This day in search marketing history: January 23
Expedia buys Travelocity, plus: Don't Be Evil tool, semantic search, Position 6 penalty, unlimited site exclusions and more.
Expedia buys Travelocity
In 2015, Expedia bought rival Travelocity for $280 million amid sluggish travel industry growth and pressure from insurgent travel providers.
Expedia had actually been powering Travelocity.com since 2013. So the acquisition seemed quite logical from both perspectives.
At the time, Expedia also owned several online travel brands: Hotels.com, Hotwire, eLong and Trivago.
Read all about it in Travel Search Consolidation: Expedia Buys Rival Travelocity For $280M
Also on this day
Neeva seeks to expand user base with free subscriptions
2022: The free basic subscription was an alternative to its full-featured subscription, which cost $4.95 per month.
Google removes ‘ads’ and ‘sponsored’ labels from flight search results
2020: There would be no more referral fees from partners in flight search, as Google sought to emphasize price and convenience in rankings.
Google Dataset Search is out of beta and adds new features
2020: Google added new features to Google Dataset Search with this rollout.
Video: Search pioneer Mike Grehan on everything from the early days of SEO to AI’s role in paid and organic search
2020: In this installment of Barry Schwartz’s vlog series, he chatted with Grehan about the early days of search, how technology like AI and machine learning are impacting search and who originally came up with term “search engine optimization.”
Amazon adds customer acquisition metrics for Sponsored Brands campaigns
2019: The “new-to-brand” set of metrics were also available for Amazon sellers’ display and video ad campaigns.
Searchmetrics wins important victory in patent infringement lawsuit
2018: A federal judge invalidated five patents SEO platform provider BrightEdge claimed in lawsuit against competitor Searchmetrics.
Bing Hotel Ads moving out of beta to general release with Koddi
2018: After running its Hotel Ads offering in beta in 2017, Bing Ads rolled them out widely.
Google mobile search adds book previews
2017: You could now read book previews directly on your smartphone from Google search.
Ed Roberts activist Google Doodle honors leader of the disability rights movement
2017: The Google Doodle paid tribute to Ed Roberts, co-founder of the World Institute on Disability.
Automatic AdWords Currency Conversion Now Enabled In Google Analytics
2015: Advertisers using a different currency in AdWords and Analytics would now be able to easily compare cost data in Analytics.
PLAs Drove 56% Of Non-Brand Google AdWords Clicks In Q4 [RKG]
2015: Click share also rose on Bing’s product ads, doubling from Q3.
Pinterest Search Is Now Customized By Gender
2015: Pinterest adjusted its Guided Search system to serve results that differed depending on whether the user was female or male.
News Aggregator SmartNews Shows Rapid Growth, Adds Local Channels
2015: Local news became available for 12 US cities, including San Francisco, New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Washington, D.C., Atlanta, Seattle and Boston.
Search In Pics: Google Glass Mug, Google Pool Table & Gmail Paper
2015: The latest images showing what people eat at the search engine companies, how they play, who they meet, where they speak, what toys they have, and more.
An Easy Way To Check What Referrer Data Google, Bing Or Yahoo Pass To Your Secure Site
2014: There was no way to search for an HTTPS version of a “what is my referrer” site. So Barry Schwartz made one.
Google To Replace Smartphone User-Agent To Improve Smart Phone Indexing
2014: The new smartphone user-agent crawler would follow robots.txt, robots meta tag, and HTTP header directives for Googlebot instead of Googlebot-Mobile
MapQuest Transfers Local Listings Management To Yext
2014: MapQuest notified business users that its local business center and basic local listings product would be formally shutting down.
Google Loses Again In AdWords Patent Infringement Case
2014: A judge determined patent-holding company Vringo was entitled to additional royalties from Google in a patent infringement case involving Google AdWords.
Google Launches Streamlined Image Search
2013: With the new system made it easier to quickly skim through multiple images, rather than the old system that requires a lot of clicking, then closing windows to go back and select a new image.
New Tumblr Blog Raises Privacy Concerns Over Facebook Graph Search
2013: Examples of searches that were a mix of comedy and creepiness.
“Don’t Be Evil” Tool — Backed By Facebook & Twitter — Shows Google’s “Search Plus Your World” Can Go Beyond Google+
2012: The companies behind the tool felt Google hadn’t focused on what was best for its users with Search Plus Your World.
Google Search Showing Results For Punctuation Marks
2012: In the past, Google ignored most punctuation marks and didn’t show any useful results for them.
Projecting 2012 Google Mobile Revenues: $4 or $6 Billion?
2012: The Google 2012 mobile revenue “run rate” range was projected to be between $4 billion and $6 billion (globally). In the US the figure would probably be just over half the number.
A Proposal For Social Network Détente
2012: Some suggestions for how a social-nuclear war between Google, Twitter and Facebook could be averted.
Searching For Old Versions of Web Sites? The Wayback Machine Is New and Improved
2011: The Wayback Machine was redesigned and relaunched with a nicer user interface and migrated to a new platform as a foundation for further improvements.
Google To Push Semantic Search In 2009?
2009: “Wouldn’t it be nice if Google understood the meaning of your phrase rather than just the words that are in that phrase? We have a lot of discoveries in that area that are going to roll out in the next little while,” said Google CEO Eric Schmidt
No Surprise: Google Is No. 1 Internet Property Worldwide
2009: Google’s sites reached 77% of the online population, age 15 and up, in December 2008.
Google Maps: From “OneBox” To Ten Local Links
2008: Google appeared to be serious about showing as many as 10 local listings beside the map and phasing this into results around the world.
Google’s Mysterious Position Six Penalty
2008: Google’s Matt Cutts shrugged off discussion about a pattern of websites ranking in Position 1 or 2 falling to Position 6 in Google.
Google Best Place To Work, According To Fortune Magazine
2008: For the second year in a row.
Search Stocks & The Stock Crash: GOOG, YHOO, & MSFT
2008: Google had the greatest decline, down 19.5%. Yahoo was just behind at 18.5%, with Microsoft at about 12.5%. The NASDAQ overall was at 15.5%.
Google Health Close To Launching?
2008: The login page for Google Health was live, although the service itself was not.
Baidu Relaunches In Japan
2008: As part of this launch, Baidu revamped the Japanese home page and added blog search.
South Korea To Google: Return Our Cities From North Korea
2008: Google had labeled some of the regions in South Korea as being part of North Korea.
FTC Complaint Filed Over AskEraser: “Unfair & Deceptive”
2008: Multiple groups asked the US Federal Trade Commission to rule on whether Ask was using unfair and deceptive trade practices in marketing its tool.
Will The European Union Decide IP Addresses Are Personal?
2008: The head of an EU group looking into search privacy issues said that Internet Protocol addresses assigned to computers should be treated as personal information.
Anything Else? Vivisimo’s Remix Clustering Surfaces Subtler Results
2008: Remix clustering let you click a link to quickly answer the question, “What other, subtler topics are there?”
Google Adds RSS Snippets To Personalized Home Page
2007: Google added plus signs next to each RSS title that, if clicked, would open to show a snippet of the summary from the post.
Google’s Site Exclusion Tool Enables Unlimited Site Exclusions
2007: Google removed the cap on the number of sites you could exclude in the Site Exclusion Tool.
Google Takes Action To ‘Strip’ Confidential Information From Google Blacklist
2007: Google: “procedures have been put in place to strip login information from future submissions.”
Google To Test New Video Ads From BMG and Warner Music Group Over AdSense Network
2007: The ads were to be tested for four weeks.
Use Microsoft Live Search & Microsoft With Donate To Charity
2007: Microsoft said it would donate $1 per search to Team Seattle’s Seattle’s Children’s Hospital fund.
Google To Invest In Indian Companies Via Seedfund
2007: Google was reportedly giving an undisclosed amount to Seedfund, to indirectly invest in technology in India.
Yahoo’s Panama Migration: Mixed Reviews
2007: The reviews and opinions presented were generally positive but some smaller businesses had problems and frustrations.
TellMe To Launch New Mobile Local Search Product
2007: It was free, direct-to-consumer, voice-enabled directory assistance.
SEMPO Institute: Online School For SEMs Announced
2007: The fundamentals course went live and provide 15+ tracks.
Past contributions from Search Engine Land’s Subject Matter Experts (SMEs)
These columns are a snapshot in time and have not been updated since publishing, unless noted. Opinions expressed in these articles are those of the author and not necessarily Search Engine Land.
- 2020: Default Search in Chrome Switched to Bing for Office 365 ProPlus users by Detlef Johnson
- 2019: Don’t give up on Google Posts by Adam Dorfman
- 2018: Will AMP improve your rankings? How to set up an AMP test by Stephanie LeVonne
- 2018: How AI can uncover new insights and drive SEO performance by Jim Yu
- 2017: SEM continuity: The ROI-boosting digital marketing concept you’ve never heard of by Jeff Eckman & Paul Benson
- 2017: Attention search marketers: ALL keywords are branded keywords! by Larry Kim
- 2015: 2 Tales Of Clarity Using Google Analytics’ Multi-Channel Funnel Reporting by Carrie Albright
- 2015: How To Dissect Your Organic Traffic By Intent & Funnel It Into Sales by Neil Patel
- 2014: Are PDFs Optimal For SEO? The Pros And Cons by Janet Driscoll Miller
- 2014: 3 Surprising Benefits Of Retargeting by Larry Kim
- 2013: 25 Questions To Ask When Executing B2B Content Marketing Campaigns by Derek Edmond
- 2013: What Is The Facebook Exchange Opportunity? by Dax Hamman
- 2013: 11 Simple Conversion Strategies Many Product Pages Fail To Incorporate by Stoney deGeyter
- 2012: Google Plus Connections Are The New Links by Andrew Shotland
- 2012: How To Achieve Mobile Search Ranking Clarity
- 2012: 10 Form Optimization Tips For Landing Pages by Mona Elesseily
- 2009: The Extended Brain, Search Marketing & User Experience Design by Kim Krause Berg
- 2008: Building Smarter Landing Pages For Stronger Leads by Julie Mason
- 2008: The Brutal Realities Of The B2B Lead Qualification Process by Patricia Hursh
- 2008: Building A Career In Search Marketing by Duane Forrester
- 2007: Forget ABCs – The Social Media Alphabet Is DNRS by Neil Patel