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Welcome to this week’s digital marketing news, featuring a trio of Google-related items. Let’s go!
Monday July 1 saw Google announce a ‘clean up’ of the left hand navigation menu in Webmaster Tools, in addition to some other minor tweaks for the platform. The navigation menu has been streamlined to improve user experience, with the order of items (listed under four main headings – see below) in the menu now syncing with the stages employed in Google’s Flow reports.
Here’s a brief rundown of the function of each section of the revised menu:
The administrative gears box can also be accessed more simply – it is now available in the top right of all Webmaster Tools pages. These changes – while largely aesthetic – are likely to be useful for both Webmaster Tools novices and experts alike. Finding certain functions should be much easier!
Friday 28 June saw Canadian SEO engineer Josh Bachynski, pose a question via Twitter to Matt Cutts, Google’s head of webspam:
While most SEO engineers already suspected this was the case, it is somewhat comforting to have confirmation from the industry figurehead.
It is also suspected that Google will imminently launch a ‘bad link reporting’ feature in Webmaster Tools, thanks to the following Webmaster Central video, featuring John Mueller, Webmaster trends analyst for Google Switzerland. Mueller asserted that bad link reporting is “definitely” coming to the platform soon:
Webmasters worldwide would no doubt find the addition of this highly rumoured feature very helpful for determining the quality of backlink profiles for their site/s (aiding the avoidance of search visibility penalisations).
Currently, anyone can make use of Google’s AdWords Keyword Tool, to determine the number of local or global searches performed for certain key terms or queries each month. However, this won’t be the case much longer – the tool is set to become exclusive for those with AdWords accounts only.
This is the warning currently showing in the Google AdWords Keyword Tool:
This isn’t overly problematic since AdWords accounts can be created free of charge, though webmasters will have to ensure they are logged in each time they want to make use of the tool. It is thought this change might be an attempt by Google to encourage more webmasters to pay out for PPC advertisements, or an indication the tool will eventually be deleted in order to hinder keyword research (making SEO practices more difficult). Time will tell…
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