A weekly roundup of the most interesting and useful posts and articles on search / inbound marketing from the past week. 

Social Media & Content Marketing

Google+ Live Hangouts on Air Now Available to All – Tech pundits disagree sharply on whether or not Google+ is a success or failure (so far), but one thing almost everyone agrees on is that Hangouts are one of the coolest features ever in social media. A Hangout is an easy-to-use video group chat for up to 9 participants. A few months ago, Google introduced Live Hangouts on Air, which added the ability to have an unlimited live audience watch your Hangout, and also to record the Hangout to a permanent YouTube video. Until recently, Hangouts on Air were available to a very limited set of Google+ users, but now all profiles and pages can make use of them.

Six Reasons Why You Should Quit Blogging – A tongue-in-cheek list of reasons your business doesn’t need to blog (that’s really a collection of good reasons why you should). In a similar vein, but for social media, is Social Media Sucks for Businesses, And Here’s Why.

Facebook Rolling Out Pages Manager App – One of the great difficulties of managing a Facebook brand page has been the almost impossibility of doing it from a mobile device. Facebook has finally responded with a new dedicated app for iOS that will allow management of multiple page accounts. It has been spotted in Australia and New Zealand, and should reach the US soon.

Three Ways to Use a Personal Google+ Profile to Build Your Business – Every business should have a Google+ brand page, but a Google+ personal profile built around your business purposes can be a powerful ally in building up the brand page and your business traffic.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Peeking Into the World of Google’s Algorithm Changes with Google Search Quality Head Amit Singhal – Google’s search quality czar pulls back the curtain a bit on how Google tweaks its search ranking algorithms. He talks about the plans to move from static keywords to understanding intent, the increasing personlization of search, how Google tried to increase relevance of results, and Panda and Penquin.

How Google Will Replace Wikipedia: The Google Knowledge Graph – Last week Google introduced its newest feature in search: Knowledge Graph. Knowledge Graph seeks to understand the connections between things in the same way humans do. The end result is quick information relevant to searched topics appearing right in the SERP sidebar. This post reviews the features of KG and explores some of its possible ramifications.

Find and Fix Unnatural Links – Google’s latest search updates have gone after sites that have too many “unnatural” backlinks (links that look like they were paid for, or that come from too many disreputable or unrelated sites). This post lays out the steps an owner of a penalized site should take to clean up the mess and get reinstated with Google.

Huge Correlation Between Link Building and Google Ranking – New study shows that not only is link building not dead, it may be more important than ever, but it has to be done with a proper understanding of how links really work.

Paid Search Advertising (PPC)

Quick Guide to the Google AdWords Placement Tool – Many AdWords account managers have been frightened away from the Display Network due to bad experiences with lots of money spent with little return. But time and again studies show that, done right, the Display Network can often be the most profitable aspect of AdWords. This guide shows how to use one of the several tools Google provides to help you zero in on where you should be placing your display ads.

Can Facebook Beat the Google Display Network in Online Advertising? – (Infographic) With Facebook joining Google as a publicly traded company, pressure to increase ad revenue will only increase. This “report” card sizes up the display advertising on the two networks.

Web Analytics

Simple Google Analytics Features You Should Be UsingBasic discussion of ecommerce tracking, goals and goal values, segmentation, and campaign and event tracking.

Google Analytics in Real Life – Online Checkout – Wonder why you get lots of traffic but few conversions? This humorous video shows how frustrating it would be if all-too-typical ecommerce checkout practices were brought into real life. No wonder people drop out of shopping carts! Of course, analytics can tell you where they are dropping out, and help you figure out where you need to unstop a bottleneck.


For Clicks and Giggles

Google’s Matt Cutts: How to Rank #1 on Google


Quarterback photo by ESPNHS. Used through a Creative Commons License.

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