Google Dives Deeper Into Paid/Organic Study, Google Panda Awakens For The 3.4th Time, Japan Has Beef With Google, & More

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This Week’s Industry News

Compiled By Rocket Clicks Staff

Google Gets Granular With Paid/Organic Click-Through Study

A few weeks ago, Google released a study on how paid and organic search impact each other. Feeling those results were too broad, Google dove further into the findings and discovered some interesting pieces of data. Among them:
  • 81% of the time, paid ads show up on page one without an accompanying organic result.
  • A paid ad with the #1 organic ranking occurs, on average, 9% of the time.
  • Even if your site ranks #1, a paid ad can increase clicks by as much as 50%.
  Source: Search Engine Land

Google Consumer Surveys Makes Customized Market Research Easy

Google has just released “Consumer Surveys,” a program that allows companies big and small to customize and distribute online surveys. The program costs $.10 per response, which comes when someone answers your survey’s question before entering a website. The program’s goal is to make market research cheap, accurate, and quick, which obviously appeals to all businesses and Internet marketing companies alike. Source: Google Consumer Surveys

Google Panda 3.4 Is Rolling, Soon People Will Start Hating

Google used Twitter to announce its official release of Panda Update 3.4, claiming less than 1.6% of searches will be significantly altered. That’s a pretty loaded collection of 140 characters. Source: Search Engine Land

Microsoft Set To Open Source ASP.NET MVC

Microsoft is peeling back the “Wizard’s” curtain concealing its ASP.NET technology, and will encourage users to submit patches and code for inclusion in future versions of the product. Considering Microsoft’s historical aversion to open source coding, this is a monumental shift for the better for web developers everywhere. Source: Weblogs.asp.net

Facebook Pushes Back Against Employer Requests For Employee Passwords

Facebook warns it’s users not to administer their Facebook login information to employers or potential employers. While social networks could be a useful way to screen employees, administering this information is a violation of Facebook’s terms of use. Companies that choose to access their employees accounts could encounter a discrimination charges. Source: Search Engine Watch

The New AdWords Display Interface Has Arrived!

Google has changed its display interface in AdWords so that it is is easier to buy and track display advertising. It will also include a Display network tab so that advertisers can target, bid and optimize on display campaigns. Source: Search Engine Watch

Japan Asks Google To Turn Off Autocomplete Feature

Japan has asked Google to turn off the autocomplete feature in the search engine bar. A Japanese man was finding himself rejected for new jobs because of the auto-complete suggestions connecting him with a previous criminal act. Google is refusing to turn off the feature stating that they are an American company and shouldn’t have to adhere to Japanese law. Source: Search Engine Land

‘Account Activity’ Allows You To Track Your Own Google Account’s Analytics

Interested in figuring out how much you use email on a monthly basis? What about how much you search on Google? The search engine is making all of this personal data available in “Account Activity,” a new Google Account feature that sends you monthly reports on search engine usage, top queries, email interactions, and more. Source: Google Official Blog

Google 86’s Blog Network BuildMyRank.Com

The blog network hammer has fallen…on BuildMyRank.com, at least. As of March 19, Google had deindexed pretty much all of the blog network, which is known for syndicating content across multiple low-authority, low-relevancy blogs in exchange for a fee. This is the first, but definitely not the last casualty in Google’s war on bad link strategies and awful content. Source: Search Engine Land

Social Media Has Fewer Friends Than Email

Social media studies are all the rage these days, given Facebook and Twitter’s efforts to monetize their large, hyper-targeted user bases. However, email remains the Paas of the digital communication world; a still-untouchable dynasty of Internet messaging. According to a recent study from Ipsos that spanned 24 countries, 85% of Internet users utilize email, while 62% use the Internet for social networking purposes. The study also contains some interesting information parsed out by country. Source: Mashable

A Google Public Service Announcement About JavaScript, CSS

Matt Cutts wants you…to let Googlebot crawl your website’s JavaScript and CSS. In a recent YouTube video, Cutts implores you, the webmaster, to remove these scripts from your robots.txt file, reasoning that it allows Google to better understand what’s on that page. People have been reluctant to let Googlebot to crawl JavaScript and CSS coding in part because it sometimes makes erroneous choices when encountering these scripts. Source: Search Engine Roundtable

A Quarter Of All PPC Traffic Will Be Mobile Based By The End Of 2012

Year Of The Mobile strikes again! According to a recent Marin Software study, 25% of all paid-search clicks will come from smartphones or tablets by December. Their data also revealed advertising benefits on mobile devices (lower CPCs, higher CTRs), and a drawback (lower conversion rates). It should be noted that mobile search often leads to in-store purchases. Source: Search Engine Land

Study Reveals Trends In Anchor Text Usage Across The Web

Although its impact is reduced compared to a few previous versions of Google’s algorithm, anchor text remains an important signal for relevancy. Through analysis of more than 4.2 million links and 650 domains, Conductor discovered some interesting trends in anchor text use. Around 53% of anchor text contains 1-3 keywords, while 21% of those links contain useless text (“click here”). Source: Search Engine Watch

Facebook Timeline Layout Boosts Brand Engagement

Switching your Facebook brand page to the Timeline layout gives you a higher chance of user engagement. That according to a study from Simply Measured, which looked at 15 Facebook brand pages (admittedly a small sample) and determined those with Timeline have an average engagement boost of 46%. The researchers also justified their small sample size by counting engagement on a granular, post-by-post level. This isn’t the first, or last, study of Facebook brand interactions on Timeline, but they all will probably say something similar. Source: Mashable

Wag The Dog: Amazon-Style

While you were fretting the search engine dominance of Wikipedia, Amazon has been robbing the SERPs blind. According to recent findings, Amazon shows up on page one 40% of the time, compared to 30% for Wikipedia. This makes sense given Amazon’s vast collection of products. This is a bit more concerning, in part because the searches that bring people to Amazon (purchase-based) directly involve monetary decisions, compared to SERPs flooded with Wikipedia (knowledge-based). Source: Search Engine Land

CSI: Facebook (Cue The Who Music)

Facebook unearthed a ton forensic evidence to prove Paul Ceglia is not a part owner of Facebook. As part of debunking Ceglia’s lawsuit, Facebook hired forensic experts to prove Ceglia forged emails and faked numerous other documents. Ceglia, a former wood pellet distributor, claims Mark Zuckerberg gave him a stake in Facebook in 2003 in a Work For Hire contract. His argument is clouded by Zuckerberg’s claim that he didn’t start on Facebook until the end of that year. Source: Business Insider

Remember, Remember The 31st Of March

Come Saturday, March 31, Anonymous will shut down the Internet. That’s, at least, according to one of their manifestos. It seems farfetched, but it’s hard not to take this group seriously, given their history of keeping their word. Source: PasteBin.Com

Notable Commentary

With A Cup Of JavaScript

No Nefarious Link Goes Unpunished

Sooner or later, the Google police will come knocking at your homepage. That’s the general lesson from Eric Ward in this Search Engine Watch post. Ward tells a cautionary tale of a client unwilling to stop his dirty linking tactics … until Google blew his sites up. Analysis By: Eric Ward, Search Engine Watch

The Best Transferred Sites Of Developers And Men Can Go Awry

Sometimes the most flawless of site transfers can go wrong. Everett Sizemore explains his solution to FreeShipping.org’s problem of a relaunch that went too well. Sounds pretty strange, right? Analysis By: Everett Sizemore, SEOmoz

There’s A Problem With Your Infographic…

On Twitter, Facebook, email, blogs, even the Rocket Clicks weekly update: Infographics are everywhere. As the market becomes more saturated, there’s a much higher chance for error and ugly visualizations that don’t reflect the theme being discussed. Outspoken Media has a four-line list of reasons why an infographic would fail in the open marketplace. Analysis By: Lisa Barone, Outspoken Media

Social Sharing Broken Down Into Actionable Numbers

David Kirkpatrick at Marketing Sherpa interviews Extole’s vice president of marketing and discusses the marketing effectiveness of social media platforms. One of the big takeaways: Twitter has the highest amplification rate, email has the highest conversion rate. Analysis By: David Kirkpatrick, Marketing Sherpa

Don’t Let Business Get In The Way Of ‘Humanizing’ Your Website

Chuck Longanecker explores the concept of “emotionally intelligent interactions,” and explains how they can be integrated into websites without sacrificing SEO and CRO performance. Analysis By: Chuck Longanecker, UX Design

A Trio Of Recommendations For Social MediOptimized Content

Social media is commonly seen as the third arm of your public relations team. Social sharing can be a massive time-saver during a content roll out because the readers do the work for you. Here are a few tips for ensuring your content is social-friendly. Analysis By: Kerry Jones, Blueglass

Video Content In Building Links

Research shows that SEO benefits from the use of video content in building links. Giving your users resources to obtain more information gives them reason to link your video. Jacob Klein also suggests different medias to project your video and how different platforms can be useful. Analysis By: Jacob Klein, SEO Moz

Why Cold Coffee Costs More, In Case You Were Wondering

Ever wonder why iced coffee costs more than hot coffee? Isn’t it the same stuff? Yes, but not for the seller. Coffee shops sweat the small stuff more than the average person does on a 90 degree day in Milwaukee. Consumers are unaware of the extra costs associated with cold drinks: clear plastic cups, straws, icemakers for ice, etc. Who knew? Analysis By: Kurt Soller, Grubstreet

Pinterest: Boost Your CTRs And Conversions!

Sherice Jacob offers four ways to utilize and maximize the advantages of Pinterest in Paid Search. With advice like when and how to re-pin, and evaluating your repining options, Jacob helps aid action steps for increasing followers. By becoming a ‘person of Pinterest’, she says your CTR and Conversions will benefit. Analysis By: Sherice Jacob, Unbounce

Guest Blogging—Definitely A Good Thing

Oli Gardner thinks that guest blogging has developed a bad rap over the years. While, yes, it is writing ‘for free’ it is also a beneficial ‘free advertising’ for you!  Guest blogging can create more links for readers and it keeps them interested in what content you think is important; it gives you a chance to control the topic. Guest blogging is also a great way to keep a large network and maintain it with online relationships. Analysis By: Oli Gardner, Unbounce

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