The sun is still out in full force here in Cornwall and sunburn and freckles are rife at HookedOn HQ. With attention now away from the Rio Olympics and the summer holidays nearly over, we’ve got a whole host of SEO updates for you to peruse!
Google Local Business Cards to be Rolled Out
All the way back in March, Google trialled “Local Business Cards” as part of the Google Posts system (you can read more about that here). This content gives content providers and business the ability to control what content appears in the carousel near the top of search results.
Below you can see an example of the Business Cards for Escape Pod Comics, which is an example from the March experiments. Now, according to Mike Blumenthal, Google will be expanding this availability from a “few dozen” to a “few thousand” small businesses.
Although Google Posts displays on PCs and Macs, the system was created with mobile users in mind. Google’s intent is to allow business owners to communicate directly with users within the SERPs. The images and content in the carousel is also shareable.
Despite some teething problems and uncertainty in the initial stages, Google has seen good feedback and results. If used right, and well, this could improve local SEO and visibility for many small businesses!
Google index status in Search Console report broken
On August 22nd, Google’s Gary Illyes confirmed that, for the time being, Google Search Console’s Index Status report is broken.
The report, which shows webmasters how many pages Google has indexed of your site, has not been doing so. There is no estimated time for this report to be fixed, so remember to use your Sitemap index report in Google Search Console instead.
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Facebook is changing its algorithm, again
Instead of cat videos, lads playing tricks on each other and epic fails, Facebook is adding a new signal to its algorithm to show people more ‘informative’ posts and stories.
In order to work out which stories are interesting to which people, Facebook is getting “tens of thousands of people” around the world in its Feed Quality Program to rank the stories in their feeds based on how informative they think they are on a scale of 1 to 5. Facebook then uses these scores to guess how informative other people will find them, based on the things they post, like, share, comment on and their relationship with the person or publisher that posted.
For brands and publishers, this could be a game changer if you’re not already pushing out useful content and video. If you’re not doing this, try talking about news stories or posts on how to use a product in detail, and video of course – something that your fans will find useful. Stay away from salesy-adverts and marketing speak and you’ll be right as rain!
Facebook have said, “We anticipate that most Pages won’t see any significant changes to their distribution in News Feed.”
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