The last quarter of the year is upon us. Time for another monthly roundup that we hope isn’t going to have our Google enthusiasts biting their nails.
Yes, we’re talking about the indexing systems glitch that took place a month back - the one that had Google being compared to Bing because of its similar search results, wreaking exact match phrase havoc!
Apparently, it all stemmed from the Google Caffeine Index. That’s what happens when you’re a search engine that overdoses on caffeine.
FYI there was another indexing issue reported earlier this month but not to worry as it was resolved soon after.
New reporting tools were added to Google’s Search Console shortly after they announced they were upgrading the infrastructure for the Search Console involving changes to the dashboard in their Cloud Platform.
Some changes are with the API Key restrictions and discovery document changes that users have the option to update by the end of the year at the latest.
Let’s talk about the happenings on the aesthetics side of things for Google. Recently, they simplified image requirements for App campaigns plus introduced thumbnail images in the search engine results page.
This time around, after months of finally beta testing the licensable badges for image search is finally live.
It further features filters that highlight the licensing information for these images. This surely makes things easier for the creative crowd to be liable when using licensed images.
What’s the very first thing that comes to your mind when you think of spicing up your search engine results?
Because now, Google lets you enhance your online presence by adding a personalized people card. How it works is you add relevant information about yourself including your social media links, bio and relevant details.
This has only been featured in India for now and is still in the testing phase.
Google Webmasters announced the Rich Results Test Tool (finally out of its Beta phase) to replace the Structured Data Testing Tool.
Website owners can now track how visitors enter your site via smartphone or desktop while getting valuable real-time results. Many of its features are about changing the Schema Markup game altogether.
Speaking of which, there’s new schema support in town!
Where Google is supporting retailer shipping details more elaborately with expected delivery times and costs, to enhance user experience and influence purchasing decisions.
Sellers can add details on a product-by-product basis with this new markup.
Google also announced the launch of a subscription based service for GMB, called Upgraded Profiles. It adds a Google Guaranteed badge of authenticity (certifying that Google considers the business to be real and in good standing) for $50 a month.
This badge has already existed for a couple of years but was limited to local service ads. The new upgrade allows businesses to list their services as guaranteed even if they’re not running ads.
Furthermore, Google also sent out an update on activity cards which will pertain to supporting these categories: online shopping, recipes and jobs.
This one will really make you think…
The “how long a blog post should be” brigade can now calm down as Marta Szyndiar explains in her recent article how “ideal length” is worthless to apply to most types of content.
This is because there’s evidence that Google prefers different lengths depending on the topic. It’s not just the algorithm, either.
Sometimes searchers want fast answers, and they’ll bounce from a long-winded article.
So keep it precise people.
Emily Potter of SearchPilot brings us this quick case study on the issue of tabbed content, this is the kind of content that’s only partially revealed until a visitor clicks on something like ‘read more’.
Accordions and drop-down content are other examples of this style. Many SEOs prefer this type of content because it makes for much cleaner pages. It’s almost necessary for the mobile versions of websites these days.
Even though the recent Twitter hack resulted in Google removing them from the search results temporarily, we’d like to highlight a tweet that definitely shouldn’t go unnoticed where Rand Fishkin (Co-Founder of SparkToro) has some thoughts on the latest findings from the recent congressional hearing where he provided some rare official confirmation regarding the fact that Google has their own secret DA score, the user signals such as clicks to determine the worthiness and also track the percentage of clicks that go to their properties versus other websites.
That’s food for some serious thought if you ask us!
Anyway, to end this piece and not to horrify you at all (2020 has claimed sole responsibility of that already) but Apple’s agreement with Google is almost coming to an end and they are already showing signs of launching their own search engine. Let that sink in.