked people to “X” their location on a map and tweet it back for the chance to win a bottle of 16-year-old whisky. Sorry, ‘Mericans: this contest is only available in the U.K.

Source: Marketing Land

Windows 8.1 Will Serve You Ads, Whether You Like It Or Not

The computer used to be humanity’s last bastion of ad-free existence in the digital world. No more, if you are a user of Windows. According to Microsoft itself, Windows 8.1 Smart Search will scrape your computer for search strings including certain keywords, and serve you ads in the search results pane of your local network as well as your online network in Bing and Yahoo. You can turn this feature off, but as usual, that preference setting is not sitting right in front of your face.

Source: InfoWorld

Apple Fixed E-Book Prices, Judge Rules

Apple worked in conjunction with five of the U.S.’s largest book publishers to raise e-book prices, according to a federal judge’s near-100 page ruling. The motive partially lies in Amazon’s insistence that new titles cost $9.99, and never more. The result was a reversal of previous “wholesale” policies, as publishers conspired to set their chosen purchasing price, which Amazon could accept or risk losing access to those books.

The largest publisher, Random House, was the lone major company not to participate in this price fixing, and will not have to face the consequences.

Source: Washington Post

Google Broke This Week, But Now It’s Not

There can’t be anything more annoying to Google’s support team than receiving an army of messages from people just wanting to let them know the search engine is broken (actually, advertisers complaining about Google policies is probably worse).

Anyways, for a fleeting 50-odd minutes on Wednesday, Google was dead to a few users. Now it’s not, and we can resume feeding the hydra.

Source: CNN

SharkNado Engulfs Twitter

If you haven’t experienced the visual chocolate ice cream that is “Sharknado” (starring Tara Reid, a guy from 90210, and the dad from Home Alone), you haven’t lived a day in your life. The preposterously titled and executed Syfy original movie debuted Thursday night, and drew in tweet volumes at about a quarter of the Super Bowl’s rate. That’s impressive for a network that also boasts such brilliant portmanteau movie titles as “Titanoboa,” “Sharktopus,” “Piranhaconda,” and “Frankenfish.”

Source: Marketing Land


Notable Commentary

From Writers That Write Things

THE Guide To Google’s Remarketing Lists For Search Ads

Google’s AdWords Remarketing Lists for Search Ads (RLSA – again, with the boring names) has been released to the general advertising public. Search Engine Watch features a good primer on how to use the retargeting tool to reach previous visitors and compile copious amounts of quality traffic and conversions.

Analysis By: Lisa Raehsler, Search Engine Watch

Getting Granular With Single-Keyword Ad Groups

In the rush to comply with the looming deadline for all AdWords accounts to switch over to Enhanced Campaigns later this month, many advertisers have been frustrated with the new system’s inability to optimize mobile campaigns by adjusting bids at the keyword level. Matt Ackley offers up the solution of creating single-keyword ad groups, the pros and cons of going that route, and tips for implementation.

Analysis By: Matt Ackley, Search Engine Land

Structuring Google’s Local 7-Pack Results

Pete Meyers takes you inside the process Google uses to construct its organic blended search results. One of his most interesting findings involves Google “promoting” an organic result to its 7-Pack based on its solid local SEO profile.

Analysis By: Pete Meyers, Moz

All The Answers To All The Questions About Duplicate Content

Stoney G de Geyter has published a guide to mastering duplicate content issues in Search Engine Journal. It deals with various on- and off-page duplicate content issues related to both content and technical issues, and details ways of dealing with each.

Analysis by: Stoney G de Geyter, Search Engine Journal

The Evolution Of Facebook Graph Search

Facebook announced earlier this month that Graph Search is rolling out to all English-speaking U.S. users over the next several weeks. Matt McGee of Search Engine Land reviews the changes that Facebook has made to the new social search tool since its introduction to a small number of users in January.

Analysis By: Matt McGee, Search Engine Land

Maximizing Excel For SEOs

Looking for new ways to maximize your efficiency on Excel? Search Engine Journal offers up 10 Excel functions any SEO professional worth their weight in links needs to know.

Analysis by: Jayson DeMers, Search Engine Journal

Why You Rank Lower Than Some Of Your Low Quality Competition

Ranking well in Google is not always about links, keyword density, snippet usage, or anything quantitative. Rand Fishkin explores the qualitative aspects of Google’s algorithmic ranking philosophy and offers some starting points for exploring more than just data that can show you how to rank better.

Analysis By: Rand Fishkin, Moz

Storm Bing’s Search Results Castle And Hold Page One Hostage

We’ve called Bing the Burger King of the search engine world for at least a year, but sometimes even the most ardent Wendy’s or McDonald’s fan gets a hankering for a Whopper. George Fischer has an excellent post on how you can beat Bing’s page one results into submission through organic and paid search tactics.

Analysis By: George Fischer, Search Engine Watch

Moz Releases 2013 Link Building Survey

James Agate has published the results of a survey on link building for the first half of 2013 on Moz. It tracks spend, challenges, and how much effort is put into the different forms of link building. It also tracks industry opinion about the most effective forms of link building, and the most effective ways of placing links and anchors in external content.

Analysis by: James Agat, Moz

Meet The Next Head Of Microsoft

If you don’t know who Julie Larson-Green is, don’t worry. The new leader of Microsoft’s core product lines (games, music, entertainment, devices in general) started as a rejected job applicant, and is likely to be the biggest beneficiary from the company’s reorganization. Here’s everything you need to know about her before she becomes a household name in the tech industry.

Analysis By: Ryan Tate, Wired

Facebook, Google, And Apple Are The Old Guys At The Club

That’s at least the gist of Wade Roush’s compelling article on Xconomy, which explores the unique differentiators of all three giants, explains why they can’t create the Next Big Thing, and why that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

Analysis By: Wade Roush, Xconomy

Startups And Their Investors, In Visual Form

The Startup Universe displays and explores the relationships between startup companies and their founders and investors since 1990.

Analysis By: Visual.Ly