Every week we bring you a brief 15-minute video and the links of the best articles in Local Search. OK. It's not always 15 minutes but we are never off by more than 10 minutes or so.
Google's KP Tests are A Hot Mess, Zero-Click Search, meh?
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Breach at Hy-Vee Supermarket Chain Tied to Sale of 5M+ Stolen Credit, Debit Cards — Krebs on Security
Mike: Cyber-thieves involved in stealing card data from main street merchants have gradually moved down the food chain from big-box retailers like Target and Home Depot to smaller but far more plentiful and probably less secure merchants (either by choice or because the larger stores became a harder target).
Mike: Is there hope for Yelp? They actually responded to a small business complaint.
Mike: I doubt that there is hope for DoorDash.
Mike: Oops, DoorDash finally responds and notes that it will be “next month” before they will fix the tip issue.
Mike: Another oops… Amazon which wasn’t called out, fixes the tip issue BEFORE they become front page news on the Washington Post. Oh, that won’t happen.
Mike: SEOs, led by Rand Fishkin have bemoaned Google’s shift to a “walled garden” approach to users. Marty Wientraub says: Get over it!
In Local we have dealt with this issue for years and have found plenty of opportunities.
Mike: Should you use fancy characters to your Title Tags? Joy thinks no.
Ben Fisher on Twitter: "GMB Ad In-Listing Spotted in the Wild. Check this out! There is an ad for a Honda dealership on a Doge dealerships GMB Listing. https://t.co/JsUN8KVCfm"
Mike: From Twitter, There is an ad for a Honda dealership on a Doge dealerships GMB Listing.
Every surface is a target as Google expands its local advertising and your business profile is one of those surfaces. So be ready to a) check your listing and b) get your own ads in that space.
Mike: Speaking of not owning but renting your Business Profile at Google, Google might now be highlighting protestor’s events on your listing. Oh joy.
Mike: Talk about a test with a bad user experience. This is one such test from Google.
Mike: Barry Schwartz interviews Joy.
Mike: Google’s review volume has absolutely gone through the roof as users behaviors have changed. Not sure where this leaves the likes of Yelp.
Mary: Why do Comscore numbers not reflect reality?
Mary: Do this! "Google's John Mueller was asked how should a web site document that its medical and health content was reviewed by a doctor or expert on the topic. John said you can use text, link to the doctor's profile and add other elements to the page to communicate this."
Mary: @JoyanneHawkins reports seeingspotted delivery icons in the 3-pack for McDonalds while searching.
Clicking on it leads you to a Google interface that allows you to order from guess who?
Official Google Webmaster Central Blog: Helping publishers and users get more out of visual searches on Google Images with AMP
Mary: This does not take you to the place where the image lives! Cyrus Shepard says: "Counts as a pageview, but the visitor stays on the same Google URL, and includes additional Google navigation (which you can't remove)"
Carrie: Joy Hawkins explores the inconsistent messaging around using 3rd party reviews. The inconsistency to me actually seems to be in Google not vetting the validity of the rating system that they're pulling in - the example from Angie's List in Joy's article is particularly glaring. Birdeye is republishing reviews from Google but gets real estate in the KP. Why not let
Carrie: FAQ, HowTo, and Q&A: Using New Schema Types to Create Interactive Rich Results - It's no secret I'm a big fan of Schema - this great article by Lily Ray of Path Interactive over at the Moz blog is excellent!
Mike Blumenthal on Twitter: ".@FTC & @TripAdvisorB2B @TripAdvisor Does this type of incentive (making a donation to charity if someone leaves a TripAdvisor review) violate FTC guidelines OR TripAdvisor Terms of Service?… https://t.co/lfSLmqdZon"
Carrie: An excellent question that Google/FTC has failed to answer - can you incentivize reviews by offering a donation to charity vs giving something to the reviewer?
Carrie: Google Screened is showing up in LSA ads for some categories. I can't imagine what kind of legal issues they'd run into if a Lawyer or doctor LSA ad had "Google Guaranteed" on it.
Carrie: Thought-provoking article about types of work consultants will turn down, and why. I know there are some categories I'm leery of as a consultant - this was an interesting article AND Twitter discussion.
Carrie: Great article from Kristine Schachinger at SEJournal about getting rankings without links. I think links are still important, but there are ways to get improvements without links. Market and competition are HUGE factors.
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