Google Search Console to Notify Site Owners of Unclear Subscription Pages by @MattGSouthern

Google will soon start sending notifications via Search Console to let site owners know if they have unclear billing pages.

It’s going to become important for site owners to be aware of unclear billing pages when the new version of Chrome releases next month.

After the forthcoming update to the Google Chrome browser, pages with unclear billing and subscription forms will display a warning like the one below.

Google Search Console to Notify Site Owners of Unclear Subscription PagesVisitors will be offered the choice to proceed anyway after seeing the above warning or go back to the previous page.

Google is making this change so users can make more informed decisions when signing up to mobile-based subscription services.

What is An Unclear Subscription Page?

An example of an unclear subscription page is one that requires users to enter their mobile phone information, without making it obvious that a charge will be added to their bill.

Google provides the following example below:

Google Search Console to Notify Site Owners of Unclear Subscription PagesIt’s not immediately clear in this example that the user will be charged after subscribing to the site with their phone number.

Viant’s Adelphic acts to solve ad pricing transparency by offering ‘all-you-can-eat’ monthly subscription

Marketers regularly complain about transparency in digital advertising and, this week, Viant’s Adelphic announced a pricing change that it believes solves the problem for a demand-side platform (DSP).

What’s new. Instead of charging a percentage of media spend as other DSPs do — typically 10 to 15 percent  — Adelphic will now charge an all-you-can-eat monthly subscription price of $3,000 per log-in, with a 12-month minimum. And all vendors involved in the process — targeting data providers like data management platforms, inventory providers like ad exchanges, verification services and others — are billed directly to the advertiser.

For those of us who don’t use DSPs on a daily basis, it seems surprising that a subscription model and direct billing is new, but Viant CEO Tim Vanderhook said in an interview that he is unaware of any other DSP that has a similar structure.

SaaS versus media agency pricing model. Adelphic, which Viant purchased two years ago, also previously charged a percentage of media spend and paid vendors itself as part of its fee. Vanderhook said his company spent the time since the purchase getting overall operating costs of Adelphic down to a point where it could offer a subscription.

After all, he said, it doesn’t cost a DSP more to handle a thousand dollars in advertising than to handle ten million dollars’ worth. The trade-off for advertisers, he acknowledged, is that Adelphic requires a 12-month commitment, whereas other DSPs only charge advertisers for their spend.

Typically, he said, DSPs employ a pricing model derived from media-buying agencies, which charge a percentage of media spend as their fee. Many DSPs, he added, don’t have a fixed percentage, but set that fee based on how much business an advertiser does. Instead of using a model based on media-buying agencies, Adelphic is now offering the subscription model of software-as-a-service.

In the traditional pricing model, the advertiser will often pay the DSP an additional monthly amount based on, say, overall CPMs, with the fees for targeting data, inventory, verification services and other vendors buried in the overall charge. Vanderhook added that this monthly amount, separate from the DSP fee, is almost as if the DSP is a publisher itself, charging for its impressions.

What startups need to know about SEO and domain names

SEO is a huge part of a business’s overall online reputation, and every startup needs to go through it as well.

If you are a startup, you cannot simply ignore the crucial factors of your business i.e. the domain name of your website and its SEO strategy.  So, what does your startup need to know about SEO and domain names? Let’s find out.

Choose the right domain name that reflects your brand

To begin with, always appropriately name your startup business. It is important to consider the foundation of your startup and what it stands for, bearing in mind that this name will be your startup’s first and sometimes only impression, especially when it comes to funding.

Once you have arrived at a business name for your startup, your next big challenge would be to decide on the domain name. A domain name carries a lot of value in terms of your website’s digital marketing aspect as well as the first impression of your business. So, choosing the domain name can just be as challenging as choosing the niche of your startup.

A short and simple domain name that preferably carries the name of your brand is highly recommended. A long domain number or the one with numbers is a strict no-no. A unique domain name with sensible extension based on the nature of your business operations can do better for you. A “.com” extension is still preferred by many and it has its own SEO benefits. Including your keywords can help you rank better in search engines.

If you are having a difficult time arriving upon your ideal domain name, you can seek help from several tools available such as DomainIt, Domainsbot, NameStation etc.

Target the right keywords

Once you have a final thought around the domain name of your startup business, it’s time to jump right into the “keyword” bandwagon. But, make sure that you do that cautiously. Since you are new to the business website competition battlefield, your efforts will require double the throttle to get the engines working.

Using long-tailed keywords is highly recommended if you are a startup. This will make sure that your chances of ranking for a certain service offering/product become higher as compared to the other startups that are not running this strategy.

Daily Search Forum Recap: November 8, 2018

Here is a recap of what happened in the search forums today, through the eyes of the Search Engine Roundtable and other search forums on the web.

Search Engine Roundtable Stories:

  • Google Search Console Tests New Domain Property
    Google hinted they were working on a new concept for property sets within the new Google Search Console. Well, here is a screen shot of one person gaining access to what Google is calling the “new Domain Property.”
  • Google Doesn’t Care If You Copy Legal Disclaimers & Privacy Policies
    Google’s John Mueller responded that it’s no problem for Google if you copy a legal disclaimer or privacy policy you used on one of your web sites and gave it to another web site. I mean, think about it, do you want your legal disclaimers to rank well in Google anyway?
  • Google Ad Grants Deactivations Spike; Reactivation Requests Necessary
    Michelle from the Google Ad Grants team confirmed in a Google Ads Help thread that Google has recently deactivated a nice number of Google Ad Grant accounts before the big charity season because of compliance issues. There is now a backlog for Google to review and Google is asking these non-profits to use the reactivation form.
  • Google: Disavow File Spaces Does Not Cause Sites To Drop In Ranking
    It has been a while since I saw John Mueller from Google outright call someone’s SEO theory “completely incorrect.” There is an article where an SEO said that a space in his disavow file results in his site tanking on November 1st. John said that is incorrect and unrelated.
  • Matt Cutts Speaks At Google
    Matt Cutts left Google over 4 years ago, well officially 22 months ago, but really 4+ years ago. Yesterday he came back to give a talk about the USDS, the US Digital Services team and how they use te

Other Great Search Forum Threads:

Search Engine Land Stories:

Other Great Search Stories:


Industry & Business

Local & Maps

Mobile & Voice

Baby boom for some nations, bust for others: study

Soaring birth rates in developing nations are fuelling a global baby boom while women in dozens of richer countries aren’t producing enough children to maintain population levels there, according to figures released Friday.

A global overview of birth, death and disease rates evaluating thousands of datasets on a country-by-country basis also found that heart disease was now the single leading cause of death worldwide.

The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME), set up at the University of Washington by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, used more than 8,000 data sources — more than 600 of them new — to compile one of the most detailed looks at global public health.

Their sources included in-country investigations, social media and open-source material.

It found that while the world’s population skyrocketed from 2.6 billion in 1950 to 7.6 billion last year, that growth was deeply uneven according to region and income.

Ninety-one nations, mainly in Europe and North and South America, weren’t producing enough children to sustain their current populations, according to the IHME study.

But in Africa and Asia fertility rates continued to grow, with the average woman in Niger giving birth to seven children during her lifetime.

Ali Mokdad, professor of Health Metrics Sciences at IHME, told AFP that the single most important factor in determining population growth was education.

“It is down to socioeconomic factors but it’s a function of a woman’s education,” he said. “The more a woman is educated, she is spending more years in school, she is delaying her pregnancies and so will have fewer babies.”

The IHME found that Cyprus was the least fertile nation on Earth, with the average woman giving birth just once in her life.

By contrast, women in Mali, Chad and Afghanistan have on average more than six babies.

– ‘Less mortality, more disability’ –

The United Nations predicts there will be more than 10 billion humans on the planet by the middle of the century, broadly in line with IHME’s projection.

This raises the question of how many people our world can support, known as Earth’s “carrying capacity”.

5 Useful SEO Insights You Can Learn from Google Analytics by @natalieannhoben

You can gain a tremendous amount of SEO and marketing insights from Google Analytics.

These helpful insights can help you to discover what opportunities exist for optimizing the overall performance of your site.

Ranging from engagement metric insights to conversion metrics and more, there is no shortage of knowledge to be gained.

Check out five of these actionable insights you can learn from Google Analytics and see how you may be able to apply them to improve your SEO.

1. Custom Segments

Custom segments have been a key feature of Google Analytics for a while, allowing you to see traffic by channel, visitors who completed goals, demographic data, and much more.

Custom segments can be created from almost any facet of user data, including time on site, visits to specific pages, visitors who completed a goal, visitors from a specific location and more.

Using segments helps you learn more about the users on your site and how they engage with it.

One insightful area to explore when determining additional segments to create is in the Audience tab of Google Analytics.

If you navigate to Audience > Interests > Overview, the Overview will display a high-level look at three interests reports:

  • Affinity Categories.
  • In-Market Segments.
  • Other Categories.

In the below example, you’ll see that almost 4 percent of visitors are Shoppers or Value Shoppers and almost 4 percent of users also work or have an interest in business marketing services.

google analytics insightsTo dive deeper, navigate to Demographics under the Audience tab to view Age and Gender data.

The majority of visitors to this site are in the 25-34 age range, and skew male by a slight margin.

Google Analytics InsightsNow having this data, a custom segment can be created to track.

Return to Audience > Overview to view All Sessions.

A new segment can be created by selection +Add Segment so that we can monitor the behavior of users in this segment, the most frequent of visitors, compared to rest of the visitors to the site.

Keep in mind that you will want to set a date range for at least 6 months to a year if applicable to have a good compilation of data.

Google Analytics Insights

2. Monitor Mobile Traffic

Mobile traffic is consistently growing in importance.

However, instead of simply monitoring mobile traffic to a site on the whole, it’s also important to monitor the engagement levels of mobile visitors.

You can do a few things to assess this.

  • View the number of mobile conversions at the individual page level. Do this by adding a mobile segment.
  • Monitor the mobile bounce rate. Be on the lookout for pages with high mobile bounce rates. This can help you hone in on potential issues related to a singular page.
  • Compare mobile and desktop bounce rate metrics. Doing this for the same page can provide further insight into the differences between the mobile experience and desktop experience.

3. Focus on Site Search

Do you have a search bar on your website? If so, you have an enormous opportunity to learn about what visitors are looking for when they reach your site.

You can not only gain insight into what they are searching for, but how many people are searching.

Another survey shows brand trust affects purchase decisions

If marketers think brand trust is just a nice-to-have, a new SurveyMonkey survey shows it’s a must-have.

“Businesses that fail to establish trust — the foundation of any relationship — will lose to businesses who can,” said SurveyMonkey CEO Zander Lurie in a statement accompanying the survey results. The survey conducted by his company found that brand trust affects the bottom line in a variety of ways.

Established brands, spinoff brands and recommendations. Trust in a brand matters “a great deal” or “a lot” for 65 percent of the survey respondents, and “some” for another 27 percent.

Not surprisingly, the survey found that consumers in the US, UK and Canada would rather make a big purchase from established brands than from untested startups.

For 90 percent of respondents, this was an important consideration for financial services products, as well as for medical expenses (91 percent), consumer electronics (83 percent), and even for lower-priced items, like shoes (66 percent.)

And trust can be passed along. The study found that, if a trusted brand creates a spinoff brand, 73 percent will trust that spinoff.

The survey also touched on how different strengths of trust affect purchase decisions. Sixty percent had the greatest trust for recommendations from a friend or family member, compared to a celebrity endorsement or online influencer. Only eight percent said they would buy something because a celebrity pitched it, and only 13 percent because of an influencer.

How to generate trust. A key question for brands is how to generate trust. Zander said that his company’s research “shows the key to establishing this kind of trust begins by listening to your customers’ voice and opinions, and then acting on those insights.”

In addition to the length of a relationship with a customer, something established brands enjoy, a good web presence can help. Almost a third of millennials who responded to the survey and about a quarter of non-millennials, for instance, don’t trust companies without a website.

Most marketers would assume that, at this point in the history of the world, virtually every company has a web site of some sort. But a SurveyMonkey/CNBC research last year found that almost half of small businesses don’t have a site, and a bit more than a third of all small businesses don’t use the sites they have to post news about their brand.

Google and Facebook back Berners-Lee’s Case #ForTheWeb

On Monday, November 5, Tim Berners-Lee unveiled a document called “The Case for the Web” which outlines principles to protect and enhance the web’s future, as well as craft a collective contract for May 2019.

He revealed these plans for a contract at the Web Summit in Lisbon, together with his organization, the Web Foundation.

Signers to join the contract thus far include Facebook, Google, the French Government, Sir Richard Branson, the Georgia Institute of Technology, and more than fifty other organizations and key individuals. Amazon has reportedly not yet joined.

The contract is expected to be finalized in May 2019, the year when the web celebrates its 30th birthday, and when half of the world’s population is expected to be online.

When asked which particular groups he’s targeting to join, Berners-Lee pronounced, “Everybody, everybody.” The hope is that any and all companies, individuals, and governments will participate in crafting this contract. You can show your support here, and also participate on Twitter with #ForTheWeb.

Why do we need a case for the web?

The document begins by chronicling a bit of web history: how we’ve grown from just one website in 1990 to nearly two billion websites at the end of 2018 — or one website for every four people in the world.

Much of that explosive growth has brought life-saving change: uncovering corruption, overthrowing dictators, providing emergency relief from natural disasters, sourcing truth, giving countless people access to education, advancing innovation, creating millions of jobs.

But much of that growth has also carried disastrous consequences: election interference, cyber bullying, misinformation, discrimination, spread of hate speech and terrorism, data breaches and privacy scandals.

For better and for worse, the web has “changed lives and altered the course of history. . . It has changed the way we communicate with each other, opening up new worlds and new ways of thinking, even if we haven’t left home.”

The document then discusses how “the web we know and love is under attack.”

Right now it’s not for everyone — over half the people in the world aren’t online, and most of them are marginalized populations (specifically those from low-income countries and women).

And right now, the vast majority of internet power is concentrated in the hands of a few giant companies:

“More than 90% of online searches go through Google, giving the company tremendous power over what people see when searching online.2 More than half of cloud services run on Amazon. Facebook boasts over 2.2 billion active monthly users, and users of Facebook-owned WhatsApp top 1.5 billion. The responsibility that weighs on the shoulders of these companies and others like them could hardly be greater.”

What is to be done, then? That’s exactly what Berners-Lee and the Web Foundation are trying to accomplish here: “to establish the open web as a public good and a basic right.”

What are the 3 key focus areas of “The Case for the Web”?

The Case for the Web outlines three main efforts the contract hopes to further.

Accessible and affordable for everyone

  • Accelerate the rate at which people are coming online
  • Drive down the cost of internet access so that people can afford to connect
  • Focus on connecting women

Safe and welcoming for everyone

  • Protect personal data online
  • Ensure automated decision-making is fair and unbiased
  • Combat online bullying, harassment and abuse
  • Ensure governments respect people’s rights online

Empowering for everyone

  • Work toward a diverse, multilingual web
  • Treat all online traffic equally
  • Put the power back in the hands of the people

What are the core principles?

The core principles thus far include mandates for each governments, companies, and citizens.

Daily Search Forum Recap: November 7, 2018

Here is a recap of what happened in the search forums today, through the eyes of the Search Engine Roundtable and other search forums on the web.

Search Engine Roundtable Stories:

  • Google Creepy Search Algorithm Update Continues With Stronger Volatility
    Earlier this month we reported about a Google algorithm update that happened Halloween night through November 1st and seems to be continuing on all week long. It is a creepy update that seems to be gaining momentum as the days go on.
  • Google: You Cannot Opt Out Of Mobile-First Indexing
    Google’s John Mueller stated the obvious, that you cannot opt out of the new mobile-first indexing process. John said on Twitter “Nope. The world has gone mobile already, we’re just catching up” when asked about if there was an opt out.
  • Google Discover More Places Surges In Google
    Google has a feature to discover more places for some local intent queries. According to RankRanger, the feature exploded in terms of how often it is shown, starting on October 24th. In the US, it increased by almost 130%, from about 3.5% of queries to about 7.9% of queries showing the feature.
  • Google: Don’t Use Different Title Tags For Mobile & Desktop Pages
    Do you know of web sites that use a strategy of showing a different title tag on the desktop version of a page, compared to the mobile version of that exact same page? Well, John Mueller of Google had to take a step back when someone asked about doing such a thing.
  • Google Ads Has New Ad Metrics To Help Clarify Ad Positions
    Google is rolling out four new ad metrics to help clarify the position of the ads displayed in Google search. The new ad metrics are Impression (Absolute Top) % and Impression (Top) % and Search (Abs Top) IS and Search (Top) IS.
  • Google Street View Car Under Water
    It is not every day where you would see a Google Street View Car. Now it is almost never a day that you’d see the Google Street View Car flooded underwater. Here is a picture of one of these cars sub

Other Great Search Forum Threads:

Search Engine Land Stories:

Other Great Search Stories:


Industry & Business

Links & Promotion Building

Local & Maps

Caribbean islands vote to retain London-based appeal court

A centuries-old London body will continue to have the final say on the administration of justice in two Caribbean ex-colonies after referendums to replace it with a regional court failed to reach the requisite majorities.

British rule in Antigua and Barbuda and Grenada ended decades ago but -– like many of the English-speaking islands -– they have retained the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council as their final court of appeal.

Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister Gaston Browne on Wednesday described the result as “disappointing but not surprising,” given the lack of support from the main opposition.

Voters in both nations went to the polls Tuesday to determine whether to officially adopt the Trinidad-based Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) instead.

Just under 48 percent of people in Antigua and Barbuda voted in favor of the constitutional changes and around 45 percent of those in Grenada. The referendums required a two-thirds majority to pass.

Low turnout in both countries suggested some apathy among the populace; just one in four registered voters took part in Grenada and one in three in the twin island nation.

Both governments had campaigned heavily in favor of the CCJ, with the main opposition parties urging residents to vote against it.