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Earlier in April this year, Google rolled out a Google My Business (GMB) feature that enables users to create short names to define their GMB listing URLs.

With these short brandable names, customers can find you better. Here’s how you can set up a ‘short name’ for your business.

  • Sign in to Google My Business.

 

  • Open the location for which you want to create a short name.

 

  • Click on Info from the menu, then on Add profile short name.

 

  • Enter your short name (should be up to 32 characters). Names that have already been taken cannot be reused so try using new words or a combination of words that can best describe your brand.

 

  • Click on Apply. (Your short name will show as pending for a while before it reflects on your business profile).

 

Final Takeaway: If your business is Google My Business verified, then go ahead and create your custom ‘short name’ without wasting any time as it could give your business the exposure it’s worth.

 

Follow this Guide for more information on how to use the custom short names feature and the policies and terms of service.

 

Questions About Google My Business? Contact Us!

 

 

In true Google fashion, the company recently announced that Google My Business support has now come up with a new way of handling the entire Practitioner Listings process.

 

Where Practitioner Listings Come into the Picture

 

When a number of professionals, such as doctors, lawyers, etc. operate from the same office location but have different clients, Practitioner Listings are used. One has to create multiple Google My Business listings to support such practitioners.

 

However, this process has now undergone a few changes. Here’s a quick look at the said changes

 

  • When a Practitioner Retires

Previously, when a practitioner retired, Google My Business by default marked the listing as ‘Closed’, which often lead the customers to believe that the entire business has shut shop. However, now you can request Google to entirely remove the said listing from Google Maps.

 

  • When a Practitioner Dies

Somewhat similar to the above scenario, Google My Business used to by default mark a listing as ‘Permanently Closed’ when a practitioner died. Again, you can send out a request to Google to completely remove the listing from Maps instead of displaying the rather distasteful messaging.

 

  • When a Practitioner Starts Working Elsewhere

In such cases, you follow the same protocol as before. You are expected to update the practitioner’s listing to display their new business location because Google believes that the listing belongs to the professionals and not the business.

 

These updates are still new, so chances are you might run into some problems when trying to make changes to Practitioner Listings. In case you face any issues, you are most likely to receive a quick solution by reaching out to @GoogleMyBiz on Twitter.

 

Have Questions About Your Google Listing? Contact Us!

 

 

On June 17, to celebrate the International Small Business Day, Google announced the launch of its new website which has been built with an aim to help small businesses grow. The site is designed to match local businesses with Google products and services.

 

During the announcement, Google explained how businesses can take advantage of the three main actions the site offers.

 

  • Personalized Plans: Where businesses need to provide their name, answer a few questions about their business and mention their primary goal. On the basis of the given information, the business will receive a step-by-step, plan of recommendation customized as per their needs. Although the plan includes products to help businesses stand out online, reach more customers, and work more efficiently, it lays more emphasis on the goal that’s most important to a business.

 

  • In-person workshops: The in-person workshops will assist the business owners looking for personalized help. Businesses can locate free Grow with Google workshops happening near them.

 

  • Latest News: With the latest news, businesses can stay updated about Google’s small business-focused tools and services.

 

If you are a new business, looking for an opportunity to grow your online presence, this website is the right platform for you.

They provide a mix of free and paid service recommendations, that can help you grow your business. You can analyze which of these could be most helpful for your business and take a trial.

 

Is your online listing up to date? Find out your visibility score today!

 

 

You already know that Google introduced the new Search Console in January. Google has now announced that the new Search Console will NOT support the Preferred Domain Setting.

 

Google stated that the reason for removing the Preferred Domain Setting is that often websites have the same content on multiple URLs, and to make things easier Google will now recognize and pick the one “canonical” URL for you.

 

You can still let google know your preferences.

 

Google is not really taking everything out of your hands; you can still let them know which is your preferred domain. Here are some of the ways in which you can accomplish this:

 

  • Use “canonical” link tag on HTML pages
  • Use “canonical” HTTP header
  • Use a sitemap
  • Use 301 redirects for retired URLs

 

For more details on ways in which you can communicate your preferences to Google, take a look at its help center article – Consolidate Duplicate URLs.

 

How this update affects you

Google has made it very clear that they will no longer use any of the existing Search Console preferred domain configuration and setting. Hence, it is important that you check your Google search results to ensure that the canonical URL you listed in Google has not changed with this update.

 

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Are you getting the best return out of your digital marketing? Need an extra pair of eyes to review your online game plan? Let our experts take a look at your current state and do a comprehensive digital marketing analysis at no cost to you. Please call us at (800) 379-2829 or contact us today and we will get to work right away.

All marketers dream of one thing and one thing only: that one of their marketing campaigns become viral. But only a few handfuls actually achieve this dream, mostly because successful marketing campaigns take work, creativity, and a certain set of skills that are usually hard to come by. Most importantly, a creative marketing campaign that goes viral needs people who think outside of the box.

The next five creative marketing campaigns have made people cry, laugh, feel, and most importantly, purchase the products or services marketed. Of course, most of these brands are already quite famous, but it doesn’t mean that you can’t learn a few lessons from them that you can use in your own future marketing efforts.

So, keep on reading to learn more about these campaigns, how they achieved publicity, and the lessons we can all learn from them.

1.   Nike – The #Breaking2 Campaign

2017 has seen the fastest marathon run in history, by Dennis Kimetto in Berlin. The run clocked in at 2 hours and 2 minutes, for a 26.2-mile journey. Noticing this, Nike started a campaign called #Breaking2. The company used the power of its incredible logo (it never hurts to have a friendly marketing logo) and its slogan and worked with three famous runners: Zersenay Tadese, Lelisa Desisa, and Eliud Kipchoge.

 

marketing

Image: campaignlive.co.uk/

 

And then, in May 2017, Nike held its #Breaking2 marathon and broadcasted it live on YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter. The live was watched by 13.1 million people from all around the world, and the hashtag #Breaking2 was mentioned 84,459 times across these platforms in the course of two days. Impressive, right?

What can we learn from this?

Always work on a marketing campaign that’s tailored for you. Nike chose running and challenging oneself, both things the brand is famous for. Another lesson we can learn here is to include your audience in your marketing efforts. Nike invited their fans, normal everyday people, to watch their marathon live and see history being remade. And even though Nike didn’t manage to actually break the record, they still managed to turn this into a viral campaign.

2.   Amazon – The “Alexa Has Lost Her Voice” Campaign

The “Alexa Has Lost Her Voice” campaign was a user experience that ran for weeks, before, during, and after the 2018 Super Bowl. The creative director for this campaign states:

“A week before the game, over a million consumers discovered Alexa was losing her voice, upon interacting with her on their device. People began tweeting, “What’s wrong with Alexa?” Overall, we created over 60 on-device interactions with Alexa, replacing her with world-famous celebrity voices, and created over 200 pieces of social content, as well as two TV spots for the big game.”

marketing

Image: nicolasmejia.com

 

The campaign ended up going viral and earning more than 40 million views across all platforms.

What can we learn from this?

The campaign shows just how important influencer marketing is in today’s world. This, coupled with the perfect video helped boost the brand and raise product awareness because people learned just how important Alexa was. It doesn’t hurt that the ad is also hilarious, and we all know humor speaks to people.

 

3.   American Express – The “Everyday Moments” Campaign

During this ingenious Everyday Moments campaign, American Express focused solely on millennial’s. The brand used social media to release 12 videos starring one of America’s sweethearts, the hilarious and witty Tina Fey.

All videos have the same concept: they start off as greeting cards, then turn into congratulatory videos where both the brand and Fey congratulate millennial’s for some of the “firsts” in their young adult lives.

What can we learn from this?

Using targeted marketing is a good choice when you want to involve your audience. By doing so, American Express created a bond with their market of choice and generated an incredible buzz.

 

4.   The Chicago Museum of Science and Industry – The “A Month at the Museum” Campaign

Yes, museums are probably the least sexy thing you might be able to think about right now (unless you’re a history buff like us, then museums are perfect), and yet, the Chicago Museum of Science and Industry’s campaign was one of the most successful in these last few years.

The “A Month at the Museum” campaign was a contest where one applicant could win a one month stay at the museum, while getting paid for it.

People from all around the world applied, which made the museum go viral.

What can we learn from this?

Breaking stereotypes is always a good marketing move, especially if your image needs a face-lift. Advertising to millennial’s and using social media platforms is also the best way to do it, as the results for this campaign have shown.

 

5.   Starbucks – The Unicorn Frappuccino Campaign

Who hasn’t heard about the Starbucks Unicorn Frappuccino? This heavy, millennial-colored drink went viral on Instagram, even though it was only available for a week. The drink and the hashtag #UnicornFrappuccino, generated over 150,000 Instagram posts in less than 7 days, which makes this campaign one of the most successful ones in these last 3 years.

Image: irisemedia.com

 

What can we learn from this?

Using scarcity and Millennials’ FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out) coupled with social media is a great way to go viral. And if your products are extremely instagrammable, then that’s even better!

 

Conclusion

All viral marketing campaigns have one thing in common: creativity. They also all put their audience first, and answered some of their desires, which is a great way to make yourself and your brand known.

 

Are you getting the best return out of your digital marketing? Need an extra pair of eyes to review your online game plan? Let our experts take a look at your current state and do a comprehensive digital marketing analysis at no cost to you. Please call us at (800) 379-2829 or contact us today and we will get to work right away.

 

Contact Us

Taste of Chicago stats

More than a million people attended the Taste of Chicago, billed as the largest outdoor food festival in the world. The 5 day event held at Grant Park and ended last weekend.  Now it’s time to look at some interesting stats that we pulled from different sources on the web. Social Media played a big role in this year’s event. Not only were people sharing pictures on popular social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat etc. but there were a lot of people posting a lot of stories and LIVE videos while at the event. We are humbled that eBizUniverse had a small role to play in the success of this year’s Taste of Chicago event as we partnered with the city of Chicago to promote the event on major Social Media platforms.

Here are some stats that we put together for you:

  • Over 1 Million attendees
  • 300 menu items from 82 eateries, including 36 newcomers
  • Economic Impact to the city: $106 million
  • Chicagoans Most Popular Eats:
    • Chicken tamales at Yvolina’s Tamales
    • Vada Pav Indian fried potato dumplings from Hakka Bakka
    • Spicy fried pickles from Doom Street Eats
    • Szechuan cold noodle salad
    • Lao Sze Chuan
    • Gator bites at Chicago’s Dog House
    • Kimchi cheese fries at Yum Dum
    • Gelato donuts on a stick from Black Dog Gelato
    • Buffalo chicken egg rolls from Egg Rolls
  • Most Consumed food:
    • 10,000 cheeseburgers ((“Cheezborgers”!)) served by Billy Goat Tavern & Grill
    • 3,000 pounds of Frannie’s Italian Beef
    • 2,000 turkey legs
    • 1,000 ears of Corn on the Cob
    • 8,300lbs of Jerk Chicken & Goat Meat by Vee Vee’s African Restaurant
    • 15,000 pounds of rib tips
    • 35,000 slices of Eli’s Cheesecake
    • Phad Thai 3,300 servings by Arun’s Thai Restaurant
    • 3,000 pieces of Fried Wontons
    • 7,500 servings of Empanadas
    • Beef & Chicken Bowls 5,000 bowls
    • 14,500 Pizza slices
    • 12,300 servings of Italian Ice
    • and for the Vegans
  • For the music lovers
    • Five Free Concerts
      • Wednesday Concert, July 10: Sunflower Bean, Courtney Barnett
      • Thursday, July 11: Cultura Profética, Bomba Estéreo
      • Friday, July 12: Taylor Bennett, De La Soul
      • Saturday, July 13: Joywave, lovelytheband, The Strumbellas
      • Sunday, July 14: Bilal, Meshell Ndegeocello, India.Arie
    •  Street Art & Graffiti  by local artists
    • Dance Performances by local dance companies
    • and much more!
  • Enjoy pictures from the event below…

 

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Taste of Chicago performance
Taste of Chicago 2013
Porchlight Music Theatre
Sources for news and images:
  1. https://wbbm780.radio.com/taste-of-chicago-2019-numbers-statistics
  2. https://www.nbcchicago.com/blogs/worth-the-trip/taste-of-chicago-photos-512735631.html
  3. https://www.choosechicago.com/events-and-shows/food-and-drinks/taste-of-chicago
  4. https://www.chicago.gov/city/en/depts/dca/supp_info/taste_of_chicago20.html

 

 

 

It’s true; come July 1st, Google will, by default, use its mobile Googlebot to index all the new sites that come online. This move will help ensure that the users’ needs are placed at the forefront. Besides, Mobile-First indexing is something that Google has already been doing with over half of the search results anyway.

Want to Find Out Whether Your Site is Being Indexed by the Mobile Bot?

Chances are, if your site is responsive and mobile-friendly, then it is already being indexed using the mobile bot and you have nothing to worry about. However, if you still want to check whether your site is being indexed using Mobile-First indexing, then it is fairly easy to do so.

Normally, you will receive an email notifying you that your site has been migrated. In case you missed the mail, you can check using Google’s URL Inspection Tool. All you have to do is add your homepage URL in the top search bar in Google Search Console account and hit enter.

The page that comes next will show you whether the site is being indexed using Google smartphone bot.

If while using the tool you are unable to understand the results you get, go through Google’s URL Inspection Tool guide that offers details on all the different types of results one can get.

 

Questions about Ranking on Google Or Ranking Issues? Talk To Us.

 

Coding errors can pop up anytime and Google is all set to make it easier for us to realize when we have one on our hands. In an effort to offer more transparency on how our structured data is actually performing, Google has added three new reports to its Search Console. These new reports are as follows:

  1. Logo Enhancement Report – If you are using Logo Markup, this report will provide you with details pertaining to the performance and/or errors around your Logo Markup.

 

  1. Sitelinks Seachbox Enhancement Report – This report has been put in place to provide you with insight into the performance and/or errors around your SearchAction Markup.

 

  1. Unparsable Structured Data Report – This error report has been designed to enable you to analyze and resolve issues around markup codes that fail to pass Google’s testing.

As long as your site has these specific markups, you will be able to find these reports listed under the Enhancements tab in Search Console.

 

Why we need these reports?

 

It is fairly common for an error to pop up even after you run a new code through Google’s Structured Testing Tool. These new reports give you a comprehensive breakdown of when Google first discovered the error, the pages with the error and even what the error looks like.

However, while you are trying to see whether you have been able to successfully troubleshoot the markup coding issues in your site, you need to bear in mind that the reports take time to update. It can take around a week or more for the updated page code to reflect on the reports even after you Validate a Fix.

 

Is your Online Listing up to date? Find out your Visibility Score today

 

 

Area 120, Google’s experimental products group, introduces a new call automation service – CallJoy.

A cloud-based phone agent, CallJoy will help local businesses improve, measure and automate their customer service.

Take a look at Google’s promotional video explaining the benefits of their new service.

Here’s a breakdown of how it will work…

  • Post a quick setup, you will receive a local phone number.

 

  • CallJoy will immediately filter calls that matter and start blocking unwanted spam calls.

 

  • An automated agent will answer calls that matter the most, greet the callers with a custom message and provide basic information related to your business, like days of operation, services available, etc.

 

  • If the customer would like to place an online order or book an appointment, the virtual agent will send him/her an SMS containing the URL for the concerned task.

 

  • The calls will be recorded and transcribed for quality purposes regardless of whether the callers interact directly with you or speak to the CallJoy agent.

These features will make it easier for business owners to tag and search each conversation based on the topic. For instance, a restaurant owner is most likely to search how many times a day callers placed orders for a particular dish.

CallJoy also compiles your data in an online dashboard and mails you a daily update including metrics like volume, new vs returning callers, etc.

At an economical fee of $39/per month, CallJoy promises to deliver customer services for small businesses that were previously available only to larger corporations.

 

Final Takeaway

 

Although it has been noted by many local search experts that Google isn’t that great with automation so far, if you wish to test the system? Sign up for early access here.

 

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A new Automated Ads tool was announced by Facebook recently. The social networking site claims it to be of great help in creating result driven ads.

The Tool Will Have Following Features:

  • Suggestions to create up to 6 different versions of your ad.
    • Call-to-action buttons
    • Text
    • Other creative details

(Facebook will show the best-performing version, once the ad is active)

 

  • Tailored audience recommendations based on the information available on your page.

 

  • Budget recommendations that are likely to generate results as per your goals.

(Your own budget can also be shared to determine the estimated results)

 

Receive timely notifications to help you understand how your ads are performing and how you can improve them.

Additionally, Facebook has expanded its free business tools to allow appointment booking and managing.

You can also find 3 new features added to their video editing tools…

  • Automatic Cropping
  • Video Trimming
  • Image & Text Overlays

Have a look at the announcement page that provides complete details and video guides on how these tools can be used.

 

Need help with Facebook Advertising Or Facebook Ad Setup? Talk To Us.

 

 

 

 

Are you getting the best return out of your digital marketing? Need an extra pair of eyes to review your online game plan? Let our experts take a look at your current state and do a comprehensive digital marketing analysis at no cost to you. Please call us at (800) 379-2829 or contact us today and we will get to work right away.

google

google

 

 

 

google

Google recently launched a new feature that lets business owners create a short name to define their GMB listing URL. The intention behind rolling out this feature was to make it easier for business owners to share details with their customers as short names are easy to remember (duh).

 

This is obviously a very useful and smart feature because earlier businesses had to market the extremely long Google My Business URLs. Also, keep in mind that just like the Emails, the short names will run out very quickly, so make sure you hurry up and claim your short name before someone else does.

 

It can even harm you if you don’t act on time as your competitors may use those short names to their advantage. Here’s how it works according to Google:

 

If you’re a verified business, you can create a short name, or a custom name, for your Business Profile to make it easier for customers to find you.

 

When you share your short name, customers can enter the short name URL in the browser’s address bar, like “g.page/[yourcustomname]”, to go directly to your Business Profile.

 

Note: For bulk users, short names have to be claimed individually per listing.

 

Having a short name for your GMB listing will not only help you in sharing it but will also help you to get more reviews. Not to mention that it will be easy for your customers to remember those names so they are more likely to click on that link, instead of passing it away as just another promotional message/Email.

Head straight to the Google support page to know how to create, change and delete your short name. In case you spot someone else using your brand name or spot any offensive or spammy content, you can submit a report using this link.

 

We can not emphasize more on how imperative it is to use it and act as quickly as possible because there’s not a single reason to not use it. It will help you with a lot of your marketing efforts. So get started as quickly as you can.

 

The process is very simple, just follow these instructions.

 

  • Sign in to Google My Business.
  • Open the location you want to create a short name for.
  • From the menu, click Info and then Add profile short name.
  • Enter your short name. You can enter up to 32 characters.
  • If your name isn’t available, you’ll receive an error message and have to choose a different name. Try abbreviating your name or adding other descriptions, like your location. You can also pick another word that describes your business or brand.
  • Click Apply. Your short name will show as pending, and when it’s ready, it’ll show on your Business Profile.

 

Questions about your Google local listing? Contact Us

 

Now you can highlight positive customer reviews for your business easily. Google has rolled out a new feature that allows you to highlight the reviews from your happy customers. It’s called Suggested posts: Customer testimonials.

 

Here’s an excerpt from their announcement:

 

We’re happy to announce a new feature that lets you post automatically suggested reviews as customer testimonials.

 

In some countries, Google My Business will provide suggested posts to help you showcase positive reviews left for your business. You may get suggestions for new testimonials to post when you sign in to Google My Business, or via email notifications.

 

These posts are automatically suggested based on 4 or 5-star reviews recently left for your business. You’ll be able to review and edit the post before publishing it.

Here’s an example of how it looks:

Takeaway

Positive reviews are immensely beneficial to your business and bottom line. So if you have a verified Google My Business listing, you can use Google posts to highlight reviews from your happy customers. It can help you in many ways. Also, do not forget to constantly use Google posts to promote your events, products & offers. In case you are new to Google posts or thinking about how much value it will bring to your business, we highly suggest you give this article a read.

 

CHECK YOUR ONLINE REPUTATION SCORE

 

Google My Business rolled out a Products Beta feature to some business listings last year. It allowed them to add products to their listing just like services. Google has a very easy to understand help page that explains every single detail of this feature.

 

Be informed that currently, it’s only available to a few businesses in select countries. Also, they have special instructions for different categories. So Make sure you read their help page before diving deep into it.

 

If you are eligible to promote products, you are allowed to feature your products within a Google post, which has proven to bring in a lot of sales.

 

But just like the service feature, you will have to add each item one at a time. And because it’s only available to retail merchants, it’s obviously a very slow and tiring process. Let’s see if they will allow bulk uploading in the future but as of now, it’s just one product at a time.

 

We tried searching for answers as to why it’s only available to retail merchants that also to selected few, we just found this statement:

 

Important: This feature may not be available to all retail merchants. We’re working to bring it to all eligible businesses.

 

Takeaway

If you are a retail merchant and eligible for this feature, you can see it in the products tab in the left-hand menu. And if you are eligible, the first thing you should do is to try it out right away. It is a free marketing tool and can bring in a lot of relevant traffic & ultimately boost your sales.

 

Is your online listing up to date? Find out your visibility score today

 

  • Bing Ads is Now Microsoft Advertising: It’s a move to demonstrate that Microsoft is aligning Microsoft Advertising with the broader aspects of search marketing.
  • Facebook has launched a new interface for Ads Manager. It will be effective from May 1. And there’s no way to switch back to the prevision version.
  • Google has postponed the Video campaigns and has launched Parallel Tracking for display campaigns.
  • It is possible that in the near future, product price and seasonality will be taken into consideration as new smart bidding signals in Google ads. Learn more.
  • Instagram is seeing steady growth in term of ad spends and so does the newer ad formats like responsive search ads. We highly recommend reading the Marin’s Benchmark Report Q1 2019 on Most Popular Ad Formats as it sheds light on the latest trends.
  • If you are running Google display ads, then be aware that there is an automated targeted setting that you need to turn it off right away. Although Google says that it targets customers who are likely to convert, but the fact that they have buried it deep in the settings says just the opposite.
  • Bing Ads which is now Microsoft Advertising has launched a new call to action extension. This particular extension help you highlight the CTA on your text ads and those who have participated in the beta have witnessed an average boost of 20% in their click-through-rate.
  • If you are not using responsive search ads, this article might give you some (seven to be precise) reasons to use them in 2019. And even if you decide not to, at least you will have knowledge about it and it will come handy in the future.
  • Here’s an excellent guide on how to graph the new Impression and click share metrics to find data insights in your Google Ads account
  • Amazon is attracting more and more advertisers as businesses are preferring to advertise directly on the E-Commerce platform rather than the search engine. Which means that they are avoiding the first step altogether and jumping straight to the second one & getting good results from it.

 

 

 

Are you getting the best return out of your digital marketing? Need an extra pair of eyes to review your online game plan? Let our experts take a look at your current state and do a comprehensive digital marketing analysis at no cost to you. Please call us at (800) 379-2829 or contact us today and we will get to work right away.

core update

core update

 

 

Google launched a massive algorithm update between March 12th & 14th. It was one of the biggest updates in recent years. Because it was a broad core update, Google came out to confirm that they have indeed launched a massive update and called it March 2019 Core update. Many SEO’s also termed it as Florida 2 update.

 

Key Takeaways

None of our client’s websites were affected by this update.

As per observations from other sources, the sites that were hit by August core update 2018 soon recovered from it. Seems like Google rewarded them for adding quality content, building high-quality Google friendly links and improving the user experience.

While some enjoyed the reward, some sites got punished. It may be because of the thin content present on the site and lack of basic on-page SEO factors.

Although the March update affected many industries, “Your Money Your Life” industry was hit the hardest. If you are wondering what exactly is Your Money Your Life, here’s a brief explanation:

Websites asking for personal information, such as identification numbers, bank account numbers, drivers license numbers, etc., which could be used for identity theft.

  • Websites used for monetary transactions.
  • Websites offering medical or health information.
  • Websites offering advice on major life decisions.
  • Websites offering advice on major life issues.

 

If your site was hit by this update or in general is not performing well, you can get in touch with our experienced team to help you out.

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A verified Google My Business listing can take your company to new heights. When your listing is verified, it not only gets a major boost in the SERP, but also appears on Google Maps & local pack. Having a verified listing on the GMB increase chances of your website appearing in front of your prospects since Google puts so much emphasis on the location of the searcher.

But over the years, Google has made their policy strict and now it’s harder than ever for some business (especially those who are in the service industry) to get their listing verified. So let’s find out if your business qualifies for it and will also try to explain how Google sees it.

 

  1. Brick and Mortar

A traditional office, store, warehouse or shop gets the fastest approval from Google.

 

  1. Shared space

 

1) Business inside another business

If you have a store or office inside a commercial complex it means that you share that location with other businesses as well. Although you are entitled to a verified Google My Business Listing, you might face some issues since Google will be extra cautious while verifying it. Many people have reported that although their business got verified, it still shows “Your business is verified. Listings may be reviewed for quality and can take up to 3 days to be published.” But it never gets reviewed and published within 3 days. It takes way longer.

 

2) Departments within other business, universities, or institutions

This case mostly arises within universities, hospitals, and bigger institutions, since they are spread over a huge area and have various entries for different departments and also have different timings.

 

Here are Google’s guidelines for getting a verified listing of different departments of the same company.

“Publicly facing departments that operate as distinct entities should have their own page. The exact name of each department must be different from that of the main business and that of other departments. Typically such departments have a separate customer entrance and should each have distinct categories. Their hours may sometimes differ from those of the main business.”

 

3) One location, one owner, multiple businesses

If you are an owner of multiple companies and they all share the same physical location but you want each of them to have its own listing, they should each also have distinct categories and business names and phone numbers and each phone should be answered with the name of that specific business.

 

4) Different practitioners at the same location

What if you are a lawyer or real estate agent who operates from the same location that other lawyers & realtors share? Will you be eligible for an individual listing? The answer is “YES”. Here’s what Google’s guidelines say about it:

“An individual practitioner should create his or her own dedicated listing if:

  • He or she operates in a public-facing role. Support staff should not create their own listings.
  • He or she is directly contactable at the verified location during stated hours.

A practitioner should not have multiple listings to cover all of his or her specializations.”

 

Having said that, have no doubt about it that it is going to be really challenging. However, if you run into any problems then you can contact the Google support team on Twitter @GoogleMyBiz or you can fill out the form here.

 

5) Virtual office space

Google has made it clear that if you use virtual office spaces will not qualify for a verified GMB listing. It will be eligible only if you or someone from your team is “available” there at the location during the business hours mentioned. Google has also recently updated its guidelines regarding this. Give it a read.

 

6) Sharing an office with a business like yours

You will have a tough time verifying this kind of business because no legit business would want to sit at the same location where their competitors are. And in case you manage to get it verified, the chances of data getting conflated is very high. So it’s better to just avoid it because it can get messy.

 

7) Co-working spaces

It’s not very different from shared spaces and virtual office. So let’s just say that if you or your employees are available at the address during the business hours then you are eligible for a verified listing on Google My Business. But let me repeat, it will be tricky!

 

8) Home-based business location

One of the most hectic situation to be in. Google HIGHLY doubts a business that is being operated from a residential address because it got spammed a lot in the past and now they want to avoid it. However, you may be eligible for the listing, if you can show proof that you have set up a legitimate office in your home where you meet your customers. They may ask for the photos or/and videos of sign boards, business cards, front entry, etc. The reason given by Google for this is: If you meet customers at your home, then you MUST have a signboard. There’s also an option of video call verification where they will ask you to show you your entire setup while being on a call with you all the time.

 

  1. Service Area Businesses (SABs)

 

Let’s first understand what Google considers as Service area business: “Service area businesses are those that do their work at the customer’s location”.

 

Hidden Addresses

If you don’t meet your customers face to face, then Google thinks that showing your address on the map is not required. If you operate such business, make sure you answer all the questions appropriately while setting up your GMB account.

 

Verification

To get this type of business verified, you may be asked for additional proof form Google staff to ensure that your business truly exists and is legit. You may be asked for videos of your work vehicle etc. to assure Google that you are running a legit business.

 

Home Addresses

It has been seen that many companies have tried to create an individual listing of their business from the home address of their own and sometimes employees. While this “Might” work, but there are high chances that it will backfire since you are trying to trick the biggest internet country on the planet.

 

Takeaway

Make sure you read Google’s guidelines & above-mentioned tips and information before setting up a Google My Business listing. Because not only Google has made their policy strict, but your competitors are also looking out for any inconsistency so they can report a problem with your listing. This may result in suspension of your account -which you will want to avoid at all cost.

Questions about your Google local listing? Contact Us

 

Everyone was excited about Google Posts within the SEO community. But over time we analyzed that it is getting less and less exposure. However, we still believe that Google Posts are worth your time and efforts.

The good news is, that while other types of Google Posts are getting less exposure, “Offers” are getting more & more exposure. Google’s new layout introduced a dedicated space for customers to see a carousel of Offers from your business.

 

Actionable Strategy

Google Posts may not be proving as fruitful as you might have expected it to be, but it still drives free traffic. So don’t stop creating Google posts and utilize the “offers” within the Google posts to the fullest. However, make sure that you are sticking to Google’s guidelines while creating offers:

 

“An offer can include a description of the promotion, a coupon code or any terms and conditions useful to your audience. You can surface up to 10 unique offers in the carousel, providing a list of choices.”

 

Questions about Google+? Contact us!

 

Twitter has launched a new tool that lets you know the best time and date to post your video content.

According to Twitter, it’s an effort to provide our publishers with more actionable data to help them improve their performance on Twitter.

As seen in the chart below, Timing is Everything displays historical data showing when audiences are on Twitter watching and engaging with video.

They further added:

“It’s important to note that the chart on the page doesn’t show when your organic followers are watching your videos; instead, in the aggregate, it shows when people on Twitter are generally watching any video on Twitter.”

 

Takeaway

Although it doesn’t provide insights about YOUR post, it’s a good roadmap to find out the right time to post. Keep experimenting with your posting time based on the insight you get from this tool and you will eventually hit the right chord. This means, you will eventually be able to figure out when is the best time to post video content for YOUR followers.

 

 

Are you getting the best return out of your digital marketing? Need an extra pair of eyes to review your online game plan? Let our experts take a look at your current state and do a comprehensive digital marketing analysis at no cost to you. Please call us at (800) 379-2829 or contact us today and we will get to work right away.

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If you or any of your clients has a mobile business, like plumbing service, landscapers or any business that is always on the move – we have good news for you.

Google wants to help those who service multiple areas by showing their service area & business information on Google Search and Maps. You can enter the area you are generally in by submitting the list of zip codes on GMB.

It simply starts with “Do you want to add a location customers can visit, like a store or office?” while creating your GMB account. It will then show you options that are tailored to fit the needs of a mobile business. But in case you already have an account on GMB, you can edit it from the dashboard.

The best part about this feature is – it allows the business owners to separately edit the storefront and service area. So, in case you have a physical location and also provide mobile services, you can highlight both on the SERP and Map.

Just in case your address isn’t applicable to your business, you can simply clear it. But will there be any downside to it? These points might be able to answer your question.

  1. Clearing your address will turn your listing into a service area business which will remove the directions icon, remove the maps pin, remove the listing from the Google Maps API and hide your address from the public.
  2. If you’re a service area business and your address was automatically cleared by Google, don’t try to add it back. If you attempt to do so, you’ll be required to reverify it.
  3. In spite of your “missing” address, Google still knows where you are but they hide your address from the public.
  4. The old service area radius is replaced with a list of zip codes or cities.
  5. Rankings are still based on your address (whether you like it or not).
  6. If you move, you should add your new address back, re-verify it, then clear it. Otherwise, your ranking will be based on the old address.

Our takeaway

If you or your client’s business can benefit from the service area feature, make sure you read Google’s announcement & then head to this article for further explanation.

Questions about your Google local listing? Contact Us

 

Again, a piece of good news for business owners and agencies from Google. Google is now allowing business owners or those who operate it digitally to respond to reviews directly from the desktop.

Until now, you had to open the Google My Business Mobile app to do so – which was troubling for some as many found the GMB app confusing. This new feature (which should be there from the very start) will provide convenience to agencies who have multiple listings to manage.

According to Community Manager, Kara at GMB…

“We’re making improvements on how you can reply to reviews, and providing you with more information and tools to get feedback from customers. You can now reply to reviews directly with your business profile on Google Maps from your computer.

Replying directly from Google Maps lets you manage your reviews without having to download the Google My Business app or open its homepage”.

How to go about it

Just search for your verified business on Google Maps. When you see your listing scroll down until you see Reviews, then click Reply next to the review you’d like to reply to.

Our takeaway

We all know the importance of reviews and how it plays a crucial role. By allowing us to directly respond to them, Google provided the much-needed convenience. In case you haven’t seen it already, Google has released it’s guidelines on how to respond to reviews, especially the negative ones.

CHECK YOUR REPUTATION SCORE

 

Google Search Console has finally added Structured Data Product Markup reporting on 22nd of Feb, 2019. Not just that but they also start sending out emails notifying about your active product markup errors. The product markup reporting now includes:

  • Recipe
  • Job Posting
  • Event
  • Q&A Page
  • Product

Despite being one of the most important Schema markups, Google still hasn’t finished the reporting yet and are still working on some bugs.

Be informed that not all websites have access to this new reporting, so if you haven’t found one in your search console, chances are you will soon be able to see it.

When we tested some WooCommerce website, the search console showed some errors like:

Either “offers”, “review”, or “aggregateRating” should be specified.

But when we tested the same URL on Google’s Structured Data Testing Tool, it did not display any errors, it just showed warnings instead.

Our takeaway

As you can see, the number of errors and warnings on the new Structured Data Product Markup reporting is staggering. But be careful of all the errors and warning emails that you might be receiving as they can be actual errors and not a bug.

But you don’t have to worry about something that you can’t control like not having a review to add since Google is still working on the New Search Console and will likely fix the bugs very shortly. So if you see any errors and can’t find any solution to it, wait for it. Google will fix it out and we will notify you as soon as they do.

Is your online listing up to date? Find out your visibility score today

 

Google has recently revamped their Test My Site Tool that shows the average loading speed of your website on mobile devices along with a report on how to fix issues and make your website better.

The biggest change here is they are now using a 4G connection to test the site speed instead of a 3G connection that they used earlier. They have also added some new features, which according to Google, will help website owners boost their site’s performance.

Here are the new features that have been added to the tool:

  • The speed of both their entire site and of individual pages
  • Whether their site/page speed is faster or slower compared to the prior month
  • Whether their site speed/page speed ranks Fast, Average, or Slow
  • How their site speed compares to others in the industry
  • The potential impact of site speed on revenue
  • A detailed list of recommended fixes to increase speed on up to 5 pages on their site
  • A complete report to share with their team

Our takeaway

When it comes to the digital world, every second counts. Multiple types of research have confirmed that site speed directly affects the bottom line of your business. Hence, you want your website to load fast. Now that Google has revamped its tool and provides more meaningful insights, it’s easier than ever to understand the issue (if any) and fix it immediately.

If you need any help, our experienced team will be there to assist you. Just connect with our support team with details.

Grade Your Website

 

Google has finally decided to shut down Google+. Although they announced it last October, the last nail in the coffin will be put on the 2nd of April. Here’s the full FAQ in which Google provides details and updates regarding the shutdown.

They have already stopped allowing people from creating new profiles from February and now it will be shut down for “Most” of the people. By most of the people, we mean those who don’t use the G-suite. Google is still somehow trying to milk Google+ (can’t blame them though) and add it to the G-Suite. According to Google, it will be like a private & secure social network where the team can share ideas, projects, and updates in real time.

Be informed that your photos & videos on Google Photos will not be deleted.

And if you want to download the data from your Google+ account before Google shuts it down completely, click here. Take note that downloading your data doesn’t delete it, so here’s where Google provides Instructions for deleting your data.

Our takeaway

  • Make sure you download all your important data from Google + account, including data on album archives and pages.
  • Delete the Google+ Icon from your website
  • De-activate any auto-post settings for Google+ in your WordPress plugins.
  • Remove any schema markup that is linked to your Google+ identities.

Questions about Google+? Contact us!

Quora rolled out auction insights and search targeting option.

 

Are you getting the best return out of your digital marketing? Need an extra pair of eyes to review your online game plan? Let our experts take a look at your current state and do a comprehensive digital marketing analysis at no cost to you. Please call us at (800) 379-2829 or contact us today and we will get to work right away.

 

 

 

 

 

Google announced last month that they are launching a new Google My Business App that provides a host of features that can help small business owners to easily manage their online presence and respond to customers.

Following are the biggest features and highlights:

  1. Profile Tab

Google has made it extremely easy to upload photos, create offers and add events by providing a post button. You can also update information of your business from the profile tab and it will instantly appear on the search as well as Map.

  1. Customer Tab

People can connect with you in many ways. They can message you, follow you, book a service or leave a review. From now on, you can see all of these customers in one place – The new customer tab. You can not only see but also respond to the reviews & post offers. Not to mention that you will get a notification when you get a new customer connection. Also, you will soon be able to respond to messages directly from the app.

  1. See your Progress in Real Time

The data that matters to you the most is now on the home screen itself. So you can now check how many new people interacted with your business, new connections & more in one place.

Here’s a short video:

Takeaway

Google My Business App is a very powerful tool that every business owner and SEO professionals must have. It’s easy to use and offers a lot of tools that make tracking, analyzing and making changes easy.

The other big news is that Google is about to launch a chat feature for Maps. So users can directly chat with business owners directly after searching for their business. Having a GMB app will help you with this feature as well.

 

 

If you have a WordPress site or manage one for others, then you need to stop everything & check the PHP version of the site.  The PHP version 5.6 & 7.0 will no longer receive security patch from 31st December & 3rd December respectively, which makes them very prone to hacking.

WordPress has released data which shows that most of the sites are built on these two or even older version of the PHP. Only a limited few sites are using 7.1 or higher version of the PHP.

If you are not sure how to check the version of the PHP your site is built on, you can simply contact your hosting company.

To know the life cycle of the all the PHP versions, please see the below table:

Be informed that updating PHP is not that complicated. However, the outdated plug-ins & themes can make it a bit daunting. So we advise you to back up all your website before making any changes.

Not all the Plug-ins that you are currently using would be compatible with the latest version of the PHP that is 7.1 & higher. So before you even start to upgrade, make sure you identify all the plug-ins and themes that can be updated, and remove those that are not compatible with the latest version of the PHP.  The PHP compatibility checker will help with just that.

It’s vital that you remove any plug-ins that are not compatible with the latest version of PHP because they pose a security threat.  Upgrading your site’s PHP version will go like this:

  1. Create a full backup of your WordPress site.
  2. Check the PHP version.
  3. Plugin Compatibility With New PHP Versions
  4. Find an alternative to those plug-ins that can’t be updated.
  5. Go to your web hosting control panel & click on the PHP section.
  6. Update the PHP version.

In case you are stuck anywhere between the whole process, make sure to reach out to your hosting provider and ask them your specific question. Alternatively, you can also reach out to us. Our expert team we will be more than happy to assist you. Call us at (800) 379-2829 or contact us.

 

 

Did you know that around 90% of consumers research online before making a buying decision? Your online reviews play a major role in how a buyer makes a buying decision today. Have you checked your online reputation score?Click To Tweet

MyReviewEngine is a review management tool where your business can get more 5 star reviews and triple your sales. The system automates your review process and makes it easy to invite your clients to review your business, via email, SMS, etc. In addition to growing your reviews on auto-pilot, the tool also prevents negative reviews from being published online and be sent to you so you can handle that directly. There are several other features but those are just a few. Go here to run a review scan and check your online reputation.

How It Works

  1. Just sign up and utilize your custom page. You can place it anywhere you want – on your website, your shopping cart, your email footer, or even send it to your entire email list. You can custom select which platforms you want to improve your reviews!
  2. Customers rate you on a 1-5 star scale. Anything 4 stars or less prompts the reviewer to a private form that only YOU see, preventing negative public reviews! Any 4 or 5-star ratings are prompted to leave a review on the website of their choosing.
  3. Your positive review scores increase on the platforms that matter most to you. This helps with conversions and trust! Additionally, you can place a review carousel or randomize reviews on your website to display all the positive reviews you’ve collected.

 

Popular Review Sites

Many potential customers come to these review sites to see whether or not they would like to come to your business. These reviews have a huge influence on their decision. You can boost reviews on these review sites just like these and even more!

Success Stories

 

 

 

 

Before:                                                                                        After:

Company Background: Chicago Controls (aka Landlord Thermostats) is an expanding nationwide company headquartered in Chicago IL.  In business for over a two decades, Chicago Controls has its origins in a company started by founder Mike Lyle in 1996. The company’s goal is to provide landlord’s, property owners, and property managers tamper-resistant thermostats for their properties. The company has invested heavily in digital marketing to differentiate and to expand their presence online.

READ MORE

 

Find Your Reputation Score

 

CHECK YOUR REPUTATION SCORE

 

 

 

 

 

 

Are you getting the best return out of your digital marketing? Need an extra pair of eyes to review your online game plan? Let our experts take a look at your current state and do a comprehensive digital marketing analysis at no cost to you. Please call us at (800) 379-2829 or contact us today and we will get to work right away.

 

Marketing has drastically progressed over the past decade. When once a simple flyer or a highway billboard may have been sufficient, the digital revolution has forced marketers to evolve and adapt along with it. Now, marketers have more tools than ever at their disposal, and through thoughtful execution, they can create the most effective strategies possible.

Generally speaking, good marketing boils down to knowing your target audience and being able to connect with them on a meaningful level. In order to do this, you need to gain useful information—or data—about your consumers. Successful marketers will take this valuable knowledge and use it to develop a powerful strategy that will continually adapt based on the results.

Data-Driven Strategies

Getting acquainted with your consumers

Strong data-driven marketing strategies rely on the insights you gain from your target demographics. There are a variety of ways to obtain the information you need (and these can differ based on your business and intended audience), but the following suggestions are great places to start.

Evaluate your analytics

Analytics data is one of the most advantageous marketing tools a brand can have. Over the years, Analytics has become more and more specific, to the point where it is able to give marketers a near complete profile of the people that visit their website and/or social media pages, including details on their purchasing habits.

These visitors provide a great pool from which to draw information about your audiences, and determine if you’re attracting the people you need to be attracting. From age, gender, and location to device, pathway, and page clicks, Analytics gives brands knowledge to leverage to their advantage.

But analytics isn’t just about capturing the right people’s attention, it’s also about creating the best, most personalized shopping experience for customers. Take the British fashion brand Burberry for example, which has created one of the most efficient customer databases in the luxury industry. Their 360 Customer View integrates their online and offline channels to ensure that store employees are always prepared to best service clientele, and that marketers receive an extremely detailed picture of their audience. “Through this data-driven shopping experience, every customer can digitally share their shopping preferences, experiences, and buying history. The information of a particular customer visiting a store can, therefore, be delivered to store employee’s tablets in real time.”

Just ask—and most importantly, LISTEN

Like most things in life, if you need an answer, the simplest thing to do is to ask the question. Collecting data from your consumers is no exception. Sounds easy enough, right? If you want to gain insight on potential consumers—insight that perhaps goes beyond the bounds of tools such as Analytics—ask them to complete a brief survey, post questions to your social media, and encourage discussions that can shed additional light onto who your consumers are and what they’re looking for. You may be surprised to find just how eager some customers are to offer their opinions! Be sure to listen carefully and translate their answers into actions.

Coca Cola is one of the many big-name brands using data to stay better connected to its customers—and this is why they’ve managed to stay one step ahead of the competition. Even way back in 2015, Justin De Graaf, Director of Data Strategy and Precision Marketing at The Coca-Cola Company, was lauding the many benefits data offers for customer retention. “Data plays an increasingly important role in marketing and product development. Consumers do a great job of sharing their opinions with us – either by phone, email or social networks – that allow us to hear their voice and adjust our approach. We often talk about why we have two ears and one mouth – it’s better to listen more than we speak. This holds true with our approach on consumer input. Data is also helping us create more relevant content for different audiences.”

Monitor online outlets

It’s time for you to play detective. If you want to find out how to best connect with your audience, you need to think like your audience. Put yourself in their shoes. Visit the sites they are likely to visit, read their testimonials, view their comments, look at their complaints, and put together a comprehensive profile that you can then target strategically.

There are plenty of tools that can help you monitor your mentions and view online discussions pertaining to your brand or your competitors. Apps such as Hootsuite, Sprout Social, Klout, Keyhole and Buffer are just a handful of examples.

Tito’s Handmade Vodka brand uses Sprout Social, and have been happy with what it has helped them accomplish. “Sprout’s analytics let us see what is working–we can listen better to our customers and react appropriately,” says Nicole Brentwood, VP of Brand Marketing, “It’s an incredible platform to get a macro look at what’s happening with your brand’s voice in the social space. It aggregates that information and really creates one solid picture for us to understand the feedback loop.”

Creating a strategy from your data

This is the part where you determine how these results translate to your marketing strategy, and then implement them accordingly. Use the data you’ve gathered in the various steps above to create a potent marketing strategy. The data should reveal things such as the channels you should be using to best engage with your consumers, what content best captures the attention of your target audience, what your consumers value in their brands, how they prefer to communicate, how often they’re online, etc.

It helps to approach this process in a scientific manner—let the data lead you to your solution. Web marketing strategist Alberto Mariutto writes in an article entitled Digital Marketing: Why a data-driven strategy is fundamental that, “we (marketers) don’t choose which direction to go in: it’s the numbers, the statistics, that decide for us. Our ability lies in identifying the right numbers, reading them correctly, understanding what actions they suggest, and putting them into practice in the best possible way. Everything combined – here and now – with the right dose of creativity.”

It’s essential to remember that your marketing strategy should always be evolving based on what your data results tell you. Careful attention to your analytics and to what your target demographics are saying will help you continually activate the right strategy for your brand, at any given time. With perseverance and adaptability, you’ll be well on your way to optimizing your marketing movements from the inside out.

Ellan Dineen is the Marketing Associate at Design Wizard. When she’s not hard at work in the Marketing Department, Ellan can be found en route to foreign lands with a book in her hand and a podcast in her ear. With a Master’s in English and Diploma in Social Media Marketing, she knows the importance of staying up-to-date with the industry’s latest trends and insights and is keen to pass these tips on to her readers

Reviews

 

 

 

 

A Local Service ads click study, sheds some light on how the users interact with local service ads and how it affects organic results.

A total of 5500 “impartial internet users” participated in this study and gave us some invaluable insight into how the local service ads impact the overall results and click through rate.

Below are the highlights from the study:

  1. Local service ads get 13.8% of the overall Google local search clicks.
  2. The local service ad on the top of the search result receives the highest clicks while the lowest one receives the least clicks.
  3. The first organic result gets the highest number of clicks.
  4. Local service ads encourage people to click on paid ads. When it’s live paid ads get 25.3% of all the clicks, while they are absent, the paid ads receive a mere 14.6%.
  5. Review & ratings are the biggest driver of clicks in the local search result.

As much as 91% of customers read reviews while shopping online and that is why the reviews and ratings are the number one factor that customers pay attention to when evaluating a local business. Reviews not only help you generate trust among your prospects but also help you stand out from the crowd as it looks good to the eyes too.

Customers prefer a business which has a healthy number of reviews & it increases the click-through rate up to 25%. The more reviews a business has, the more customers they will get as people generally prefer popular business as compared to the new one, because taking risk is not something we as a human-like to do, very often.

And this is why you should be paying more attention to reviews. If your product or service is good, then it is highly likely that there will be happy customers, who are willing to invest some time and effort in writing reviews.

To help you get more reviews for your business, we highly recommend our review widget. It’s a small piece of code which is placed on your website and helps you get positive reviews on Google, Yelp and Facebook. In addition, it helps to filter out negative reviews too thus ensuring positive experience to website users. Need more details? Please connect with us.

 

 

Google rolled out Google My Business agency dashboard in June. It was launched to help agencies manage a large number of listings. But many agencies faced issues while migrating to the new agency dashboard. To help them out, Google has launched a new tool to streamline the entire process.

First, you have to decide whether you want to shift completely to the GMB agency dashboard or not. So far the migration of the location has been the biggest hurdle. In case you decide to shift to the new GMB, Google is offering you two ways to do so.

Assisted Migration: In order to encourage hesitating agencies to shift to the new GMB agency dashboard, Google is ready to offer them personal assistance in migrating the locations and accounts. It’s good for agencies who have a lot of locations to move. You just have to request for the assisted move and for that, you will need to log into your GMB agency account, then go the Overview tab, click the Got existing locations to transfer? and follow the instructions from there. It will take around 48 hours to complete the entire process and then you can see all of the locations in the manage location tab of your agency account.

Self Migration: You can opt for this option if you are managing only a few locations. In order to transfer the locations into your new agency account, you will have to request access to each location or location group manually from your agency account and then accept the request from your personal account. The steps can differ based on the number of locations, so make sure you read Google’s support page.

We would like to inform you that it’s far easier to manage multiple locations and accounts on the agency dashboard than the private account. Google has also fixed the bugs from the initial launch, so we highly recommend you to use the agency account.

 

 

Google is sending emails to site owners who are struggling with site speed via Google Search Console. The intention is to help them identify and fix the slow loading pages. Here’s the email.

“Google has noticed that your site’s performance is significantly below average. Real user measurement data from the Chrome User Experience Report shows that pages on your site are slow to become interactive. This can have a severe negative effort on your business metrics and can cause user frustration.

Speed is a ranking factor for both mobile and desktop search results. While we don’t disclose the exact factors used for ranking, we recommend using a variety f metrics to understand your site’s performance, including first content paint, time to interactive, and first input delay. In particular, 8.70% of loads on this site have a slow first input delay and 39.7% have had a slow first contentful paint.”

Our takeaway: Speed is crucial for both mobile and desktop version of your site and it is officially part of the algorithm. It not only help you with your SEO efforts but also massively boost the user experience since most of the users want a fast loading page. So site speed means better ranking and it also directly boost the conversion rate. Hence it is a very crucial aspect of your site which you should be paying attention to.

Need help with site load time? Connect with one of our Sales rep to assist you further.

 

 

Google unveiled the option to book appointments with local businesses directly from the search results in August 2017 and since then they have been pushing it to local business owners in a very discreet manner. Maybe it’s because they don’t want to appear like a pushy salesman.

However, this feature didn’t receive the kind of warm welcome they were expecting. It might be because people were not sure whether they are just testing it or planning to fully launch it before putting efforts, money and time into it.

If you want to test this out (recommended), first you have to go to your GMB dashboard and check whether your business is eligible for the booking feature or not.

And if your business is eligible, you will have to choose a third party provider from all the listed options. Yes, you read that right. Google has partnered with third-party booking services for this feature and you have to shell out anywhere between $20-$80 a month.  But it “might” be worthwhile for you since bookings can increase given how convenient it is to book appointments directly from the search.

 

 

In order to help YouTube advertisers drive more conversion, Google added new features that combine the power of YouTube’s creative canvas with Google’s machine learning and measurement solution.

YouTube advertisers soon will be able to use a wide variety of ad extensions, so that they can provide interesting information and compel the audience to take actions.

Google now wants to encourage viewers to complete a lower funnel action, i.e.: booking flight, downloading app etc. & for that, they are testing additional use cases.

 

Google also wants to enable YouTube advertisers to measure the full impact of their video campaigns by evolving Brand Lift. They are also partnering with IRI so that it will get easier for the advertisers to act upon upper and lower funnel metrics.

They also have introduced new metrics:

  • Lifted Users: To know the estimated number of users whose perception changed after seeing your ads.
  • Cost-per-lifted-users: To know the average cost of the lifted users.

Google also added that in order to utilize this new measurement tools to the fullest, you should use Maximize Lift bidding.

Furthermore, Google is investing heavily in Google Measurement Partners to ensure that the measurements you receive is authentic & not exaggerated. Google said that it’s their topmost priority to provide measurements that advertisers can trust, as it is crucial to their overall advertising efforts.

Since Facebook drastically exaggerated activity reports (As much as 900%), having a measurement that you can trust is vital to the success of the ad campaigns. Google also announced their “New MRC accreditations and partners for Google and YouTube ads measurement”.

In the end, we would like to add that if you are a big brand, then you surely want to check all the new measurement tools and metrics that YouTube has to offer in order to get the most out of your YouTube ad campaigns.