There is a browser add-on that, once installed in your web browser, allows you to opt out of Google Analytics. That essentially means that if you use the add-on when visiting websites that are using Google Analytics, your visit(s) won’t be recorded. This is the Google Analytics Opt-Out Browser Add-On. [Read more…]
Google has lost an appeal to a patent infringement lawsuit that has been ongoing for several years now. The case, Google, LLC vs. Netlist, Inc., is a case where Google argued that a patent owned by Netlist, Inc. was invalid. Google claimed that part of the patent “involving the specific use of rank-selecting signals for rank multiplication” was invalid. [Read more…]
Not long ago, I installed the Google Site Kit WordPress plugin, as it is an official Google WordPress plugin. When you install the plugin, it gives you an easier way to view data from Google Analytics, Google Search Console, Google AdSense, and Google PageSpeed Insights. You can view this data for the entire site or you can view it per page or per post. It doesn’t really do anything special except make it easier for you to view the data. You can see it directly in the WordPress dashboard rather than having to go to each of those sites separately: Google Analytics, Google Search Console, Google AdSense, and Google PageSpeed Insights. Well, there’s a problem with the plugin: an attacker can gain access to your Google Search Console for the site, and presumably with access they could do some harm. [Read more…]
It appears that Google has removed the www subdomain of LinkedIn from their organic, natural search engine results pages. This is commonly referred to as being banned in Google when pages are removed. Initially we didn’t know who removed the pages. We now know, as I’ll explain in this post, what really happened and what you need to know as a result of this whole incident. This was a very fluid situation, so this post has been heavily changed and updated as we learned more about what really happened.
Over the past few years, LinkedIn profile pages have typically ranked very well for personal names, especially for my personal name. Google, for some reason, has decided to remove the www subdomain of LinkedIn’s pages. There are a few reasons why pages are removed all of a sudden: the site is given a manual action (penalty) from Google. Initially we didn’t know for certain if it was a manual action from Google or if the pages were mistakenly removed by LinkedIn. In either case, all of the www subdomain pages have been removed from Google’s search engine results. [Read more…]
Google Ads Support is not currently accepting any phone calls. When you call the phone number for Google Ads phone support, which is 1-866-246-6453, you get a recorded message that they are not accepting any phone calls. The automated message (which is a computer-type voice and not a human-recorded voice) says that they are not accepting phone calls. They then go on to say that they are not accepting phone calls because they are protecting their employees from the effects of COVID-19 and the Coronavirus. [Read more…]
Every month, there are over 5 billion searches on Google for restaurants. 3 billion searches for hotels. 1 billion searches for clothing stores. 600 searches for hair and beauty salons. 5 million searches for coffee shops (Google My Business data, December 2019). These are all local businesses with physical locations. Customers visit those locations. But what if you’re NOT a local business.
What if customers don’t visit your location? Do you really need a Google My Business (GMB) listing? Probably not. Let me explain.
As you may or may not recall, I have a theory that some Google My Business listings are hurting websites and not helping. So, I removed my Google My Business listing. Not only did I remove the GMB listing once, but I removed the listing twice. Essentially with a 3-month time difference between the removing of the listing. It’s been a few weeks since the second removal of the Google My Business listing, and I have some interesting data to report. [Read more…]
By Bill Hartzer, February 17, 2020 at 11:33am CST
A disturbing new extortion is being sent via email to website publishers who participate in the Google AdSense program. The publisher receives an email, telling them that if they do not pay a certain fee then they will force Google to disable their Google AdSense account. [Read more…]
By Bill Hartzer, February 7, 2020 at 9:22am CST.
Scammers are using Craigslist ads to try to gain access to your Google Account. When the victim places an ad on Craigslist, they respond, asking to call them. Once they have the phone number of the victim, they ask the victim for the Google code that they have Google send them, and they’re then able to access the Google account. [Read more…]
Google is shutting down Google App Maker, a tool that allows you to make custom apps for your business. App Maker is included with G Suite Business and Enterprise editions, as well as with G Suite for Education. [Read more…]
Starting in January 2020 (this month), Google Chrome will start warning users when they visit websites that are not using TLS 1.2 or higher on their secure website. This is a change in Google’s policy about SSL secure HTTPs websites, as they previously have said that it did not matter which type of SSL certificate that a website uses as long as it was HTTPs. We are now learning that it does matter, and the server and the SSL certificate must support at least TLS 1.2 or higher. [Read more…]
The URL Inspection Tool inside Google Search Console is down. Requests made to Inspect Any URL that is on a verified website in Google’s Search Console has a message saying that you need to try back in a few hours.
Apparently Google mistakenly sent out invites to their highly-sought-after Google Cameos app, then promptly un-invited many of those same people. In the second email, they claim that they made a mistake. Google Cameos is an invite-only Google App that allows celebrities and other noteworthy people, to create videos of themselves answering questions. Those videos are then uploaded to the celebrity’s Knowledge Panel directly in the Google search results. [Read more…]
Google AdSense is getting rid of their iOS and Android apps in favor more a more favorable mobile experience. According to an email sent out to Google AdSense publishers such as myself, that means that they will no longer support the Google AdSense app. There will no longer be a Google AdSense app that you can use on your phone. [Read more…]
Google is shutting down Google Bulletin, as well as the Google Bulletin App, which will stop working in about two weeks. Bulletin is an app where you could create stories about your local community using photos, videos, and text. It was in beta in the United States and Canada, and certain metro areas were targeted. However, this Google product never got out of beta, and they have decided to shut it down. [Read more…]
Do you have a Google Account that you use frequently? I have more than one Google Account, but one that I primarily use for things like my calendar (Google Calendar), Google Drive (Google Docs, Google Sheets, etc.), and Gmail. If someone were to get access to that Google account without my permission, they would get information to those, as well as access to other data that’s tied to that Google Account. I don’t currently have Google Pay set up, but if I did and someone got access to my Google Account then it could lead to more hassles, especially if they bought stuff. [Read more…]
Google is saying goodbye to the old Google Search Console. In a post on the official Google Webmaster blog and a tweet, they said that from “now on, if you try to access the old homepage or dashboard you’ll be redirected to the relevant Search Console pages.” So, essentially this is a goodbye to the old Google Search Console, as many of the reports that we’ve been accustomed to over the years are going away. The information isn’t going away, though, as the data has been moved over to an equivalent report on the new Google Search Console. [Read more…]
Is Google required to list your business or your website in their search engine results? When I mention the word “list”, I am referring to whether they are indexing your website in their search results or whether they are listing your business in the Google Maps listings, for example. Being listed is different than ranking. Let me also explain that this post, and anything in this post (such as comments from others) in no way should be seen as legal advice, as I am not a lawyer and don’t claim to be one. You should always consult the advice of a qualified lawyer or solicitor about your unique situation. If you are a lawyer and would like to make a comment (and I can quote you), get in touch with me and we’ll talk about it. I may update this post. That said, though, let’s get back to the question: Is Google (or Bing or Yahoo!) or any search engine (or website) obligated to list you? [Read more…]
Should Google link out to SEO websites from the official Google Webmaster blog? That’s the question that is a hot topic right now: on the official Google blog, should Google link out to a website that offers search engine optimization or digital marketing services, no matter how good the resource is, and how much it will help website owners. [Read more…]