Industry Update for March 17, 2017

Industry Update for March 17, 2017

This Week’s Industry News

Compiled by the Rocket Clicks Team

Top Stories

Google’s Updated Quality Rater Guidelines Focus on Click Bait & Fake News

This week, Google released an updated version of the Quality Rater Guidelines. The new guidelines focus on what determines the quality of a site, targeting misleading and fake news sites by declaring them “low quality.” Other sites that are included in these new rankings include hate sites, clickbait and sites with dubious science claims. Google’s horde of quality raters around the world now can flag offensive sites, this won’t remove the result but provides information to Google so they can keep improving their algorithms. Source: Search Engine Land

6 Ads Spotted at Bottom of Google Search Results

A new test has been recently spotted at the bottom of the Google Search results page with 6 paid ads appearing in this space, bringing the total ads on a single page to 10. Based on other recent tests to Google, this came as no surprise for some. But, other searchers have also reported seeing 8 ads at the bottom, which would bring the total paid ads on a single page 12. Source: Search Engine Roundtable

More News Regarding Last Week’s Google Algorithm Update…

Last week, SEOs saw a change in rankings but still can’t decide what is causing these changes. The unconfirmed “Fred” update has SEOs speculating that it could be affecting everything from link quality to the influence of Private Blog Networks. When you take a step back and look at how Fred is acting, it appears to be the beginning of Google’s attempt to target low-quality sites that optimize for Google and not the end user. Source: The SEM Post

Some Advertisers Still Using Emojis Even Though Google Doesn’t Allow Them

With the report of emojis appearing in AdWords ads last week, many speculated that they would get shut down quickly. Well, Google has indeed taken action and removed those ads. But, recently, even more emoji ads were spotted in the search results following this removal. The emoji appeared in a search for “Hudson ny weekend” and featured an ad with a hotel emoji in it. Clearly, some advertisers don’t care about the terms of service, but it is more surprising that Google continues to let these slip through. Source: Search Engine Roundtable

The Local Pack Boasts a New Display, But Will It Stick Around?

Over the past few months, the Local Pack has seen a lot of changes both temporary and permanent. This week’s changes reveal that most retail and service industry results have lost the call icon and now display an image from the Google My Business listing. This new display means users will have to use at least two clicks to get to directions and contact information, but it also provides more results than the three most popular. Like previous rollouts, there is no word if this is a test or a permanent change. Source: Blumenthals

Additional Commentary

Helpful Ad Testing Tips & Tricks

If you don’t know where to start with testing your ad copy, Jason Puckett has you covered with some helpful ad testing tips & tricks. One tip is to test fully-written promotional language, like testing “Half-Off” compared to “50% Off.” Another tip is to continually test the verb in your call-to-action to ensure that your ad is relevant to searchers’ decision-making process. The author also recommends trying ad customizers and IF functions in your description line, especially if you want to put a specific product SKU in your ad. Analysis: Jason Puckett, Search Engine Land

Implementing Tag Manager on Complicated Sites

Google Tag Manager makes viewing and managing Analytics data easier and more convenient with the plethora or triggers you can create, test and apply. Setting up Tag Manager on a new site is a simple task, but older, more complicated sites may require a bit more finesse to ensure you’re getting all the right data. Logan Gordon at LunaMetrics created a guide to help with the pain points of migrating from Analytics to Tag Manager. Gordon encourages webmasters to have an overlap period, tracking Analytics and Tag Manger as well as creating a filter to catch any old hard-coded UA tags you may have missed during Tag Manager installation.  Analysis: Logan Gordon, LunaMetrics