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Google Comes Out Counterpunching

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Google is counterpunching with a vengeance in early 2016.

While things have probably been hectic behind the scenes at Google for a couple of years it was mid-2015 that the first sign of what was to come showed:
* Google Web Light transcodes aka converts web pages on the fly for transmission over slow networks. Primarily targeting third world (mobile) systems. As per Google standard behaviour GWL is opt-out not opt-in AND opt-out results will be labelled as potentially slow aka no test before iffy condemnation. Can you say 'extortion'?

And, for a change, Google has targeted Europe before America:
* Digital News Initiative (DNI), is a Google partnership with European news publishers that includes:
---a 150 million Euro DNI Innovation Fund (currently ~30 million granted) 'incentive' for news organisations to (better) do their (digital) job.
Note: fascinating that even here for listing participating organisations G uses it's notorious partial bucket sort...

---product development in participation with news organisations to increase revenue, traffic and audience engagement.

---training and research:
to include dedicated Google staff to train news room staff in partnerships with news organisations; to enhance existing tools, i.e. Google Trends; increase available information resources to better serve journalists;
Query: will G guarantee info served is correct, factual, and substantiated? If so, how?
and extend Google Journalism Fellowships

* Project Shield née Jigsaw née Google Ideas:
to alleviate DDoS attacks against news organisations.

* Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) Project:
Note: AMP is not aimed at most of us. We are simply being allowed to give ourselves up as collateral inclusion.
Note: AMP is technically not 'right' for many sites (it IS perfect for news and MFA sites, just saying)
Note: AMP holds and serves cached pages (including ads) from Google, which is why they are so fast. In other words, you are giving G your content (or using them as your CDN, if you are a glass half full type). Actually, if we publishers were not tied to third party ad calls page speed would go up too.
Note: AMP is primarily a response to FaceBook and only secondarily one to ad-blockers as AMP doesn't actually by-pass many/most such; it is hoped that if everything loads fast ad-blocker take-up will recede.

* AdMob:
is basically AdSense for Apps.
And it comes with Google Analytics built in.
Can you say say 'Trojan horse'?

They want news organisations because it is breaking news that mobile users tend to concentrate upon (also why they went for the Twitter hosepipe).

They want to play nice aka bribery and corruption with European news organisations because those are the ones that have been biting back.

They want inside apps because they are a way around search and all that has been built upon search.

They want to serve the world everyone's everything.
With their ads attached.
And everyone's data mined,
And repurposed for profit.

And the SEO and media worlds are agog.
What is it with the never ending fascination with adulterated kool-aid?

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Google has also recently started placing up to four adwords ads above the SERPs and none on the right side of the SERPs. Google Shopping results are often above or below the ads too.


That is forcing adwords bidders to be more aggressive for visibility and pushing the organic results down the page.


So far, I am not seeing any real decline in traffic, but I am sure that I am losing some traffic on highly commercial queries.



Another thing that I am seeing recently is google moving the "People also ask" questions up to the middle of the Page 1 results, at position six or seven. If your site performs well on long-tail question/answer queries, this is an opportunity if the searcher wants more than a quick bite of an answer.

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