Reviews are critical for local search.

The basic conclusions of the study are that: (1) organic ranking factors (e.g., links, keywords, anchor text, etc.) boost local visibility; and (2) reviews are critical. The study argues that “local and organic search algorithms are still highly interconnected.” It adds that while Google is trying to include unique variables in the local algorithm, “traditional organic SEO tactics” are effective to rank locally.

via Local ranking factors study finds reviews, organic SEO best practices boost local visibility (Search Engine Land)

Easy win for local small businesses. Add a little “nudge” on invoices, email communications, and in-store signage reminding customers to leave a review.

Before that, of course, you gotta make sure you’re set up on Google My Business.

There’s no “diversity of views” on the internet.

That “diversity of views” so dear to past regulators is pretty much dead and buried on the Internet, where filter bubbles, marketing algorithms, and sophisticated information warfare ensure most Americans see only what they already believe, and ownership is concentrated beyond anything we’ve seen in the offline media world.

via Govt to Journalism: Screw You (NewCo Shift)

With the United States changing course on net neutrality, I’m certain that this is just going to get worse.

Launch in 5 @ WordCamp Rochester 2017

What can you do with WordPress if you aren’t a developer (or aren’t inclined to set up a development environment and get “into the weeds”)?

Quite a bit, actually!

This session walks through my standard flow for getting a new WordPress site up and running. I’ll walk through each step: domain registration, WordPress installation, installing a theme & plugins, even connecting to Google Search Console and Google Tag Manager.

We won’t touch any code along the way. (I promise!)

If you’re new to WordPress, this is a crash-course walkthrough that’ll give you an idea of how quickly a site can be built.

If you’re an experienced WordPress user and want to start building sites for others, this is a good opportunity to see how you can get a foundation in place for a client without breaking a sweat.

Let’s get into it.

Keep reading…Launch in 5 @ WordCamp Rochester 2017

ads.txt

I’m diggin’ the new ads.txt initiative from IAB:

The mission of the ads.txt project is simple: Increase transparency in the programmatic advertising ecosystem. Ads.txt stands for Authorized Digital Sellers and is a simple, flexible and secure method that publishers and distributors can use to publicly declare the companies they authorize to sell their digital inventory.

I found out about this via Google’s Doubleclick for Publishers documentation:

Use of ads.txt is not mandatory, but is highly recommended. The ads.txt file can help you protect your brand from counterfeit inventory that is intentionally mislabelled as originating from a specific domain, app, or video. Declaring authorized sellers can help you receive more advertiser spend that might have otherwise gone toward counterfeit inventory.

While I’m not doing much ad management these days, I think it’s valuable to look at both sides of the (current) ecosystem, at what’s happening on both the publisher and advertiser side of things.