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Showing posts from May 22, 2018

What negative SEO is and is not

Today we are starting a six-part series on Negative SEO. The series will be broken into three areas and will show how negative search engine optimization (SEO) has an effect on links, content and user signals.DefinitionsPositive SEO under this broader view would be any tactic performed with the intent to positively impact rankings for a uniform resource locator (URL), and possibly its host domain, by manipulating a variable within the links, content or user signals areas.Negative SEO would be any tactic performed with the intent to negatively impact rankings for a URL, and possibly its host domain, by manipulating a variable within the links, content or user signal buckets.But Google says negative SEO isn’t realUnfortunately, Google isn’t being entirely honest here.If you can accidentally hurt your rankings by shifting a variable, then it would logically suggest that an external entity shifting that same variable associated with your site could result in a ranking decrease or outright…

Ask the SMXpert: SEO markup and structured data

The Ask the SMXpert series continues the question and answer (Q&A) segment held during sessions at Search Marketing Expo (SMX) West 2018.Today’s Q&A is from the Successful SEO Using Markup & Structured Data session with Alexis Sanders. With an introduction from moderator Chris Sherman.Chris ShermanAt first glance, using markup and structured data can seem intimidating. There’s a lot of jargon to understand, and even making a small error with punctuation can lead to unintended or even disastrous consequences.But as Alexis demonstrated at SMX West, succeeding with structured data needn’t cause ulcers, and can even be fun when approached with the right attitude. In this question and answer (Q&A), Alexis offers solid technical advice with straightforward answers and pointers for finding additional resources.Alexis SandersQuestion: Do you recommend implementing microdata over JSON-LD for e-commerce sites?Alexis: In terms of Google, no. Either [will] suffice — whatever is ea…

Microsoft acquires Semantic Machines, signaling a deeper move into ‘conversational AI’

With the recent acquisition of Semantic Machines, Microsoft is bolstering its commitment to conversational artificial intelligence (AI). David Ku, Microsoft corporate vice president and chief technology officer for AI and research, announced the news on Monday.Microsoft says that the Berkeley-based technology company has created a “revolutionary” new approach to building AI.With this move, Microsoft underscores its dedication to being on the leading edge of conversational AI and commitment to Cortana, its struggling-for-market-recognition voice assistant product, and other conversational products and platforms.[Read the full article on MarTech Today.]The post Microsoft acquires Semantic Machines, signaling a deeper move into ‘conversational AI’ appeared first on Marketing Land.

via Marketing Land

How to survive Google’s new local search world

Last month, I attended the Local Search Association’s 2018 annual conference (LSA18) and was overwhelmed at the helpful information shared by the experts who spoke. I’d like to share some key takeaways and offer some insights of my own on local search.Local search must adjustOne of the main themes discussed centered around the fact that Google search today is less about displaying organic web page results and more about featuring Google products.A typical query in Google search may bring back an abundance of Google-owned properties:Paid listings and ads.Knowledge panel.Review carousel.Local pack.News carousel.Images carousel.Research carousel.Refine by brand carousel non-Google SERP features.E-commerce URLs.Review URLs.We are seeing result pages where Google features occupied virtually the entire page and organic web page results were barely visible.The impact is clear: More and more information resides on Google’s servers instead of on the web itself. Google “curates” the vast majori…

Read This Before You Buy Any Udemy Course

Looking to learn coding this summer? Well, there are plenty of free resources on the Internet to quickly get you started but if you prefer proper instructor-led video courses, go with Udemy. If you are new here, Udemy is an online marketplace where you’ll find courses on everything from calligraphy to photography to programming.I’ve purchased more than two dozen Udemy courses around web development from different instructors – the list includes courses on React, Redux, JavaScript, Node.js, ES6, Express, Webpack, Firebase, TypeScript – and have been really impressed with the overall quality of the training content. You pay a one-time fee for any course and, unlike Pluralsight or Lynda LinkedIn Learning that charge a monthly subscription, your Udemy course will be yours forever.Most video courses on Udemy are priced between $20 and $200 but before you key in the credit card, ready this.Avoid Impulse BuyingUdemy offers massive discounts almost every week and the $150 course you are looki…

Six Google Shopping opportunities you may be overlooking

As of Q1 2018, Google Shopping ads drove 76.4 percent of retail search ad spend, eclipsing text ads in markets around the world. As these Product Listing Ads (PLAs) become more competitive, the question becomes how to maximize ROI without simply piling on budget.The answer is competitive search intelligence: understanding where your spend will have the most impact, identifying your strengths and your competition’s weaknesses, discovering hidden (and cost-effective) opportunities and eliminating waste.With a comprehensive competitive analysis across categories, devices and ad types, search marketers can get a complete picture of their share of clicks vs. competition across the search market, including PLA. With that information, you can finesse your approach to focus spend on the most lucrative opportunities, not to mention knowing what your competitors are doing at any given time.The fact is, for many retailers, even a small increase in CTR can mean a huge uptick in revenue, so findin…

A review of the payday loans algorithm in 2018

For several years, the search term ‘payday loans’ has regularly attracted more than 200,000 searches per month on Whether providing loans or generating leads, the payday loans industry has notoriously been big business and at its peak, was estimated to be worth around £2 billion per year.Because of this, the top positions on Google’s SERPs for ‘payday loans’ have been a hugely lucrative and sought-after search term; and subsequently was dominated by SEO professionals using massive manipulation to hack their way to the top of the search results.Until 2013, page one for payday loans barely listed a real payday loan company. Instead, the listings were made up of ‘hacked sites’ including bicycle sales, women’s magazine and frankly, just random domain names that once clicked on redirected to a dubious data capture form.Introducing the payday loans algorithmWith customer data at risk and a mountain of complaints from UK consumers (and similar results in the US), Google reacted…

Technical considerations before purchasing a commerce platform

Choosing a commerce platform is one of the most crucial and important decisions you’ll make in the early life of your business. There are a number of factors to consider before purchasing a commerce platform – in fact, the choices are endless. But what’s really important? Here are some of the key considerations.The product catalogueYour product catalogue is technically a reservoir for every item you sell. Its role is to promote the items you want to push and simultaneously help your customers find the items they are looking for with ease.A poorly constructed product catalogue can be rigid and uncompromising, especially if the product attributes you want to store don’t naturally align with the definitions set in your commerce application.Some commerce platforms charge based on the number of products on your platform. Depending on the requirements of the ecommerce marketplace, you can choose accordingly.In the case of a multivendor ecommerce marketplace, the product list can easily grow…

Marketing Day: YouTube Music, B2B influencer marketing & Microsoft Audience Network

Here’s our recap of what happened in online marketing today, as reported on Marketing Land and other places across the web.From Marketing Land:YouTube’s new streaming music service to start rolling out this week
May 21, 2018 by Amy Gesenhues
YouTube Music will include skippable and non-skippable in-stream ads.60 Minutes segment: Google is a monopoly without question
May 21, 2018 by Greg Sterling
The segment promotes an image of the company as thuggish and market-manipulating.Buy vs. Develop It Yourself: Considerations for Scaling Your Ad Network
May 21, 2018 by Digital Marketing Depot
The question of whether to buy a performance marketing platform or develop core capabilities in-house is central to every ad network. For network owners and CTOs, who are under constant pressure to deliver innovation and revenue, it’s a decision with direct impact on short- and long-term business growth.2018: The year of influencer marketing for B2B brands
May 21, 2018 by Michael Brito
Think influencer m…

YouTube’s new streaming music service to start rolling out this week

Starting Tuesday, YouTube will be rolling out its YouTube Music platform, the site’s new streaming music service. According to the announcement, there will be a Premium ad-free version that will cost $9.99 per month and include background listening and downloads.The free version of YouTube Music will have TrueView skippable ads as well as non-skippable ads running in-stream. Google says there are no plans at the moment for any specialty ad products specific to the new streaming platform.YouTube says its new streaming service will offer “… official songs, albums, thousands of playlists and artist radio, plus YouTube’s tremendous catalog of remixes, live performances, covers and music videos… all simply organized and personalized.” It will also come with a new mobile app and new desktop player designed specifically for the music-listening experience. YouTube says the new home screen “dynamically adapts” to a user’s listening history, location and activity to provide recommendations.In a…

60 Minutes segment: Google is a monopoly without question

In last night’s widely anticipated “60 Minutes” segment on Google, the program asks, “How Did Google Get So Big?” The answer the interviewees generally give is: by engaging in illegal manipulation of search results in an effort to defeat competitors and promote its own content.One of the interviewees, Google critic and antitrust lawyer Gary Reback, argues that Google is a monopoly without question. He says during the segment that the company has a “mind-boggling degree of control over our entire society.”Yelp’s Jeremy Stoppelman is another featured interviewee who gives journalist Steve Kroft a tour through Google’s local search results. Stoppelman argues that if you’re seen as competitive by Google the company “will snuff you out.” He also contends that in the current climate, it wouldn’t be possible today to build Yelp.The segment also features a discussion with European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager, who asserts Europe’s unequivocal position that Google has engaged in…