Google rolling out LSAs and ‘Google Screened’ to select professional services nationally

Google rolling out LSAs and  ‘Google Screened’ to select professional services nationally

Local Services Ads (LSAs) have been a success for Google. Originally designed for home services advertisers, Google initiated a test last August with select professional services categories (lawyers, financial planners and realtors) in San Diego and Houston. National rollout. After a successful trial run, Google has decided to formally roll out LSAs for professional services nationally. It will be available initially to lawyers, financial planners, real estate agents and tax preparers, although I’ve seen other categories discussed as well. Currently there are nearly 50 business categories and sub-categories available for LSAs, most of which are home services. LSAs appear at the top of search results and deliver leads to advertisers […]

Bing Webmaster Tools gets a new robots.txt tester

Bing Webmaster Tools gets a new robots.txt tester

Bing has added a new feature to the new Bing Webmaster Tools: a robots.txt tester. This is a feature Bing had in the tool prior to 2009 but dropped supporting it for the past ten-years or so. Now it is back and better. Where can I access it? You can access the new robots.txt tester within the new Bing Webmaster tools over here. From there you can enter a URL to see how BingBot will fetch the URL. What does it look like? Below is a screenshot of the tool. Enter a URL, test it with BingBot and Bing’s Ad bot and also see how the robots.txt file differs from […]

Shopify tradeoffs: What to consider before selecting your next e-commerce platform

Shopify tradeoffs: What to consider before selecting your next e-commerce platform

Selecting the appropriate e-commerce platform for your goals, circumstances and customers can influence your sales and the amount of time your staff dedicates to maintaining that platform. If you’re looking at Shopify as your next potential e-commerce solution, you need to be aware of its strengths and limitations, with regards to SEO as well as other considerations that could affect your organization’s success. “Shopify achieved 47% growth in Q1 2020 primarily on the notion of ease and speed to market,” said Tony Verre, founder of DreamFire Digital Marketing, “It’s a particularly strong proposition for business owners scrambling to get online as retail visits came to a screeching halt. However, with […]

Saying adieu to AMP: You might be giving up rankings — and revenue

Saying adieu to AMP: You might be giving up rankings — and revenue

Since its introduction in 2015, Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) framework has been controversial. The company recently decided to no longer require AMP for inclusion in the Top Stories carousel. That may lead to abandonment of the format by many publishers – some of whom considered AMP coercive; however, the data argue that AMP pages do perform much better, boosting rankings and revenue. Page Experience taking over. There are various cynical theories about why Google created AMP. What Google said at the time was that it wanted to “dramatically improve the performance of the mobile web . . . no matter what type of phone, tablet or mobile device you’re using.” And it […]

Video: Brian Ussery of Razorfish on SEO for e-commerce sites

Video: Brian Ussery of Razorfish on SEO for e-commerce sites

The Director of SEO at Razorfish, Brian Ussery, an individual who I’ve known in the SEO space for almost twenty-years, chatted with me about the earlier days in the SEO industry. We also talked about the new evergreen GoogleBot and some tips and things to look out for when doing SEO for e-commerce sites. Brian has given a lot of his time to the SEO industry. He has been a “product expert” in the Google support forums for almost as long as Google has had support forums. Before that, he helped SEOs in other public SEO forums. He has also spoken at countless SEO conferences, including our SMX events, he […]

Social Shorts: Twitter ad engagement drops, Snap Minis launch, more brands pause Facebook Ads

Social Shorts: Twitter ad engagement drops, Snap Minis launch, more brands pause Facebook Ads

Twitter ad engagement suffers. Snapchat user gains slow Twitter’s ad engagement declined along with a steep drop in ad revenue. We’re starting to get a clearer picture of how the pandemic affected social platforms last quarter. This week, even as monetizable daily active users increased by a whopping 34% to 186 million, Twitter reported ad revenue fell by 23% year-over-year to $562 million in Q2 (total revenue was $683 million, down 19% year-over-year), that’s coming off flat ad revenue growth in the first quarter of 2020. Twitter’s sharp decline in ad revenue was matched in a steep drop in ad engagement and cost per engagement. Why we care. The trends […]

The importance of valuing latent orders to successful Amazon Sponsored Products management

The importance of valuing latent orders to successful Amazon Sponsored Products management

Sponsored Products is the most widely adopted Amazon search ad format, and typically accounts for more than six times as much ad spend as Sponsored Brands ads for the average Tinuiti (my employer) advertiser. As such, it’s incredibly important for advertisers to understand the full value that these ads drive. Part of this is understanding the click-to-order period between when a user clicks on an ad and when that user ends up converting. Given how Amazon attributes orders and sales, it’s crucial that advertisers have an idea of how quickly users convert in order to value traffic effectively in real time. Amazon attributes conversions and sales to the date of […]

COVID-19 is the asteroid that struck American small business

COVID-19 is the asteroid that struck American small business

Small businesses (SMBs) are now in a Darwinian struggle for survival. The fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic is completely disrupting and reconfiguring the market, with some SMBs adapting and others calling it quits. This will have big implications for marketing and advertising as well. In its Q2 economic report, Yelp paints a picture of increased consumer activity in late May and early June driving the growth of infections in states such as Florida and California. The report also quantifies the number of local businesses that are permanently closing. According to a separate, June survey of 1,200 SMBs by Small Business for America’s Future, 23% said they considered closing their doors permanently. […]

Product feed optimization: Here’s more reason to use those attributes

Product feed optimization: Here’s more reason to use those attributes

Google is showing attributes from product feeds in Shopping ads. If you needed more reason to pay attention to all the attributes available for your products in your Google product feed, here’s one: Google is surfacing more attributes from merchants’ product feeds in Shopping Ads. The example above, spotted by Jackson Lo, SEO lead, international growth at Shopify, this week, shows apparel ads with the “Material” attribute. A Google spokesperson told Search Engine Land that surfacing attributes in Shopping ads is live on mobile and is now being tested on desktop. I was curious if this was mainly showing on ads for brand queries, but I was also able to […]

Buy on Google goes commission-free, will enable checkout via PayPal, Shopify

Buy on Google goes commission-free, will enable checkout via PayPal, Shopify

Earlier this year, Google surprised merchants by opening up the Google Shopping tab in its search results to free product listings. Now for the next phase of the shakeup: commission-free access to Buy on Google, the company’s native checkout from product listings. It is also integrating with third-parties to make it easier for merchants to streamline order management and payments. Items available to Buy on Google are indicated by a shopping cart icon in Google Shopping. Why we care. The combined moves of making Google Shopping and Buy on Google checkout free for retailers will make it much more accessible to a wider range of sellers than other marketplaces. Not […]