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Monthly Archives: March 2015

SearchCap: Google Maps Pac-Man, Google/Baidu China & Senator Lee FTC

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By Barry Schwartz

Below is what happened in search today, as reported on Search Engine Land and from other places across the web.

From Search Engine Land:

Recent Headlines From Marketing Land, Our Sister Site Dedicated To Internet Marketing:

Search News From Around The Web:

Industry

Local & Maps

Searching

SEO

SEM / Paid Search

Search Marketing

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Click-to-Call Deep Dive: Best Practices from Search Experts – April 16 Webcast

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By Search Engine Land

There’s no denying the connection between smartphones and search – one quarter of all search queries now come from mobile devices. By the end of this year, BIA/Kelsey projects that there will be more local searches coming from smartphones than desktops.

But how do marketers move beyond counting calls to tracking, analyzing, scoring and routing them to the right sales staff or location? How do search marketers determine which keywords drive the most qualified calls?

In this Digital Marketing Depot webcast, Matt Marshall from DigitasLBi, Tedd Post from Spark SMG, and Cody Kunning from Marchex will provide answers as they lead us into a deep dive of click-to-call and mobile search best practices. Join our panel of experts to learn how to analyze call data to find the best keywords, boost mobile conversions with click-to-call analytics, and use analytics to predict call outcomes.

Registration is free at Digital Marketing Depot.

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Google’s PAC-Maps Gets April Fools’ Ball Rolling Early, Turns Google Maps Into Pac-Man Video Game

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By Amy Gesenhues

And we’re off!

Google has started its April Fools’ festivities a day early with today’s release of PAC-Maps, a new Google Maps feature that lets users play Pac-Man via various Google Maps locations.

With this update, we’ve added imagery of dangerous virtual beings, starting with Pinky, Blinky, Inky and Clyde.

To play, open a Google Maps location and click on the Pac-Man map option in the bottom left of the screen.

Google Maps pac-man

“When navigating fruit-filled streets, determine at a glance which turns to pass to evade ghosts and get where you’re going safely,” writes Google Maps product manager Michelle Luo. She goes on to say that PAC-maps is “just the beginning” and mentions more possible April Fools’ features, including zombie incident alerts and intergalactic street views.

According to the announcement, users can play PAC-Maps on both their desktop and mobile devices.
pacmap mobile

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Google Still Dominant, But Baidu Benefitting From Google Ban In China Says eMarketer

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By Ginny Marvin

Google continues to dominate the global search market with 54.7 percent of search ad revenues worldwide in 2014. But mainland China’s ban on Google is giving Baidu, the search leader in that country, a huge advantage. Baidu will see its global share of search ad revenues increase from 6.4 percent in 2013 to 8.8 percent in 2015, according to new data from eMarketer.

“Baidu is reaping the benefits of Google’s ban in China—and of course, a massive and growing internet user population,” says eMarketer in the report, which breaks out search ad revenues from the overall digital advertising market for the first time.

The research firm notes that China will account for $14.90 billion, or 32.8 percent, of the global search spend in 2015. The U.S., by comparison, will account for $25.66 billion in ad spend this year. But, with rapid growth search growth of 32.8 percent this year — nearly double the overall growth of 16.2 percent — it’s easy to see that China could soon eclipse U.S. search spend. Spend that Google is missing out on.

For another perspective on future growth, the U.S. has internet penetration of over 86 percent of the population, while in China, just 46 percent has internet access according to Internet Live Stats.

Google’s search ad share is expected to shrink marginally from 55.2 percent in 2013 to 54.5 percent in 2015. Google’s search ad revenues will continue to far outweigh its competitors this year. The company is expected to bring in $38.42 billion in search revenues in 2014 and $4446 billion in 2015. Baidu’s revenue is expected to grow from $5.35 in 2014 to $7.18 in 2015.

Microsoft and Yahoo will see their combined search share grow by just 6.5 percent in 2015. Bing saw strong growth in 2014, with its search ad share rising from 3.7 percent in 2013 to 4.2 percent in 2014. Bing’s share is expected to hold steady in 2015. Yahoo is expected to see stronger revenue growth in 2015, rising to $1.90 billion from $1.78 billion in 2014. However, Yahoo’s global share will continue to shrink from 2.5 percent in 2014 to 2.3 percent in 2015. Last week, the two companies have extended talks to renegotiate their search deal which hit its five year mark in March.

Search is expected to make up $81.59 billion globally, up 16.2 percent from 2014. Search is expected to grow at nearly 10 percent a year through 2019 to top $130.58 billion globally.

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A Surefire Recipe To Getting The Links You Deserve

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By Julie Joyce

A few months back, I was trying to figure out just how to replicate the Olive Garden’s insanely amazing salad dressing, and the first thing I did was look at a copycat recipes cookbook given to me by my mother. The second thing I did was wonder why, as a person who spends so much time online, I didn’t think to just look it up online.

When I did, I was quite surprised to learn that Olive Garden puts recipes for their products on their site. I decided to see if some other big chains did the same thing, so I chose one of the most popular chains in town, P.F. Chang’s, and took a look. No recipes. Interesting, right?

Why Should You Care?

Let’s look at the searches for recipes so you’ll see why this was such a clever move.

A search for “Olive Garden recipes” returns over 6 million results, and guess who’s number one? That’s right: Olive Garden.

A search for “PF Changs recipes” gives you 244k results, and guess where P.F. Chang’s ranks? Number 6.

The number one result for that query is a page on Food.com; the number of unique linking domains to that page? Two. Dinky, right?

However, let’s look at just one more URL ranked above the P.F. Chang’s site so you can see why this matters:

The fifth result, a page from Damn Delicious, has 94 linking domains — 94 unique linking domains! Heck, some sites that do well online barely have half that number.

Wouldn’t you rather have those links than not have them?

For Olive Garden’s recipes page, there are 119 unique linking domains. Those are 119 domains that link to the site but wouldn’t if that recipes page didn’t exist. They are totally using resources that they have to get the links they deserve.

Now, if you offered a product, and a search query for it returned a copycat version on someone else’s site, wouldn’t you think, “Maybe I should have this info on my own site!”?

Sure, you can argue that giving away that info might make customers less likely to frequent a restaurant. I could point out that knowing how to make their fettuccine might mean I don’t go there for it – but then I’d remember that I am a busy person, and I really don’t feel like giving up all my guilty pleasures.

An Industry Spawned From Another One

Copycat recipes are big — big enough that they spawn cookbooks and entire sites devoted to them. Why ignore the chance to grab that market share?

Let’s take a brief look at California Pizza Kitchen.

CPK

They don’t list their recipes online, but they do have their own cookbooks on Amazon (and a landing page designed to take you there). They’re ranking number one for the term “California Pizza Kitchen recipes” with that, as you can see in the image above.

(They don’t have many unique linking domains pointing to that page, but they’re still number one in Google!)

How Does This Apply To You?

You probably aren’t the Olive Garden or P.F. Chang’s (or California Pizza Kitchen), so you may be wondering how all this applies to you.

The point here is that, no matter what your industry, you could be failing to capture traffic that is rightfully yours. Try asking yourself these questions:

  • What do I have?
  • What do people want from me?
  • How can I give it to them?

Use the keyword tool of your choice to see which keywords people are searching on that mention your brand, product or service. From there, figure out which ones you’re not addressing with existing content. (Make sure you get an idea of their potential by looking at search volume, too.)

Check what topics related to your business are being talked about across the web. I love IceRocket for this – you can search blogs, Twitter, Facebook, or all of those at once.

Twitter trends can be useful if you happen to follow a lot of people interested in the same thing that you offer. Otherwise, you probably won’t see much that will be helpful. You can see this on your Twitter homepage. There are also loads of services that give you trends in Twitter (way too many for me to even mention since there’s always a new one).

Google Trends can also be very useful, and you can subscribe to get updates about your searches.

OG trends

Have alerts set up for your brand name and major products/services. Talkwalker Alerts is my favorite, but I also use Google Alerts.

Look at what people are asking questions about. FAQ Fox is amazing (you can download a spreadsheet of data!), but you can also look at Quora, Yahoo Answers, and many others.

OGFaqFox

Look at queries that lead to your site. Look at your rankings for those queries. If you have decent traffic and rankings from queries for which you don’t yet have entirely relevant content, then create it!

What I love best about Olive Garden’s move is that they didn’t view this as taking away from their main offering, which is in-house and takeout dining at their restaurants. From my point of view as a link builder, it’s absolutely brilliant as they’re owning the traffic (and links) for a phrase that did not previously come to them — and doing so in a 100% organic and relevant way.

The post A Surefire Recipe To Getting The Links You Deserve appeared first on Search Engine Land.

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Microsoft, Yahoo to Renegotiate Terms of Search Partnership by @mattsouthern

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By Matt Southern

According to a report from Reuters, Microsoft and Yahoo are extending the deadline to renegotiate the terms of a search partnership that was formed in back in 2010. The deal was signed for 10 years, with at opportunity to renegotiate terms after the 5 year mark. The two companies can either make changes to the terms originally agreed on, or terminate the partnership. The negotiations have already exceeded 30 days, but the two companies have agreed to extend the deadline another 30 days. Yahoo stated it values the partnership with Microsoft and will continue discussions, while Microsoft declined to comment. […]

The post Microsoft, Yahoo to Renegotiate Terms of Search Partnership by @mattsouthern appeared first on Search Engine Journal.

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When Did The Eiffel Tower Open To The Public? Today’s Google Logo Marks 126th Anniversary Of Paris Attraction

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By Amy Gesenhues

Today’s Google doodle marks the March 31, 1889 public opening of Paris’ Eiffel Tower.

Created by guest doodler and French visual development artist Floriane Marchix, the illustrated logo links to a search that asks the question, “when did the eiffel tower open to the public?” but – as of writing this story – Google has not included a quick answer in search results to answer its own doodle question.

Built for the 1889 World’s Fair, the iron structure was created by Alexandre-Gustave Eiffel’s construction company. Eiffel and his employee Maurice Koechlin previously had worked together to create the Statue of Liberty’s metal armature.

According to History.com, the Eiffel Tower receives more tourists than any other paid attraction in the world since its opening 126 years ago today.

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