Hi I’m Helen, Head of SEO as Reflect Digital, welcome to the very first Reflect Round-up. There’s been a lot of moving and shaking in the world of search engine optimisation over the past week and I want to quickly run-through the most important news.
First up, Google Posts. For those of you who haven’t heard of them, Google Posts offer the ability to submit updates directly into Google’s search results via your Google My Business listing. Originally trialled by Google during the American presidential elections, enabling candidates to supply the voting population with timely thoughts and feelings on hot topics, this functionality has now been rolled out to everyone with a Google My Business listing. I say everyone, but if you’re in the UK, you have to apply to the waiting list before you can get approved to use it.
When used as they are actually intended, Posts can be latest news stories, offers and can include images, gifs and some of the predetermined calls to action like “learn more” and “buy”, you know, the important ones. Crucial to note, the posts expire after 7 days. So they are really intended for instant, timely information. I’ll be letting you all know about my latest Reflect Round-up because you definitely want to “learn more” about SEO, right?
Google has stated “Posting on Google is a new way to share relevant, fresh content with the people who are searching for you. Use image, videos and even animated GIFs to engage your audience, and ad inline links to drive traffic to specific content. This enhanced format allows searchers to hear directly from the primary source – you – and complements existing results from across the web.”
Next up, you know Google Now, that personal assistant in the Google app that gives you information you didn’t know you needed? You know the one, tells you it’s going to rain before you even ask it, like a spoiler in a film only real life? Anyway, don’t worry about it, it’s going. Well, the Google Now branding is going, the functionality is staying and hopefully, being improved, because now, you get the added benefit of a news feed… in case Facebook, Twitter and Instagram weren’t enough for you. Now when you search for an entity you’ll have the option in the search results of following it and it will be included in your news feed, alongside local and trending information that Google reckons you’ll like. There’s going to be a lot of cat videos in my feed.
Finally, Google is reportedly changing its homepage design. The Guardian claims Big G is radically revamping the classically minimal desktop homepage with a variation of that updated Google Now Feed hoopla that I’ve just told you about. However, this might be a bit of premature reporting because Google PR has allegedly shot-down these claims, saying it’s not for certain and any designs are still in the early stages. So there you have it, Google is definitely changing its Homepage design… maybe.
That’s it for this week’s Reflect Round-up. Join me again next week!