Google Authorship, Winning at AdWords Quality Scores, and Are You On “Board” with Google? Internet Explorers, June 27

By Tom Shearman

This week’s edition of Google AdWords update pleases technovikingInternet Explorers covers a Google authorship redesign, a Google update that has left spam sites reeling, a guest appearance from Nathan with some important information about AdWords Quality Scores, bad news for brands on Facebook, and the latest and craziest in Google’s wearable technology. Here’s a hint: you won’t be “board.” Hi everyone, and welcome back to Internet Explorers. Unlike Luis Suarez, we don’t bite, so lean in close and check out this week’s SEO, PPC, and content marketing news.

Google Drops Photo and Circles from Authorship Search Results

On Wednesday, we learned that Google doesn’t think you’re as pretty as YOU think you are. That is, they’re dropping the profile photo and Google+ circle count from search results that list authorship. Google claims that the click-through behavior will stay about the same, but that remains to be seen. Look for the rollout on both desktop and mobile soon.

Payday Loan 3.0 Google Update

In the epic and ongoing battle of Google versus spam, it looks like Google delivered a crushing blow with the Payday Loan 3.0 Google update. The update seems to have gotten rid of parasite hosting sites on the search engine results pages, as well as any shady redirects. Gold star for you, Google.

Best Practices for a High Google AdWords Quality Score

We now welcome our chief PPC correspondent, Nathan. This week, Google’s chief economist released a best practice guide on AdWords Quality Score, which, until now, has been misunderstood. The guide outlines what does and doesn’t matter when determining Quality Score and advises readers to view Quality Score as a diagnostic tool to see how you’re doing and NOT a goal in itself. For you, this means that it’s not in your best interests to chase an improved Quality Score number. Instead, focus on “delighting your users” with an awesome user experience.

Brand Engagement on Facebook is Down

In a new report from Contently, brand engagement on Facebook is taking a nose dive– even though brands are pushing out more content and spending more money to promote their posts in a feeble effort to fight their plunging organic reach. In addition to being incredibly depressing for brands, this finding is also ominous for publishers of your favorite listicles, like BuzzFeed and Upworthy, because they depend on referral traffic from Facebook. They’re getting a ton of free traffic from Facebook right now- but if Facebook decides to start charging for this, the publishers better be ready to show Facebook the money. What can you do? Keep an eye on this inevitable train wreck, and remember that Facebook is rented space, best used for redirecting your audience to areas where you can control how they consume your content.

Google Introduces “Cardboard”

And finally, Google has dropped its craziest, most innovative, absolutely shocking piece of technology yet: Cardboard. With a Kit consisting of some cardboard, lenses, magnets, velcro, and a rubber band, users can turn their Androids into a virtual reality viewer. We are unsure if this is just Google’s version of a little kid using a refrigerator box as a pretend spaceship or something more, but our dedicated testers are on the case.  That’s it for this week. Thanks for tuning in, and be sure to sign up to receive future videos in the box that appears after the video.