Tag Archives: Alphabet

Investors anxious about Google traffic acquisition costs, which regulation could further increase

Mobile fees and new regulatory moves could bump Google's revenue costs. The post Investors anxious about Google traffic acquisition costs, which regulation could further increase appeared first on Search Engine Land.

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Danny Sullivan joins Google, leaves advisor role at Third Door Media

Search industry veteran journalist begins new role at Alphabet's core business division on October 9 The post Danny Sullivan joins Google, leaves advisor role at Third Door Media appeared first on Search Engine Land.

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Alphabet to create separate business unit in Europe to run Google Shopping

Effort is attempt to comply with European antitrust decision; would force Google to bid against rivals in the AdWords auction as a standalone entity. The post Alphabet to create separate business unit in Europe to run Google Shopping appeared first on Search Engine Land.

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Google CEO Sundar Pichai joins Alphabet board

During his tenure, Google's stock has increased from roughly $650 to $995. The post Google CEO Sundar Pichai joins Alphabet board appeared first on Search Engine Land.

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Google fined $2.7 billion by E.U. in anti-trust ruling

Google has been fined a record $2.7 billion for a breach of E.U. anti-trust rules.

The search giant was charged with giving “illegal advantages” to another Google product within search results in a case that started more than seven years ago. The case relates specifically to Google Shopping, Google’s increasingly profitable shopping comparison engine.

This fine dwarfs the previous record fine for the abuse of a monopoly, doled out to Intel in 2009.

The E.U. commission arrived at the figure by taking a percentage of Google’s revenue from its Shopping product across the 13 European countries in question since 2008.

Should Google fail to comply with the terms set by the E.U. within 90 days, they will be fined 5 percent of the daily turnover of parent company, Alphabet.

“What Google has done is illegal under EU antitrust rules. It denied other companies the chance to compete on their merits and to innovate. And most importantly, it denied European consumers a genuine choice of services and the full benefits of innovation,” stated Margrethe Vestager, the E.U. competition commissioner.

The wider implications of this ruling

The bigger questions now surround the precedent that this sets. There is a general consensus that the industry requires independent regulation, but that will be a lot trickier than it seems. Google would be loathe to reveal its closely guarded algorithms.

Moreover, we are moving into an era where they may start to lose full transparency over the inner workings of their products.

With Google – and all of its main competitors – moving their focus towards unsupervised machine learning algorithms, how exactly will they comply with these regulations? It may become impossible to prove the non-existence of bias in such a complex system in constant flux.

The likes of Facebook and Amazon will surely see this as the E.U. making an example of Google. However, they may have cause for concern too.

Google’s position as a search engine sets it apart, as consumers trust that the results have been ranked based on their quality. A 2014 study in India showed the persuasive power that Google holds, and this is one it is adjudged to have abused to the detriment of European consumers.

Facebook and, in particular, Amazon, strive to dominate the e-commerce advertising market. Any potential abuses of their increasingly strong positions will be watched very closely, by both the E.U. and Google.

Although companies like Amazon operate on different business models to Google, they are still moving towards a ‘machine learning first’ approach and will want to solidify their dominant position as the number one online shopping destination.

With the E.U. taking such a firm stance now, it seems unlikely they will relent and accept that their algorithms are making unbiased decisions.

What happens next?

Google has the right to appeal, which could extend the case by another 5 to 10 years. Intel, for example, is still fighting its fine from 2009 in European courts. However, even if Google should choose to appeal, it will still need to provide proof that it has changed its business practices in line with the court’s ruling within 90 days.

Google remains under investigation by the E.U. for giving similar advantages to two other Alphabet products, Android and AdSense.

 

For more Google vs. the EU, check out our previous news story: When is a search engine not a search engine? When it’s Google, says the EU

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Six most interesting search marketing news stories of the week

Welcome to our weekly round-up of all the latest news and research from the world of search marketing and beyond.

This week, we’ve got a bumper crop of stories from the search and marketing industry, including the Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative’s acquisition of an AI-powered search engine, new ad-targeting features on YouTube, the most popular emoji on Instagram, and the news that mobile search and YouTube are leading growth in Alphabet’s fourth quarter earnings.

Also, you’ll never guess who one of Google’s most prolific advertisers is – it’s Google.

Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative acquires AI-powered search engine, Meta

The Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative, the $45 billion philanthropic organisation founded by Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan, has made its first acquisition – of a search engine. Meta is an search tool which uses artificial intelligence to make connections between scientific research, making it easier for researchers to search through and link together more than 26 million scientific papers. The Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative intends to make Meta, which was previously partly subscription-based, free for everyone to use after spending a few months enhancing the product.

“But wait!” I hear you cry. “Didn’t Search Engine Watch already run a story recently about a scientific search engine powered by AI?”

You’re absolutely right, astute reader – as Adam Stetzer reported earlier this month, Semantic Scholar is an AI-powered search engine for scientific research which is already free to use. While there’s no reason why the world can’t have more than one AI-powered science search engine, it will be interesting to see how the two different projects interact over the coming months and years.

YouTube adds new ad-targeting features

One of the biggest weapons in Google’s advertising arsenal is the sheer amount of data that it is able to collect about users’ search and browsing histories, in order to better target ads in their direction. Last Friday, it was revealed that Google is bringing that scary amount of knowledge to bear on YouTube by allowing advertisers to target users based on their Google account activity.

A blog post on the Google Inside AdWords blog explained:

Now, information from activity associated with users’ Google accounts (such as demographic information and past searches) may be used to influence the ads those users see on YouTube. So, for example, if you’re a retailer, you could reach potential customers that have been searching for winter coat deals on Google and engage with them with your own winter clothing brand campaign at just the right moment.

Al Roberts reported on the news for ClickZ this week and examined why Facebook could be the driving force behind Google’s decision to give advertisers more flexibility in how they target users on YouTube.

Instagram is making Stories more appealing to brands

In August of last year, Instagram debuted Stories: a new feature on its social network devoted to posts which disappear after 24 hours, and a direct and unashamed copy of the Snapchat feature of the same name. Despite a bit of mockery at first, response to Stories has been positive, with 150 million users enjoying the feature daily – and some saying that Instagram Stories has all but replaced Snapchat for them.

Now, Instagram is bringing in some additions to make Stories a more appealing prospect for brands, with new Business Insights available to users with business profiles, and full-screen photo or video ads appearing in between Stories.

Ads will be initially tested with 30 clients around the world, including Capital One, Buick, Maybelline New York, Nike, Yoox, Netflix, and Qantas.

Six most interesting search marketing news stories of the week

These are 2016’s most popular emoji on Instagram

We’ve got a two-for-one special on Instagram stories this week, with a study by Quintly which has revealed exactly how and how often emoji have been used on Instagram.

Quintly analysed  20,000 Instagram profiles and 6.2 million posts during 2016 to observe how emojis have been used on the platform over the last year. Among its findings were the fact that 56% of Instagram profiles have used emoji so far, and there has been a 20% increase in their use during 2016 alone.

Also, the most popular emoji on Instagram is the camera Six most interesting search marketing news stories of the week – commonly used as a way of attributing photos, which might speak to the amount of pictures on Instagram which aren’t created by the accounts who uploaded them.

Six most interesting search marketing news stories of the week

 One of Google’s most prolific advertisers is… Google itself

Google is the single biggest recipient of digital ad spend, with its well-oiled ad machine generating tens of billions of dollars of revenue every year. Now, an analysis by the Wall Street Journal and SEMRush has revealed that “ads for products sold by Google and its sister companies appeared in the most prominent spot in 91% of 25,000 recent searches related to such items. In 43% of the searches, the top two ads both were for Google-related products.”

Al Roberts took a look at the study’s methodology and findings over on ClickZ, and considered what this means in terms of conflicts of interest from the internet’s biggest search engine.

Mobile search and YouTube lead Alphabet’s revenue growth

Yesterday, Google’s parent company Alphabet announced its fourth-quarter earnings for 2016. Quartz reported that Wall Street was expecting Alphabet to post revenue of around $25 billion, but it in fact exceeded this prediction with more than $26 billion in revenue, up 22% over the same quarter the previous year.

Six most interesting search marketing news stories of the week
Source: Atlas

In a press release, Alphabet CFO Ruth Porat said that the company’s “exceptional” growth was “led by mobile search and YouTube.” While this is interesting news for the search industry (especially ahead of Google’s mobile-first search index – coming soon to a search engine near you), the earnings report revealed that Alphabet’s non-search prospects haven’t been doing so well. Nearly 99% of Alphabet’s revenue came from Google, while its “Other Bets” – the other projects it is pursuing to diversify its revenue streams – posted a loss of roughly $1.1 billion.

Google is still finding ways to increase its revenue, and the company is by no means struggling to bring in the money. But thus far, its parent company hasn’t been too successful in shifting the focus away from the search and advertising it is best known for.

meta-1.png

Six most interesting search marketing news stories of the week

Welcome to our weekly round-up of all the latest news and research from the world of search marketing and beyond.

This week, we’ve got a bumper crop of stories from the search and marketing industry, including the Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative’s acquisition of an AI-powered search engine, new ad-targeting features on YouTube, the most popular emoji on Instagram, and the news that mobile search and YouTube are leading growth in Alphabet’s fourth quarter earnings.

Also, you’ll never guess who one of Google’s most prolific advertisers is – it’s Google.

Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative acquires AI-powered search engine, Meta

The Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative, the $45 billion philanthropic organisation founded by Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan, has made its first acquisition – of a search engine. Meta is an search tool which uses artificial intelligence to make connections between scientific research, making it easier for researchers to search through and link together more than 26 million scientific papers. The Chan-Zuckerberg Initiative intends to make Meta, which was previously partly subscription-based, free for everyone to use after spending a few months enhancing the product.

“But wait!” I hear you cry. “Didn’t Search Engine Watch already run a story recently about a scientific search engine powered by AI?”

You’re absolutely right, astute reader – as Adam Stetzer reported earlier this month, Semantic Scholar is an AI-powered search engine for scientific research which is already free to use. While there’s no reason why the world can’t have more than one AI-powered science search engine, it will be interesting to see how the two different projects interact over the coming months and years.

YouTube adds new ad-targeting features

One of the biggest weapons in Google’s advertising arsenal is the sheer amount of data that it is able to collect about users’ search and browsing histories, in order to better target ads in their direction. Last Friday, it was revealed that Google is bringing that scary amount of knowledge to bear on YouTube by allowing advertisers to target users based on their Google account activity.

A blog post on the Google Inside AdWords blog explained:

Now, information from activity associated with users’ Google accounts (such as demographic information and past searches) may be used to influence the ads those users see on YouTube. So, for example, if you’re a retailer, you could reach potential customers that have been searching for winter coat deals on Google and engage with them with your own winter clothing brand campaign at just the right moment.

Al Roberts reported on the news for ClickZ this week and examined why Facebook could be the driving force behind Google’s decision to give advertisers more flexibility in how they target users on YouTube.

Instagram is making Stories more appealing to brands

In August of last year, Instagram debuted Stories: a new feature on its social network devoted to posts which disappear after 24 hours, and a direct and unashamed copy of the Snapchat feature of the same name. Despite a bit of mockery at first, response to Stories has been positive, with 150 million users enjoying the feature daily – and some saying that Instagram Stories has all but replaced Snapchat for them.

Now, Instagram is bringing in some additions to make Stories a more appealing prospect for brands, with new Business Insights available to users with business profiles, and full-screen photo or video ads appearing in between Stories.

Ads will be initially tested with 30 clients around the world, including Capital One, Buick, Maybelline New York, Nike, Yoox, Netflix, and Qantas.

Six most interesting search marketing news stories of the week

These are 2016’s most popular emoji on Instagram

We’ve got a two-for-one special on Instagram stories this week, with a study by Quintly which has revealed exactly how and how often emoji have been used on Instagram.

Quintly analysed  20,000 Instagram profiles and 6.2 million posts during 2016 to observe how emojis have been used on the platform over the last year. Among its findings were the fact that 56% of Instagram profiles have used emoji so far, and there has been a 20% increase in their use during 2016 alone.

Also, the most popular emoji on Instagram is the camera Six most interesting search marketing news stories of the week – commonly used as a way of attributing photos, which might speak to the amount of pictures on Instagram which aren’t created by the accounts who uploaded them.

Six most interesting search marketing news stories of the week

 One of Google’s most prolific advertisers is… Google itself

Google is the single biggest recipient of digital ad spend, with its well-oiled ad machine generating tens of billions of dollars of revenue every year. Now, an analysis by the Wall Street Journal and SEMRush has revealed that “ads for products sold by Google and its sister companies appeared in the most prominent spot in 91% of 25,000 recent searches related to such items. In 43% of the searches, the top two ads both were for Google-related products.”

Al Roberts took a look at the study’s methodology and findings over on ClickZ, and considered what this means in terms of conflicts of interest from the internet’s biggest search engine.

Mobile search and YouTube lead Alphabet’s revenue growth

Yesterday, Google’s parent company Alphabet announced its fourth-quarter earnings for 2016. Quartz reported that Wall Street was expecting Alphabet to post revenue of around $25 billion, but it in fact exceeded this prediction with more than $26 billion in revenue, up 22% over the same quarter the previous year.

Six most interesting search marketing news stories of the week
Source: Atlas

In a press release, Alphabet CFO Ruth Porat said that the company’s “exceptional” growth was “led by mobile search and YouTube.” While this is interesting news for the search industry (especially ahead of Google’s mobile-first search index – coming soon to a search engine near you), the earnings report revealed that Alphabet’s non-search prospects haven’t been doing so well. Nearly 99% of Alphabet’s revenue came from Google, while its “Other Bets” – the other projects it is pursuing to diversify its revenue streams – posted a loss of roughly $1.1 billion.

Google is still finding ways to increase its revenue, and the company is by no means struggling to bring in the money. But thus far, its parent company hasn’t been too successful in shifting the focus away from the search and advertising it is best known for.

Alphabet Creates More Localization Opportunities, Says Forrester

A new Forrester report discusses how restructuring under Alphabet could help Google fix its issues in Europe an China, as well as leverage local data, storage, and talent.

Why Did Google Choose ABC.XYZ for the Alphabet Domain Name?

What is in a domain name? Rather than using one of its many top level domain options, Google took a different approach by making a new address for Alphabet Inc. - ABC.XYZ.