Tuesday, 31 January 2017

New Google AdWords IF Functions Allow for Greater Ad Customization by @MattGSouthern

Google AdWords has introduced new IF functions to search ads which allow ad text to be customized based on whether or not specific parameters are met.

Ads can be customized in a number of ways using IF functions, here are just a few examples:

  • IF it’s a new customer, then show ads for introductory promotions.
  • IF it’s a returning customer, then show ads emphasizing your loyalty program.
  • IF the customer is using a mobile device, then show ads emphasizing quick and easy mobile checkout.

Anyone who has ever used IFTTT (If This Then That), or has a background in computer programming, will get the basic idea behind IF functions. If X parameter is met, then perform Y action… and so forth.

IF functions can be used to display custom text if any of the following parameters are met: device, time, audience, gender, or age. IF functions can be applied in any field of an expanded text ad, except for the URL itself.

In the example which Google provides below, IF functions are used in both the second headline field and description field.

Headline 2 will promote “Fast Mobile Booking” if the user is searching on a mobile device. In the description field, “Save 15% at checkout” will be added if the searcher is in the LoyaltyMembers audience.

In the event that parameters aren’t met, advertisers can now select default values to be displayed instead, which means you’ll never have to have an ad without customizers in your ad group.

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Author: Matt Southern

The post New Google AdWords IF Functions Allow for Greater Ad Customization by @MattGSouthern appeared first on On Page SEO Checker.

source http://www.onpageseochecker.com/new-google-adwords-if-functions-allow-for-greater-ad-customization-by-mattgsouthern/

Snapchat rolls out QR-style ‘Snapcodes’ to open links in app


Of course Snapchat has come up with a weird way to browse the web. And of course that way involves snapping a photo.

On Tuesday Snapchat added a feature to its mobile app for people to turn links into “Snapcodes” (its version of the QR code) that can be used to open web pages within Snapchat’s in-app browser. For now the feature is only available to iPhone users.

To create a Snapcode, open Snapchat’s in-app settings, select “Snapcodes” and then select “Create Snapcode.” Then paste the URL of the chosen web page and add an image that will appear within the Snapcode; Snapchat will automatically pull images from the web page as options. The completed Snapcode will be saved to your phone’s camera roll and can be inserted anywhere you can insert a photo, like embedded on a website; posted to Facebook, Instagram or Twitter; painted on a billboard; tattooed on your body; etc.

To open a link from a Snapcode, you take a picture of the Snapcode using Snapchat’s in-app camera, and then a prompt will ask if you want to open the link. As a security measure, URL-laden Snapcodes will include the domain of the site being linked to.

While publishers and brands can add parameters to a URL to track when people are visiting a link from Snapchat, Snapchat will also provide in-app analytics for Snapcodes that have been scanned at least 100 times, according to a Snapchat spokesperson. For eligible links, the person who created the Snapcode will be able to see the total number of scans over the past three months as well as the percentage of people who opened the link after scanning it.

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Author: Tim Peterson

The post Snapchat rolls out QR-style ‘Snapcodes’ to open links in app appeared first on On Page SEO Checker.

source http://www.onpageseochecker.com/snapchat-rolls-out-qr-style-snapcodes-to-open-links-in-app/

Creative is Complicated: Tips for better brand/agency collaboration


We all know the creative process is challenging. Its non-linear nature often causes frustration, delays, unplanned expenses, and burnt out creative teams.

Join brand expert Lesya Lysyj and Hightail’s Chief Operating Officer Mike Trigg as they explore the hidden costs of a broken creative process, and provide best practices for better creative collaboration. You’ll learn:

  • How to meet deadlines without sacrificing creative quality.
  • Simple ways to keep disparate teams on the same page.
  • Common causes of miscommunication between brands and agencies.

Register today for “Creative is Complicated: Tips for better brand/agency collaboration,” produced by Digital Marketing Depot and sponsored by Hightail.

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Author: Digital Marketing Depot

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source http://www.onpageseochecker.com/creative-is-complicated-tips-for-better-brandagency-collaboration/

Facebook updates News Feed algorithm to show more timely and authentic stories


With the brouhaha about fake news and the significant impacts it’s making, Facebook has come out with two algorithm updates, one of which is focused on timely signals to improve prominence of news stories and the other to better rank authentic content. In a joint announcement made by members on its engineering and research science teams, new signals will determine how visible Facebook updates are going to be in the News Feed.

According to Facebook, authenticity is based on a number of factors, including categorizing Pages to identify whether they’ve solicited likes or posted spam in the past. If you run a Page that has tried to game the Facebook feed, consider yourself unlucky. Asking for likes, comments, or shares is a no-no and this update will likely penalize you whether or not the content you share is authentic. They also leverage user behavior; if posts are hidden by the user, Facebook considers the Page’s contents to be unauthentic.

Facebook also looks at real time signals to amplify visibility of posts. These signals include recent comments from friends or post Likes. If there’s “a lot of engagement … about a topic or a Page is getting a lot of engagement,” Facebook’s algorithm will consider that topic important and improve its visibility on the feed.

Facebook says that this might minimally impact Pages–but it subtly suggests that marketers not encourage suspicious activity to improve post visibility. It might have worked once in the past, but it looks like they’ve caught on.

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Author: Tamar Weinberg

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source http://www.onpageseochecker.com/facebook-updates-news-feed-algorithm-to-show-more-timely-and-authentic-stories/

Facebook Is Changing How it Ranks Stories in 2 Ways by @DannyNMIGoodwin

Facebook is changing the way it ranks stories in the News Feed. The social network is adding and updating signals to its ranking algorithm.

The goal is to start showing users more authentic content by cutting down on posts that are “misleading, sensational or spammy.” In other words, cutting down on the Facebook’s fake news problem.

To date, Facebook has

Here’s what’s changing now, according to Facebook’s announcement.

Facebook Adds New Signals

Authentic posts may start appearing higher in your Facebook News Feed. Sounds great, but what exactly is an authentic post?

Well, to figure this out, Facebook started by categorizing pages to identify any pages that were posting spam or encouraging users to like, comment, and share posts. Facebook then used posts from those pages to “train a model that continuously identifies whether posts from other Pages are likely to be authentic.”

As one example, Facebook said that it looks at how often users who read posts end up hiding them.

Facebook Updates Real-Time Signals

Timey posts or topics that get a lot of engagement (likes, shares, comments) during a short period could also appear higher in your News Feed.

For example, if your favorite sports team wins a game and lots of people are posting about the game or the team, then those posts will get a temporary boost.

Facebook promises these update will result in little change to News Feed visibility for most pages – though some Pages may notice small increases or decreases in referral traffic and clicks.

Image Credit: Depositphotos

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Author: Danny Goodwin

The post Facebook Is Changing How it Ranks Stories in 2 Ways by @DannyNMIGoodwin appeared first on On Page SEO Checker.

source http://www.onpageseochecker.com/facebook-is-changing-how-it-ranks-stories-in-2-ways-by-dannynmigoodwin/

Apple Reports Best Quarter Ever: $78.4 Billion Revenue, 78 Million iPhones Sold


After three consecutive quarters of year-over-year sales declines, Apple announced its biggest quarter ever. The company beat revenue and earnings expectations, selling more than 78 million iPhones.

Apple revenues came in above the high end of guidance. The company reported revenue of $78.4 billion vs. an expectation of $77.25 billion. It sold 78.2 million iPhones vs. 76 million expected. Indeed all product lines posted increases. Across the board it was Apple’s best quarter.

Here are numbers:

  • iPhones: 78.3 million units, $54.4 billion in revenue
  • iPad: 13.1 million units, $5.5 billion in revenue
  • Macs: 5.4 million units, $7.2 billion in revenue
  • Services (including Apple Pay, Apple Care): $7.2 billion in revenue.
  • Other (including Apple TV, Apple Watch, Beats products): $4 billion in revenue.

Apple earnings

At the end of the December quarter, Apple had $103.3 billion in cash and cash equivalents.

International sales were roughly 59 percent of total revenue. The company said it had net profit of $18.4 billion. The Americas, Europe and Greater China were the company’s top markets, in that order.

Notes from the earnings call:

CEO Tim Cook ticked off record sales across Apple product categories: iPhones, Macs, Apple Pay, Music, Watch, services revenue. He said the company sold more Watches than at any time. He also said there are more than 2 million small businesses using Apple Pay (some via third party partners).

Cook talked about smart home automation and integration with HomeKit and Siri. He said there are now more than 2.2 million apps.

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Author: Greg Sterling

The post Apple Reports Best Quarter Ever: $78.4 Billion Revenue, 78 Million iPhones Sold appeared first on On Page SEO Checker.

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Marketing Day: Snapchat’s ad tech, Budweiser’s Super Bowl ad & Facebook news

Here’s our recap of what happened in online marketing today, as reported on Marketing Land and other places across the web.

From Marketing Land:

Online Marketing News From Around The Web:

Affiliate Marketing

Blogs & Blogging

Business Issues

Content Marketing

Copywriting, Design & Usability



General Internet Marketing

Internet Marketing Industry

Mobile/Local Marketing

Other Items

Reputation Management

Social Media


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Author: Amy Gesenhues

The post Marketing Day: Snapchat’s ad tech, Budweiser’s Super Bowl ad & Facebook news appeared first on On Page SEO Checker.

source http://www.onpageseochecker.com/marketing-day-snapchats-ad-tech-budweisers-super-bowl-ad-facebook-news/

Daily Search Forum Recap: January 31, 2017

Here is a recap of what happened in the search forums today, through the eyes of the Search Engine Roundtable and other search forums on the web.

Search Engine Roundtable Stories:

  • New Google Mobile-Friendly Test API
    Google has announced they finally released the mobile-friendly test API, something webmasters have been asking for since the test has came out in November 2014. Google said “the Mobile-Friendly Test API lets you test URLs using automated tools…
  • Gary Illyes: Report Companies Impersonating Google
    Gary Illyes from Google was listening in on a conversation about folks calling me asking if I was Google. No kidding…
  • Google AdWords Updates IF Functions & Default Values
    Google quietly announced on Google+ that they made some changes to the IF functions and default values used for ad customizations. Google said “we’re making it even easier to customize these ads with IF functions and default values…
  • Google: Tell Us About Your HTTPS Migrations Again
    Gary Illyes from Google wants to hear feedback on success, failure or other issues during your HTTPS migration and how Google handled picking up and reindexing those HTTPS URLs and any traffic changes…
  • Google Releases New Content For Hacked Site Support
    Google’s Nathan Johns announced on Twitter that Google has released “new support content around help for hacked websites.” The new content can be found at developers.google.com/webmasters/hacked…
  • Google Campus Protests Hit 2 Million Googlers #GooglersUnite
    There are tons of pictures on social media of the Google campus protest last night at the Mountain View, GooglePlex headquarters. Reports say there were about 2 million Googlers there. Here is a phot

Other Great Search Forum Threads:

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Author: barry@rustybrick.com (Barry Schwartz)

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source http://www.onpageseochecker.com/daily-search-forum-recap-january-31-2017/

SearchCap: Google new AdWords interface, ads by AdWords & IF functions


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:

Link Building



SEM / Paid Search

Search Marketing

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Author: Barry Schwartz

The post SearchCap: Google new AdWords interface, ads by AdWords & IF functions appeared first on On Page SEO Checker.

source http://www.onpageseochecker.com/searchcap-google-new-adwords-interface-ads-by-adwords-if-functions/

New AdWords interface alpha is rolling out to more advertisers


Google has been slowly building out the new AdWords interface, which was introduced last March. More accounts have been granted alpha access, and on Tuesday, Google’s head of search ads, Jerry Dischler, said it is rolling out to even more AdWords accounts in the next few months.

When you first get access, you may be taken right to the new interface, or you may see a notification in the top right corner or at the bottom of the screen like the one below.


Don’t worry about clicking it and never being able to get back to the land you know. You can toggle back and forth between the new and old interfaces, which you’ll want to do because functionality like being able to download data is still not available. A guided tour will launch the first time the new UI loads in an account.

Last fall, I wrote about some of the handy, time-saving visualizations in the new interface, which you might find helpful if you’re just  getting access or want to see what’s coming.

Google continues to add more features to the new UI, so even if you don’t find yourself working in it extensively at first, it’s worth continuing to check out and get used to the navigation. Here’s a look at an Overview screen today. The Advanced bid adjustment menu option on the left nav is relatively new, for example.


Google says accounts are selected based on a number of factors, such as the features used.

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Author: Ginny Marvin

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source http://www.onpageseochecker.com/new-adwords-interface-alpha-is-rolling-out-to-more-advertisers/

Walmart targets Amazon Prime with free, two-day shipping


Compete head-to-head with Amazon in the e-commerce arena? It might be crazy, but that’s not stopping Walmart.

Today, Walmart announced its latest attempt at evening the playing field, and it looks like it came straight out of Amazon’s playbook: free, two-day shipping on more than two million products.

It looks like Amazon Prime, but there are a few twists:

  • Walmart isn’t charging a membership fee. Amazon Prime is $99 per year, or $10.99 per month.
  • Walmart requires a minimum $35 purchase to get free, two-day shipping. Amazon Prime has no minimum purchase level.
  • Walmart’s offer covers about two million items. Amazon Prime reportedly includes 40 million items.

Of course, Amazon offers Prime members several other benefits beyond free, two-day shipping: free same-day delivery in certain areas, free two-hour delivery in some areas via its Prime Now product, unlimited media streaming via Prime Video and Prime Music, Amazon Dash button ordering and more.

Prime has been a huge success for Amazon. Analysts estimate that Prime has 65 million members in the U.S. who spend $1,200 per year with Amazon — about double what non-Prime customers spend. One recent survey revealed that 30 percent of Prime members place at least one order per week from Amazon.

Marc Lore, Walmart’s head of U.S. e-commerce, says today’s shipping announcement “is the first of many moves we will be making to enhance the customer experience and accelerate growth.” He also called free, two-day shipping “table stakes” in today’s e-commerce landscape. Lore is the co-founder of Jet.com, the e-commerce startup that Walmart bought last year.

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Author: Matt McGee

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source http://www.onpageseochecker.com/walmart-targets-amazon-prime-with-free-two-day-shipping/

Report: Snapchat launches new Facebook-inspired ad technology platform


Snapchat is launching a new Facebook-inspired ad platform, reports AdAge. While it has had an API since early 2016, today marks its opening of the platform with partnerships already in play to a wider user-base, including brands and agencies, allowing them to buy directly on the social network.

Evidently, Snapchat is taking cues from Facebook. An anonymous source told AdAge that “Snapchat is totally copying what Facebook did. They now have all the right tech partners to build the platform for them and bring in revenue.” It’s not surprising to see Snapchat take a stab at Facebook–Facebook is certainly doing the same with its product enhancements that aim to kill the service as a whole.

Many of these the partners who have been part of this ad technology overhaul, including Kenshoo, Kinetic, HyFn and Videology, have already worked with Facebook. Omnicom-owned agency Resolution Media will be licensing the API as well, allowing brands to bid on inventory through a self-serve model just like other services such as Google and Facebook.

Snapchat has also forged partnerships with Merkle, Kochava, LiveRamp and others who will work as “audience match” partners, which facilitates lookalike campaigns–data like customer lists can be uploaded to target similar users.

It has also introduced a video feature via a “creative API” to allow companies like Celtra, Vidmob and Spredfst to manage video content, helping with production and editing of videos for to achieve certain marketing objectives.

We have reached out to Snapchat for comment and will update this story when further information is made available.

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Author: Tamar Weinberg

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source http://www.onpageseochecker.com/report-snapchat-launches-new-facebook-inspired-ad-technology-platform/

Google launches Ads Added by AdWords pilot: What we know so far


Automation is nothing new in AdWords, but this month, Google launched a pilot that adds new text ads to advertisers’ accounts. Dubbed Ads Added by AdWords, the program started on January 26.

Not surprisingly, this news has set off alarm bells among paid search managers that worry about Google usurping control over the ad creation and testing process. Here is what we know so far about this test.

The initial set of advertisers were notified of the pilot on January 12. For those that chose to participate, ads were added to ad groups two weeks later, on January 26, at which time a second wave of advertisers were notified about the pilot. Currently, 2,000 accounts have been selected for the test. Each has a two-week opt-out window via a form. If you do not receive an email, you haven’t been selected for the pilot.

What accounts were considered for this program? Google looked at campaigns with ad rotation settings of either “Optimize for clicks” or “Optimize for conversions” that have ad groups with few ads in them.

If you’ve opted out of automated extensions or are in a vertical with privacy sensitivities such as pharma, your account was not selected for this program.

How are the ads generated? We’re told that for the test, the ads were generated by people (as opposed to auto-generated) based on the existing ads in the account and the landing page content. The ads went through review by the product team, among others, for quality assurance. The sales teams were also involved in creative review and account selection for the pilot.

From the Help Center page on this new program, we also know that any ads generated for the pilot will be labeled “Added by AdWords.” In the example below (yes, all of the ads are terrible, but try to look past that for now), Google has added two test ads in an ad group that had just one ad. Notice that the headlines, description and paths are all being tested.


Google says on that Help Center page, “We believe that adding more ads to the affected ad groups can improve these ad groups’ performance by 5 to 15%.” The new ads are set to run indefinitely, and Google recommends pilot participants not pause the ads. Theoretically, if they perform worse (based on conversion or click-through rates), the ads will be shown less. But certainly, review the ads if you’re participating in the test, as Google also advises.

This program obviously raises more questions about advertiser control and the role of machine learning in ad creation. If Google deems the pilot successful and rolls out Ads Added by AdWords more broadly, it’s hard to see how the current ad creation and vetting process can scale without automation. One can assume that the machines will be learning from this pilot.

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Author: Ginny Marvin

The post Google launches Ads Added by AdWords pilot: What we know so far appeared first on On Page SEO Checker.

source http://www.onpageseochecker.com/google-launches-ads-added-by-adwords-pilot-what-we-know-so-far/