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Showing posts from January, 2018

Daily Search Forum Recap: January 31, 2018

Here is a recap of what happened in the search forums today, through the eyes of the Search Engine Roundtable and other search forums on the web.
Search Engine Roundtable Stories:
Google Gives Details On Featured Snippets & What New Snippets May Come
Google's featured snippets have been one of those areas in search that Google has been investing a lot of time...Google Search Console Can Show Clicks To HTTP After Site Migration To HTTPS
So you moved your site from HTTP to HTTPS, you feel good about it, but for some reason, Google Search Console's Search Analytics report for the old HTTP property is still showing some click data to the old HTTP property...

Bing Ads Solution For Conversion Tracking With Apple's Intelligent Tracking Prevention
Bing announced a new solution to enable tracking across Apple's Safari browser after they implemented Intelligent Tracking Prevention...Google Dance Happening In Tokyo, What About At The GooglePlex?
The past two years, Google broug…

Google Gives Details On Featured Snippets & What New Snippets May Come

Google's featured snippets have been one of those areas in search that Google has been investing a lot of time, resources and money in. It is clearly a space that Google finds to be one of the more important areas of search because (a) they are shown as authoritative answers in the search results, (b) take up a lot of real estate and (c) are the forefront of Google's voice Assistant responses.
Danny Sullivan, in his first blog post at the Google blog, wrote A reintroduction to Googleâs featured snippets - it honestly may be the best written Google blog post in history - of course I am biased about Danny's writing. But more importantly, the blog post, as I explained at Search Engine Land yesterday, is one of the most authoritative and comprehensive explanations of featured snippets ever.


We've covered them in absolute detail and many of the UI changes to them and embarrassing moments over the years.
Let me share what is newish to me from the post, although, I don't…

Google Search Console Can Show Clicks To HTTP After Site Migration To HTTPS

So you moved your site from HTTP to HTTPS, you feel good about it, but for some reason, Google Search Console's Search Analytics report for the old HTTP property is still showing some click data to the old HTTP property. Why? Well, John Mueller said it is normal to show some clicks because some queries can still trigger the HTTP version even if the canonical version is set to HTTPS.
He said this on Twitter, "That can happen in individual cases... Sometimes you can see it by finding the queries that trigger it, even if a https url is the canonical."


That can happen in individual cases... Sometimes you can see it by finding the queries that trigger it, even if a https url is the canonical. — John â.o(â§â-½â¦)o.â (@JohnMu) January 29, 2018 I still see it and we moved this site to HTTPS three and a half years ago and I still see some Search Analytics data in my HTTP Search Console profile:

So this is normal and you probably should every now and then check your HTTP profile…

Bing Ads Solution For Conversion Tracking With Apple's Intelligent Tracking Prevention

Bing announced a new solution to enable tracking across Apple's Safari browser after they implemented Intelligent Tracking Prevention. Bing said "to help ensure that conversions continue to be reported accurately and in full across your Bing Ads campaigns, the auto-tagging of the Microsoft Click ID in ad URLs is now required."
Here Bing Ads will automatically add a unique click IDs to the landing page URLs after a customer clicks your ad. The landing page URL may look something like this: www.contoso.com/?msclkid=123abc, Bing explained.


You can enable the auto-tagging of the Microsoft Click ID on the URL options page of the Shared Library by checking the box, "Add Microsoft Click ID (MSCLIKID) to URLs to allow conversion tracking." This option will be selected by default when creating new conversion goals.
Here is a screenshot:

Ginny Marvin has more details over here.
Forum discussion at Twitter.

PC:SEOROUNDTABLE.COM

Google Dance Happening In Tokyo, What About At The GooglePlex?

The past two years, Google brought back the Google Dance to the SEM community after a long hiatus off. The one in 2016 and 2017 were both huge successes. They also hold these Google Dance events in Tokyo and they will be doing so again this year.
Takeaki Kanaya from Google announced it on Twitter and Gary Illyes translated:
Google Dance Tokyo in Sakura season ð https://t.co/O9GX3FwQ4q â" Gary "鯨ç" Illyes (@methode) January 29, 2018

But will it be coming back to Mountain View, California - the GooglePlex? It is unclear. John Mueller said on Twitter last night that "we're trying some different things this year, there's one lined up for Tokyo though :-)." I am not sure what he means by something different?
We're trying some different things this year, there's one lined up for Tokyo though :-). â" John â.o(â§â-½â¦)o.â (@JohnMu) January 30, 2018 It was such a huge olive branch to see Google invite the SEM community at large to their home.
F…

Greg Finn - The Search Community Honors You

This is part of the say something nice about an SEO/SEM series - feel free to nominate someone over here.
Greg Finn, 36 years old, lives in Western New York with his wife and three year old twins - oh, and a very hairy 8 year old dog named Rogan. I've known Greg for many many years, both through his work as a correspondent at Search Engine Land and from his work within the community as well.
He is extremely giving of his time, always excited and ready to write up a thought provoking and detailed analysis of any search topic you give him. He has a deep inside understanding of how things work in search, both on the paid and organic side. The best part, is he a solid, caring and good person who will do anything to help someone else.


I honestly don't get excited to read much content we have in our space but when Greg writes something, I know I will always get something new out of it. So I love his writing and his perspective on search.
Oh, I also need to thank him for being the on…

How Do Ride A Google Bike

PC:SEOROUNDTABLE.COM

Daily Search Forum Recap: January 30, 2018

Here is a recap of what happened in the search forums today, through the eyes of the Search Engine Roundtable and other search forums on the web.
Search Engine Roundtable Stories:
Google: You Can Target & Rank For Two Keywords On A Single Page
The topic of optimizing for one keyword phrase over multiple is nothing new, we covered it in 2005 and probably more times since then...Google: Our Search Algorithms Don't Try To Figure Out Reading Levels
I'll be honest, John Mueller of Google has confused me on this one... In a hangout from the other day at the 30:41 mark into the video, someone asked John about how Google grades or calculates the quality of the content around things like reading level...

Google AdWords Extensions: Email Reply Time & Average Delivery Time
Matthew Umbro shared on Twitter a new Google AdWords extension last week that the PPC community thinks is another form of an automated AdWords ad extension. He showed the AdWords ad showing in the snippet or ad c…

Google: You Can Target & Rank For Two Keywords On A Single Page

The topic of optimizing for one keyword phrase over multiple is nothing new, we covered it in 2005 and probably more times since then. Can you optimize a single page for more than one keyword phrase?
Well, Google's Aaseesh Marina said in a Google Webmaster Help thread that it is technically possible.
Question asked: "I want to target 2 keywords on a single page. Is this a good idea or should I create two different pages to target both of the websites?"


Answer by Aaseesh: "If the content on the page is relevant for both the keywords, then I don't see an issue. Make sure the content is providing useful information to user queries around those keywords."
I guess if the keyword phrases are somewhat related it makes sense but to target [medical billing software] and then [flower delivery services] on the same page seems like a bad SEO strategy.
Forum discussion at Google Webmaster Help.

PC:SEOROUNDTABLE.COM

Google: Our Search Algorithms Don't Try To Figure Out Reading Levels

I'll be honest, John Mueller of Google has confused me on this one... In a hangout from the other day at the 30:41 mark into the video, someone asked John about how Google grades or calculates the quality of the content around things like reading level. In John's answer, he kind of flipped flopped back and forth and danced around the concept of scoring reading levels and how it impacts the rankings of web pages.
What I think he is saying, and I'll post the video and transcript below, is that sometimes having a super high reading level is not always the best thing for your content. This is because if you have super scientific or technical terms and the average reader has no clue what it means, how is that going to help you rank for what the average user is searching for. On the most basic level, if someone wants their site to rank better in Google but never heard of SEO, maybe you want to have a page about ranking higher in Google and try to rank for that phrase over the t…

Google AdWords Extensions: Email Reply Time & Average Delivery Time

Matthew Umbro shared on Twitter a new Google AdWords extension last week that the PPC community thinks is another form of an automated AdWords ad extension. He showed the AdWords ad showing in the snippet or ad copy "email reply time 3 hours." When I tried replicating it for the same ad on desktop, I got one that said "average delivery time: 1-4 days."


Here are screen shots:


Don't you just love automation and potentially machine learning at its best?
Forum discussion at Twitter.

PC:SEOROUNDTABLE.COM

You're Invited To The GooglePlex To Participate In A Google Hangout With John Mueller

Every now and then, John Mueller of Google opens up his Google webmaster hangout sessions to SEOs and webmasters who want to join him in person for the event. He has done so a fewtimes at the Google headquarters in Mountain View, California, and he did it at least once in Zurich.
Well, Thursday, at 4pm local time, he will be doing another one at the mothership in Mountain View, California and has invited you all to join him. Of course, you need to coordinate with John how to get in, so make sure to reach out to John to get a pass to get into Google and join him for the hangout.


John said:
For next week's office-hours hangout I'll be in Mountain View -- if you'd like to join in person (in the room), drop me a note here :). Thursday, Feb 1, 4pm. See you then!https://t.co/D25nSTe8KD — John â.o(â§â-½â¦)o.â (@JohnMu) January 26, 2018 He also reminded folks about it:
If you'd like to join the office-hours hangout in person this Thursday in Mountain View CA, let me know! ht…

Susan Wenograd - The Search Community Honors You

This is part of the say something nice about an SEO/SEM series - feel free to nominate someone over here.
Susan Wenograd, 38 years old, lives in Richmond, Virginia with her supportive husband Steve and 2.5 year old firecracker of a daughter named Sadie. Susan has been deeply involved in the SEM community since 2007 and before that focused on e-commerce.
She is a speaker and columnist, who speaks at industry events and company events including SMX, Pubcon, Digital Summit series, brightonSEO, PPC HeroConf, State of Search and other events. She also contributes a lot of her knowledge on industry web sites like Marketing Land, Search Engine Land, Search Engine Journal and much more. It is not just limited to paid search topics but also social media paid ads, including Facebook ads.


She even participates in Twitter chats and of course, from what I hear, has helped so many individuals in our space without asking for anything in return!
Akvile DeFazio nominated her and wrote:
Our industry is…

Google Hanging Cocoon Hammocks

PC:SEOROUNDTABLE.COM

Daily Search Forum Recap: January 29, 2018

Here is a recap of what happened in the search forums today, through the eyes of the Search Engine Roundtable and other search forums on the web.
Search Engine Roundtable Stories:
More Google Search Algorithm Updates Going On Now?
Over the past several days, people have been moaning about ranking and organic search changes in the SEO communities. The most public one is WebmasterWorld, but the overall "chatter," as I like to call it...Google Bulletin - Testing Hyper Local Stories & News
Hyper local news and stories is nothing new, there have been many platforms that tried it out or are currently live that try to bring really local news stories more...

Google Won't Tell You Who Jesus or Muhammad Are Out Of Respect
Before the weekend the internet began questioning why Google Home, Google Assistant or Google search would not give you the answer to [who is jesus]...New Google Search Liaison Twitter Account From Danny Sullivan
Danny Sullivan, now at Google, is Google's S…

More Google Search Algorithm Updates Going On Now?

Over the past several days, people have been moaning about ranking and organic search changes in the SEO communities. The most public one is WebmasterWorld, but the overall "chatter," as I like to call it, has been somewhat slow and limited. I am sure some webmasters and SEOs have seen significant changes in their rankings over the past week - as you all tell me, Google is updating several times a day. But I do not personally believe these are massive or largish algorithmic updates with Google as a whole.
I do feel I should bring awareness to it, as I have been following them for the past five days or so and the chatter, although limited, is still there. So go check your rankings, your organic search referral traffic and dig in.


Here are some of the comments from WebmasterWorld starting on January 23rd, last Tuesday evening and thoughout the next several days:
Anyone seeing another bump or drop in traffic yesterday / today?
We are up 15% today. Yesterday ended 12% up. We&#…

Google Bulletin - Testing Hyper Local Stories & News

Hyper local news and stories is nothing new, there have been many platforms that tried it out or are currently live that try to bring really local news stories more awareness to the greater public or just to those in those local areas. The oldest examples of this are the local newspapers and maybe the local cable news channels. But there are newer styles that give people apps to do the news from their front porch.
Google is taking a stab at it with what they are calling Google Bulletin. Google describes it:
Bulletin is an app for contributing hyperlocal stories about your community, for your community, right from your phone. Bulletin makes it effortless to put a spotlight on inspiring stories that arenât being told.

Anyone can contribute if they are accepted into this, but right now, it is a beta in Nashville and Oakland.
Impactful: Bulletin helps you tell the stories that arenât being toldOpen: Bulletin stories are public and easy to discover: on Google search, through social network…

Google Won't Tell You Who Jesus or Muhammad Are Out Of Respect

Before the weekend the internet began questioning why Google Home, Google Assistant or Google search would not give you the answer to [who is jesus]. It actually blew up a bit, so much so, Google had to respond and explain the reason was because Google responds often with featured snippets or Wikipedia and featured snippets and Wikipedia can sometimes be vandalized and thus, Google can get in trouble by reading the wrong answer from the web.
Google posted their official response on the new SearchLiaison account over here saying:


The reason the Google Assistant didn't respond with information about "Who is Jesus" or "Who is Jesus Christ" wasn't out of disrespect but instead to ensure respect. Some of the Assistant's spoken resources come from the web and for certain topics, this content can be more vulnerable to vandalism and spam. If our systems detect such circumstances, the Assistant might not reply. If similar vulnerabilities were detected for other…

New Google Search Liaison Twitter Account From Danny Sullivan

Danny Sullivan, now at Google, is Google's Search Liaison and has created a new Twitter account @searchliaison for official Google communication explaining how Google works.
Danny explained that if you dislike his Starwars tweets or personal tweets and just want the Google stuff, go there. It will just be Google facing tweets on the @searchliaison account.
I'll retweet here anything I share there. I'll also likely do follow-up replies from this account. Plus, I'll still be sharing some minor things here. But larger issue stuff, @searchliaison will have the updates. — Danny Sullivan (@dannysullivan) January 26, 2018

I think this makes a lot of sense and glad Danny did that. Of course, I am sure, as he said, he will be sharing stuff about Google on his personal account.
The description of the new Google Twitter account reads "Official tweets from Google's public liaison of search, @dannysullivan, sharing insights on how Google search works."
Hat tip to Mic…

Google Search Console Team Wants To Know Which Reports You Are Missing Most

We have been covering the Google Search Console a lot since the roll out of the new beta version. The theme I keep seeing come up time and time again is that the new version is missing too many reports, which doesn't make it worthwhile using.
Honestly, that response bugs me. Google has said they are going to migrate reports over, and this is just a beta. So give it time. Google also is not removing access to the current/old Search Console, so you can use both reporting tools. The new beta gives you a different way to access similar reports and new and unique ways to understand and act on that data. It has a huge benefit, as does the old tool.


Now, Google posted a survey asking webmasters, SEOs, etc to let them know which reports you "need most" to be migrated from the old Search Console to the new one. The options currently include:
Structured DataRich CardsData HighlighterHTML ImprovementsAccelerated Mobile Pages reportLinks to Your SiteInternal LinksManual ActionsInter…

Google Tests White Local Knowledge Panel Design

Google is testing yet another variation of the local knowledge panel, this one is making the blue background color - white. Sergey Alakov posted about it on Twitter and shared screen shots of the white look.
There is zero functionality difference, the only difference between the two is the blue versus the white background. Here they are:
BLUE:



WHITE (this is the test):

The blue is actually easier read and use, in my opinion.
Forum discussion at Twitter.

PC:SEOROUNDTABLE.COM

Simon Heseltine - The Search Community Honors You

This is part of the say something nice about an SEO/SEM series - feel free to nominate someone over here.
Simon Heseltine, 46 years old, lives in Norfolk, Virginia with his family. Simon has been in the SEO space for over a decade and during that time has been very gracious with sharing his experience and knowledge with his peers.
He speaks at industry conferences, writes really useful and thought provoking articles and shares a lot on Twitter and social media. He spent time on the board of SEMPO back in the day. He also worked HP as an SEO and now is the VP of Search at ForRent.com. He is a kind and giving man who loves to see others succeed and do well in their lives.


Kristine Schachinger nominated Simon and wrote:
Simon does much of what he does in a low key manner, not much fanfare or notice, but he is always so very generous to others in the community of which he gets little public recognition.
Whether in referring clients he cannot take to lower profile SEOs who might not norma…

New Googlers Still Get Pinwheels

PC:SEOROUNDTABLE.COM

Daily Search Forum Recap: January 26, 2018

Here is a recap of what happened in the search forums today, through the eyes of the Search Engine Roundtable and other search forums on the web.
Search Engine Roundtable Stories:
Search Buzz Video Recap: Google Search Console Live, SEO & Google Fight & New AdWords & AdSense Features
This week in search, we reported that the Google Search Console beta is now live for everyone. Also...Google AdWords Adds Remarketing Ad Settings & Mute Ads Additions
Google announced they are adding two new features to help searchers and users see less ads they don't want to see. Google announced "more additions to Ads Settings and Mute This Ad to give you more control to mute the ads you see on Google, on websites...

Google: Vacation Rental Test Does Not Change Google My Business Guidelines
Several months ago, we covered how Google was testing vacation rentals in the Google Maps and local results. So when I saw Allyson Wright, the Community Manager at Google My Business mention it…

Search Buzz Video Recap: Google Search Console Live, SEO & Google Fight & New AdWords & AdSense Features

This week in search, we reported that the Google Search Console beta is now live for everyone. Also, SEOs and Google got in a fight about subdirectories versus subfolders. Googleâs remove URL report in Search Console had a reporting issue. Googleâs John Mueller dished out some heavy SEO advice to one webmaster. Google also said they donât use GPS coordinates in search rankings. Google said when you translate your page content, make sure to do so also for the alternative image attribute text. Stone Temple came out with Actions on Google for Google Assistant SEO related questions. Google launched a sub carousel for people also search for. Google My Business now has video uploads working properly. Google vacation rentals test does not mean they have changed their Google My Business guidelines. Google AdSense in-feed ads now uses machine learning to match your site design. Google AdWords launched new features to hide more ads. Googleâs Chrome User Experience report now can drill into reg…

Google AdWords Adds Remarketing Ad Settings & Mute Ads Additions

Google announced they are adding two new features to help searchers and users see less ads they don't want to see. Google announced "more additions to Ads Settings and Mute This Ad to give you more control to mute the ads you see on Google, on websites, and in apps."
The first example is stopping showing those ads that track you around the web, retargeting or remarketing ads, when you are no longer interested. So you visit a web site to buy a new pen, and then you see ads for pens all over the web sites you visit for the next month or so - but you already bought the pen - you don't need a new pen. You can now stop those ads from showing.


You can now mute the reminder ads in apps and on websites that show these ads where they are powered by Google:

Here is how to do that.
Google also added two more features to the Mute This Ad option:
(1) It will now recognize your feedback on any device where you are signed in to your Google Account, based on your account settings.


Google: Vacation Rental Test Does Not Change Google My Business Guidelines

Several months ago, we covered how Google was testing vacation rentals in the Google Maps and local results. So when I saw Allyson Wright, the Community Manager at Google My Business mention it yesterday in a Google My Business Help thread, I was a bit confused.
She basically said that some folks were talking about it and that this is just a "pilot," a test, and it has no impact on the Google My Business guidelines. Those guidelines are unchanged. I suspect people are upset about this line in the guidelines about ineligible businesses for Google My Business listings include "rental or for-sale properties, such as vacation homes, model homes or vacant apartments. Sales or leasing offices, however, are eligible for verification."


Allyson wrote:
As some of you may have noticed, we are running a pilot to test vacation rentals on Google. As part of this pilot, we're surfacing a limited number of listings across a handful of selected regions
We want to clarify that…

David Harry - The Search Community Honors You

This is part of the say something nice about an SEO/SEM series - feel free to nominate someone over here.
David Harry, 51 years old lives in a small town named Millbrook, in Ontario, Canada with his family consisting of a daughter and son and his wife, Tanya, who is also his business partner. David is well known in the community for his SEO Dojo site, podcasts, hangouts, videos, content and much more. David is also thought of as a "cool dude" who is super kind, generous and caring.
He has been doing the SEO thing since before most of us even started using a web browser. He is really smart, knows the in and outs on the technical side and knows more about how search works than most people in our industry. I have always been a David Harry fan and it is my honor to write this for him.


David got three nominations including;
Donna Cavalier who wrote:
I remember him as the coolest of the cool. Loved his SEO Dojo, the podcasts, and so much other great stuff. Barry Adams wrote:
When …

Google's Brain Surgery & Neurology Doodle For Wilder Penfield

Today on Google's home page is a special brain Google Doodle for the 127th birthday of the neurosurgeon, Wilder Penfield. Wilder Penfield was a pioneer in the space, being the first to map some of the functions of various regions of the brain. Hence the Doodle which shows a brain, eyes and understanding the look and smell of burnt toast to a region in the brain.
Wilder was born in Spokane, Washington on January 26, 1891 and died in Montreal, Canada on April 5, 1976 at the age of 85. He was an American-Canadian and was known as "the greatest living Canadian" for a period of time.


He was known for prompting memory recall during surgery via temporal lobe stimulation, treatment of epilepsy by surgery, the Montreal procedure and the Penfield dissector, amongst other things. He received Guggenheim Fellowship for Natural Sciences, US & Canada and other awards.
Google explained the Doodle depicts the the Montreal Procedure, which led to a greater discovery: stimulating cert…