Industry Update for March 24, 2017

Industry Update for March 24, 2017

This Week’s Industry News

Compiled by the Rocket Clicks Team

Top Stories

Google My Business Now Automating Ownership Conflict Resolution

Business owners no longer have to go through the long and tedious process to update ownership and/or have inappropriate photos removed. This week Google revealed an automated conflict resolution feature for Google My Business. Through the automated process a request is made to the current business owner to transfer or add ownership. This new feature is currently only available when verifying a single listing and the update should be complete in the next few days. Source: Blumenthal’s

Google Expanding Close Variant Definition

Much to advertisers’ dismay, Google has recently announced that the behavior of close variants is going to be expanded. With this change, prepositions like in and to and conjunctions like for and but are now being ignored as Google has stated that they “don’t impact the intent of the query.” Word order will also be ignored, with Google saying that “two keywords can share meaning, even if the word order is slightly different.” There currently is way to opt out of this feature that seems to give advertisers less control over their keywords. Source: Search Engine Roundtable

The #NoHacked Progress Update

Google’s #NoHacked Campaign had meager beginnings as a one week awareness project that has transformed into a long-term battle against website hacking. Recently Google provided insights regarding 2016 and tips for 2017, including a 32% jump in hacked sites since 2015 that doesn’t appear to be slowing down. To assist webmasters to better understand and prevent security breaches, Google is providing further documentation about hacking and security. Google now offers guides to clean up and recover from specific types of hacks. Source: Google Webmasters

Google Adding Tools for Placement Control

Following Google’s blunder last week in the EU regions for allowing their ads to show up on websites classified as “hateful, offensive, and derogatory”, they have now added more controls to let advertisers better define how their ad placements show. The three tools include: safer default for brands, simplified management of exclusions, and more fine-tuned controls which will make it easier to exclude high risk content. Source: Search Engine Roundtable

Google Posts Now Accepting Applications from Museums, Musicians, Movies and Sports Groups

Google Posts has expanded its availability to include museums, musicians, movies and sports groups. Originally, Google Posts was only available as a test for presidential candidates, but the expanded service offering may be an indicator that the test is over. Organizations using Google Posts are given a dedicated place either at the top or bottom of relevant mobile SERPs and the content, which can be text, images, video and animated Gifs, is stored directly on Google’s server. Source: Search Engine Land

Additional Commentary

Optimizing Low Traffic Landing Pages

Jacob Baadsgaard offers a few helpful tips on how you can improve your landing page experience. His first tip is to try using heat mapping software. This will give you a visual representation of your visitors’ behavior on your landing page, allowing you to adjust the page based on your findings. You can also try the 5 second test where you show your page to others and ask them their initial opinion of the page within the first 5 seconds. This can be helpful as users can typically form a first impression of your page within as little as 50 milliseconds. Source: Jacob Baadsgaard, PPC Hero

3 Steps to Battle Site Performance Issues

As the state of the web has evolved users’ expectations have evolved as well. A Consumer Web Performance Expectations Survey run by Akamai revealed that nearly half of all consumers expect a page to load in 2 seconds or less. In addition to site speed, an attractive layout and content plays a major role as 38% of users will abandon a poorly designed site. Jim Yu from Search Engine Land provided a simple 3 step guide to resolve performance problems: audit your site in search of errors and anomalies, prioritize your results by severity and overall impact repairing the error will have and then start fixing the errors. Source: Jim Yu; Search Engine Land