Category: SEO

Organic Search Growth Reaches 2-Year High [Report]

For some years now, the term organic search has been on the tip of the tongue of just about every webmaster. Organic search has become a headache in many aspects, and declining growth meant that some webmasters were happy to look for other channels.

According to Merkle’s Digital Marketing Report for the fourth quarter of 2017, you should avoid being gloomy when it comes to organic search. Why? Because organic search growth has hit a 2-year high in terms of volume. That’s a massive growth, with a growth of around 15% year-to-year on the mobile market mainly.

With this becoming more and more important, it’s vital that your business does not keep looking the other way when it comes to fully understanding and comprehending the importance of organic search currently.

With 56% of all organic site visits via Google in Q4 2017, too, it’s safe to say that organic searches are back – and in a big day. It’s not just on Google, either – Yahoo seen around 18% of its searches come from mobile organic searches. This is more than just a fad; it’s a sign of a major cultural change in how we deal with our searches on the web.

Rapid Rate of Organic Search Growth

With an 8% growth rate year-over-year in 2017’ Q4, this is a very interesting topic of discussion. While the overall share of site visits being produced by mobile search was actually down a little, the mobile platform is growing all the time and shows no signs of slowing down.

Social media, e-mail and display advertising all grew in the fourth quarter, too, delivering a strong end to what was a rather turbulent year for some in advertising and marketing.

At the time of writing, this report shines a very positive light on the growth of organic search. If you have been ignoring this platform, then it might be time to make a change and focus on bringing this to your marketing channel again.

Source: Merkle, Inc.

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Non-HTTPS Sites to be Marked as Not Secure in July 2018

Come July 2018, ALL websites without HTTPS security will become marked as Not Secure on Google Chrome. This is bound to help make a major change to the way that people perceive a website.

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5 Insights How Google Rank Websites

For example, Google looks to try and solve problems and make searches solve as many problems as it can. No matter what Google changes they always stick to the following fundamentals. Each of these key factors play a role in how a website is ranked.

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Restaurant Owners Can Edit Menu Listings Now in Google My Business

This latest announcement from Google My Business is a major coup for the restaurant owners out there ripping their hair out at menu mistakes. Now, you should be much more likely to put together a full restaurant list with your menus easy to edit and adjust as you had intended.

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Google: You Can Target and Rank for Two Keywords on One Page

While in the past you could rank with impunity, today most pages go for one particular keyword to rank for. While that is still a good strategy, it turns out that you can rank for two keywords on one page without penalties.

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Google Issues Comprehensive Guide to Featured Snippets

You should be able to easily learn to understand the more detailed side of the said snippets. With the main reason for their development arguably due to mobile search and voice-activated searches, there’s much to be understood about this important new feature.

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Google to Use Page Speed as Ranking Signal in Mobile Search

Named quite sensibly as the “Speed Update”, this is going to play a major role in helping to make Google even more involved with page rankings.

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Google My Business Video Upload Available Now to Business Owners

For some time now, users of Google My Business have wanted to have access to video content. We all know the unique and impressive power that video media can have when marketing a business. So, the latest announcement from Google My Business team member Allyson Wright is one to be celebrated.

With so many people requesting that the feature be installed, this is now finished being tested and implemented. This landmark new feature will be one to use for any business wanting to use video to help advertise their products and services. According to Allyson, users will be able to:

view videos added by customers and upload videos about their business for customers to view,

This is a major improvement to the system and should go some way to helping give websites with media marketing an opportunity to showcase their quality offering. With videos capped at 30 seconds in length, it’s important that Google My Business users appreciate these limitations.

Indeed, it can also take up to 24-hours for a video to appear once it has been put up online. Don’t expect the upload to happen immediately.

We know that videos will be able to easily be grouped together under the Videos tab. This will make it easy for viewers and users to help find the content that they need as soon as possible. Also, this is not only just for the business itself – but also for the customer.

Customer uploaded videos will come under “Customer” tabs, while Merchant uploaded content will come under the “Owner” tab. Anyone who is looking to utilize Google My Business for promotion and reputation management should find these useful new features very impressive.

If you are interested in making your business work better, faster and smarter then Google My Business is essential. As a marketing tool, the use of videos could play a major role in helping to improve the way in which your business operates and markets itself moving forward.

Of course, with this new feature also comes some new features of moderation. For example, merchants will be able to flag inappropriate content through the dashboard. This will make it easy for those who come across videos that don’t fit the narrative or are incorrect/offensive to have them taken down.

Google My Business: How to Upload Video

To add a video to your Google My Business page, you just need to:

  1. Log in and go to Google My Business dashboard.
  2. From the dashboard, you can visit the Photos > Video link to begin adding video content.
  3. Simply select the video that you would like to upload and hit Post Video.
  4. If you have an existing video already, just click the Plus (+) sign on the upper right corner.

Simple, right?

Source: Search Engine Land

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Google Showing Third-Party Reviews in Local Results Again

When it comes to looking for local venues and locations to try out, we often turn to Google. Thanks to the power of Google’s local search functions, it’s easy to quickly look at what people make of local landmarks.

Since 2016, however, there has been a rather interesting quirk taking place across the Google platform: third-party reviews are appearing on the Knowledge Graph for local venues. An entirely opt-in process, it’s been quite an interesting point to notice.

This has been happening due to Google having direct relations with third party review sources. In the past, Google got hit for doing this without permission. Yelp and Google wound up in a bit of an argument over this, as they felt that it was an anti-trust move from the search engine. By incorporating third-party reviews into Google Places, it was causing alarm.

Indeed, during the 2012 anti-trust settlement that Google had with the FTC, Google was forced to settle on an agreement to keep this kind of content out of search offerings. It would still appear in the normal web result, but these results wouldn’t appear on the right-hand side as they have in the past. The FTC stated that:

Google also has promised to provide all websites the option to keep their content out of Google’s vertical search offerings, while still having them appear in Google’s general, or “organic”, web search results.

The FTC investigated allegations that Google misappropriated content, such as user reviews and star ratings, from competing websites in order to improve its own vertical offerings, such as Google Local and Google Shopping.

This settlement just ran out at the end of 2017 and has become another major talking point in the search industry. With review programs meaning that Google works directly with publishers to include their own content, there are concerns that this might start to spread into other hospitality industries.

At the moment the issues are mainly being noticed in industries such as hotels. That might change in the future, though. With these reviews being integrated in the way they presently are, we expect this battle to continue on for some time. What this means for other industries is yet to be seen, but any business that is having issues with this might wish to contact their webmaster or developer.

This is an issue that, without intervention, will continue. If you don’t want third-party reviews scraped in with reviews left on your own content, you should look to finding a solution with your webmaster.

Such an issue has been ongoing for some time, and it’s something that you need to act upon if you wish to correct it.

Source: Search Engine Land

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Maccabees Update: Google Confirms New Core Algorithm Changes

As everyone knows, Google has a habit of changing search engine algorithms. Not only does the site like to keep pages on their toes to avoid long-term dominance, it loves change. These latest changes are known merely as “Fred” to people – or the Maccabees Update. This major update is a massive part of the Google algorithm adjustments and will determine how SEO works for the long-term.

While the changes are being advertised a “minor”, many of them could make quite a fundamental difference. As part of their development to keep SEO fresh and to keep improving rankings, this latest adjustment confirms that change is coming.

However, don’t mistake the “Fred” update to be a singular entity. Unlike other changes in the past, this is a small collection of minor updates which, together, will make something major possible in the future. These are more minor changes that will have a lasting effect – in a good way.

This latest update adds a whole new number of small but significant changes to the search engines. Search marketers and digital marketers should pay attention; it could cause you problems if you don’t.

Maccabees Update: What’s Changing at Google?

So, as part of this new update – which we will call “Fred” – users can enjoy some very important changes to the way that they work. One of the biggest industries to be feeling the pinch at this moment in time is the affiliate industry.

Much change has taken place to the industry over the years. It’s an industry rife with competition and people using all manner of methods to ‘win’ ahead of other affiliates.

Affiliate sites are now seeing large drops in traffic, especially if they aren’t optimized to meet up with the new changes quickly. Meanwhile, e-commerce and ‘standard’ websites aren’t quite suffering to the same level as they would have been expected to.

The aim is to make search engine results more relevant, more organic and less forced. Sadly, there’s still not a great amount of detail known about the changes and how they will limit performance. In time, that may change as Google finalizes the adjustments that they have made to the Maccabees Update.

One of the most common changes in recent years has been the change to mobile-first index. While there’s no real proof to show this yet, with many mobile-friendly sites not seeing a big change in traffic, it’s certainly worth noting.

Since many of the changes seem to be affecting affiliates and not shoppers, we can assume that this has something to do with changes to how shopping-based sites are being managed. While many affiliates are still ranking without issue, it appears that excessive and aggressive linking is being clamped down on.

It’s become commonplace in the affiliate industry to use this linking strategy, so it may be the most common and prominent reason for the changes. We’ll provide more information about the Maccabees Update as it becomes clear what Google has specifically changed.

Source: Search Engine Journal

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