Friday Catch-up is a new section of our blog, which is aimed at providing all important information in the field of online marketing and SEO. Every week, we will bring highlights of all significant happenings to you guys and also share some useful information and advice. So here is a brief recap of the second week of January.
News and Events
Definition URLs Become Clickable Links on Google Search
Google unveiled a new format recently for the definitions which appear at the top of the search results. However, the URL provided for the source website wasn’t clickable. Instead of clicking on the URL, the user had to click on the ‘Source’ tab which appeared at the bottom of the box. That has been rectified by Google and now the definition URLs are clickable.
The user can easily click on the link and the source website will open up. Google had responded to queries affirming that they planned to make the URLs clickable and that has been done. Yet, no URLs are shown for definitions derived from multiple websites. The user can click on any of the sources provided at the bottom. Read more at Search Engine Land.
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Google Wants You to Sign In
Apparently, the world’s leading search engine is not content with people simply searching through their home page. Yes, that seems to be the case with Google who have recently hired a Marketing Manager for the exclusive purpose of convincing people to sign in when they are searching. Google’s point of view remains that they can provide a more personalized experience to the users if they are signed in when performing a search.
However, some user groups are already saying that this may be a way for Google to obtain personal information about the users and use it for their own purposes. Read more at Search Engine Land.
Businesses Can Verify Google Maps Listing through Phone
Google Maps is an extensive database of businesses and can help users locate the premises easily. Yet, some businesses have complained that their accurate location is not being shown. Google has taken the initiative to solve that problem by offering phone support for the businesses to have the location verified. What’s surprising is that Google has not announced offering phone support. It was reported by a reader.
One thing is for sure: this would improve Google Local for Businesses. The feature has been notorious for throwing up bugs and other issues. Read more at Search Engine Land.
FTC off Google’s Back
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) had been investigating Google in an antitrust case for the past two years. Google can finally breathe a sigh of relief as the FTC has finally conceded to the company. Though the panel appointed to investigate the company felt there were some bones of contention, they didn’t think they were strong enough for charges to be levied against Google. Google got away with nothing more than a slap on the wrist and has promised to make a few changes to their business practice.
While this is great news for Google, its competitors must be wondering how the company got away scot-free. Google’s dominance and business practices have been under the scanner for a long time now. Lawsuits and other antitrust cases are lodged against Google in the US and across Europe yet it seems to be leading the way in the tech industry. Read more at Search Engine Journal.
New Zealand First to Witness New Facebook Timeline
New Zealand was among the first countries to welcome the New Year and now has become the first country to witness the redesigned Facebook Timeline. Facebook seems to be moving away from their two-column design which had been a feature since the beginning of the website. Timeline hadn’t been accepted warmly by the users when it first came out.
So far, some of the users have been able to try out the new Timeline. In a few days, the new Timeline would be implemented on the business pages as well. The changes will matter as they might help alleviate the resentment towards Timeline shown by Facebook users since it first rolled out. It remains to be seen what happens. Read more at Search Engine Journal.
Useful Posts and Info
Google Webmaster Report for Dec 2012
With the updates made by Google last year, including the infamous Panda and Penguin, life was harder than ever for webmasters. A majority of them failed to recover from the changes, which is reflected in the trends shown in the topics which are part of Google’s Webmaster Report for December 2012. In addition, you will find a number related to Google Search, emphasizing the growing importance of SEO. Read more at Search Engine Roundtable.
Guide for Using New Highlighting Tool
Google provided a new tool for webmasters to use recently, the data highlighter. This was intended to highlight the lines of code which are the most important. However, some of the developers were having a hard time using the highlighting tool. Google has taken it upon themselves to solve the problem and produced a comprehensive troubleshooting guide for it. You can consult the guide for any problems you face while using the highlighter. Read more at Search Engine Roundtable.
Marketing Threads to Die for on Quora
Quora has become the website of choice for people looking to take a break from work or kill some time. The discussion platform is making it easier for people to interact with their peers about the latest marketing trends. If you have time on your hands and could do with useful information about SEO, landing pages and other aspects of online marketing, there are no less than 31 marketing threads you can check out. Read more at Unbounce.
Tips to Evade Duplicating Content
There are few things worse than duplicate content which can affect the results and success of your website’s search engine ranking. The key to this is making sure the content you are using is original and free of duplication. There are issues related to navigation, search engines and even URLs which need to be sorted out to ensure there is no duplication. Read more at EConsultancy.
How Publishers Can Counter Ad Blockers
While the French government has sided with Google in the case of Free’s ad blocker, the fact remains that publishers might not be free to publish ads in the near future. This could mean a significant drop in revenue for them and would affect profitability. There are four main ways in which they can counter the threat of ad blockers, which includes offering paid content, creating their own ads, etc. Read more at EConsultancy.
Websites with Outstanding Responsive Design
For a while now responsive web design has been touted as the way of the future. However, most of the retailers have been slow on the uptake and are not particularly convinced about it. At the same time, there are some websites which have made outstanding use of responsive design, including Burton, King of Nothing and Tattly. There are other examples for commerce websites to follow. Read more at EConsultancy.
What You Can Learn from eCommerce Chats on Twitter
Industry experts have been considering the potential of eCommerce chats for some time now. #Ecomchat became the first website to launch an official eCommerce chat on the social networking site Twitter. Users and businesses both had been using social networks to communicate in the past and a formal chat has only furthered its potential. There have been some drawbacks along the way but there is a lot to learn for you in terms of what you can gain from eCommerce chats on Twitter. Read more at EConsultancy.
Width or Characters: How Google Title Tags Are Measured?
The general assumption in the industry has been that Google title tags are measured by the number of characters they include. However, some experts have highlighted the fact that it is the width of the tag which is taken into account. According to some sources, the prescribed width is 584 pixels, which would come to around 107 characters. But then, Google knows best. Read more at Search Engine Roundtable.
Guide to Being a Successful Blogger
Starting up a blog is not rocket science. Anyone with a computer and an internet connection can do it. What is difficult is constantly updating the blog, posting new content and generally retaining interest. It is not just the reader’s interest which can wane with the passage of time but the blogger’s own. Still, there are some ways a blogger can ensure his/her blog is a success. Read more at SEOmoz.
How to Avoid Being Ghost Banned on Social Networks
Social networks have found a way to let spammers do what they want to do, i.e. create many accounts and spam, while not letting the other users be affected by their activities. This is known as ghost banning but some way or the other, users have been banned as well. They aren’t spamming or anything but their accounts get banned and their activity doesn’t show.
Ghost banning is quite frequent on StumbleUpon, Pinterest and Twitter among other social networks. It is wise to read up on the ways to avoid being ghost banned. Read more at Kissmetrics.
Mobile Spending Makes Up Over 20% of Facebook Ad Revenue
In a recently released infographic, Facebook has revealed that over a fifth of the money they are making from advertising on the website is through mobile users. Among the users who contribute the most through clicking on ads on Facebook are Android users while the iOS consumers aren’t too far behind. In general, mobile ads generate more revenue, with $1.38 per click. In comparison, the average is $0.70 for the desktop ads. You can view the infographic at EConsultancy.