This is an important time for many as we approach the traditional holiday shopping seasons. Our sites have to be ready, and our marketing has to be set in place. So, when I heard of yet again, reports of another Google SERPs update, I started to be concerned. It's worrying for many webmasters are they prepare for, hopefully, a good holiday shopping season. It's a little too early to say what's going on, but some webmasters are sharing their referral data and are indicating that referrals from Bing are rising.
What's going on? Are Google's referrals dropping so that Bing's are now appearing above the radar, or is it deeper than that.
I know i'll be watching referrals closely, especially over the next few days and weeks.
The previous WebmasterWorld Weekly is here.
Welcome to this WebmasterWorld Weekly Round-up.
Microsoft's Bing released a useful tool: Bing XML Sitemap Plugin. This week Bing described how best to use the Bing XML Sitemap Plugin tool to save bandwidth and retain site freshness.
Google announced it will no longer support IE8 after 2013. Google said, "It is our hope that giving you more than 3 months to prepare for this change will minimize disruption to Google Analytics usage for you and your business."
Microsoft says it is to refresh Bing Search with a new logo, and to include what it calls "Pole Position", and "Page Zero." According to Microsoft, the new Bing will be platform independent, making it work on whatever device being used. I think the logo looks great.
Not wanting to be left out, Google is to launch a new look, following rapidly on the heels of Bing's announcement, and Yahoo's a short while back. The logo will be flatter, losing the 3d effect, and there will be a new "App Launcher" navigation menu.
Google's SERPs are becoming more an more crowded as images, ads, etc. start to take up more space, especially on the first page. This week, WebmasterWorld members are discussing whether they can survive Google's shrinking SERPs.
I'm sure we've all switched hosting companies at some stage or another, and choosing a new host is often a difficult question. Having selected a new host, one of the next concerns is minimizing the affect on the search engine rankings and user experience. This week, WebmasterWorld members were discussing the issues around minimize impact on Google SERPs ranking when switching web hosts.
There was a report this week that Google is developing an anonymous identifier for advertising, or AdID, that would replace third-party cookies as the way advertisers track people's Internet browsing activity for marketing purposes. If it becomes a reality, is it yet another lock-in to Google's ecosystem?
Google said it was improving the backlink data in its Webmaster Tools. The company said, "The most significant improvement you'll see is that most of the links are now sampled uniformly from the full spectrum of backlinks rather than alphabetically."
In a troubling trend, especially where good links are a valuable commodity, a WebmasterWorld member is reporting that his link partners are being harassed to remove links to his site. There are a number of instances like this appearing, and i'm sure we'll continue to see more. Importantly, what can you do about it? Join the discussion on the topic.
Are you seeing a drop in AdWords QS? Some members are reporting the drop. There's no word from Google on the issue, and it seems a little distant from the earlier announcement from Google some many weeks back. Have you noticed a change in your AdWords QS?
When Microsoft announced it was acquiring Nokia's business a short while back, it appears there's now some emerging controversy over the pay-off that Steven Elop, Nokia's former CEO, is to receive. Does $25 million seem like a good figure?
We discussed, some time back, the topic of Google +1s having no ranking influence. However, some people seem to have failed to grasp the situation. To remind everyone, here's our thread, "Matt Cutts: Google +1's have no ranking influence."
Have you been hit by Panda? Are you sure about it? Here's a video by Matt Cutts titled, "What should a site owner do if they think they might be affected by Panda?"
In a shocking story of incompetence, Facebook had to ban an advertiser for showing a dating ad with picture of a girl that had recently committed suicide. How did it get through in the first place, and how low can some advertisers go!
Microsoft has said it is releasing a temporary patch for an IE zero day vulnerability.
How to do handle your 404s? Join the discussion and let's have some suggestions.
This week I heard that a U.S. Court has ruled that Facebook "Likes" are protected free speech.
An alternative to Google's Android OS has received funding to develop the CyanogenMod (CM).
Blackberry BBM messaging will be released for Apple and Android OS. It's an interesting move, imho, especially if you value your privacy.
In our Supporters Google SEO Forum (subscription required), there's a discussion about how to get quality backlinks that's worth a mention. If you're a WebmasterWorld Supporter, join the discussion.
Until next time, have a terrific week!
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