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Google

Web Crawling, Click Fraud Detection, and Coffee. Oh My!

CAYK’s Current Research & Development Project  (Part 1) 

11,407,243 – This is our current count of websites that have participated in the Google Ad Network to date. (Websites that allow Google to place their ads on them.)

Now that you know that, how do you pick which websites to show your advertisements on? That’s a big number after all, and it’s the only representative of the ad placements that we’ve come across during this R&D project. After all, Google isn’t publishing that list anytime soon, so we’re left to build the list without their help.

It’s not difficult to rule out large portions of available ad placements with the tools provided within the ad management platform. However, even a small targeting change often wipes away millions of domains without actually knowing with any degree of certainty whether or not they would have otherwise brought value to a client’s advertising campaign. Worse is that the placements that remain after targeting updates haven’t actually been vetted. While this is the nature of the industry, it’s certainly not good enough for us.

Data-Drive Marketing vs Research and Development
Where lies the line between the two?

By the very nature of digital advertising, every online advertising decision is bordering on a big data project. Selecting advertising placements is a great example of this phenomenon, with millions of websites that can be targeted, how do you decide which are worthy of advertising funds, and which are not? It may be a bold approach, but we’re working towards vetting each one individually.

It starts with tracking down domains participating in the ad network. This means first crawling as many sites as you can and gathering previous crawl data wherever you can find it. Of the 248,555,113 domains in our overall database (248.5 million!), approximately 4.6% have had tell-tale embed scripts or DNS calls that show participation in Google’s Ad Networks.

The scope required to do anything on this scale has led to a long journey of learning with the singular purpose of doing the best job we possibly can for our clients. It’s been actively worked on (nearly every single day, (weekends too!), for over a year! In our upcoming mini-series, we will break down some of the key milestones of this project, speak to the many hurdles and challenges which needed to be surmounted, as well as help explain how these learnings are already bringing value to our clients!

Categories
Google

How Is Voice Search Affecting SEO?

SEO has become a second-nature aspect of marketing a business and bringing in new leads. However, as with any component of your strategy, SEO is evolving as time goes on. Voice search is playing an increasingly prominent role in the current landscape, so how do you adapt?

 

Voice & the Rise of Mobile

 

There’s no question about it — mobile devices have had profound effects on the way that users discover brands. We speak often about the importance of having a responsive, mobile-friendly site, but voice search is another factor in this phenomenon that shouldn’t be underestimated. Whether taking place on smartphones and tablets or devices like Google Home and Amazon Echo, the immediacy and sophistication of voice search is increasingly preferable for users today. Considering the fact that the majority of searches take place on mobile, it will probably come as no surprise that 50% of searches are projected to be voice searches by 2020.

 

How It Affects Your Content

 

Voice searches are syntactically distinct from traditional text-entry searches. They tend to manifest as long-tail keyword phrases and using natural, conversational speech. It will be wise to adapt the style of your content accordingly. Additionally, remember that voice-driven search features and virtual assistants like Siri and Alexa respond to many types of queries by reading the featured snippets at the top of results pages. Work towards optimizing your content to respond to queries that begin with trigger words like “what” and “how”, offering concise and useful snippets of information that Google is more likely to yield during a voice search.

 

Localization & Directories

 

Another factor to keep in mind when adapting to the advent of voice search is how swiftly users can locate and learn more about you. Let’s say someone says “car mechanic near me” or “Joe’s Auto Shop reviews”. These are two of the more common applications of voice search, and in the case of the latter, the virtual assistant being used will typically announce the average rating of the establishment and number of reviews. Make sure that your business has a strong presence on directory services like Google My Business and Yelp, not to mention thorough reputation management. Don’t fall behind on optimizing your business for voice searches!

 

Our mission is not just to build comprehensive, holistic marketing strategies for businesses in Canada and the U.S. It’s to see those businesses thrive. If you want your company to reach its full potential for growth and transformation, we can help. Call (403) 456-0072 to find out how!

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Google Industry News

Google Gmail Introduces “Confidential Mode”

Google recently released an update to Gmail that allows users to send confidential email messages. The new feature allows users to send email that requires a PIN to open it. You have the option to send the PIN as an alternate email or if you enter the recipients cell phone number through the send process the recipient will be able to request the PIN via SMS message.

As Google explains on their own website, “You can send messages and attachments with Gmail’s confidential mode to help protect sensitive information from unauthorized access. You can use confidential mode to set an expiration date for messages or revoke access at any time. Recipients of the confidential message will have options to forward, copy, print, and download disabled.”  → Read more from Google here.

If you are a G-Suite business user, you may have to ask your G-Suite Administrator to activate this functionality from the Admin console.

Once the feature is active, here is how to send confidential email →

  1. Start a new email message by clicking “Compose”.
  2. Look for the “Lock & Clock” Icon in the lower right of your composer to activate Gmail Secure Mode.
  3. Set the date that you wish to have the email message expire automatically and set how you would like the recipient to receive the passcode (PIN).
  4. Choose “No SMS passcode” and the recipient that is using Gmail will have direct access to open the email. Non-Gmail users will receive a passcode in a different email message.
  5. If you choose “SMS Passcode,” the recipient will get a passcode by text message. They will be prompted to ‘get’ the SMS message when they open the email so that it will make some sense to them. Make sure to have the correct cell phone number or they won’t be able to see the message.
  6. Click ‘save’ on the pop-up and then you are ready to send your message.

Here are a few examples why you may want to send confidential email that automatically expires →

  1. Sending usernames and passwords to a friend or colleague.
  2. Sending personal information.
  3. Sending a ‘legal’ notice or document that you do not want hanging around forever.
  4. Sending payment or credit card information.
  5. Sharing financial documents etc. etc.

Does the new ability to send confidential emails truly protect the message from outside prying eyes?

The simple answer to that question is NO.

The more robust response is MAYBE.

The Recipient can take a screen capture of the email with desktop software → The recipient will receive the message, after verifying the passcode, in a web-browser. I was not able to use “Clipular”, a popular screen capture plugin for Google Chrome to make a screen capture of the email message. I was however able to take a screenshot using my desktop screen capture application.

There is no easy way to forward the confidential email → The only way I can think of to forward the secure mail message would be to take a screen capture and then paste it as an image in a new email message.

The ability to ‘right-mouse-click’ and copy or view the source of the confidential email is disabled.

Summary

Sending confidential and self expiring email is a great new feature for Gmail. The general average recipient of an email will likely have no reason to try and defeat the process. That is of course assuming that the security is in place to protect the sender and the recipient.

Having specific email messages secure and ‘self-destructing’ is an excellent step in the right direction.

Categories
Google

Four Google Chrome Extensions You Should Try

Google Chrome may be known for its speed and straightforward design, but one particularly exciting dimension to this browser is the range of available extensions that make it more versatile. We’ve got four examples in mind that could prove to be beneficial to your business.

VidYard

Video is one of the most powerful tools in digital marketing. Being a Chrome extension, VidYard makes the integration of video into your strategy beautifully straightforward. You can use it to connect with customers by recording video tutorials, information about promotions, or anything else your company needs. It allows you not only to send video content to your clients’ and prospects’ inboxes, but provides you with metrics tools to track performance. Rather than using fixed pricing, it’s offered to businesses on an individualized basis depending on your needs.

Clipular

Video isn’t the only form of visual content that should play a central role in the way you market your business. What about screenshots? Clipular is a free Chrome extension that allows you to capture, save, and manage screenshots of the websites you visit. You can either capture a region or an entire webpage in one image. Its screenshot management system makes it easy to keep your clips organized as well. This is great for market research, sharing information with clients and team members, promoting your website or partner websites, and more.

Grammarly

Some marketing mistakes can be fairly subtle yet quite damaging to the image of your brand. Spelling and grammar problems, for instance, exude a lack of attentiveness to detail that no one wants to see in a business. Grammarly is another Chrome extension, also free, that keeps a close watch on your in-browser writing in real time. Whether you’re working on articles, social media posts, or an email campaign, Grammarly will offer corrections and suggestions as you go. Not only this, but you’ll also get performance stats and personalized insights on your writing.

Chrome Remote Desktop

Operating a modern business requires modernized connectivity and immediacy with both your audience and the rest of your team. Chrome Remote Desktop is one of the most convenient ways to share or view a live desktop feed and even remotely control another computer. You can rest easy if that sounds a little creepy, as it requires all involved users to have the app installed and go through access permission procedures. Collaborate seamlessly, assist team members or clients with application use or other tasks, and more. Did we mention this one is free too?

The digital marketing experts here at CAYK are driven to help you leverage all of the today’s most powerful marketing tools to achieve lasting growth as a business. If you want to better equip yourself to meet modern standards, call (403) 456-0072 so that we can make it happen!

Categories
Google

Why don’t I see my companies Google Ads when I search?

Why clients will not always see their own ads.

Clients want their ads to show up to the most relevant ‘searchers’ during their campaign. The natural response is to open a web browser and start doing Google searches to “check your ads”. If you do this you will decrease the quality score on your ad campaign and your ads may stop showing completely.

Don’t search Google to see your own ads!

If you regularly search your campaign keyword phrases that trigger your ads, but never click on your ads (because that costs money), you will be teaching Google that the ads are not relevant. Google will stop returning the ads in time and you will not see them anymore. Running up ad impressions without clicking on the ads will decrease the quality scores on the campaign and negatively impact it’s overall performance.

Daily budget and cost-per-click may impact your ads showing.

Your ads may stop showing if your daily budget is too low. The campaign cannot obtain more impressions or potential clicks if the daily budget is exhausted too soon.

Location, Location, Location

Your ad campaign will very likely target a specific area. For example, if you want to target all of Calgary only. We can also target areas as small as one area code. If you live or work outside of the campaign location target then you will not see your ads.

What is the best way to see how my campaign is performing?

The best way to understand your ad campaigns performance is to ask your Account Representative for an update. A report will include;

  • Ad Impressions (the number of times your ads have shown in search).
  • The average position of your ads.
  • The “click-through rate” or the number of people who clicked to your landing page.
  • The cost per click and the total cost to date.

If you have any additional questions, please contact your account representative today to book an account review meeting, we’d be happy to further discuss these points. 403-456-0072

Categories
Google

Could Google Decide the Next Election?

We see Google show up in the media every day, usually regarding things like SEO, mobile technology, and other topics. One that has spread like wildfire lately is somewhat unusual: the effect of search listings on the outcome of elections. Let’s investigate.

Google and The Voter Margin

A wealth of recent research has made it quite clear that how a candidate is ranked in search listings has a direct correlation on how a voter will decide. We know the same to be true for consumer choices and other types of decisions, so it’s not terribly surprising. These days, demographics are as divided as ever. There are extreme ends to every issue and many voters become unsure about how to align themselves. This means some vote decisions may come down to a single search. Another critical factor is voter margins. The current election is becoming a tight 3-way race and this makes search ranking all the more potent in how it affects the outcome of an election.

How Voters Get Their Information

During election season, even before using sites specifically designed for the comparison of candidate policies, internet users everywhere are conducting Google searches to learn about who is running. Even as many voter information sites strive to be as neutral as possible, more often than not, users still go through Google to get there. Of course, a significant amount of this comes from direct sharing between people on social media, but the dominance of Google as a tool for electoral decision-making is unmistakeable.

What it All Means

The fact that Google’s search algorithm has the ability to sway undecided voters may seem unsettling, but it’s also a very informative discovery. It underlines how powerful search technologies can be in guiding our lives. This has larger implications for thinking critically about what information is made available and how autonomously you’re making a decision. It’s useful to be aware of how you are being influenced by all that information, how it is presented to you or your audience, and how this may lead them to one company over another. As a business owner, you’ll find that this is relevant to you at every turn.

CAYK is dedicated to helping you understand the power of today’s search and marketing technologies. To learn more about the capabilities of digital marketing tools and what they can do for your business give us a call at (403) 456-0072 today!

Categories
Company Updates Google Industry News Uncategorized

September 2015 – Google Events

We have several events planned in September and hope that you will join us.

Starting on the 10th, we are hosting a webinar to follow up the Google Mobile Friendly Update that occurred in April. This is an easy one for people to join us right from their own desk!

Do you eat breakfast? The Digital Breakfast with Google on September 23 will be right up your alley. Join us at the Willow Park Golf & Country Club for breakfast and meet our Google Agency Representatives.

Winding up the month on the 30th, we are hosting our 3rd Google Partners Connect. This is a casual meeting over coffee – a great opportunity to network. During this event some of Google’s top Advertising professionals will stream in LIVE and present on the most current trends in digital marketing.

I hope that you will join us. Call me if you have any questions at <span class="**403-456-0072**-CAYK">***403-456-0072***</span>

David A. West
CAYK Marketing Inc.

CAYK WEBINAR | Post Mortem: Google’s Mobile Friendly Update | Sept 10, 2015 at 11am | Join David West and Melissa Gregory online for what promises to be a very interesting 35 – 45 minute seminar.
Register here –> http://yyc.tips/mobile26min

BREAKFAST with GOOGLE | Sept 23 at 7:45am | Join David & the CAYK team as we meet “live” at the Willow Park Golf Club. Meet our Google Agency representatives and be exposed to some of the most current information available about digital advertising –> Limited Seats –>
RSVP here –> http://yyc.tips/breakfast2

GOOGLE Partners Connect | Sept 30, 2015 at 9:30am | Join us, in person | The Internet gives every business a chance to achieve success. We’d like to invite you to join our agency for a Google event designed to help you reach your business goals online. It’s a great opportunity to learn from digital marketing and advertising experts about how to grow your business online. –>
RSVP Yes here –> http://go.cayk.click/google3

Categories
Google

How Important is Speed: Do Websites that Load Quickly Gain an Advantage in Organic Search?

Does the speed of your website actually matter? Can you lose users’ interest due to incessantly slow load times? The answer to both of these questions is a definitive “yes!” Your website’s ability to load quickly is paramount to retaining interested users.

Quick-loading websites have been found to outperform slower sites on nearly every front, including search ranking, user experience, and user engagement. Websites that load faster also tend to deliver higher conversions and more significant revenue.

Finding Optimal Speed

While it’s obvious that a faster load time will benefit your site, it’s important to be realistic with your goals. If you can get your website to load in under 1 second, that’s great! If not, you should shoot for a load time of, at least, less than three seconds.

Even if your website needs seven seconds to load, you won’t lose significant attention from users. That being said, you’ll still benefit from improving that load time. If your website needs more than 10 seconds to load, you’ll notice a significant diminishment in the number of users visiting your site and the overall revenue you can accrue from mobile sales.

Interesting Facts About Load Times and User Behaviour

While people are typically comfortable with load times up to 10 seconds, you might be interested to know that an astoundingly high percentage of users, 47%, expect web pages to load in under two seconds. In addition, 57% percent of people that visit your website will leave if your page fails to load in three seconds or less.

Interestingly, a recent study also determined that 75 percent of online customers will opt for a competitor’s site as an alternative to waiting an inordinate amount of time for your website to load. On average, two seconds has been found to be the preferable wait time when allowing websites to load.

Some websites have benefited from installing a progress bar that notifies users of the website’s “percentage loaded.” Studies have actually shown that a well-designed progress bar can extend load wait times to a maximum of 38 seconds.

That being said, faster has unanimously been found to be better. In a larger study between websites that load in 1 second and those that take up to three seconds to load, those with longer wait times have been subject to a 50 percent higher bounce rate, 22 percent fewer page views, and, perhaps most importantly, 22 percent fewer conversions.

Google’s Recommendation

When ranking sites for its’ search engines, Google prefers wait times of one second or less. As the web continues to speed up, Google will continue to value websites with faster load times more highly than those that take too long to load.

Even for mobile devices, Google recommends that designers make sure their pages will load in less than one second. This ultimately helps to ensure that users don’t abandon web pages because of their inability to deliver content in a timely fashion.

If you’re looking to speak to someone about your specific website needs, please don’t hesitate to give the marketing professionals at CAYK® a call at <span class="**403-456-0072**-CAYK">***403-456-0072***</span> today!

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Featured Google Search Engine Optimization

How Significantly will Google’s Mobile-Friendly Algorithm Update Impact your Website?

Is your website already designed to be mobile-friendly? Are you prepared to conquer the upcoming changes in Google’s search algorithm? If not, it’s not too late! You still have about two months to make changes to your site before the new search algorithm goes into effect.

While Google making changes to how it ranks websites in their search results should be nothing new to you, the update that will take effect on April 21st is set to be one of their most significant modifications to date.

What the Update Means for your Website

Google’s recent announcement of an anticipated algorithm change that will favour mobile searchers means that Google’s search results will now rank mobile-friendly sites higher than their non mobile-friendly counterparts.

If your site lacks critical mobile-friendly characteristics, it will most likely fall in Google’s search results when the new algorithm goes into effect. Alternatively, sites that make changes to become more mobile-friendly will likely move up in Google’s search results.

If you run an indexed application, Google will now serve up information from your app in search results for signed-in users that have your app installed on their device. Your search engine ranking will also be somewhat determined by the quality and relevance of that information.

How to Make your Site More Mobile-Friendly

Seeing as how your search ranking will surely fall if you do not do so, adapting your site to be more mobile-friendly is essential. Fortunately, there are many ways that you can do so without completely redesigning your website.

One of the ways to improve the mobile-friendliness of your website is to allow Googlebot access to JavaScript, CSS, and Image files. This will give Google’s web crawling bot the ability to crawl these properties of your website to more effectively index your content correctly for improved overall rankings.

If you’re attempting to integrate mobile and desktop versions of your website, accurate redirects are a must. In other words, if mobile users are searching for a desktop compatible URL, your site should effectively redirect the user to the mobile-friendly version of your site.

As an Internet user, you’re most likely familiar with receiving a frustrating “Page not found” message when searching for a specific page you’re interested in. While the page might exist on the desktop version of your site, you also need to be sure that its’ equivalent exists on your mobile-friendly site.

Because most mobile users will typically wait less for a page to load than their desktop counterparts, it’s also essential that your mobile-friendly site loads quickly and completely. If you fail to do so, momentarily interested users will lose interest as soon as they gained it.

Text size and font choice are also two very important criteria when designing your mobile-friendly site. Because mobile devices are obviously much smaller than desktops, you must be sure that your site can be read on multiple different-sized screens.

As Google makes another important change to their search algorithm, it’s important that your website doesn’t get left behind. If you’re looking to discuss your company’s online marketing needs, be sure to give CAYK® a call at <span class="**403-456-0072**-CAYK">***403-456-0072***</span> today!

Categories
Google

Are You Getting as Much as You Could be From Google?

Imagine for a moment that your very best customer came over for dinner and brought seven or eight of his colleagues and competitors, introducing each one of them to you personally. That’s probably not going to happen, but you could get an even more powerful set of referrals without cleaning your home or spending hours in the kitchen… all you have to do is get Google to start sending more qualified traffic to your website.

Google might not be the world’s largest company yet, but to those of us in the Internet marketing world there is no better bridge to do customers than the search and social media company that makes more than 2 billion introductions every day. That’s why we’re so excited to announce that our firm has been certified as a Google Partner, meaning we have gone through an extensive study-and-testing process to ensure we know the ins-and-outs of the company’s products.

What does that mean to you, as a client or someone who is interested in Calgary Internet marketing? Here’s what you need to know:

We can help you manage your search advertising. By gaining the certification, we’ve shown Google that we know how to set up search advertising campaigns, optimize ads, improve quality scores, and monitor accounts. In other words, we can help you with the basics and a lot more.

Our abilities go beyond simple text PPC ads. Although a lot of companies associate Google ads with text search results, the reality is you can market through images, their displaying network, and other search advertising tools.

We’ll be finding new ways to integrate search marketing for our clients going forward. Now that we’ve made our work official, will be looking for even more ways to expand our pay-per-click management options – and bring you more profit-building opportunities as a result.

This is an exciting event for everyone here at CAYK®! If you’re looking for a Certified Google partner to help you get more from your website and Internet marketing, call or email us today!