Digital Marketing News Round Up: Cutts Link Recommendation for Widgets and Infographics, AdWords Editor Update and Google Now Going Mainstream

Written by Intern - 19 Aug 2013

In this week’s digital marketing news round up: Matt Cutts informs the SEO community of two more places we need to use the nofollow attribute and Google Now personalised approach will be used universally across search. It’s also a big week for paid search news, with updates to the handy AdWords Editor software and an insightful survey into agency spending.

Cutts warns: nofollow your widgets and infographics

Another week and another Webmaster Help video. This time, Matt Cutts answers a question about the inclusion of links in widgets and infographics. Explaining that these link sources have been abused in the past, Cutts recommends adding the rel=“nofollow” attribute, further commenting that “I would not rely on widgets and infographics as your primary way to gather links”.

Widgets and infographics are often shared via the use of copy-pasted code snippets – those who create the content to be shared rightfully expect to receive some recognition for their work, and will naturally include a link back to their website. However, Google apparently feels that the value of distribution should be in gaining brand attention and driving traffic rather than transferring authority via linking.

AdWords Editor update upgrades sitelink management


Google’s powerful AdWords Editor software – used to manage accounts, make bulk changes and streamline collaborative work – has been updated. The headline features of version 10.2 pertain to sitelink management improvements, most notably:

    • A new ‘Sitelinks (upgraded)’ tab, which allows you to view and manage sitelinks and settings including device preference

    • The ability to add, edit or remove sitelinks at a campaign or ad group level

    • Upgraded sitelinks can now be copy-pasted between campaigns or ad groups

    • Sitelinks can also be included in imports and exports

Google displays additional sitelinks under selected ads (as seen in the screenshot above) according to a range of criteria. Having control over editing them isn’t a guarantee that they will appear, but it does allow you to ensure the most useful result will be served to your users if Google decides to use them. A complete list of changes in the latest version is available here.

Google Now informational queries to come to SERPs

Google Now cards for day management

Google Now – the search giant’s enhanced search for mobile devices that serves up a series of ‘cards’ with enhanced information related to search queries – will be making the jump to all versions of the Google homepage (though only in American English for the time being). Featuring Siri-like voice-activated search, you’ll be able to get personalised answers to search queries by drawing on information stored in the user’s Google accounts as well as Google’s Knowledge Graph project.

In real terms, this means that if you ask Google Now “Is my flight on time?”, it will be able to cross-reference information about your flight from your Gmail account with flight arrival and departure times. Considering the privacy implications, Google has unsurprisingly pledged to make this an opt-out feature. Other questions and commands the service will be able to answer include:

    • “Where is my hotel?”

    • “When is my reservation?”

    • “When will my package arrive?”

    • “What are my plans for tomorrow?”

    • “Show me my photos from Japan”

Paid search survey reveals state of the industry

A survey published last week by the US-based Hanapin Marketing aimed to reveal the state of paid search in 2013 as well as the outlook for 2014. Key points include:

    • 70% of respondents say that their current PPC spend is higher than last year

    • 72% say they plan PPC spending increases in 2014

    • 85% are planning to place more emphasis on conversion rate optimisation (CRO) in 2014

    • 63% of survey respondents have annual PPC budgets over $300,000

    • 95% of the biggest spenders consider text ads “important” or “very important

    • 68% of the biggest spenders consider social ads only of “moderate” importance or even not “important

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