Google Updates – Latest News

Going Virtual – Tips for hosting a successful virtual meeting

Going Virtual – Tips for hosting a successful virtual meeting

Whilst virtual or digital conferences and events aren’t an entirely new technology, the restrictions of the COVID-19 Pandemic has seen a drastic rise in businesses turning to the platform recently. From webinars, to launch events, to team meetings and industry conferences – online meetings have become commonplace and somewhat of a necessity during these times. For many businesses, however, the idea of hosting a virtual conference can be daunting. But don’t worry, we’ve come armed with a handful of tips to get you started on the path to hosting an awesome digital event.  Understand the technology First and foremost, its important to understand the technology you’ll be using and its purpose. All of the most popular video calling software have the same fundamental features, whether you’re using Google Hangouts, BlueJeans or the most popular platform: Zoom. Typically, the features you’ll need most are video capability, screen-sharing, mute button and a text chat for those not using a microphone. Test, Test, Test The last thing you want is to schedule an important meeting, only to have your video or your microphone functioning incorrectly. Run a test on your audio and video prior to starting – most video calling platforms offer tihis […]
What’s the Best Domain Extension For You?

What’s the Best Domain Extension For You?

The domain name for your business may be more important than you think – ultimately it’s the face of your online brand and the first thing customers learn about your online business. The very best domain names are familiar, relevant to the brand and easy to remember. Figuring out a domain name is only one piece of the puzzle, however. Picking the right domain extension is also crucial. Whether .com , .net or something else, this small piece of text has a big influence on your online presence and will aid in crafting how your visitors perceive your brand online. So how do you pick the right domain extension for your business?  Types of Domain Extensions Domain extensions can be categorised into three main types: Generic, Sponsored and Country. Generic Domain Extensions These types of extensions are the most commonly used by online businesses. A generic domain extension is available to anyone willing to make the purchase (and some are even free!). The most popular include .com, .co.uk, .org and .net although there are many other extensions available in this category. Sponsored Domain Extensions Domain extensions in this category typically require the business to meet a certain set of requirements […]
Customer Experience and Why It’s Vital for Success

Customer Experience and Why It’s Vital for Success

The easiest way to quantify customer experience is to step into the shoes of the customer for yourself. When was the last time you had a really great experience when making a booking, a purchase or even just browsing online? How did that experience leave you feeling? Did you visit that same company again or plan to in the future? On the flip side, what about the last time you had a terrible experience as a customer?  In simple terms: A happy customer is more likely to become a loyal customer. A loyal customer ultimately helps you to boost revenue in more ways than one. Not only may they offer repeat revenue, but they can also become a promotional tool for your business via word-of-mouth and brand advocation. This is why customer experience, particularly online, is crucial, as it has a profound impact on how customers see your business as a whole and is critical for sustained growth.  Importance of Customer Experience In today’s market, the customers hold all of the power – not the sellers.  Thanks to the world wide web, customers have access to a plethora of choices at the click of a button, giving them the ability […]
New Google Featured Snippets Combine Content From Multiple Publishers

New Google Featured Snippets Combine Content From Multiple Publishers

Google’s features snippets are beginning to show content that combine multiple sources and publishers into a single result. These featured snippets are designed to directly answer search queries using a list of different articles and small excerpts. What’s most interesting about these new snippets however, is that they are quite vague in crediting where the information comes from, thus not entirely directing traffic to the publishers. You could argue, however, that if the snippet gives the user exactly the answer they’re looking for, there is no reason for them to have to click through to a website. Not to mention featured snippets aren’t something that website owners can necessarily target, so it’s rather that Google are offering their searchers fast answers as opposed to ‘rewarding’ a business with a top rank for quality content. Still, this type of snippet has caused somewhat of a stir with search engine marketers and SEOs. Some see it as Google using content created by other businesses whilst keeping the traffic on their own site. A user can expand the snippet list and see multiple different links to different publishers, but Google have specifically hidden the links away under accordion-style tabs. The use of publisher […]
Google Tests Favicons in the Top Stories Carousel

Google Tests Favicons in the Top Stories Carousel

As usual, Google is testing something new! This time, the big G has opted to try out the use of favicons in the ‘top stories’ carousel displayed in some search results. These favicons are appearing for some searchers, and only on desktop, next to the website name in the carousel. They appear quite similarly to how favicons usually do in your browser tabs. Here’s a quick example that a keen-eyed searcher spotted earlier: These new favicons aren’t appearing for everybody, and we were unable to replicate the example above. This confirms that the test is currently selective and even those that see the favicons in the results for one search haven’t been able to replicate it consistently. What Is A Favicon? For all those who are unaware of what a favicon is: Favicons are 16×16 pixels small icons that usually contain the logo, the first letter of the brand or a generic image that represents the business type. These files are placed in a file called favicon.ico and placed in the root directory of a website. Typically they are useful on websites for: Brand recognition Credibility and Trust Follow up Visits Time saving for users Have Google Tested Favicons Before? […]
Google Testing Mobile SERPs With Up to 14 Ads

Google Testing Mobile SERPs With Up to 14 Ads

Keen-eyed users have noticed that Google has been testing up to a total of 14 ads in a single search results page on mobile. That’s right, 14 ads. The test was first spotted by Fibre Marketing, who shared a screen recording of the discovery. In the recording, you will see a total of 14 ads are shown before the user reaches the ‘More results’ button at the end of the page. The 14 ads aren’t all in one chunk, with 4 consecutive ads appearing first before being followed by two organic listings. After this, there are 7 more consecutive paid listings then a further 6 organic results. Finally, the SERP ends with three more PPC ads in a row before the ‘More results’ button. Collectively this means there are a total of 14 paid ads among only 8 organic results. This is twice as many ads as what currently shows on a regular SERP. It’s quite the bold move from Google, as however you look at it, it’s a huge number of ads in comparison to what users currently experience. It has to be said, though, that not all searches result in this many ads appearing, so it could entirely […]
Google Updates ‘Inspect URL’ Tool For The Better

Google Updates ‘Inspect URL’ Tool For The Better

Updates have been made to the Inspect URL tool within Google Search Console to include useful information about HTTP response codes, JavaScript logs and rendered screenshots. The tool and information are readily available after logging into Search Console, heading to the Inspect URL Tool and clicking on the ‘View crawled page’ button. Users will then be presented with a sidebar, sliding in from the right side of the screen, which includes separate tabs for the new data. Google wrote on Twitter “You can now see the HTTP response, page resources, JS logs and a rendered screenshot for a crawled page right from within the Inspect URL tool.” HTTP Response Codes Clicking on the ‘more info’ tab will include the new HTTP response code data for the specified page. You will be able to determine if the page is OK (code 200), not found (code 404), moved permanently (code 410), experiencing a server error (code 500) and any other status. Blocked Resources Again under the ‘more info’ tab, users will find a heading for Page resources. Within this section will be information regarding any resources on the page that couldn’t be loaded by Googlebot. Whilst blocked resources don’t always cause problems, […]
Google Images Gets New Image Preview Design

Google Images Gets New Image Preview Design

You may have noticed recently that Google Image searches look a little different. It appears as though they are rolling out a whole new layout for previewing images in the image search results. Instead of loading image previews with a black background frame, preview images are now appearing to the right of the image results. It seems to have been a widespread rollout so far, with many people being able to use the new feature already. Google image results last underwent a face-lift in September 2018, where captions on images, the URL of the image and new filter bubbles were added in order to bring the desktop image search experience in line with mobile. What does the new Google Images preview look like? As you can see from the screenshot below, the image preview appears in a box on the right side of the results. A larger thumbnail view of the image is shown at the top and includes the name, copyright, description, share button, bookmark button and also a link to see more. Below are related images and related searches, much like the previous layout. How does it compare to the old preview? It is possible to still view […]
New Google Search Bar – Rounded & Sticky

New Google Search Bar – Rounded & Sticky

Following months of testing, the new search bar for the Google search results page has begun rolling out. A fancy new search results page design is being rolled out by Google, and it features a rounded search bar that now sticks to the top of the page as you scroll down through the search result snippets. This new feature was first tested in August and it is now being rolled out to all users, so you can expect to see it on your search results very soon. The New Google Header What really “sticks” out here (pun intended) is that the new search bar header now sticks to the top of the SERPs as you scroll down through the results. The old Google search bar header didn’t function this way, and you had to scroll all the way back to the top in order to perform another search. The second prominent change is that the search bar is now rounded in design, rather than being a box like previously. Here’s how the new sticky search bar looks when you’re scrolling down through the search results: Desktop Only At this stage, the new search bar only appears on desktop searches and […]