Hey folks, welcome to the Smattering of SEO News for the week ending May 10th. There was a lot of news from Google this past week, but also some search-related news from Yahoo, which we’ve not seen for quite some time. Enjoy!
- Google Analytics Now Offers Real-Time Goal Conversion Report – Google Analytics now offers the ability to see real-time conversion goals, and can be sorted by number of conversions and drilled down to specific segments. Computed engagement goals aren’t available in real-time, however, and are still found in the standard reports.
- Possible Google Update Underway – According to webmasters on Webmaster World and elsewhere, they’re noticing significant shifts in the SERPS for their tracked keywords, denoting an update might be underway. Hopefully we’ll learn more in the coming days.
- Don’t Worry Too Much about Google Patents, Says Cutts – In a recent video, Matt Cutts said that there are “a lot of interesting ideas” in regards to patents, and while there is a lot of stuff in patents usually acquired by Google, “don’t take it as an automatic golden truth that we are doing any particular thing mentioned in a patent.”
- YouTube Could Launch Premium Channels – According to a report in the Financial Times, YouTube will soon launch premium channels requiring a monthly subscription that could start at $1.99 a month. In response to the report, YouTube told Mashable that they are indeed “looking into creating a subscription platform that could bring even more great content to YouTube for our users.” No word on when this service will launch, however.
- Press Release Links Do Work in Google, According to Test – According to a story on Search Engine Land, Daniel Tan created a press release with a link pointing to Matt Cutts’ blog using the anchor text, “leasreepressmm”, to test Cutts’ notion that press release links don’t work. A few days later, Cutts’ blog indeed did show up in a search for that particular term, putting to question the notion that those links aren’t worthwhile.
- Google Wins in German Antitrust Case – In a case brought on by German weather group Verband Deutscher Wetterdienstleister, in which it claimed Google placed its own weather results well above that of the group’s in search listings, the group argued many of the same search bias complaints brought on by other groups in recent months. The court rejected those arguments, saying the group was using the court case as a shield against market competition. This could have an impact in other, similar cases across Europe and the rest of the world.
- Microsoft Extends Revenue Guarantee to Yahoo for One More Year – Microsoft has extended it’s revenue guarantee for Yahoo involving U.S. search for one more year, marking Yahoo’s first new agreement since CEO Marissa Mayer took over in July of last year.
- Yahoo Attempting to End Search Deal with Microsoft – In 2010, Microsoft and Yahoo entered into a ten-year search deal. However, according to Bloomberg, Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer has been striving to end the deal, even meeting with former employer Google to discuss an alternate search partnership. However, the partnership can only be called off if Microsoft sells or closes Bing, or if Yahoo’s search revenue falls below 40% of Google’s.
In other SEO news…
- Tool Uses Twitter Data to Measure Mood of U.S. – A tool entitled Hedonometer.org measures what’s being said on Twitter to monitor the mood of the United States using the prevalence of specific words in people’s Tweets. It checks 500 words to test happiness or sadness, and goes back to 2008. The happiest days have been Christmas for the last four years, while the saddest day was this past April 15th, which was the day that the Boston Marathon bombings occurred.