Good morning, sometimes one site’s loss can be another’s gain.

As often happens after big updates, repercussions from Google’s March 2019 core update have been playing out in some earnings reports. The popular automotive marketplace Cars.com noted in its latest earnings release that its “SEO traffic grew 49% year-over-year” in the first quarter of the year. We reached out to get the specifics. The company told us that while it believes it benefitted from its overall SEO strategy, another big factor was that one of its biggest rivals, CarGurus.com, saw organic visibility drop around the time of the update. The lesson? Cars.com says it’s sticking to its strategic plan, which currently encompasses roughly 100 SEO projects focused on site performance and content.

In his latest SEO for Developers column, Detlef Johnson discusses how Googlebot can now render and index AJAX-style dynamic content driven by XHR POST. In other words, how more of your dynamic content can now be indexed by Google. Detlef notes the crawl budget implications when Google renders dynamic content driven by the XHR POST request method, which prompted a discussion on Twitter.

Being unable to see conversion data for campaigns is not awesome. If you’ve kept selecting conversion columns in Google Ads only to see them disappear, you weren’t going crazy. Google acknowledged via tweet to Kirk Williams of Zato Marketing yesterday that missing conversion columns in the Google Ads UI were the result of a technical issue: “Our Engineering teams have confirmed a technical issue that caused some advertisers to stop seeing certain conversion columns in their tables, as well as filters, saved reports, and custom columns.” Google said the glitch has now been fixed.

“The biggest challenge facing Local SEOs these days is the changing Local SERPs,” says Andrew Shotland, who will be among the speakers discussing the Evolving Landscape of Local Search at SMX Advanced. The conference takes place June 3-5 in Seattle. Hope to see you there!

Keep reading for a Pro Tip on five segments to analyze, how to get started with the Bing indexing API and much more.

Ginny Marvin
Editor-In-Chief

 
 
 
Pro Tip
 

Here are the segments you should be analyzing

“If you don’t know where users come from and you don’t analyze segments, then you are missing out on conversion opportunities,” says Luca Tagliaferro of Future Fit Training. Here are some segments he recommends exploring:  “1) Devices – with so many devices available to visitors, you can spot differences in conversion rates. 2) Referral website – customers that land on your website from a trusted partner is more likely to convert. 3) Traffic sources – if you do any promotions or lots of work for SEO, this segment will show you the differences. 4) Blog landers – content marketing is very important, right? So, make sure to check this segment and see if your content helps with conversions. 5) Paid channels – especially if you run paid ads, make sure they bring conversions.”

Read More »

 

How to check why PPC performance changed

Sponsored by Optmyzr

There are lots of moving pieces in PPC campaigns and that can make it challenging to pinpoint the cause when performance changes. We share the tools to make the process of discovery faster.

Read More »

 
SMX Update
 

What's new with schema & structured data

Much has been written about the increasing importance of machine learning and AI and how they affect ranking algorithms and the presentation of search results. While it’s true that these are important factors, they’re largely beyond the ken of traditional tactics used by SEOs to influence results.

That’s not the case with schema and structured data, however, according to a recent exhaustive study of ranking factors conducted by SEMRush. Search engines are relying more and more on markup, not just to understand what content is about but to validate authenticity and authority.

And if you’re hungry for those “position zero” featured snippets, real-estate in the knowledge panel or inclusion in spoken results from search assistants, you should be focusing heavily on the excellence of your structured data.

During the What’s New With Schema & Structured Data session at SMX Advanced, you’ll hear from Search Engine Land contributor Max Prin and Microsoft Senior Program Manager Cata Milos discussing recent developments that drive both Position Zero/featured snippets in the SERPs and answers to voice queries on intelligent assistants on devices.

They’ll also offer:

– Advanced tactics that ensure your sites rank well by making content accessible to search engines.
– Tips on how to implement, test and validate structured data.
– Advice for how to future-proof content to avoid getting left out of the voice search conversation.

Both Max and Cata will also participate in Overtime, where they’ll be available to personally answer any and all questions you may have. Check out the full SMX Advanced agenda and register now.

 
Search Shorts
 

APIs, voice queries and indexing tools.

Bing indexing API how-to. Bing has written a quick setup guide to how to get started with the Bing indexing API. You can check it out over here.

Voice query data far off. John Mueller from Google made it sound like there’s little likelihood of getting voice query data filters in Google Search Console anytime soon, when he said if it was up to him, he’d have the team focus on other things.

Web pages only. Google’s URL Inspection tool is for web pages only, it is not meant for image URLs.

 
What we're reading
 

We've curated our picks from across the web so you can retire your feed reader

Why Pagination is Important – Here’s Why #215 – Stone Temple

12 reasons your SEO traffic is plateauing and how to fix it – Kevin Indig

7 Proven SEO Reporting Best Practices That Boost Client Retention – Moz

Glass Enterprise Edition 2: faster and more helpful – Google Blog

Google changes policy to block misleading ads for anti-abortion groups – The Guardian

Google Image Classification and Landmarks – SEO By The Sea

How to Add the New HowTo Structured Data to Your Content – Brodie’s Blog

Yandex Webmaster Tools: SEOs Should Check It Out – Search Engine Roundtable

 
 
 
Join Us
 

Unlock actionable SEO & SEM tactics to accelerate your campaign's success. Attend SMX East in NYC!

Attend the only conference in the East Coast entirely devoted to search marketing: Search Engine Land's SMX East, November 13-14, 2019. Join us for a deep dive into SEO and SEM tactics, networking, and top amenities including WiFi, delicious meals, and snacks. You'll come away with at least one tactic that you can immediately put to use… we guarantee it. View rates and register today!