Friday recap: Google glitches, iOS updates and an Ads death
Some weeks it’s easy to wonder if, one day, future humans will look back at 2017 and think Google was some kind of all-seeing, all-knowing deity. Then again, maybe it will be an all-seeing, all-knowing deity in the future, you just never know….
At any rate, Google keeps growing, and this week is no exception. We’ve got a special Google-only Friday recap for you today! Let’s get stuck in.
Google might have glitched, and then it was maybe fixed
According to recent web chatter, it is believed some kind of Google algorithm change occurred on Friday/Saturday, September 15-16 and made some people’s analytics go haywire.
Earlier today, Google Search Ranking Update Chatter Continues https://t.co/ANyGgsv2dX
— SE Roundtable (@seroundtable) September 20, 2017
“I saw bounce rate up, and page per session down over the weekend. Back to normal rates on Monday [Sept. 18],” commented one user.
“We got really bad traffic over the weekend but looking at the sessions for yesterday I think what ever this was is reverted back,” said another.
Some users on Webmaster World have blamed the end of the hurricanes in Texas and Florida, which would have led more users to come back to Google and mess up the results. Search Engine Roundtable thought it might have been a bug. Either way, it appears back to normal – so if you experienced any turbulence last weekend, it should be over.
If you think you’re still being affected by algorithm shenanigans, let us know!
Find related content on your iOS device
In less dramatic news, Google has rolled out a new feature for its iOS app. Announced on September 19, this update will allow users to see content related to whatever they are reading without needing to navigate off the page.
For example, if you are on Wikipedia perusing an article about Mars rovers, Google surmises you’re interested in learning more about the subject – perhaps the Curiosity mission, or other planned excursions.
When you start scrolling back up the page, a little pop-up will slide in from the bottom and offer you a “People also view” box, where you can click on other content.
Currently, this is only available in the US, but Google has plans to expand the reach soon. No doubt when that occurs, we’ll be taking a look at how to rank in the new space!
Bye bye Google Ads’ second line of descriptions
We know how much Google loves testing out new features, and sometimes these trials can give users an edge over their competition.
Well, those of you who were fortunate enough to trial the Google Ads second line of description will be sad to hear that soon it will pass on to whatever graveyard disused Google functions go to.
Although initially designed to help advertisers gain a higher ad CTR by displaying extra text (an additional 80-character field on top of the original 80-character field), it looks like the trial was unsuccessful and is to be shut down.
The next time you try to modify your two-text ad, you should see the following message:
“Starting this September, text ads will no longer include the optional Additional description field. Your existing ads will continue to show without it. To continue using the content you’ve added in this field, create a new ad. You can also bulk download your existing ad text.”
— Search Engine Land (@sengineland) September 20, 2017
Travel well to Valhalla, Google Ads second line of descriptions. RIP.