The Week We Searched For- January 16-20, 2012
Google disappoints analysts with Q4 results- Google released its Q4 earnings report for 2011 yesterday. Despite its 25% increase in revenue Y/Y in Q4, Google’s results disappointed analysts, who were dissatisfied by Google’s 8% Y/Y drop in cost-per-click metrics. Analysts are skeptical that Google will be able to push net revenue in 2012 amidst antitrust investigations, increasing competition from Facebook, and its acquisition of Motorola. Google’s stock sunk almost 10% yesterday after the announcement.
- For more perspective on Google’s Q4 earning’s report, check out Claire Cain Miller’s coverage of the announcement on the New York Times.
Google+ hits 90 million users- During his quarterly report yesterday, Larry Page announced that ” there are over 90 million Google+ users – well over double what I announced just a quarter ago on our earnings call. Engagement on Google+ is also growing tremendously. I have some amazing data to share there for the first time: Google+ users are very engaged with our products – over 60% of them engage daily, and over 80% weekly.” Since its launch in July 2011, more than 1 million Google+ Page have been created and more than 3.4 billion photographs have been uploaded to the site. By way of comparison, Facebook boasts 800 million users and more than 6 billion photo uploads monthly.
Wikipedia goes black in protest of SOPA- It was a strange day on the Internet on Wednesday when Wikipedia introduced a 24-hour shutdown of its English-language site as part of a web-wide protest against SOPA and PIPA. On Wednesday, users were confronted with an ominous black and white page with accompanying message: “Imagine a World Without Free Knowledge.”
- To learn more about SOPA, PIPA, and the controversy surrounding the new proposed pieces of legislation, check out Cassandra Caswell-Stirling’s article SOPA- What You Need to Know Today.
Facebook introduces new Timeline apps- Facebook introduced 60 new apps to its timeline this week. Facebook’s current partners include Gogobot, Tripadvisor, Pinterest, Digg as well as Ticketmaster, StubHub, ScoreBig and Eventbrite. Now, instead of just being able to “Like” things on Facebook, you’ll be able to “Eat,” “Run,” “Buy,” etc. “Soon, there will be apps for all types of interests, as more apps will launch over time. Whether you love snowboarding, gardening, hiking, or knitting, or something else, there will be an app for you,” explains Carl Sjogreen, director of platform at Facebook, in his blog post announcing the change.
Google named best place to work in America- Google was named the #1 best place to work in America by Fortune magazine on Thursday.
Twitter acquires Summify- Twitter acquired the social startup Summify this week, which uses social data to create a personalized news feed.
Google AdWords Update: More Granular Mobile Targeting Options- Google improved its AdWords mobile targeting offering this week to allow marketers to target specific mobile devices. Now users can target their ads to specific operating systems, e.g., iOS, Android, and webOS. Marketers can now also target users based on Wi-Fi connection speed.
Yahoo! co-founder resigns- Yahoo! co-founder Jerry Yang formally resigned from the company after 17 years this week. The resignation is effective immediately. In addition to leaving his position on the Board of Directions, Yang also stepped down from the Boards of Yahoo! Japan Corporation and Alibaba Group Holding Limited. In his resignation to the board, Yang explained, “My time at Yahoo!, from its founding to the present, has encompassed some of the most exciting and rewarding experiences of my life. However, the time has come for me to pursue other interests outside of Yahoo! As I leave the company I co-founded nearly 17 years ago, I am enthusiastic about the appointment of Scott Thompson as Chief Executive Officer and his ability, along with the entire Yahoo! leadership team, to guide Yahoo! into an exciting and successful future.”
Google introduces changes to page algorithm- Google announced a new algorithm change this week that reviews page layout. If there are an excessive amount of ads about the fold on your page, your site may be penalized in the SERP. “We’ve heard complaints from users that if they click on a result and it’s difficult to find the actual content, they aren’t happy with the experience. Rather than scrolling down the page past a slew of ads, users want to see content right away,” explains Google. “So sites that don’t have much content “above-the-fold” can be affected by this change. If you click on a website and the part of the website you see first either doesn’t have a lot of visible content above-the-fold or dedicates a large fraction of the site’s initial screen real estate to ads, that’s not a very good user experience. Such sites may not rank as highly going forward.”
What we’re reading:
- “Facebook Timeline Apps: Should You Use Them?”– Jill Duffy provides a user’s guide to Facebook’s new Timeline Apps service.
- “Young, in Love and Sharing Everything, Including a Password”– Matt Richtel explores the social etiquette for teenagers around sharing online passwords to Facebook, email, and other accounts in the digital era.