Google. The globally-known company responsible for the search engine which has completely shaped the way we browse online. A lot of us search marketers would be without jobs if it wasn’t for Google and it’s wonderful ways; we have a lot to be thankful for.
As technology continues to advance, the likes of Google have to evolve to ensure that users are given the best experience at all times. And, as technology has been progressing quicker than ever before, more and more updates are released each year. Take a trip with us down memory lane as we unravel some of Google’s greatest moments of 2018!
May: Introducing Google news
There’s no denying it: the internet is overwhelming. From businesses to blogs to social media to videos; there’s so much right at our fingertips. We can’t fathom exploring the over 2 billion websites out there, but thanks to Google, finding the most relevant content is made that little bit easier.
But – what about the news? Google can’t possibly keep up with the hundreds of thousands of journalists publishing their version of news stories every single minute of every single day?
That was until May 2018, of course. Google announced the launch of their very own, reimagined ‘Google News’ platform. A platform ‘using the best of AI to organise what’s happening in the world’. As Google always has our best interests at heart, the main aim of this platform was to deliver content tailored to each individual; tailored to what they will want to see.
This update has completely changed how many of us keep in touch with the world, removing anxieties of fake/untrustworthy news.
Today we're rolling out an all-new @GoogleNews—using the best of AI to organize what’s happening in the world to help you learn more about the stories that matter to you → https://t.co/z8234zDXU1 #io18 pic.twitter.com/6QkX6x6OiD
— Google (@Google) May 8, 2018
July: AdWords changed forever
Fast-forward to July 2018 and Google once again announced something big they had been working on. This time, it was specifically for all the PPC enthusiasts out there. After 18 years of advertising platform AdWords reigning the throne, Google revealed that it would be getting a revamp. Although this might have pushed some traditionalists out of their comfort zones, the re-design was done to make the platform both cleaner and more straightforward; it wouldn’t take long to warm to. The main three changes to expect from the paid search announcement were:
🔀 Google AdWords was to become Google Ads.
🔀 DoubleClick and Google Analytics 360 were merging into one platform called Google Marketing Platform.
🔀 DoubleClick for Publishers and DoubleClick Ad Exchange were merging into a new platform called Google Ad Manager.
July: Huge algorithm changes
If you haven’t got the gist by now, Google loves an update. And, due to being the most visited search engine of all time, algorithm changes are expected. Usually, these algorithm updates are so frequent and minimal that they go unnoticed, but sometimes, they can affect a website’s rankings significantly.
Right at the beginning of 2018, Google announced that it would be rolling out a huge ‘speed update’ in July. Now, this sent the SEO industry into a panic; was this update going to send them into decline? But fear not, the announcement simply meant that we could all prepare for the update and go unharmed. Named the ‘speed update’, the following changes were expected:
💨 Page speed was to become a ranking factor in mobile results.
💨 Only slow landing pages will be affected.
Luckily, there was no evidence of major shifts in mobile rankings, so work resumed as usual after July, providing your website was optimised for mobile.
September: Turning 20 and adding new search features
If 2018 wasn’t a big enough year for Google, the much-loved search engine turned 20 years old! To celebrate this milestone, some never-seen-before features were announced. You can read all about Google’s latest search features on our blog, but we’ll give you a quick rundown here.
🆕 Activity cards: activity cards will pop up when you make a query similar to one you have done in the past. This makes re-visiting useful websites far more accesible, especially if you’re in a rush.
🆕 Collections: keep track of your searches by clustering them into your own ‘collections’. Once again, making re-visiting useful websites far easier.
🆕 Dynamic organisation: sub-categories will be suggested when you make a certain search. For example, searching for a particular breed of dog may create a tab for their characteristics.
October: Google+ shut down
Entering the last quarter of the year, and Google made an announcement which didn’t particularly shock anyone. Google Plus, Google’s social network, was to be shut down. Perhaps this was a slight downer to Google’s successes from the year, but in hindsight, it was the best decision to make. Google Plus had faced a series of legal allegations regarding exposed information and after years of trial and tribulations, it was time wave good-bye.
Please excuse us while we bring back our favourite, and very relevant, tweet…
Google+ is shutting down.
This is like when a band announces they’re splitting up and your first reaction is, “oh, didn’t realise they were still going”
— I Am Devloper (@iamdevloper) October 9, 2018
December: Year in search
Similar to YouTube’s ‘rewind’, Google releases a video at the end of each year, highlighting what got the world ticking. Considering this year was pretty epic for Google, it was very humbling to see that this ‘year in search 2018’ was all focused around the search term ‘good’. Stated by Google, in a world full of ups and downs, the world searched for “good” more than ever before. Get the tissues…
What a hectic, but rewarding, year for Google! Once again, the global giant has moulded our online experiences into a wonderful, seamless, experience. How would you like to see the world of search in the next five years? There are so many possibilities. Let’s start a discussion! 🚀