SearchEngines Specialist's Archives SearchEngines Specialist

  1. Why You Should Manage Your IoT Devices Like Employees

    12 Dec 2018 ...  

    Why You Should Manage Your IoT Devices Like Employees

    There is a well-known joke among security professionals:

    Q: “What does IoT stand for?”
    A: “Internet of Threats.”

    Sadly, this joke is our reality.

    An estimated 20.4 billion Internet of Things devices will be deployed by 2020, according to Gartner, in what some have dubbed “the fourth industrial revolution.” These connected devices are being manufactured to streamline everything we do. Smart fridges will be capable of ordering groceries when we’re running low, for example, and smart desks will alert us when we’ve been sitting too long.

    While there is vast opportunity for IoT to improve both our personal and professional lives, there’s an equally vast opportunity for bad actors to exploit vulnerabilities in connected devices.

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  2. Facebook Goes Into High Gear to Fight Election Meddling, Fake News

    12 Dec 2018 ...  

    Facebook Goes Into High Gear to Fight Election Meddling, Fake News

    Defending against foreign interference in American elections is one of the priorities Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has been focusing on this year, he said in a post Wednesday.

    The issue is highly sensitive, and it is one that has garnered a great deal of discussion in media reports and on the Web. Special counsel Robert Mueller warned in a court filing this spring that foreign interference efforts were still going on, and President Trump earlier this week signed an executive order that would punish such interference with sanctions.

    To date, Facebook has taken the following steps:

    • Identified and removed fake accounts ahead of elections in various countries;
    • Taken down foreign influence campaigns from Russia, Iran, Mexico and Brazil trying to influence elections abroad;
    • Attacked economic incentives to spread misinformation;
    • Worked more closely with governments — including in Germany, the United States and Mexico — to improve security during elections; and
    • Set a new standard for transparency in the advertising industry that makes advertisers more accountable for the ads they run.

    Using machine learning, Facebook identified and removed more than 1 billion fake accounts between October and March. It has doubled its safety and security workforce over the past year, from 10,000 to more than 20,000. It has been identifying and removing accounts associated with networks of people launching coordinated campaigns to distribute fake information.

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  3. Report: EU antitrust unit exploring broader local search complaint against Google – Search Engine Land

    12 Dec 2018 ...  

    The focus now moves to travel, hotels and restaurants.

    The European Commission is asking local search competitors in Europe whether Google’s algorithm changes and other practices are hurting them, according to a questionnaire seen by Reuters.

    If the answer is “yes,” the EC could bring what would be the fourth antitrust action against Google. Two of those cases have yielded nearly $8 billion in fines against the company. A third, involving AdSense agreements, is still pending.

    New focus on travel, hotels and restaurants. According to Reuters, the EC sent questionnaires to unnamed Google competitors in local search last month asking about the period from 2012 to 2017 with a focus on travel, hotels and restaurants. It reportedly asks about algorithm changes (e.g., Panda) and the local One Box and whether they’ve had an adverse impact on rivals’ businesses. The EC also has apparently asked whether Google is using any of their content (e.g., reviews) in the One Box.

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  4. The importance of understanding intent for SEO – Search Engine Land

    12 Dec 2018 ...  

    Search engines are getting more sophisticated at measuring how well a page matches intent so here are some tips on how to build a better strategy for it.

    Search is an exciting, ever-changing channel.

    Algorithm updates from Google, innovations in the way we search (mobile, voice search, etc.), and evolving user behavior all keep us on our toes as SEOs. The dynamic nature of our industry requires adaptable strategies and ongoing learning to be successful. However, we can’t become so wrapped up in chasing new strategies and advanced tactics that we overlook fundamental SEO principles.

    Recently, I’ve noticed a common thread of questioning coming from our clients and prospects around searcher intent, and I think it’s something worth revisiting here. In fact, searcher intent is such a complex topic it’s spawned multiple scientific studies (PDF) and research (PDF).

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  5. How to prepare for a JS migration – Search Engine Land

    12 Dec 2018 ...  

    Here are the steps to consider when migrating a website built with a static HTML to a JavaScript framework.

    An 80 percent decrease in organic traffic is the nightmare of every business. Unfortunately, such a nightmarish scenario may become reality if a website migration is done incorrectly; instead of improving the current situation it eventually leads to catastrophe.

    How to prepare for a JS migration - Search Engine Land

    How to prepare for a JS migration - Search Engine Land

    Source: http://take.ms/V6aDv

    There are many types of migrations, such as changing, merging or splitting the domains, redesigning the website or moving to a new framework.

    Web development trends are clearly showing that the use of JavaScript has been growing in recent years and JavaScript frameworks are becoming more and more popular. In the future, we can expect that more and more websites will be using JavaScript.

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  6. Voice search & virtual assistants – SMX Advanced Session Recap – Search Engine Land

    04 Jul 2018 ...  

    With over 420 million voice assistants sold, it’s clear that SEOs need to optimize their content for voice search. Contributor Eric Enge recaps the session and covers the opportunities and challenges voice search presents.

    Voice search & virtual assistants - SMX Advanced Session Recap - Search Engine Land

    Voice search is all the buzz out there, with some saying that by 2020, 50 percent of all queries could be by either image or voice. Personally, I think that estimate is aggressive, but the fact is that it’s a rapidly growing segment.

    It’s also important to be aware that “voice search” may not be the correct label. I say this because many of the “queries” are really commands, like “call mom.” That is not something you would ever have entered into a Google search box.

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  7. Bing visual search adds support for your camera and photos – Search Engine Land

    04 Jul 2018 ...  

    Bing unlocks new intelligent visual search features within the Bing app for iOS and Android.

    Bing visual search adds support for your camera and photos - Search Engine Land

    Bing has announced that you can now use Bing’s visual search features with your cameras and the photos on your device. If you are walking around, let’s say on vacation, and see a landmark, you can take a photo using one of the Bing apps or upload a picture from your camera roll, and Bing should return more information about what you are looking at.

    Here is a screen shot of how the feature looks after you snap a picture:

    Bing visual search adds support for your camera and photos - Search Engine Land

    This is now supported in the US on the Bing app for iOS and Android and for Microsoft Launcher (Android only). Here is where you can find the camera button in these apps:

    Read More >>>

  8. Google changed the way it works, and no one really noticed – Search Engine Land

    04 Jul 2018 ...  

    If you missed the changes Google made late last year on labeling country services, you’re not alone. Contributor Patrick Stox goes through the update and explains why you’re seeing a better experience for local users.

    Google changed the way it works, and no one really noticed - Search Engine Land

    In October 2017, Google announced it had updated the way it labeled country services on the mobile web, the Google app for iOS and desktop Search and Maps.

    From Google:

    Today, we’ve updated the way we label country services on the mobile web, the Google app for iOS, and desktop Search and Maps. Now the choice of country service will no longer be indicated by domain. Instead, by default, you’ll be served the country service that corresponds to your location. So if you live in Australia, you’ll automatically receive the country service for Australia, but when you travel to New Zealand, your results will switch automatically to the country service for New Zealand. Upon return to Australia, you will seamlessly revert back to the Australian country service.

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  9. Should you keep your best content on your site or send it away? – Search Engine Land

    04 Jul 2018 ...  

    Contributor Julie Joyce looks at the pros and cons of keeping content on your site versus sending it away.

    Should you keep your best content on your site or send it away? - Search Engine Land

    Recently, I’ve had some very enjoyable discussions with other search engine optimization specialists (SEOs) about where to place promotional content.

    Opinions vary and are dependent on the goals of the webmaster. Some webmasters openly ask for guest bloggers since they need content and don’t have a writing staff.

    Others who are just starting out want to write guest posts or columns for sites other than their own as a way to boost their reputation and increase inbound link counts.

    Some newbie professionals ask more seasoned SEOs to participate in roundup posts as a way to build credibility for their sites. There are many reasons people ask for content or ask to place content.

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  10. Google replacing video boxes with video carousel on desktop search – Search Engine Land

    04 Jul 2018 ...  

    Notice a change to your video views on some of your more popular videos? Google made a change in search on how they display video boxes.

    Google replacing video boxes with video carousel on desktop search - Search Engine Land

    Over the past couple of weeks, Google has been replacing the video box in the desktop search results with a new carousel-formatted video box. First reports of this came as early as June 6, but the big change, according to RankRanger, was on June 15.

    The video carousel box gives searchers a way to click and toggle through more than just three videos by clicking on the right arrow on the last video on the right of the box. Here is a screen shot:

    Google replacing video boxes with video carousel on desktop search - Search Engine Land

    RankRanger said, “Video thumbnails had fallen to the point where they appeared on just .8% of all page one SERPS, a mighty 92% loss.” Here is a screen shot of their tracker tool showing the drop of the old formatted video thumbnails:

    Read More >>>

  11. Fighting Fake News and Forging Real Diplomacy

    04 Jul 2018 ...  

    Fighting Fake News and Forging Real Diplomacy

    What we do about fake news today could have a major impact on our future. Two new initiatives — a concerted effort by Apple and a massive educational effort called the “Pro-Truth Pledge” — could help eliminate much of the fake news BS that is really messing up the United States at the moment.

    On another front, President Donald Trump’s plan to meet with Kim Jong-un, the supreme leader of North Korea, reminds me a bit too much of a pivotal meeting between Carly Fiorina, who was CEO of HP at the time, and Steve Jobs, who was then CEO of Apple. Fiorina and HP were badly damaged by that encounter, and I’m more than a little worried that something similar could happen to Trump and the U.S.

    Read More >>>

  12. Microsoft Calls On Linux for Its New IoT Security Platform

    04 Jul 2018 ...  

    Microsoft Calls On Linux for Its New IoT Security Platform

    Microsoft has opted to use its own version of a Linux operating system instead of Windows 10 to drive its new Azure Sphere solution for securely connecting Internet of Things devices.

    Microsoft introduced Azure Sphere last week at the RSA security conference in San Francisco.

    Azure Sphere is a platform that connects microcontroller units, or MCUs, embedded in cloud-connected devices. The platform operates a new cross-over class of MCUs that incorporate real-time and application processors with built-in Microsoft security technology and connectivity.

    Each chip includes custom silicon security technology that Microsoft developed. The new Azure Sphere-certified chips are based on the company’s 15 years of experience with Xbox, to secure this new class of MCUs and the devices they power, according to Microsoft.

    Read More >>>

  13. What is GS1 SmartSearch Schema markup and why should e-commerce sites use it?

    15 Mar 2018 ...  

    Contributor Tony Edward explains the new, more advanced schema markup for products called GS1 SmartSearch and how it helps listings gain visibility in the search results.

    What is GS1 SmartSearch Schema markup and why should e-commerce sites use it?

    By now most of us should be familiar with Schema Product markup which can be leveraged for listings on e-commerce sites.

    The benefits of implementing this are serving up your product data in a structured format that is search engine friendly and has the potential to gain rich results such as product rich snippets and rich cards for your product pages.

    Now there is a more advanced way to implement Schema Product markup which provides the benefits mentioned above and can also help your products gain additional visibility. Called GS1 SmartSearch, this advanced structured data type includes customer-facing attributes related to food, beverage, tobacco and healthcare, as well as to clothing and footwear.

    Read More >>>

  14. Study: 11 voice search ranking factors analyzed

    15 Mar 2018 ...  

    Some of the findings confirm and some upend conventional wisdom.

    Study: 11 voice search ranking factors analyzed

    Backlinko has done an extensive analysis of “voice search ranking factors” and identified 11 variables tied to appearing in Google Home results. The company examined 10,000 results delivered over the smart speaker.

    What Backlinko found was consistent with what many others have been saying but there were also a few surprises. For example, the study discounts the impact of Schema to some degree and page authority.

    Here’s a partial, paraphrased list of the ranking factors:

    • PageSpeed is a significant factor; voice search results typically come from faster-loading pages.
    • Google relies heavily on very authoritative domains for results, but pages not as much.
    • Content that ranks well on the desktop tends to rank in voice search. This might be a correlation rather than causal however.
    • Schema may not be a factor: 36 percent of pages voice search results came from pages using Schema.
    • Roughly 41 percent of voice search results came from Featured Snippets.
    • Voice search results are generally 29 words; however Google sources voice results from long-form content.
    • HTTPS is critical.

    Google has made page speed an explicit mobile ranking factor. Backlinko found that the page-load time for a voice result was almost 2X faster than traditional webpages. Not a surprise. What may be a surprise are the findings around Schema.

    Read More >>>

  15. Multifaceted featured snippets begin rolling out in Google search results

    15 Mar 2018 ...  

    Google updates the search results features with an expanded featured snippet targeting broad, nuanced queries

    Multifaceted featured snippets begin rolling out in Google search results

    Google has been rolling out many new search features over the past few months related to images, featured snippets, and the knowledge graph. Today the search giant released another feature called “multifaceted featured snippets.”

    Multifaceted featured snippets will be surfaced for queries that are sufficiently broad enough to allow for more than one interpretation of what was submitted. In these instances, the SERP returned will include more than one featured snippet, with the original query rewritten as the questions the algorithm assumes the user may have intended, and the results displayed in the multifaceted snippet will reflect those new questions.

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  16. Germany Cracks Whip Against Hate Speech on Social Media

    14 Feb 2018 ...  

    Germany Cracks Whip Against Hate Speech on Social Media

    Germany on Monday began enforcing its new Network Enforcement Act, or NetzDG, which imposes a fine of up to 50 million euros (US$60 million) on social media networks that fail to remove hate-inciting posts promptly.

    The controversial law, adopted in mid 2017, just entered its formal enforcement phase. It is designed to help combat hate and fake news at a time when ISIS-linked terror and anti-immigrant extremism have been on the rise in Germany.

    Further, Russian hackers have been accused of trying to sow nationalist tendencies through social media attacks in Western countries facing elections.

    The law calls for fines of up to 50 million euros on major social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and other channels.

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  17. 2017 in Tech: The Year of Foreshadowing Big Things to Come

    14 Feb 2018 ...  

    2017 in Tech: The Year of Foreshadowing Big Things to Come

    2017 may be the year that developments in the tech world truly were overshadowed by other world events: deepening divisions in the United States and the looming threat of war with North Korea; numerous high-profile Hollywood players, TV personalities, politicians, journalists, business executives and others involved in sexual misconduct scandals; terrorist attacks in Europe and elsewhere; and the announcement of yet another royal wedding in the United Kingdom, to name just a few.

    With all of that going on, it would be easy to overlook Apple’s introduction of another iPhone or Nintendo’s comeback with a hit video game console. The truth is that 2017 could be what sports teams often call “a rebuilding year.”

    Read More >>>

  18. Ready Player One and the Troubled Future of VR

    14 Feb 2018 ...  

    Ready Player One and the Troubled Future of VR

    One of the issues with virtual reality is that expectations have been overset massively with TV shows like
    Star Trek: The Next Generation, which promised an artificial reality indistinguishable from reality. VR failed.

    It didn’t have to — there is a pattern to bringing out successful technology that is repeatable. You create a complete experience regardless of cost, then cost-reduce it. That way, you have a model for where you need to go. Sadly, the more common path is to try to hit an aggressive price point first and deliver a crippled experience.

    The coming movie
    Ready Player One showcases the eventual goal for VR as an uncompromised platform: a meshing of technology and the human experience so that the user can’t perceive the difference.

    Read More >>>

  19. Google removes tappable shortcuts from search app

    14 Feb 2018 ...  

    Less than a year after launching this feature, Google has removed the shortcuts offering quick answers on weather, sports & entertainment info.

    Google removes tappable shortcuts from search app

    ouh_desire / Shutterstock.com

    Google has quietly dropped the tappable shortcuts feature the company released just about a year ago in the Google search app. That feature aimed at giving you a quick way to access Google features without having to search for them.

    Andy B. from the Google Search & Assistant team wrote in a Google help thread that the feature was indeed removed to give more prominence to the new feed experience in the search app, which will make it “easier than ever to discover and explore what matters to you,” he added.

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  20. Google adds new SEO Audit category to Chrome’s Lighthouse extension

    14 Feb 2018 ...  

    The popular auditing tool used by developers and search marketers now enables users to run basic SEO checks against site pages.

    Google adds new SEO Audit category to Chrome's Lighthouse extension

    Webmasters, web developers and SEOs are getting a new feature in the widely used website auditing tool Lighthouse. Google announced today the addition of an “SEO Audits” category to the Chrome extension. You can access the new audit category via the “Options” button in the extension.

    By no means a replacement for a comprehensive SEO audit, the new feature does provide feedback on basic/fundamental SEO best practices, returning a report that checks for:

    • Descriptive anchor text.
    • Titles, description.
    • If the page can be crawled by Google.
    • HTTP status code.
    • Valid hreflang and rel=canonical tags.
    • UX — legible font sizes, plugins.
    • … and makes recommendations for additional reports.

    From a sample report I ran against Starbucks.com:

    Google adds new SEO Audit category to Chrome's Lighthouse extension

    SEO Audit Report from Lighthouse Extension

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