Good morning, more audience solutions are now available.

Microsoft Advertising continues to build out its audience targeting capabilities. Yesterday, the company moved product audiences (retargeting for Shopping campaigns) and similar audiences (lookalike matching for expanded prospecting reach) to open beta. If you’re already running Shopping campaigns in Microsoft Advertising, the product audiences could be a good complement to add ahead of the holiday shopping season to recapture people who’ve viewed specific products on your site. The matching for similar audiences, as well as for in-market audiences, is powered by AI and the Microsoft Graph, which includes LinkedIn profile dimensions.

The impact of Google’s algorithmic updates to the display of review stars in rich search results, announced earlier this week, is starting to register. Multiple monitoring tools are reporting anywhere from a 3 to 5 point drop in the number of times review rich results show. If you notice your review rich results are no longer showing, review the rules Google laid out this week for potential answers.

And speaking of tracking tools, Barry Schwartz sat down with Pete Meyers, aka Dr. Pete, the creator of Mozcast which tracks changes in Google search results. The two discussed their shared passion (OK, obsession) for tracking search changes and what makes this work important. Watch the full 10-minute chat

Read on for a Pro Tip on why you should be obsessing over intent and lots more. 

Ginny Marvin

Pro Tip

‘Intent’ should be every marketer’s #1 obsession

Google’s ranking algorithm might remain a mystery, but it’s always surprising to me that all marketers don’t rally around the same important concept as the most crucial of all: intent.

By “intent,” I mean both user intent and what I call “creation intent.” That is, we should always be focused on what people are looking for and why we’re creating something because where those two elements meet is where the most successful content lies. Don’t get me wrong: There are other important elements, of course, like quality backlinks and keyword optimization, which can greatly boost your chance of ranking highly.

But intent should always be the foundation you’re building on. Without it, it’s like serving someone steak when they ordered a cheeseburger. Sure, steak is great, but it’s not what they wanted. So, figure out what they want first (start with that cheeseburger). And then dress it up with crunchy fried onions and some chipotle aioli and some pepper jack cheese… and now I’ll go get some lunch.

– Amanda Milligan, Marketing Director at Fractl


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Search Shorts

Ranking and indexing in Google

Get content into Google fast. This guy accidentally dropped his site out of the Google index, so John Mueller suggested he do manual submissions for the most important URLs and update the lastmod date in XML sitemap file for the rest.

Structured data errors. John Mueller of Google said the number of structured data errors does not impact your rankings in search. It might keep your rich results from showing but does not impact your rankings.

CTR and ranking. Google’s John Mueller said on Twitter Rankings can always change, I just wouldn’t assume that it’s a matter of CTR. If you get a higher CTR, that’s pretty awesome regardless of the ranking anyway!

What we're reading

We've curated our picks from across the web so you can retire your feed reader

Did Local Review Spammers Just Get Self-Served – Local SEO Guide

Google App tests new features in Search, Discover, Podcasts, & Assistant – XDA Developers

Google Assistant Adds New International Voice Options – Voicebot

Google Auto-Complete Suggestions Showing Emojis – Search Engine Roundtable

Google, Facebook Cozy Up to Publishers as Regulators Circle – Wall Street Journal

How To Identify & Best Optimize for User Search Intent. The Step by Step Guide – Cognitive SEO

Keyword Tracking For Enterprise SEO: Scale, Segmentation, & Real Searcher Data – Botify

Long Tail Keywords for eCommerce: Our Advanced Strategies to Rank for and Profit from Them – Go Inflow

What Google’s Star Rating Rich Snippet Changes Mean for You – Distilled


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