This week in search…

May 19th, 2017

Another week in our rapidly changing industry delivers more Facebook backlash, Googling for jobs, shows the increasing importance of search in politics (and on competitor keyword bidding) and more…

To begin with a subject we’ve covered a lot recently, in voice search news – Google Assistant is set to take on Siri and Cortana on iPhones operating iOS 9.1 or above. It will also have an expanded list of features.

Google Assistant’s new features

  • Notifications: – Traffic delays, reminders and the status of your flight are amongst the varieties of information that will cause Google Home to flash to announce it has news for you.
  • Type to Assistant: – Your Google Assistant will now be contactable by text as Google acknowledges both the embarrassment some feel talking to a digital assistant and the fact that not all situations are suitable for a loud ‘OK Google!’.
  • Integration with Lens: – GoogleLens (announced at I/O this week) will begin working with Assistant to provide more information about the places and things that users photograph.

This, combined with further entertainment integration and other announcements regarding Google Home, see a big push from Google to earn its place in the future of voice search and digital assistants.

Google Jobs

While information on this is limited at the moment, the announcement was followed by news that they would allow submission of jobs – making it, at least in its first iteration, an extension of recruitment sites rather than direct competition to them.

There’s a lot of Google news this week, thanks in no small part to Google I/O 2017 – you can see some of the big news through Verge here and below:

Facebook facing criticism

Facebook, alongside Google, has come in for a lot of negative media attention lately regarding its ability to shape the news with targeting, but the latest trouble comes in reports that it has censored Pulitzer prize winning journalist Matthew Caruana Galizia in his efforts to expose the alleged corruption of Malta’s Prime Minister. With Facebook having faced criticism lately for a lack of response, it was only a matter of time before it over-reacted and faced criticism in the other direction.

In what has been a bad week for the social media giants, Facebook has also been fined some £94M for supplying misleading information regarding the 2014 merger with WhatsApp, while another report suggest that social media damages the mental health of young people.

AdWords and politics

AdWords has again shown itself to be a major battleground for politics – with reports of competitor keyword bidding across searches for ‘conservative manifesto’, ‘labour manifesto’ and ‘lib dem manifesto’ returning opposition party responses in the top ad placement. While I have not been able to repeat searches from yesterday (which showed in top positions for all three search terms), the only party featuring in top place for its own manifesto today has so far been the Lib Dems.

If there’s one thing that links these stories, however, it is that search is now so far ingrained in all areas – social, political, financial, organisational – of our lives that there is little to do but continue to ensure that those of us working in search marketing continue to push to ensure that the digital space is a safe and trustworthy one for users.

There is more news in search each week than it would be possible to adequately relate in one post per week. Nevertheless, Click Consult prides itself on remaining up to date with everything happening in the industry. To find out how you can take advantage of our expert knowledge, contact us today.

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