A summary of search related news items that occurred this week including comScore January results show Google continuing to lead in search market share as well as searches conducted increased by 2% over December, Google will finally reveal URLs of publisher sites to AdWords advertisers participating in their contextual network, Microsoft files a patent that explores the possibility of removing organic search listings when there’s also a paid listing pointing to the same page, Jason Lee Miller of WebProNews breaks down study on the behavior of searchers with the intent to buy versus searchers with the intent to find information, Google releases click fraud figures claiming that less than 0.02% of all clicks are actually fraudulent, and finally The Online Marketing Guy gives us 20 reasons why newbie SEOs should stop taking on clients.
- Google Continues To Lead Search Market Share - The comScore results are in for January and Google continues to lead. No surprise there, right? They captured 47.5 percent of the U.S. search market (search volume) in January, gaining 0.2 percentage points from the previous month. Yahoo takes second place with 28.1 percent of U.S. searches, followed by Microsoft sites – 10.6 percent; the Ask network – 5.2 percent; and the Time Warner network – 5.0 percent. comScore also reported that some 6.9 billion online searches were conducted in January in the U.S., up 2 percent from December – and up 26 percent year over year.
- Google To Finally Reveal URLs Where AdWords Advertisers Ads Are Run – Jennifer Slegg reports that Google will finally fulfill a long time wish of AdWords advertisers who participate in Google’s contextual advertising program. In the next few months, Google’s advertiser reports will begin showing the publisher sites where each ad runs. This according to Kim Malone, director of online sales and operations for Google AdSense. She also pointed out that advertisers on the Google networks would soon be able to bid on contextual ads on particular Web sites rather than simply buying keywords that appeared across Google’s entire network. This is something I will anxiously wait for as I have clients who want to advertise in the contextual environment but have wanted more control and information as to where their ads would be displayed.
- Microsoft’s Possible Plans to Remove Organic Results That Match Paid Ones - Bill Slawski discovered a new patent filed by Microsoft that explores the possibility of filtering organic results when there’s more than one URL pointing to the same page on a search results page. It adds the possibility of removing a Web search listing from a search results page when there’s also a paid listing pointing to the same page. He reminds us that this is not something that they are doing or even planning to do, only that they filed a patent that might allow them to do this in the near future. If they do implement this and base it on URLs pointing to the same page, using unique landing pages for paid search campaigns would alleviate the possibility of having organic search listings targeted for removal.
- Attracting Searchers in One Second or Less – Jason Lee Miller breaks down a recent study (PDF) conducted by Dutch firms DeVos & Jansen and Checkit which examines the behavior of searchers with the intent to buy versus searchers with the intent to find information. The bottom line according to Jason – buyers search longer; branding is crucial; search result language matters; the right column sucks; Google rocks harder at this than anyone else, but that’s a bad thing for you, the marketer, really; and cheesy, sandwich board, sidewalk-barker type results ain’t gonna cut it. More at WebProNews.
- Invalid Clicks For Google AdWords Constitute Less Than 0.02% - Google releases their own study where they find that advertisers being affected by undetected click fraud constitute less than 0.02% of all clicks. In other words, for every ten thousand clicks on Google AdWords ads, fewer than two are reactively detected cases of possible click fraud. This proportion has stayed within this range every quarter since AdWords was originally launched, even as the issue of click fraud has received more widespread media attention. In the cases of reactively detected invalid clicks, a refund or credit is provided to the advertiser, and Google utilizes the discovery as a feedback mechanism to improve their proactive detection systems. Danny Sullivan provides a good analysis of Google’s findings at Search Engine Land.