It sounded huge. Angered by Google expanding the use of social profile information in advertising, Google+ users were changing their profile pictures to that of Google executive chairman Eric Schmidt in protest. So went several reports. The reality is practically no one is doing this. For the few who are, good news. Google’s rules about profiles probably allow you to continue. Google’s Shared Endorsements Ads Expand On Friday, Google announced that it would be expanding the use of “Shared Endorsements” in ads. Google already had been using the pictures and names of people who make use of its Google+ social networking service in ads for over two years. But in the near future, Google might make further use of social actions people do, such using comments they make about products, in ads. Our previous story, All About Google’s New “Shared Endorsement” Ads, explains this in more detail. Despite the fact that Google had already been using … [Read more...] about No, Eric Schmidts Face Isnt All Over Google+ In Protest Over Shared Endorsement Ads
A 2006 Belgian case that found Google in breach of copyright law for indexing newspaper headlines and snippets without permission is now on appeal and approaching conclusion a little over four years later. In 2007 Google was ordered to pay fines and remove links and/or obtain permission from the newspaper copyright owners before indexing their content in Google News. Google immediately appealed the decision and also took the position that the case was narrowly limited to the newspaper-specific facts. Google dismissed the significance and larger potential impact of the decision on Google’s approach to indexing content in Europe. Google PR said in 2007 that unlike cases in the US or the UK, the ruling will be seen legally as specific to this particular situation rather than indexing in general. Google’s legal counsel, Yoram Elkaim, added: “Because of the legal system in most European countries, there is no rule of precedence. That means the court here was really asked … [Read more...] about Obscure Belgian Case Threatens To Open Copyright “Pandora’s Box” For Google In Europe
The recent acquisition of TellMe by Microsoft, piqued my interest in the free voice driven directory assistance service, 520-Find and the possible role that Google plays in the service. Mobile directory assistance will have a huge role in both local search and local advertising going forward. Clearly, Google has an interest in this field, it just isn’t clear how that interest will pan out. I am a frequent user of the 520-Find service as it provides reasonably accurate voice activated directory assistance with call connection and text back capacity. As Greg Sterling has pointed out this type of service is the most likely and most usable way to push local data into the mobile market over the near term. Users are comfortable with the interface and need the service. Local search when viewed from this type of mobile perspective takes on added importance. Since the inception of the 520-Find service, there have been rumors that it was owned by Google. Originally the service even used … [Read more...] about Is Microsoft Shadow Boxing Against Google In Mobile Voice Search?
Google is the dominant force in Europe—there is no other search engine which even comes close to Google’s market share. As I wrote in my last article, Europe could use some competition for Google. Bing should be the designated search engine to become that big competitor, but for now that is not the case. Despite its dominance, there are alternative search engines in Europe, and for search marketers they’re worth looking at. With Europe’s more than 800 million people, of whom about 60% spends time online, even a small percentage using alternatives to Google offer attractively large numbers, and targeting users of those search engines could be very profitable. Lets take a look at some of the alternatives. UK and France: Bing The UK offers the closest step from the US market to the European market. As in almost every country Google is the dominant force, but here we see that Bing is more popular than anywhere else. Bing now accounts for about 4% of the search … [Read more...] about Alternatives To Google In Europe
Earlier this week a Bloomberg/BusinessWeek article appeared under the headline: Apple Threatens Search Giants’ Mobile Ad Shares. It gained a tremendous amount of secondary pickup and discussion for the proposition that Apple had tied Google in mobile advertising revenue. The article relied on IDC estimates to argue “Apple may be gaining share in the U.S. mobile advertising market this year at the expense of Google and Microsoft.” Here are the IDC US mobile advertising marketshare figures (based on revenue) cited in the article: Apple: 21% Google: 21% JumpTap: 13% Millennial: 11% Yahoo: 9% Microsoft: 7% Nokia: 2% Other: 16% (missing from the figures mentioned in the article) When I saw this it immediately struck me as wrong. IDC has gotten it wrong before. But how could Apple with its very recent entry in mobile advertising (albeit based on the Quattro acquisition) have greater share than a combined Google and AdMob? Google “owns” the vast majority of … [Read more...] about Is Apple Really “Threatening” Google In Mobile Advertising?
I keep hearing people talking about Apple finally going “thermonuclear” on Google with the forthcoming iOS 6 mobile operating system. No, it hasn’t. In fact, there are good reasons why it can’t, though Apple is certainly exercising a much more subtle and smart containment strategy. Themonuclearly Renewing With Google The thermonuclear reference comes from the Steve Jobs biography written by Walter Isaacson, where Jobs was so upset about Google’s Android operating system — and the theft from Apple that he viewed it to be — that he said to Issacson in early 2010: I’m going to destroy Android, because it’s a stolen product. I’m willing to go thermonuclear war on this. Maybe Jobs was willing to go thermonuclear on Android, but that didn’t translate into going thermonuclear on Google’s search products. As I explained last year, Jobs renewed search deals with Google even after making that statement, keeping Google as the … [Read more...] about Why Apple Is Going “Containment” Not “Thermonuclear” Against Google In iOS 6
We’re starting to see what Apple Maps will look like as well as the features it will contain, among them check-ins on Yelp. At the same time it’s becoming clear how important Yelp now is in the world of local and Local SEO through its Apple relationship. Yelp has always been important. However the site is now second only to Google in terms of its importance — if not its equal. Yelp’s Huge New Visibility On the iPhone 4S Yelp provided reviews for nearby local businesses found by Siri, in a generally mediocre local search experience. Though Yelp was the source of the content (or some of the content), its brand presence was limited. However in the new iOS 6 regime Yelp gets marquee placement and promotion. No one will now mistake where the local reviews and other content are coming from. Apparently in Australia, where Yelp is also providing data to Apple for iOS 6, the company is telling local businesses that they need to claim their pages as a way into Apple Maps … [Read more...] about Yelp Elevated By Apple Relationship, Second Only To Google In Local Importance Now
That’s partly a result of the switch from Google’s local data in Maps to Apple’s own mapping data. However another part of the change is probably the addition of more non-Google sources of structured data to support Siri. In Piper Jaffray’s previous study it found that Siri used Google or Google data to answer 60 percent of queries. Now that number has dropped to 30 percent. The chart below (via Apple Insider) illustrates who “wins” and who “loses” under the new regime: While the methodology here isn’t entirely clear, one of the interesting findings is that a substantial percentage of Siri-initiated queries are local (Apple Maps, Yelp). It’s also not clear how Yelp is being counted (probably as part of queries to Apple Maps). Accordingly, it’s hard to reliably say something like “X percent of Siri queries are local” from this data. Piper Jaffray also compared the accuracy of Siri vs. Google Now/Voice Search … [Read more...] about Study Hints At Long-Term Siri Threat To Google In Mobile
A would be class action lawsuit was filed last week against Google in Federal Court in California. The action seeks to resurrect some of the themes and arguments raised in the now settled FTC antitrust case against the company. While repeating familiar abuse of market power allegations against Google, the new civil case is focused on mobile search and Android devices rather than the desktop. The FTC investigation didn’t look at Android. The complaint (embedded below) alleges violations of various antitrust and unfair competition laws. However at its factual core is the argument that Google maintains a mobile search monopoly through Mobile Application Distribution Agreements (MADAs) and “tying” — mandatory installation of the full suite of Google mobile apps, with a privileged position for Google’s search app: But Android itself only enables the basic functionality of a handheld device; what brings mobile phones and tablets to life are applications. Some of … [Read more...] about Secret Contracts Keep Google In Control Of Mobile Search Argues Lawsuit
Google In-depth articles is a new search result option introduced by Google in August 2013. Along with News, Images and a number of other familiar search blocks, In-depth articles is a new search section located at the bottom of search results and features 3 search results, accompanied by images: In-depth articles were introduced to feature well-researched write-ups on broad topics, thought-provoking content that remains relevant months and years after publication. Research shows that 10% of all Google searches are searches on broad topics, so this feature apparently comes in handy for users. But how about SEOs? Does introduction of the new section create any extra opportunities for them? Opinions range from that you should invest into In-depth articles to that they are not worth chasing. In this post I’ll share the main takeaways of Google In-depth articles to help you see if you can make anything out of them. Keywords that suit In-depth articles To begin with, In-depth … [Read more...] about What SEO’s can make of Google In-depth articles