Here it is, your Big Picture for April 8…all the search and social news that’s been bouncing around the Anvil offices this week!
- Google AdWords and the New +1 – With their ultimate intentions for the new feature a little unclear, will Google’s +1 recommendations have a bigger impact on the paid side than the organic side?
- Use the AdWords Dashboard – A tour of, and some tips for customizing, the redesigned AdWords dashboard.
- Google Shuts Down Position Preference for AdWords Bidding – Google’s official line is that they want to “dissuade advertisers from putting an emphasis on the position of their ads,” but you can still use the new Automate tool to achieve the same (or better) results.
- Understanding the Average Position Metric – Managing average position can be tricky, and even trickier to explain; this post from Google offers some guidelines for interpreting the metric and how to respond sensibly to the data.
- Google Page Speed Ratings One Year Later: News Sites Range from Up 27% to Down 73% – It looks like many news sites are responding to the role that site speed plays a role in SEO. The leads being The Economist, BBC UK and Newsweek – all of which have seen over 15% improvements.
- Google Analytics Tracking Code Improvements – New improvements have automatically been pushed out to clients using Google’s asynchronous tracking code that allows for more accurate data tracking when a site has long URLs & long event tracking parameters.
- Four Web Analytics guru’s discuss key trends for 2011 – Thoughts from some of the biggest names in web analytics – companies are struggling still with social media measurement (are my social media activities providing value?), marketing integration (social vs. online vs. offline) and “do not track” initiatives.
- Detailed Instruction on setting up Events as Goals in GA – Walk through setting up event tracking as a goal for Google Analytics. Reminder: use event tracking for tracking downloads, interaction with flash or video elements, how long a video was watched & more.
- Can Likes, Pluses & Tweets Cleanse the Link Graph? – Read about how simple clicks like the new Google +1 will affect your link development efforts.
- How to Undermine your Link Building – Get information on what type of link building strategies and tactics can’t have a negative impact on your link profile.
- Twitter considering Facebook style pages for businesses – It’s not official yet, but Twitter’s addition of business pages could offer competition to Facebook.
Local Search Engine Optimization
- Local Search and the Art of Title Tags – Website title tags are now playing a bigger role in local search rankings since the O-pack was introduced last October. Local businesses may consider a test using NAP (Name, Address, Phone) in the title tag.
- Google Adding Local Product Data to Place Pages – Now when you do a product search Google will show you local store availability — mostly at large retail chains.
- Which Test Won? – An Australian company tests two vastly different homepages, one with sales copy, and one with search by location functionality.
- Ecommerce Sales on Track for Healthy Growth – Overall projected growth rates for retail ecommerce sales in 2011 is 7% lower than growth rates from 2010, however total online sales will reach $188 billion in 2011. Mobile and social commerce in addition to daily deal sites are the main factors in future growth.
- eCommerce Steps on the Gas – MasterCard SpendingPluse reported the 5th month of double digit growth for online retail sales, increasing 16.1% in March compared to 2010. High gas prices could be contributing to recent growth increases for online retail sales, noting online sales are growing faster than brick and mortar sales.
- Top Lead Scoring Factors – This survey outlines the top lead scoring factors (or triggers) used by B2B online marketers in their lead generation activities. Simply providing basic contact information in exchange for a download is the top factor, while some companies also use the potential deal size and position in an organization as a factor as well.
- Most Effective B2B Social Media Avenues – Although Twitter and Facebook can work for B2B companies, LinkedIn has come out on top as being by far the best performing social media network. In general, social media participation is finally becoming commonplace for B2B companies.
- Android Continues to Grow at Rapid Pace – Android still growing fast, while RIM continues their steady decline, and Apple remains flat.
- Best Practices for Using Push Notifications – From our friends at Urban Airship: 1) Get Users to Opt-In; 2) Determine the Right Amount of Push; 3) Track Engagement.
- 6 Mistakes to avoid for mobile usability – A few ways to avoid common mobile pitfalls in mobile app development.
- Google Drops Barcodes for NFC – The push towards mass NFC adoption took another major turn with Google officially no longer allowing businesses to generate custom QR codes and now pursuing “new ways,” i.e. NFC. Google also just joined the NFC Forum.