Search marketing news and what it means for marketers – Oct 2017

In this month’s news bulletin, we take a look at Google Stamp, purchases through smart speakers, Bing’s local pack results, new AdWords extensions and Twitter doubling its character limit.

Say hello to Google Stamp

Google StampDerived by combining ‘Stories’ (ST) and ‘Accelerated Mobile Pages’ (AMP), Google Stamp is set to be the ‘in search’ challenger for Snapchat Discover. Google Stamp will be another interactive (aka Google carousel) element of search, empowering users to swipe through digital content in the search results, keeping users engaged and able to access mixed rich information (image, video, text) faster.

Why does this matter for business?

Although in its infancy, the sooner businesses start maximising mixed content creation, video and image content optimisation, and generally positioning themselves as content leaders, the greater the current and future rewards will be. The days of text only, shallow-value content are over.

Buying with your voice

There are about 20 million smart speakers in the US, and the UK is not far behind. The number of V-commerce (voice commerce) sales has risen exponentially; 57 percent of smart speaker owners have now bought something using their voice. V-commerce isn’t just used for minor purchases either; 25 percent of voice purchases are over $100.

Smart speaker purchases

For marketers, smart speakers will require a personalised message tailored to each user. With no screen available, ad copy is going to be incredibly important in engaging users to buy. Also, refining the simplicity of the purchase journey to accommodate voice commands will be challenging. Read more here.

Action point: Write copy that is more conversational and organic.

Bing testing new “blended local mini one pack”

Bing has taken an alternative route regarding their local pack results. Before, they were rather large and noticeable in the search results. Now, however, they are smaller and blend well with the search feed.

Bing blended local mini one pack

Once clicked, the local pack expands with the map and further information.

Bing local pack expanded

This less invasive presentation of local pack results seems like a welcome change, although, not currently widespread. Marketers can use this new local pack to create new styles of local pack ads. Read more here.

Action points: If your client’s business is eligible for this new local pack, experiment with this new technique! 

Three new AdWords extensions for call-only ads

Previously, call-only ads were not eligible for ad extensions, however, that has changed and now marketers can use three types of extensions on call-only ads:

  1. Location Extensions
  2. Callout Extensions
  3. Structured Snippets

With these extensions, marketers can add another level of engagement to their call-only ads, which will allow them to create call-only ads with improved CTRs and to apply further messaging. Read more here.

Action points:  Add three new extensions to your call-only ads to improve CTR!

Twitter doubles character limit

Are you one of the chosen Twitter profiles to have been selected to trial double character limits?

At the end of September, mainstream media went microblogging mad with the announcement that tweet character limits had increased to 280 (from a measly 140 characters).

The potential this offers business is substantial. The ability to increase the breadth, variation and value of content on Twitter will enable the more creative content marketers to stand out and shine. Regardless of whether you have a trial of this or not, you should start preparing for sharing your 280 character insights ASAP.

If you have any questions about anything covered in this article, don’t hesitate to call us on 023 9283 0281 and one of our search experts will be happy to help.


Lee Wilson profile picture
Lee Wilson

Lee has been working in the online arena, leading digital departments since the early 2000s, and oversees all our delivery services at Vertical Leap, having joined back in 2010. Lee joined our company Operations Team in May 2019. Before working at Vertical Leap, Lee completed a degree in Business Management & Communications at Winchester University, headed up the online development and direct marketing department for an international financial services company for ~7 years, and set up/run a limited company providing website design, development and digital marketing solutions. Lee had his first solely authored industry book (Tactical SEO) published in 2016, with 2 further industry books being published in 2019, and can be seen regularly expert contributing to industry websites including State of Digital, Search Engine Journal, The Drum, plus many others. Lee has a passion for management in the digital industry and loves to see the progression of others through personal learning, training and development. Outside the office he looks to help others while challenging himself, having skydived, bungie jumped and abseiled (despite a fear of heights) with many more fundraising and voluntary events completed and on the horizon. As a husband and dad, Lee loves to spend time with his family and friends. His hobbies include exercising, trying new experiences, eating out, playing countless team sports, as well as watching films (Gangster movies in particular – “forget about it”).

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