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YP’s “Mybook” Makes Local Search More Social

Local search provider YP has been investing in its mobile app, doing brand advertising and generally seeking ways to better compete with rivals such as Google, Foursquare and Yelp. It doesn’t have the reach of Google or the content of Yelp but with its mybook feature the company may have…



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Influential Twitter Accounts Indexed More in Google [Research]

Stone Temple Consulting released findings of research today that showed indexation of Twitter pages was low in Google search results overall, but that influential Twitter accounts with specific types of tweets were indexed more.

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Google’s EU Censorship Removes Links For More Than Just Names On Their Own

It turns out that those in the European Union asking Google to “forget” links they don’t like that appearing for searches on their names are also getting links removed for any search that involves their names and additional words, rather than just their names alone. Until now, it…



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Bing Ads Lays Out Plans For Coming Year: More Scale, New Ad Formats, Eventually Automation

“As great as this past year was, I’m more excited about FY15 than I’ve ever been,” said Microsoft’s David Pann, General Manager for the Search Network, by phone this week about Bing Ads as the company starts its next fiscal year. “All the fundamentals are…



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Google’s New AdWords Editor Version Offers Shopping Campaigns Support, More Display Targeting Options

Roughly a month ahead of the rollover to Shopping Campaigns, Google has released a new version of AdWords Editor that supports the new campaign type. Google announced the old style of PLA campaigns will be shut down at some point in late August. Note that support is limited to editing Shopping…



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Instagram for Business: Data-based Answers re: Timing, Hashtags, and More via @Buffer by @kevanlee

How do you choose which social media networks to participate in? Certainly, there’re a ton to choose from. Are you on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, and LinkedIn? Are you on Pinterest and Tumblr? Instagram and Vine? How many social media networks can you handle? Instagram makes a strong case, if you’re interested in raw numbers and unique appeal. Instagram has 200 million active users and provides a huge asset for visual content, which we all know is driving social like none other. It’s one of the top 10 most popular smartphone apps with growth nearly doubling that of every competitor ahead of it on the list. More […]

The post Instagram for Business: Data-based Answers re: Timing, Hashtags, and More via @Buffer by @kevanlee appeared first on Search Engine Journal.

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UI 101: Are Looks or Usability More Important While Designing Your Website?

In releasing our themes, we got lots of reactions about the aesthetics of our themes. Some people found them plain looking, boring or unappealing. Others were very enthusiastic. Of course, there is no accounting for taste. But it made me wonder, how important are the aesthetics of a website? Does a beautiful site convert better? And what is the relation between aesthetics and usability? What is Beautiful is Usable? The Halo Effect The halo effect is a cognitive process in which people attribute all kinds of characteristics to a person based on a first impression or one characteristic. The attractiveness or the […]

The post UI 101: Are Looks or Usability More Important While Designing Your Website? appeared first on Search Engine Journal.

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iOS Developers Make More Money, But Android’s Volume Is Closing The Gap

Looking at smartphone and tablet sales, Google’s Android ecosystem should be printing money for developers. After all, not only are Android device sales outpacing Apple’s iPhone and iPad sales, but Google also shares more Android-related revenue with its ecosystem than Apple does with the iOS ecosystem. 

And yet iOS developers earn more than Android developers. What, or rather who, gives?

The answer is in efficiency. Apple is able to centralize its revenue stream while Google shares with a wide variety of partners. But Android, on pure volume, may soon outstrip the mighty iOS.

Android’s Larger Ecosystem

It’s no surprise that Android devices have been outselling iOS devices for some time. Given Apple’s insistence on charging a price premium, falling behind was a foregone conclusion. Analyst Mark Hibbens estimates Android’s widening lead over iOS in shipments.

Credit: Mark Hibbens

Which means, of course, that in the first quarter of 2013 the population of Android’s installed base surpassed that of iOS and will almost certainly never look back.

Credit: Mark Hibbens

And yet this hasn’t translated into more money for the Android app economy.

Who Does Android Pay?

According to a new VisionMobile study, Apple’s app economy is considerably larger than Google’s Android, at $163 billion:

Apple’s Ecosystem: All About Apple

Google’s is smaller at $149 billion:

But there’s a key difference between the two economies, from hardware to apps to accessories: Apple claims much of its ecosystem’s revenues, whereas Google shares among manufacturers, developers, carriers and advertising partners. To highlight this point, both Apple and Google take a 30% from developers for paid app downloads and in-app purchases. Google used to hardly keep any of this money, passing it along to distribution partners (like cellular carriers and payment processors) and paying fees. As of Google I/O 2014 though, that policy has changed and Google will keep nearly all of the revenue from Google Play. Apple keeps nearly all of the 30% it takes from app developers.

Not that Google is necessarily playing a charity here. Part of Google’s problem, as ABI Research notes, is fragmentation. While ABI says Android was used in 77% of smartphones shipped worldwide in the fourth quarter, 32% of those 221 million devices used forked versions (up from 20% of shipments the year before and up from 27% in Q3 2013).  

So a fair amount of Android’s adoption does not generate revenue for Google, even if it wanted to. Google is trying to minimize the negative impact from fragmentation “by giving primacy to Google Play Services as the hub for new Android capabilities,” as Crittercism’s Michael Santa Cruz highlights, but it has a long way to go. 

Even so, Google’s strategy inherently shares more with its ecosystem: by design, Google doesn’t care about capturing hardware or accessories revenue, and even in software it is less concerned with app revenue than ad revenue. Google’s goal has long been to get more people on the Internet, using the Web, searching for more items. Google’s view is that the more eyeballs there are on the Internet, the more potential it has to advertise them through search.

Google announced that it payed app developers about $5 billion dollars between Google I/O 2013 and I/O 2014, with a rate increase of 2.5x in that span.

And yet iOS developers make more. $500 – $1000 per app per month, according to VisionMobile, compared to Android’s $101 to $200 per app per month. 

At least, for now.

Go East, Young Man

While Hibbens suggests that Apple’s higher app spend per device accounts for the chasm between the Android and iOS economies, and that this gap will only widen over time, this feels like a short-term perspective. Yes, it’s true, as Andreessen Horowitz’s Benedict Evans posits, that Apple benefits from a “wealth gap” between its customer base and Google’s. 

Apple enjoys market share superiority in the comparatively rich North American and Western European markets, as VisionMobile illustrates:

This isn’t something to celebrate, however. As I’ve written before, emerging economies can’t afford Apple’s price premium. And when “emerging economies” include China, set to become the world’s largest economy in 2014, and India, another market serving over one billion people, the future for Android looks very bright indeed.

It will likely continue to be the case that Apple will earn more app revenue per device than Google, but that’s just fine for Google. Android has always been a volume play. With few exceptions, Google’s business model is always about skimming small amounts of money from vast amounts of transactions

Which is not to say Apple is doomed. It’s simply to argue that developers should tune their monetization strategies differently for iOS and Android … just like Apple and Google do.

Article updated to correctly reflect Google’s cut of Play app earnings.

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Larry Page On Right To Be Forgotten: “Could Have Arrived At More Practical Place Than Court Ruling”

Larry Page offered his thoughts on the European court’s “Right To Be Forgotten” ruling during an interview at Google’s I/O conference this week with New York Times reporter Farhad Manjoo. Page claimed it would have been better if there had been more discussion around the…



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Page On EU Right To Be Forgotten: “Could Have Arrived At More Practical Place Than Court Ruling”

Larry Page offered his thoughts on the European court’s “Right To Be Forgotten” ruling during an interview at Google’s I/O conference this week with New York Times reporter Farhad Manjoo. Page claimed it would have been better if there had been more discussion around the…



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