Waze, the free real-time traffic navigation app from Google is introducing “Waze Local” map-based advertising. This is aimed primarily, (though not exclusively), at small businesses and enables them to reach drivers nearby with targeted advertising messages.
Designed to be simple to buy and set up, it features three ad units:
- Branded Pin
- Promoted Search
- Zero-Speed Takeover
Matt Phillips, who’s in charge of the global SMB team at Waze, told us that setup takes under five minutes and that the units and dashboard were designed with considerable input from small to medium businesses (SMBs). Accordingly, Waze will report:
- Call and URL information
- Info Button clicks
- Plus users get additional metrics and reporting
Starting now: Google will write your new AdWords ads
Google’s been testing Ad Suggestions since January 2017 in the UK and US markets; it's now being rolled out to accounts here.
You’ll see the new ads on the Recommendations page in your AdWords account, and may be alerted via email (depending on your notification settings). You can opt out completely from the program, although making sure that you have at least three active ads in every ad group should also do the trick.
If you are interested in seeing what Google comes up with, simply review the ad suggestions and choose whether or not to let them go live. Do nothing, however, and the ads will be automatically enabled two weeks after they are first proposed.
Optimising for voice search and virtual assistants
An interesting recap on a panel session at the recent SMX West conference about optimising for voice search and virtual assistants.
By 2020 it’s expected that 30-50% of all searches will be by voice.
Much of this growth will be driven by the mass uptake of AI services like Google Assistant which is currently available on over 400 million devices, such as Google Home speakers.
According to Google, people use voice quite differently from the way they use traditional search. The commands tend to be far more action-oriented and 70% of all voice queries are in natural language format.
Clever as Google Assistant is, accessing recipe content using voice search through Google Home is only possible if the site with the recipe has implemented structured data markup.
The growth in voice search highlights the increasing need to implement structured markup on websites and make them future proof.
Read more here...
Google rolls out mobile-first indexing
It's finally happening.
After one and a half years of testing Google is starting the rollout of mobile-first indexing. At this stage, only sites deemed by Google to “follow the best practices for mobile-first indexing” are being included.
Included sites are getting notification messages in their Google Search Console accounts. These sites will see significantly increased crawl rate from the Smartphone Googlebot.
A quick way to identify if a site has been included in mobile-first indexing is that the mobile version of pages will show in Google Search results and Google cached pages.
Contrary to popular misconception, Google doesn't have a “mobile-first index” that’s separate from their main index. Google continues to have one single index for search results.
The big difference is that increasingly Google will switch to indexing the mobile versions of websites, rather than the desktop version which historically is what has been indexed.
For most websites using responsive design that shouldn't be an issue. But if you have a separate standalone mobile site you may have issues.
Check out the Google announcement here...
Web Browsers Reject Two out of Three Cookies
Analysis by ad serving firm Flashtalking has revealed that nearly two-thirds (64%) of tracking cookies are either blocked or deleted by web browsers. Advertisers are in for a particularly hard time tracking users on mobile devices (which reject 75% of cookies).
What we’ve been reading this week
- 1SEO Best Practice for Discontinued Products
- 2NZ online advertising grows 7% to hit new all-time record of $923M
- 310 ways to generate traffic WITHOUT Google
- 4Almost one in four NZ SMEs experienced a cyber threat in 2017
- 5AI disruption will have an extreme impact on NZ’s agriculture & health sectors in the next decade