Archiv für den Monat: März 2017

Google Chrome SSL certificate proposal could affect millions of websites

Last year, the developers behind Google’s Chrome browser began taking steps designed to protect users and encourage companies to use HTTPS.

But now, potentially millions of websites that use SSL certificates issued by Symantec and affiliated resellers could find that their certificates are effectively worthless as far as Chrome is concerned, after a member of the Chrome team published a proposal that would make them untrusted over the next 12 months.

The reason? According to the Google Chrome team, Symantec has not properly validated thousands of certificates. In fact, the Chrome team claims that “an initial set of reportedly 127 [misissued] certificates has expanded to include at least 30,000 [misissued] certificates, issued over a period spanning several years.”

Ryan Sleevi, the Chrome team member who wrote the announcement, elaborated,

“This is also coupled with a series of failures following the previous set of misissued certificates from Symantec, causing us to no longer have confidence in the certificate issuance policies and practices of Symantec over the past several years.”

Under the proposal he put forth, the accepted validity period of newly-issued Symantec to nine months or less, and an “incremental distrust” of currently-trusted certificates and removal of recognition of Extended Validation status of Symantec-issued certificates.

A nightmare scenario?

Symantec is the currently the largest Certificate Authority (CA) and by some estimates, has issued a third of the SSL certificates in use on the web.

So if the Google Chrome team moves forward with its proposal, it will have a huge impact on Symantec and its customers. Symantec would have to reissue potentially millions of certificates, creating a huge headache for customers, who would have to go through the validation process and install replacement certificates.

What’s more, under the Chrome team’s proposal, Chrome would immediately remove the status indicators for Extended Validation certificates issued by Symantec.

These certificates, which require companies to provide greater verification that they are who they say they are, are often used by companies running websites that absolutely need to use HTTPS, such as those that handle payments and financial transactions.

Extended Validation certificates are more costly, and one of the justifications for the greater cost is the fact that most browsers display indicators for websites that use them. If those indicators go away, it could theoretically harm companies that have relied on these indicators to signal trust to their users.

Not surprisingly, given the gravity of the situation, Symantec is disputing the Chrome team’s claims about certificate misissuances. In a response, it called the Chrome team’s proposal “irresponsible” and said the allegations leveled at it are “exaggerated and misleading.”

Symantec is open to working with the Google Chrome team and while it’s reasonable to hope that both parties will identify a satisfactory resolution that averts disruption, companies with certificates issued by Symantec will want to monitor the situation as it develops.

Source:: searchenginewatch.com

Five most interesting search marketing news stories of the week

Welcome to our weekly round-up of all the latest news and research from the world of search marketing and beyond.

This week, the Google SERP has got a bit more interactive with the addition of rich results for podcasts, and a new study has found that marketers are still failing to use advanced search tactics in their campaigns.

Plus, Google has launched a new website to bring all of its open-source projects under one umbrella, and an unlikely partnership has arisen between Google and Chinese search giant Baidu to bring faster mobile web pages to a wider user base.

Google adds rich results for podcasts to the SERP

Google has stealthily launched some new guidelines for structured data on its Developers blog, to bring rich results for podcasts to the SERP.

At the moment the new feature is only available via Google Home (where you can use voice activation to start up a podcast) or in the Google Search app v6.5 or higher on Android, but Google hopes to soon add support for Chrome on Android.

Google’s blog provided a sample image for how this will look in practice:

In his article for Search Engine Watch this week, Clark Boyd explains how you can get your podcast indexed on the SERP, and how to add the right structured data to your podcasts.

Study: Marketers still aren’t using advanced search tactics

Those of us who keep close tabs on search innovation and strategy – or comment on it – are probably familiar with search tactics like retargeting lists for search ads (RLSA), voice search optimization, ad extensions in paid search listings, and schema markup. We know how to use them, and the benefits that they bring to ROI and visibility.

But a study by Bing and search agency Catalyst has revealed that among marketers as a whole, very few still are making use of advanced search tactics like these in their campaigns.

When asked which of a range of tactics their company used or was planning to use in 2016, only 34% of marketers reported using ad extensions; 30% said they used Product Listing Ads (PLAs); and 28% used retargeting lists for search ads (RLSA).

Just 28% of respondents reported using voice search optimization, 27% said they used sitelinks, and a dismal 17% reported using schema markup.

So why are many marketers still failing to tap into the full potential of search? Search Engine Watch spoke to Microsoft’s Rob Wilk and Catalyst’s Kerry Curran to find out what search marketers can do to improve their campaigns.

Twitter introduces pre-roll ads for Periscope

Pre-roll ads might just be everyone’s least favorite ad format – so much so that YouTube did away with 30-second unskippable pre-roll ads earlier this year. But Twitter-owned livestreaming platform Periscope announced this week that it will be adding pre-roll ads to live and replay Periscope streams.

The new ad product is named, unsurprisingly, Ads on Periscope, and is an expansion of Twitter’s existing Amplify ad product. The Periscope ads are expected to share revenue with content creators in the same 70/30 split as Amplify ads.

Amidst Twitter’s struggle to drive revenue on its social platform, monetizing Periscope could be one way to bolster its flagging fortunes. But the autoplay ads may prove to be unpopular with users, especially with the news that they will run over streaming content – meaning that viewers will miss several seconds while the ad finishes.

Google’s new site brings all of its open-source projects under one umbrella

Google has launched a new website this week which is designed to act as a central directory for all of its open-source projects, bringing them together under one umbrella.

In its blog post announcing the launch, ‘A New Home for Google Open Source‘, Google wrote that the new site:

showcases the breadth and depth of our love for open source. It will contain the expected things: our programs, organizations we support, and a comprehensive list of open source projects we’ve released. But it also contains something unexpected: a look under the hood at how we “do” open source.

The site contains the source code for Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages Project official website, as well as the source code for its Android mobile OS, the Chromium web browser, its Tesseract Optical Character Recognition engine, and hundreds of other Google projects, both well-known and obscure.

While Google has always made the code for these projects available on GitHub and its self-hosted git service (this being the nature of open source), this is the first time users have been able to browse them from a central location, and is sure to provide Google enthusiasts with plenty of cool material to scour.

Baidu is working hand-in-hand with Google to accelerate the mobile web

And speaking of Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP), an unlikely partnership has arisen in the world of search, as Baidu and Google confirmed that they are teaming up to bring a faster mobile web to a wider user base.

Google has a rocky history with China. It has had a presence in the country since 2005, but in 2010 decided to stop censoring its searches in accordance with Chinese law in response to a Chinese-originated hacking attack on itself and a number of other US tech companies, redirecting the searches instead to its Hong Kong search engine. Access to Google’s search engine and services has been blocked by the Chinese government on a number of occasions.

In the wake of this, native Chinese search engine Baidu overtook Google as the main search provider in China, and now enjoys around 80% of the Chinese search market, while Google China only has about 10%. But the two have evidently agreed to set aside their rivalry in order to pursue a higher goal: accelerating the mobile web.

At Google’s first AMP conference in New York, Baidu’s Gao Lei announced Mobile Instant Pages (Chinese-language link), or MIP, Baidu’s answer to Accelerated Mobile Pages. Hermas Ma reported on Search Engine Land that MIP has very similar technology to AMP, the main difference being that MIP are optimized for the Chinese internet.

Mobile Instant Pages can reportedly reduce the rendering of above-the-fold content by 30 to 80 percent, and Baidu has been considering giving MIP a ranking advantage in search results (something which AMP doesn’t yet have).

Ma also notes that the AMP Project website now loads in mainland China where it didn’t before, further pointing to a burying of the hatchet between Google and its Chinese counterpart.

Source:: searchenginewatch.com

Online Marketing News: The Age of Mobile, Cheetos Snackware & Twitter Expands Pre-Roll

Why Creativity Matters More in the Age of Mobile [Infographic]
Based on Facebook’s new ‚Why Creativity Matters in the Age of Mobile‘ report, this infographic shows four big shifts that are driving the way that we consume media, including that consumption is no longer linear, our visual-first evolution and more. Social Media Today

Goodbye Forever, Orange Fingers — Eating Cheetos Could Get an Epic Upgrade
Cheetos and Betabrand are coming together to solve a long-time snack crisis — Cheeto fingers. The mix of brilliant understanding of the user experience from a product standpoint, and creativity in finding a resolution involving user-interaction, is an inspiration for marketers everywhere. Inc.

Expanding Pre-Roll Ads to Periscope Video
Twitter is expanding their pre-roll ads as their video viewership continues to grow. The platform is now giving publishers the opportunity to monetize content while allowing brands to advertise against that content with pre-roll ads on Periscope. Twitter

Mobile now accounts for nearly 70% of digital media time [comScore]
comScore recently released a report that shows 70% of digital media time is spent on mobile, with less than one third being consumed on desktop devices. 60% of that mobile time is spent within ads. However, while less than one third of digital time is spent on desktop, 80% of ad dollars are being spent there. Marketing Land

Introducing Pinterest Propel for successful advertising
Pinterest has announced a new program called Pinterest Propel to help train soon-to-be Pinterest advertisers from agencies and brands alike. In order to qualify for the benefits, like 30-day one-on-one phone support, advertisers must be prepared to spend $100/day or more on Pinterest ads. Pinterest

More Ways to Share with the Facebook Camera
On Tuesday, Facebook rolled out two new ways to share photos and videos: a new Snapchat-esque in-app camera that allows users to add effects and dynamic objects to their photos, and they’ve added Facebook stories to the main Facebook app. Facebook

Google AdWords Rolls Out 3 Important Upgrades to Dynamic Search Ads
Google AdWords has released three new improvements to Dynamic Search Ads. These changes include page feeds that allow advertisers to specify exact URLs within DSAs, expanded text ads and showing more relevant ads by default. Search Engine Journal

What Consumers Really Think About YouTube’s Offensive Content Problem and Its Advertisers
AdWeek recently commissioned a survey of 502 consumer respondents to show what they really think of the ongoing controversy of advertiser’s content being shown prior to offensive content: „the questionnaire shows that enough people (36 percent) view ads as endorsements by brands to cause concern among marketers. At the same time, 55.1 percent of survey participants said their opinion didn’t change about such brands.“ AdWeek

What were your top news stories this week?

We’ll be back next week with more top online marketing news. Have something to add? Share your thoughts in the comments to Tweet to @toprank.

The post Online Marketing News: The Age of Mobile, Cheetos Snackware & Twitter Expands Pre-Roll appeared first on Online Marketing Blog – TopRank®.

Source:: toprankblog.com

Contributor spotlight: Santi Nuñez

Santi Nuñez is a Spanish graphic designer and CGI artist turned stock photographer. Since purchasing his first camera in 2015, Santi has been consistently photographing and learning. His dedication to the craft, combined with his experience and expertise as as a CGI artist, has allowed him to quickly accelerate in the world of photography become a fully dedicated stock photography in less than two years.

Fotolia: You were a designer and you are now starting as a professional photographer. How has this change been?

Santi Nuñez: Since beginning my professional career, I’ve always been curious about advancement and how to acquire new skills. I had a moment when I realized that my job as a CGI artist did not keep me feeling motivated, and I came upon stock photography. It was a business model that grabbed me right off the bat, and without giving it much thought I made a pretty sizeable investment in getting my initial equipment to fully immerse myself into that world.

The change was gradual. This March will be my second anniversary of entering the world of stock. For the majority of that time, I was balancing my usual 40 hour work week with stock production. In December of 2016, thanks to earnings generated by the sales of my photos, I decided to dedicate myself exclusively to professional stock photography.

It was a lot of sacrifice and many, many hours in production and editing, but the sense of satisfaction in seeing your productions sold every day around the world is tremendously motivating and thrilling.

F: What are the benefits of selling your images on Fotolia?

SN: It was precisely the benefits provided by stock photography that convinced me to enter into this world. I’m one of few professional photographers who got to know photography through stock agencies first, rather than the other way around. There are few business models that can offer you a potential global market that functions 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. The power to be totally creative in your productions, doing what you really like while generating income in doing so, is simply incredible.

F: What are some of the challenges you face as a stock photographer?

SN: The biggest challenge I face is the tremendous potential for improvement with each production. When I begin a session, I try to improve each step from the last time. Preproduction, production, and editing are the three fundamental steps that have to be well thought through before beginning each shoot; the first two steps being the most important for me in order for the session to really go smoothly. This last year and a half producing stock images has taught me that having prepared a proper preproduction makes the day of the session go so much more smoothly. It’s evident that having an inspired day facilitates a good end result to the session.

F: How would you describe your style (aesthetics and process)?

SN:
I don’t think there’s just one concrete style that can describe my images. I’ve picked up certain habits that I can see result in better productions. The vast majority of models I work with are not professionals and many of them, when they start a session, are not particularly comfortable in front of a camera. I make sure to make them comfortable through casual conversations prior to the session, and that accounts for 70% of the success to a session. A relaxed atmosphere during a session always transmits into the images.

Another thing I attempt to do to the extent I am able is to produce images that are clean, without other distracting elements. This way I am able to proportion the relevance I want to the things displayed in the image.

F: Where do you find your inspiration?

SN: You can find your inspiration getting out on the street. Going for a walk has become an accidental method of finding the perfect location for different sessions or coming across a person who inspires me. These days we see hundreds of images marketed to us daily online and you always end up seeing a few that give you ideas for your next production. On social networks, like Instagram, you can see incredibly good work from your peers, and there’s always something to be learned.

F: You are from Spain, how does your country impact your creative style?

SN: Spain is a country that offers so many alternatives. It’s a privilege to have so many days and hours of light per year, as well as being surrounded by the sea on the peninsula and the islands, being able to choose from mountainous backdrops or big cities and small towns with great charm. All of this offers possibilities that would be unthinkable somewhere else.

F: What is your gear composed of?

SN: The gear I currently own has been growing as I advance in the world of stock photography.
In my first eight months as a photographer, I started with Nikon D610, a Tamron 24-70mm 2.8f VC lens, two hand flashes with a couple of triggers. Little by little my gear has grown – I just added a Nikon D750. I also have some different elements that help with production like LEDs, colored backgrounds, reflectors, and so on.

F: Do you have any advice for someone who is looking to get into selling his or her work on stock websites?

SN: I consider consistency to be something fundamental in this business. To trust what you are doing and to have a constant production capacity that’s of a certain quality is something vital in order to have a reasonable amount of sales.

If like me, you lack resources to contract models and/or space, having people nearby who are willing to help you, offering to pose as models or lend you space, is paramount. If I hadn’t had those friends who were willing to help me, I would never have made it, as the majority of photographic production I do requires models. I’m so thankful to everyone who has helped me along the way.

And lastly, I would say to keep the excitement in the project alive. Stock is an exercise in patience, as the competition is great, so trust your project, get excited by every production that you do, and keep growing and learning.

F: What are you excited to work on in 2017?

SN: Without a doubt, 2017 is a year of changes. I’m thinking of working with new models, new workspaces and with the goal of completing two or three productions every week. I’m even thinking mid year of beginning to do video productions!

See more of Santi’s work on Fotolia.

Source:: blog.fotolia.com

Study: Why do marketers still struggle with innovative search tactics?

Many marketers who are seeing flagging returns from their search marketing campaigns might wonder what they’re doing wrong – especially if they’ve already got best practices like accurate site descriptions and keyword optimization covered.

But a new study commissioned by Microsoft’s Bing and search agency Catalyst, and carried out by Forrester Consulting, may have some light to shed onto why marketers aren’t realizing the full potential of search.

The study, whose findings are written up in a whitepaper, ‘Prioritize Search to Maximize ROI of Marketing‘, found that more advanced search marketing tactics like local inventory ads, voice search optimization, sitelinks and schema markup have low adoption by marketers, who may not even know about them.

In addition, marketers struggle to properly integrate search with other channels in order to take advantage of the demand which they themselves have created.

“We too often see advertisers spending significant dollars in, let’s say, TV, and then failing to fully fund their search campaigns,” says Rob Wilk, Vice President of North America Search Sales at Microsoft.

“So if a consumer hears a message somewhere and then decides to search on Bing to get more information, many times the advertiser isn’t present, and that consumer ends up taking a different path than what the advertiser would have desired.

“In a worst case scenario, consumers come to search and end up clicking on a competitor ad. Think about that for a moment – clients are spending their dollars to line the pockets of competitors.”

So what do Bing and Catalyst think is keeping search marketers from tapping into the full potential of their campaigns, and how can they go about addressing the problem?

Challenges in allocation and attribution

The study’s findings drew on online surveys of 300 US-based marketing agencies and B2C advertisers, together with Forrester’s Consumer Technographics data.

Wilk explained that Bing and Catalyst commissioned the study to “better inform the market about the importance of looking at search not just as an individual, effective marketing channel, but to clearly articulate the benefits of closely aligning all media spend in concert with search advertising investments.”

Overall, respondents to the survey gave a high rating to the ROI they receive from search marketing, with 74% of respondents who were investing in search giving its ROI a rating of “excellent” or “good”.

However, 53% of marketers cited cross-media attribution as one of their top three challenges in budget allocation, with another 53% citing a lack of data to inform strategy; 44% also cited measurement as one of their top challenges.

“Competing business demands force marketers to rely on hard attribution data to develop and support their cross-channel investment strategies,” notes the study.

“Unfortunately, their attribution models today do not necessarily paint an accurate reflection of the consumer engagement with cross-channel touchpoints, which inhibits them from moving budget fluidly from channel to channel.”

Kerry Curran, Senior Partner and Managing Director of Marketing Integration at Catalyst, adds:

“The majority of the data supports that consumers consistently use and value paid search, and marketers find it to be a strong ROI driver; however, adequate budget allocation is still a challenge.

“With competing business demands and attribution data that does not measure cross-channel impact, paid search marketers are struggling to fully invest in their programs.”

Search marketers still aren’t being innovative enough

Those of us who keep close tabs on search innovation and strategy – or comment on it – are fairly familiar with concepts like retargeting lists for search ads (RLSA), voice search optimization, ad extensions in paid search listings, schema markup, and so on.

But for the majority of marketers, advanced tactics like these go far beyond what they would use for their campaigns. When asked which of a range of tactics their company used or was planning to use in 2016, only 34% of marketers reported using ad extensions; 30% used Product Listing Ads (PLAs); and 28% used retargeting lists for search ads (RLSA).

Just 28% of respondents reported using voice search optimization in their campaigns, 27% said they used sitelinks, and a dismal 17% reported using schema markup. (Findings like this shed light on why, even now, less than 1% of websites are using schema.org vocabulary to mark up their webpages).

I asked Wilk and Curran why they thought that marketers weren’t going the extra mile with their search marketing tactics. Was it due to a lack of expertise, or perhaps just budget and time?

“It’s all of those reasons,” replies Wilk. “Doing all of the tactics well in search requires constant learning, constant testing and of course constant optimization.

“These days, all marketers are being asked to do more with less, and we don’t see that changing anytime soon. So in a world of squeezed time and resources, clients and agencies are forced to make trade-offs, and often the tactics mentioned tend to get a lower priority.

“Eventually clients do get to these things but every query we see, whether it’s voice, on desktop or mobile is a perishable good. That “magical” moment of someone expressing clear intent comes and goes in an instant. Getting ahead of these trends, and sticking to them, is where the return on investment lives.”

Curran adds: “There are so many advanced search tactics already available, and as search engines continue to innovate, they continue to release new options and update existing features.

“While the advanced tactics can drive campaign improvements, alignment between the search engines, paid search teams, and brand is required to roll out and test new tactics.

“In addition to the intricacies of day-to-day management, search marketers need to prioritize the opportunities, budgets, and resources to allow for testing in a manner that provides statistical significance.”

What can marketers do to improve their search campaigns?

It’s one thing to pinpoint where the problems might be, but if marketers want to take concrete steps to improve their search marketing, where should they begin?

“One – prioritize their search budget,” says Rob Wilk.

“Two, when running media campaigns – especially expensive TV commercials – marketers need to make sure they have strong search campaigns so that consumers can easily engage with the brand and find what they are looking for via search engines.”

“Three, make sure they have full alignment across all channels. Marketers must keep their ear to the ground when it comes to search.

“We have billions of moments every month where consumers express their desires, and marketers must tap into this wealth of data to inform marketing decisions in terms of what message to deliver, to whom and in what way.”

The search industry is constantly innovating, and it might seem overwhelming for marketers with limited time and resources to try and keep on top of developments. However, as we’ve seen, there is a large number of advanced search tactics available that most marketers aren’t taking advantage of.

Investing in even one of these tactics could prove to have significant benefits for search marketing ROI, which would pay dividends in the long run.

Source:: searchenginewatch.com