Bing News Gets A Makeover: Adds Social Trends To News Page

Bing News got a modern makeover, in more ways than one. In addition to a more functional and streamlined look, Bing has also added a ‘social trending’ column for news stories on Facebook and Twitter. The recent addition to the news page makes finding trending topics that much easier and is yet another step towards more social search.

What’s Different

New Look – A larger section for headlines, a sleek carousel for trending topics and gray undertones complete this modernized look. While not drastic, the new look of Bing News is refreshing and more aesthetically appealing. Not to mention, this sleek design is adaptive for any device.

New Look

Old Look

Trending Carousel – The trending carousel is a new addition that features all the latest trending topics. On the default ‘Top Stories’ page, the trending carousel features a compilation of the latest political, world, local, entertainment, sports and local news. You can also find the carousel across any topic when you click on a specific news tab. Whether you want to find out what’s trending in sports or entertainment, the trending carousel at the top of the page will highlight the most topical news stories pertaining to that category.

Social Media Trending Column – In order to further integrate social and search, Bing has added a trending column showing the latest news on Facebook and Twitter. Now in addition to traditional news, you can follow the latest social media stories in real-time, all from one page.  You can find this new feature underneath the carousel to the right-hand side.

The modernized look and added convenience of the carousel creates an easier experience for users. In addition, the new social media column validates the growing intersection of search and social. While minimal, the changes were a nice update to the Bing News Page and will most likely be welcomed by Bing users.

Questions? Comments? Contact us!

Submitted by Erica Machin, Titan Growth

Google Clears Up Misconceptions About REL=”Author” 

Google Authorship has been a hot topic for SEO’s, content creators and digital marketers alike, but there are still some gray areas when it comes to best practice. In a blog post last week, Google clears up some misunderstandings about this powerful microformat.

Pages with the rel=”author” tag should feature a majority of content written by one author
Google stipulates that the page in question should feature a majority of original content written by a single author. Lists of articles, or articles written by multiple authors should not use the rel=’author’ tag. Google lists the following as ideal candidates for the rel=”author” markup.

  • The page contains a single article or piece of content, written by one author.
  • The URL or page consists primarily of content written by a single author.
  • Using a clear byline on the page, stating the author wrote the article.

Do not use rel=”author” for mascots

Your audience may love your mascot alias, but Google asks that you only tie the rel=”author” tag to actual people. In order to keep the credibility of actual authors, it’s best that characters like the Geico gecko aren’t tied to rel=”author”.

Use the same Google+ profile for articles in different languages

If you have multiple versions of the same article for language purposes, Google says it’s okay to direct them all to the same Google+ profile, regardless of the author’s language of choice.

To credit a business rather than an individual author, use rel=”publisher”

While rel=”author” ties an individual author to their Google+ profile, the rel=”publisher” tag ties a company to the respective Google+ business page. The primary purpose of rel=”author” is to associate an author with their unique content and build a separate identity from the website. Both tags are independent of each other and can be used on the same website.

Do not use rel=”author” on product pages or property listings

Google Authorship’s intended use is to associate authors with their perspective and content. Since product pages or property listing generally aren’t a perspective piece, it is advised that you do not use the rel=”author” tag on these pages and save them for articles where the author’s opinion is being shared.

The benefits of Google’s Authorship are vast and may become even more prevalent in the future. It’s a simple process that can make a big difference, as long it is leveraged correctly. If you have any questions on how to implement Google’s Authorship markup, contact us.

Submitted by Erica Machin, Titan SEO

Goodbye Google Keyword Tool, Hello Keyword Planner 

The sun has finally set on Google AdWord’s Keyword Tool and the new Keyword Planner is giving marketers mixed feelings.

The Google Keyword Tool, a staple for SEO’s and PPC managers alike, has officially retired. Of course, Google wouldn’t leave us all empty-handed and has provided the Keyword Planner in its place. While SEO and PPC experts all over the world will say goodbye to the Keyword Tool, the new Google Keyword Planner is being embraced with mixed sentiment.

The Keyword Planner is said to combine the functionality of the Keyword Tool and Adwords’ Traffic Estimator, allowing users to find keyword ideas and the respective traffic for them. Sounds pretty similar to the Keyword Tool functionality, but there are some definite differences along with new features as well.

Points of contention

Login to AdWords – Instead of being an external tool, users now have to log in to an AdWords account in order to use the tool, which can be a bit inconvenient. For PPC managers who spend most of their time logged into AdWords anyway, it probably won’t make much of a difference.

No more match type data for search volume – The Keyword Traffic Tool would allow users to specify different match types, like a broad match and phrase match when gathering data. The Keyword Planner, on the other hand, shows data for exact match only.

No more device targeting – The late Keyword Tool revealed data for the desktop by default, but would allow users to target specific devices like tablets or mobile phones as well. However, the Keyword Planner targets all devices by default, showing a broader set of data. The plus is that keyword volumes are now more accurate because it incorporates data for users across multiple devices. On the other hand, users no longer have the option to see data for anyone specific device.

New Benefits

Get estimates for more keywords – With the Keyword Planner, you can get estimates for more keywords by uploading your own lists with up to 10,000 keywords. You of course still have the option to type in the keywords manually.

Multiply keyword lists – Many of you may be familiar with the concatenate feature in excel just for this purpose. Now the Keyword Planner offers a completely new feature where you can mash up different keyword lists.

More customized CPC estimates – With the Keyword Planner, you are able to get more customized estimates based on your actual budget, bids and location. This gives you a better idea for how many clicks and impressions you’ll receive and at what cost. The Keyword Planner also allows you to save your keyword plans and add them directly to your current PPC campaigns.

The simplicity of the Keyword Tool was its most appealing asset, but a brief introduction with the new Keyword Planner will soon erase any uncertainty. While a few of the old features have neglected to make it into the new tool, an influx of new ones will help soften the blow. The Keyword Planner still serves the purpose of its former counterpart, and at the end of the day, that’s what matters most.

If you have any questions about the Keyword Planner or how to use it, please contact us for a free consultation.

Submitted by Erica Machin, Titan Growth