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Google Releases "Top Heavy" Search Update

Digital publishing news for February 11, 2014

Search Engine Land is reporting that Google has released a new search algorithm update named “Top Heavy.” Barry Schwartz writes, “Matt Cutts, announced that Google has released a refresh of its Page Layout Algorithm. The filter, also known as the Top Heavy algorithm, downgrades the ranking of a web page with too many ads at the top or if the ads are deemed too distracting for users.”

The algorithm update was released last Thursday so you should be able to see if your site has been affected. There have been two previous “Top Heavy” updates to Googles Search algorithm update. The first “Top Heavy” update was released in January 2012, and the second released in October 2012. Schwartz adds, “We have not seen many complaints within the SEO community around February 6th or 7th about any update like this, which suggests it impacted fewer sites than when Google updates other filters like the Panda or Penguin algorithms.”

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InMobi Launches Video Ad Platform

TechCrunch is reporting that InMobi has launched a new video ad platform to help advertisers boost sales in the mobile space. Pankaj Mishra writes, “The new mobile platform goes beyond serving traditional videos that are more suited for television viewing, and increases customer engagement levels by five times, resulting in more revenue for the partners, the company said. InMobi hopes to make video ads more interactive. Mishra adds, ” This is made possible by four video formats being launched with the new platform — Interactive canvas, video smart ads, video continuum and form capture.”

Product Listing Ads Seen as a Success for Google

eMarketer is reporting that Product Listing Ads on Google have seen an increase in impressions and clicks. eMarketer writes, “The former grew 82.9% year over year and 63.4% quarter over quarter. Clicks in Q4 2013 nearly doubled compared with the same quarter in 2013 and rose 63.4% over Q3 2013. This growth drove Google’s PLA click share up to 0.24%.”

PLA ads have been an even bigger hit on mobile. “Smartphone clicks in Q4 2013 increased 1,589% over Q4 2012, and those on tablets rose 335.7%. Overall, mobile grew its click share nearly six times year over year, from 4.2% to 24.3%. A main driver of this growth was the release of mobile-optimized PLAs in October 2013.”

Yahoo to Partner With Yelp

USA Today is reporting that the Yahoo search engine will be featuring Yelp listings in the near future. Gabrielle Kratsas writes, “Citing an unnamed person who attended a Yahoo employee meeting Friday, The Wall Street Journal said CEO Marissa Mayer revealed plans to incorporate Yelp’s local business listings, user-generated reviews and photos into Yahoo’s search engine results. The new feature will be made available in the coming weeks, according to the Journal story. The new partnership is part of Yahoo’s initiative to distinguish itself from market leaders Microsoft Bing and Google. In December, Yahoo’s share in the search market was 10.8%, compared to Micorsoft’s 18.2% and Google’s 67.3%, according to ComScore.”

New Editor at Entertainment Weekly

The New York Post is reporting that Matt Bean has been named the new editor at Entertainment Weekly. Keith J. Kelly writes, “Bean will oversee EW’s weekly print edition as well as its digital operations and will report to People’s Jesse Cagle, who is now the editorial director of both. That is a change in the reporting structure. Cagle was named editor of People, the No. 1 money-maker at Time Inc., only last month, when he replaced Larry Hackett, who was booted after an eight-year run. Bean’s ability to think on his feet on live TV factored strongly into the decision, insiders said.”

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