I’ve been hearing rumors that Google is about to roll out some major changes to AdWords. Do you know anything about this yet? I’m a bit nervous about it.
Google announced some major changes to AdWords today – the main one being Enhanced Campaigns.
Basically Enhanced Campaigns mean that advertisers can now present consistent ads to people via multiple devices in the right context within a single campaign, rather than setting up separate campaigns for mobile/tablet users.
The focus here seems to be Google’s way of increasing the adoption of mobile advertising.
I’m still getting my head around the new functionality and will post an indepth article here about it soon, but if you’re interested to learn more in the meantime, here is a round up of articles about it:
If you’re like me, you do a lot of research online.
Whether I’m writing an article, preparing a slide deck, putting together a presentation or researching a subject for a client, I always seem to be hunting down compelling Internet statistics of one kind or another. Particularly topics like:
- Number of US households with Internet access.
- Latest search engine market share figures.
- Most popular search terms for a particular year.
- Number of Facebook users in a particular country.
- Amount of e-commerce expenditure in past 12 months.
I always start a search for stats like these thinking it’s going to be a simple task and then end up down some bizarre rabbit hole, emerging two hours later with an amusing picture of a cat in a teacup.
To prevent this from happening again, I’ve bookmarked a list of *Go To* sites for Internet statistics in my Evernote account and today, (you lucky things!), I’m sharing them with you:
- Internet World Stats – This site lists a range of Internet usage statistics sorted by country and population figures. The site is regularly updated and features a range of handy charts and graphs. There are also links to the latest Facebook usage statistics.
- ComScore – The press releases and reports from ComScore are often geared to the search industry, so I can usually find something of relevance here related to my particular slide deck or training workshop. Their white papers and presentations are also fantastic sources of visual cues and infographics to help illustrate your points.
- Forrester Research – Forrester is a prolific publisher of research documents, market reports, analysis and studies of all kinds and in all industries. A common focus of their research is the impact of the Internet on business activity. Many of their reports are available for purchase, but they also regularly release synopsis’ of their more influential studies for public use through their media department.
- Google Trends – Don’t overlook Google Trends as a source for useful web statistics and anecdotes. For example, if you enter a search for *mobile phones*, you can track Google’s search history for that phrase and related phrases since 2004 and note the peaks and troughs as the use of cell phones impacted our daily lives. The items highlighted with a letter of the alphabet are influential news items relating to the search term over the historical period. These make fun anecdotes for your presentation e.g. in 2010, Fox News reported that mobile phones have more bacteria on them than the handles on public toilets. Ewww.
- Facebook Marketing Bible – The FMB apparently started life as an internal company manual and has now become a published guide to marketing your brand, company, product, or service on Facebook. The Facebook Marketing Bible includes summaries about the inner workings of Facebook, strategies to using Facebook for your business, specific how-tos, successful case studies, and insights from social media experts across the board. I include it in this list because it contains some of the most interesting Case Studies for using Facebook that I’ve come across and everyone knows that compelling case studies are the lifeblood of a successful presentation.
- Nielsen – Nielsen is another prolific global research company. Anything that Nielsen publish quickly becomes extremely influential and many businesses make major decisions based on the data published by Nielsen. Their whitepapers and webinars are freely available for download once you register for the site and new reports are published every day. If I need stats quickly, I always start here.
- Gartner Research – Gartner Group provide insightful research on the impact of the Internet and the increasing role of IT in business. Gartner’s specialty is technical research, particularly relating to applications development and business intelligence. Unlike Forrester, Gartner’s research is generally only available via paid subscription, but they do offer a 30 day free trial.
- Simba Information – Simba offer market intelligence primarily for the media, education and publishing industries, but their research reports often include useful technology-related statistics e.g. *The iPad and its Owner: Key Trends and Statistics 2013*.
- Google Zeitgeist – Google’s annual wrap of the most searched-for topics, year by year, country by country. Think of it as Google’s answer to the Guinness Book of Records.
- Gap Minder Not strictly Internet related, but Gapminder is a non-profit site that publishes the World’s most important trends in the fields of wealth, health, global development and the environment. In their own words, Gapminder is a modern museum on the Internet with the intention of being a *fact tank* that promotes a fact-based world view. Gapminder produces videos, Flash presentations and PDF charts showing major global development trends with animated statistics in colorful graphics.
Hopefully this list has helped shorten your search time for compelling and useful Internet statistics and prevented you from falling victim to the Rabbit Hole syndrome. After all, the last thing we need on the Internet is more pictures of cats in teacups.
Postscript: Factbrowser has been suggested as a worthy addition to this page. Thanks Keith!
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Search Engine College
I have a question. I want to start optimizing my own site. Would it be better to start fresh with a new site or should I try to fix the existing site? And does it make sense to purchase a template or have a webmaster design it from scratch?
Whether you optimize your existing site or start from scratch depends on a lot of factors:
- Are you happy with the design of your current site?
- Is the current web site designed with users in mind?
- Does it convert well and/or attract a lot of traffic?
- Does the current design allow for SEO to be performed easily?
If you’re able to quickly answer YES to these questions, then you may not need to start from scratch. If you hesitated even a little, you would probably be better off redesigning your site from the ground up.
In other words, if there are more ticks in the *negative* column than the *positive* one, you should absolutely not fear scrapping your existing site and starting a new one. If you are worried about losing current search rankings for existing pages, you should consider 301 redirecting those pages to their replacement pages when you create them.
In terms of a new site template, I have been recommending WordPress for SEO purposes for a long time now. I advocate keeping your own domain and installing WordPress on it, with an attractive theme that is easy to use. Google and other search engines adore web sites built with WordPress and there are a lot of SEO-related plugins that will help you. Plus it’s free! Can’t argue with that.
If you aren’t confident using WordPress, there are a lot of talented WordPress designers out there who can be of assistance, or you can teach yourself using the detailed WordPress user documentation.
As an alternative to WordPress, you could also consider Google Sites.
Hope this helps.
Sick of paying others to SEO your site? Download my Free SEO Lesson. No catch!
Evil Panda is Evil
Google rolled out another Panda update this week, making it update #24 since Panda first hit the SERPs in early 2011.
According to Google’s related tweet, the Panda refresh impacted approximately 1.2 percent of English language search queries.
You can see a handy timeline of all Panda updates on the Search Engine Land site.
Has Panda #24 impacted your site yet? Let us know in the comments.