Industry Update for August 19, 2015

Industry Update for August 19, 2015

This Week’s Industry News

Compiled by the Rocket Clicks Team

Top Stories

Sitelinks Expanded for Google’s Mobile SERPs

Websites that have sitelinks listed in Google’s mobile SERPs have recently started to show an expandable drop-down style list under certain sitelinks. The expanded list allows searchers to get a snapshot of the most recent content under that given section of the website. According to Shree Vaidya of Engage Interactive, “[this change] allows Google to show more useful links to the user without drastically changing the amount of space the result uses.” Source: Search Engine Watch

Sponsored Video Ads Being Tested by Google

Following a recent test being done for Bing and Yahoo with sponsored video ads, Google has recently been doing similar tests.  It is unknown whether the Google sponsored video ads will have the same thumbnail format as Bing and Yahoo, but it could be a big step up for Google search results ads. Beta testing has allegedly begun and you need to reach out to an AdWords representative to get access. Source: The SEM Post

Page Rank Not Affected if Website is Mobile Only

While Google’s John Mueller admits that having a “mobile only” website is not necessarily best practice, he says that there are no negative effects on a website’s page rank if they do not have a desktop version of their website. Mueller further clarifies that, as long as a “mobile only” website is available to view on desktop, Google will show that website in its search results if it is deemed relevant. Source: Search Engine Watch

Amazon Product Ads Being Discontinued for Text Ads

Amazon has recently announced that their product ads will be discontinued on October 31st. In their place will be text ads that follow a format similar to Google’s text ads. Targeting will be keyword-based and character counts, parameters, and campaign structures will also be similar to Google’s format. The ads that are displayed will be shown in three different areas: below the search results, in the browse results, and on product detail pages. Source: PPC Hero

Wikipedia Experiencing Notable Dip in Traffic from Google

According to a recent report from SimilarWeb, Wikipedia has been seeing a significant decline in traffic, especially within the last year. While there are no concrete reasons for this decline, some speculation includes the rise of the Google Answer box or some tweaks to the algorithm. Wikipedia responded to this report by saying that the data they have cannot necessarily prove or disprove SimilarWeb’s findings, and that they will be reaching out to Google for answers. Source: Search Engine Land

Three Text Ads Displaying on Some Searches in Google on Mobile Devices

Google has recently confirmed the addition of a third text ad appearing on certain relevant searches on the search results page for mobile devices.  Although there may be an additional ad appearing on your screen, the “ad real estate” remains mostly the same.  Three text ads are adjusted to take up the same amount of space as two text ads would. But, the ability to show three ads  for mobile queries may have a big impact for many advertisers. Source: Search Engine Land

Voice Search Now Context-Aware in Google’s iOS App

With a recent update to its iOS app, Google has added a context-aware search feature for its users. This features allows users to use voice search to look for related information based on the web page they’re currently on. For example, someone reading an article about George Washington could say “Ok Google, where was he born?” Google then assumes the “he” being referenced is George Washington and will open up another SERP with the answer. Source: Search Engine Land

Automated Extensions Taking Over PLAs for Google

Google has announced the retirement of promotional text in product listing ads at the end of September which will be replaced by automated extensions. These new extensions will highlight price drops or free shipping for PLAs from data pulled from the advertisers’ product feed and Merchant Center settings. Google has stated that these extensions allow for a better click-through rate in comparison to promotional text. Source: Search Engine Land

Additional Commentary

Need Help Explaining Local Search? Use Pizza!

To help Local SEOs better understand how to make their clients better understand how and why SEO is important, Greg Gifford of DealerOn writes that (as always) pizza is the answer. Gifford says that explaining SEO to the uninitiated local client can be as easy as comparing their business to a pizza delivery company. By making this comparison, Gifford argues that SEO is simplified for the client because it allows for easily digestible hypothetical examples. Analysis: Greg Gifford, Search Engine Land

Impact of Quality Score Changes in Google

Frederick Vallaeys covers the impact of Google’s change to quality score back in July. He covers how Google no longer predicts quality score for new keywords and instead defaults them to a quality score of 6. The author also covers the financial impact of this change, stating that the costs for accounts that previously had an overall quality score higher than 6 had increased.  He also makes a point that advertisers with a good history will no longer receive a break with the starting CPC. Analysis: Frederick Vallaeys, PPC Hero