If you think it’s getting harder to distinguish between paid ads in search results and organic results, you’re not alone. Wall Street Journal has said that search engines are ignoring the FTC 2013 directive. I agree. My practice today is to immediately skip over the first 3 to 5 results because they are usually somewhat disguised paid ads.
WSJ: Search Engines Ignoring FTC Rules About Labeling Search Ads, Greg Sterling, Search Engine Land (Oct 13)
Google dominates in Europe with 90% of share, and is stuck at 67% in the United States. But in mobile, Google has 83% of the US search market share – thanks to Chrome, I bet.
Google Market Share: 67 Percent On PC, 83 Percent In Mobile
Good – if you don’t want to be social at Google through Google+, you can say “no thanks”.
Google+ Is No Longer A Requirement For Creating A Google Account, Martin Beck, Search Engine Land (Sept 19)
It should help the company further distance itself from missteps such as the extremely unpopular integration of YouTube comments and Google+.
Watch for knowledge graph data for items in the search results.
Google Structured Snippets Officially Live In Search Results, Barry Schwartz, Search Engine Land (Sept 22)
Google calls these “structured snippets,” where Google will show snippets of data, relevant to the query, within the snippets of the search results.
Only 7% in a survey of 521 people knew about DuckDuckGo. Let’s change that. This is an excellent search engine that is designed to return answers – and on many “knowledge” type questions does as well as Google’s Knowledge Graph or Bing’s Snapshot. And with DuckDuckGo you benefit from its policy of not saving search history. Apple has recognized its value and has included it in iOS 8, the latest version of the iPhone operating system.
Could DuckDuckGo Overtake Bing? by Eli Schwartz, Search Engine Land.
With more consumer awareness of alternatives like DuckDuckGo, that tipping point might not be too far in the future. If ever this event occurs, it is entirely conceivable that the surge of new users could push DuckDuckGo ahead of Bing. (According to our survey, only 7.7% of respondents used Bing on a daily basis.)
Watch for Knowledge Graph nuggets from Wikipedia showing in the search results. Google is constantly experimenting with this.
Google Now Showing Knowledge Snippets In Search Results by Barry Schwartz, Search Engine Land (Sept 8)
Google Authorship always seemed arcane to me. Danny Sullivan describes it as “Google’s way to allow the authors of content to identify themselves for display purposes” and it was done through markup code. Well – no more – but Google is keeping “Author Rank”
Google Authorship and Author Rank aren’t the same thing. Here’s why Google Authorship can die yet Author Rank lives on., Danny Sullivan, Search Engine Land (AUg 29)
How can all this be, when Google has also said that it’s ignoring authorship markup?
The answer is that Google has other ways to determine who it believes to be the author of a story, if it wants. In particular, Google is likely to look for visible bylines that often appear on news stories. These existed before Google Authorship, and they aren’t going away.
Google’s Knowledge Graph excels at displaying structured information on entities. Google is developing the next generation of this called Knowledge Vault.
Google “Knowledge Vault” To Power Future Of Search by Greg Sterling, Search Engine Land (Aug 25)
Sensationally characterized as “the largest store of knowledge in human history,” Knowledge Vault is being assembled from content across the internet without human editorial involvement. “Knowledge Vault autonomously gathers and merges information from across the web into a single base of facts about the world, and the people and objects in it,” says New Scientist.
If you haven’t lived through search with Google since its launch this article picks out the high points up to the present, highly personalized engine. The author looks forward 10 years ( a very long time) to suggest more speech, wearable devices, and driver-less cars.
Here’s What Google Search Will Look Like in 10 Years by Ryan Dube, Make Use Of (Aug 21)
Google makes many changes every year to search – some we are barely aware of, some we don’t like at all, some that are loved instantly. This past year, according to Google’s head of search Amit Singhal, Google made 890 “improvements”.
Google Made 890 Improvements To Search Over The Past Year, Barry Schwartz, Search Engine Land (Aug 19)
He doesn’t say what they were but does list highlights in last 10 years (which is a very long time). Of his ten, I think the most valuable were:
- Autocomplete – stroke of genius – see the variation and choose one that best suits our intent.
- Voice search – I love this on my iPad.
- Knowledge Graph – information nuggets frequently have the answer, or at least a good overview.