Internet Marketing News March 2014 Recap

Happy April! Here is an overview of the top internet marketing news stories of March 2014.

Google

  • Google Now Cards are available to everyone on desktop and laptops using the Chrome browser. While it was originally released for Chrome Canary in January, this update installs Google Now on the main Chrome browser.
  • Google’s Knowledge Graph now includes concert dates when searching a related query as well as a section for related topics on a variety of queries.
  • Google announced a new version of the Android Operating system, Android Wear, designed specifically for wearables. Below is a video introducing the new system:
  • What seemed to be only an experiment at first, Google has redesigned their entire SERP. Paid listings now feature the yellow “Ad” button, as previously seen on mobile. Organic and Paid listings have larger text size and the underline on hyperlinks has been removed.
  • Google AdWords has added Consumer Rating Annotations, ratings pulled from Google’s Consumer Surveys. This does not require additional set ups and will show up on ads that Google believes would be aided with the results.
  • When users search for restaurant menus, Google now provides results above the paid and organic results where the user can toggle through the menu without leaving the results page. Google receives this data from SinglePlatform.

Bing

  • After being in beta for months, Bing released Product Ads to all US advertisers. These ads   feature custom images, promotional text, pricing, and the company name.
  • Bing Ads now displays zero-click search queries which allow advertisers to have access to twenty to forty times more search term data. This is useful for advertisers to build out negative keyword lists and understanding which ads are under performing.
  • Bing adds driving directions directly into search results. Like Google, Bing users can search direction-related queries and get directions, estimated length of trip, and distance.
  • Microsoft announced Xbox One now supports full web searches via Bing.
  • The video below shows Cortana, Microsoft’s version of Siri & Google Now, will become the personal assistant for Windows 8.1 in April.

Yahoo!

  • Yahoo is rolling out indoor maps via Nokia’s Here division. This is currently only available on desktop but will roll out to mobile eventually.
  • Yahoo updated its search iPhone app to mirror the simplicity of the iOS7 design and enable SSL search Yahoo added in January.

Facebook

  • A year after the last makeover, Facebook announced a new News Feed redesign. The redesign puts the newsfeed in line with its mobile app in an effort to have a consistent appearance across platforms. Below is a screenshot provided by Facebook:

Facebook Newsfeed Redesign

  • Facebook acquires Oculus VR for $2 billion, the company behind Oculus Rift gaming headset. Zuckerberg described his interest in Oculus VR as “a long term bet on the future of computing”.
  • Instagram celebrated crossing the 200-million user milestone, 50 million of which signed up in the last six months.
  • Instagram agreed to a $100 million ad spend deal with Omnicom, according to AdAge.

Twitter

  • This month Twitter celebrated its 8th birthday with a tool called #FirstTweet where users can discover their first tweet.
  • Twitter is shutting down its mobile app #Music, just over a year after its creation, officially on April 18th.
  • Twitter now allows users to post up to four photos in a tweet and tag up to 10 friends in the photo. The images will appear a as a four-part collage like the example from Danny Sullivan.

LinkedIn

  • LinkedIn will be retiring their Product and Services pages on April 14th. Marketers can add this content either as company updates or Showcase Pages.

Yelp

  • Yelp announced a strategic partnership with Yellow Pages that will provide YP advertisers an enhanced presence on Yelp via distribution to Yelp’s large local audience and a branded profile.

Catalyst

Have any questions about any of the above stories or think we missed something? Let us know in the comment section below. Also, be sure to check back in early May for our April monthly recap!

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