Post-holiday analysis: connected TV becomes performance TV

Post-holiday analysis: connected TV becomes performance TV

The dust has settled on another holiday shopping season, and now it’s time to evaluate and analyze what went right for advertisers. As usual, brands and agencies turned to the tried and true ad channels — paid search, display, social, native, the list goes on — to (hopefully) drive as many shoppers to convert as possible. This year, however, there was a new entry to the list — Connected TV (CTV). Or as we’ve come to call it based on its ad performance, Performance TV. SteelHouse has been launching and optimizing campaigns across CTV for years now, and during that time we’ve learned quite a bit about what the fastest-growing […]

Google Ads offers more granular conversion actions for leads and sales

Google Ads offers more granular conversion actions for leads and sales

Google is testing more granular options for tracking website conversion actions in Google Ads. The new options were spotted by Yatin Mulay of Zen Online Marketing. It’s not clear how widespread this is, but we’re seeing the set of options that Mulay shared in some accounts as well. Current state. The current list of options for tracking website conversions (shown below) has five options: purchase, lead, page view, sign-up and other. The current set of conversion actions available in most accounts today. What’s new. The new set of options is divided into two sections: sales categories and lead categories. In addition to “purchase”, those tracking sales actions can also opt […]

An agency veteran goes in-house to help build and lead a new PPC team

An agency veteran goes in-house to help build and lead a new PPC team

After working for many years with agency partners to plan and execute paid search, it took T-Mobile US just five months to transition all paid search activities-house. “Bringing the team in house aligns us closer to the business and drives more impactful outcomes to T-Mobile US through paid search activation,” said Natalie Barreda, senior manager of media. She leads T-Mobile and Metro By T-Mobile’s new in-house paid search team. Establishing tightly woven connections across the brands’ digital teams “gives us a competitive advantage to plan and activate search as quickly as our business moves,” added Barreda. She says the paid search team has developed deep partnerships with the company’s internal […]

Video: Chris Boggs on experience in the SEM industry

Chris Boggs has been doing the SEO and SEM thing since 2000 — yes, for over 20 years. Boggs does both SEO and PPC and has worked at both large agencies and smaller agencies and in-house at both large companies and small companies. He has been on his own, running his own agency named Web Traffic Advisors, since 2014. Boggs is a former US Marine and credits a lot of his success in the industry to what he learned from his service. He also credits his previous jobs and bosses with his success. We spoke about that and also chatted about some of the earlier days in SEM. Our conversation […]

Google Partners clarifies why clients may be listed as ‘eligible users’ toward new certification requirement

“We strongly recommend that any user who can edit campaigns should be certified,” Google. There is a lot about the coming changes to the Google Partners program eligibility requirements that agencies aren’t happy about. Among them, the requirement that at least 50% of the eligible users listed in their manager accounts will need to earn Google Ads certifications (up from just one certified user with standard or admin access). The new requirements, announced last week, are set to take effect by the end of June. The issue isn’t that the certifications are regarded as weak indicators of a user’s proficiency with using Google Ads products to create value for clients, […]

The state of tracking and data privacy in 2020

The state of tracking and data privacy in 2020

January 2020 felt like a turning point. CCPA went into effect, Google Chrome became the latest browser to commit to a cookie-less future and, after months of analytics folks sounding the alarm, digital marketers sobered to a vision of the future that looks quite different than today. This article is not a complete history of consumer privacy nor a technical thesis on web tracking, although I link to a few good ones in the following paragraphs. Instead, this is the state of affairs in our industry, an assessment of where search marketers find themselves in the current entanglement of data and privacy and where we can expect it to go […]

Microsoft Office hits pause on forcing Bing search in Chrome, Firefox

Microsoft Office hits pause on forcing Bing search in Chrome, Firefox

Microsoft recently announced a new “extension” as part of an update to its Office 365 ProPlus software that forcibly changes company-wide Chrome and Firefox search engine defaults to Bing search, automatically, from what is likely set to Google. After considerable backlash, the company is reversing course, a bit. In a predatory fashion, the extension automatically seeks out, through the network and local device file systems, installations of independent browsers (Chrome and Firefox were mentioned) in order to edit configuration files outside its own software ecosystem. A compromise In a halfhearted reversal, Microsoft will compromise with modifications that comply more with administrators’ wishes to make the extension optional. This will result […]

Leverage Python and Google Cloud to extract meaningful SEO insights from server log data

Leverage Python and Google Cloud to extract meaningful SEO insights from server log data

For my first post on Search Engine Land, I’ll start by quoting Ian Lurie: Log file analysis is a lost art. But it can save your SEO butt! Wise words. However, getting the data we need out of server log files is usually laborious: Gigantic log files require robust data ingestion pipelines, a reliable cloud storage infrastructure, and a solid querying system Meticulous data modeling is also needed in order to convert cryptic, raw logs data into legible bits, suitable for exploratory data analysis and visualization In the first post of this two-part series, I will show you how to easily scale your analyses to larger datasets, and extract meaningful […]

Google: ‘We do updates all the time’ — somewhat confirming February update rumors

Earlier this week, we reported on an unconfirmed Google February search algorithm update. In response to questions about an update, Google’s Danny Sullivan said on Twitter Thursday morning, “We do updates all the time.” He then referred to the company’s advice given around the November update, which Google has described as “several updates.” Google’s response. Sullivan responded to several questions around the rumors of a February update on Twitter early Thursday morning. Here is one of the responses, but they were all the same: We do updates all the time. I would suggest rereading our general advice about this: https://t.co/aL4QObvvhH — Danny Sullivan (@dannysullivan) February 13, 2020 Was there an […]

No, the Google My Business description does not impact ranking

No, the Google My Business description does not impact ranking

Yesterday, there was a ton of discussion on Twitter about an update in the help center that suggested the description field in Google My Business will help you rank better. We’ve done testing on this, along with many others, and can safely say that we have found that the description field has no impact on ranking in the 3-pack. This is what I would expect to see. If Google made it that easy to rank, the results would be full of garbage that would be both bad for users and Google. I spoke to Google yesterday and asked them to update the document as it was misleading.  As of this morning, […]