Google Site Search, TV Patents and Facebook Media - Digital Marketing News

Written by Will Barnes - 19 Sep 2014

In this fortnight’s digital marketing news, we take a look at Google’s new internal search feature, its patent for bringing TV listings into the algorithm, and Facebook’s new hub for aiding brand marketers.

Google introduces an improved site search

Google has recently introduced an improved site search feature that taps into the internal search of a website. Much like Bing (who got there first), this improved search will aid users in finding what they need quicker by allowing them to search the site directly from the SERP.

To ensure that Google’s crawlers understand the mechanics of any given search feature, it is important to mark-up the site correctly – Google recommends using JSON-LD or, failing that, microdata.

Google Site Search

More on Google’s new search feature can be read on its webmasters site here.

Google acquires patent that shows it may use TV listings as a ranking factor

It has taken a while for anyone outside of Google to notice until Bill Slawski discovered it this week, but in 2011 Google filed a patent that looked to bring TV listings into its search algorithm. The patent, filed by Roman Kirillov and Kyle Maddison, gives examples of how this might work:

‘When there is an acceptable degree of correlation between the program information and the user's search query (e.g., when the user executes a query for "Porsche" during the same time window a TV program is airing that includes a segment about a particular Porsche model), the search engine returns enhanced search results based on the presumption that the user in question was watching that particular TV program - or that the user in question would be interested in watching that particular TV program.’

It’s not clear if this patent is actually being considered as part of the search algorithm, but it is interesting to see Google attempt to pull in more of the offline world into its search engine.

Facebook helps brands become better social experts

Facebook has launched Facebook Media, a content hub full of success stories, best practices, and hints and tips for brands wanting to really push the envelope of their social presence on the network. Facebook’s Nick Grudin sums the platform up nicely:

‘At Facebook, we are committed to building a platform to make these connections broader, richer and more dynamic. That’s why today we are introducing Facebook Media — to highlight great examples and new trends illustrating how public figures, organizations and media are using Facebook to connect with their audiences.’

Facebook Media provides brands looking to get the most out of Facebook’s features with the inspiration and help needed to do just that. My personal favourite success story is of skateboarder Rob Dyrdek and his work with Make-A-Wish America, where they both saw some impressive results:

‘On Facebook, both Rob and Make-A-Wish saw an increase of new fans over an average day, increasing 7% and 49% respectively. On Instagram, Make-A-Wish successfully launched their account, increasing from 27 to 27,000 followers in a 24 hour period.’

Hints, tips and rumours

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