Online advertising revenue sets a new record high.
The Internet Advertising Bureau reports that US online ad sales reached an all-time high of $6.4 billion in the third quarter of 2010. This represents a 17% year-over-year gain from the third quarter of 2009, and follows an 11.3% year-over-year gain for the first half of the year.
Google gets an unexpected boost from renaming "Sponsored Links" as "Ads."
Sometimes truth in advertising works: According to a study by search marketing firm The Search Agency, click-through rates have risen 11.4% since Google started labeling what were formerly known and "Sponsored Links" simply as "Ads." Google had expected a negative impact, based on a Harvard Business School professor's experiment.
A single site can now score up to four page one listings on Google Search results.
Google has announced that it will allow up to four listings from a single web site on page one of its Search results, if those pages meet the test of its search algorithm. This could allow a single site to dominate what users see on the all-important first page of search results.
Bing rolls out a new interface for its mapping program.
Bing Maps has announced a new interface with a number of upgrades. Significant changes include making the growing number of apps for Bing Maps more accessible, by putting them on a menu on the Maps home page. Bing Maps also made their maps easier to read by moving the map controls outside of the map itself.
Search Engine Land
Twitter launches a new tool to help direct traffic.
Twitter has added a tab entitled "Directory" to user home pages. Clicking on the Directory tab gives users access to tools that can help them find relevant accounts to follow, either by browsing categories, searching keywords, or seeing which accounts are similar to ones the user has recently visited.
Search Engine Land
A surge in deals raises concerns about a new tech bubble.
A New York Times report expresses concern that a wave of tech deals is creating a new speculative bubble, similar to the dot-com bubble that burst a decade ago. There have been 5,100 tech deals so far this year, compared with 7,007 in 2000, the year the dot-com boom peaked.
The New York Times
Google TV encounters content roadblocks.
Google TV's hopes of revolutionizing the way television content is delivered was dealt another blow as Viacom became the latest major content provider to block access to its programming via Google TV. ABC, NBC, CBS, and Fox had previously made their content unavailable to Google TV, as traditional content providers are wary about ceding delivery control to Google.
GM plans to move social media efforts closer to brand marketing.
General Motors recently marked its comeback from near-bankruptcy with a successful IPO, and social media have been part of the effort to move GM into the 21st century, as the company has been active withFacebook, Twitter, blogs, and online video. Now the company plans to take a further step by decentralizing its social media efforts, shifting them away from the corporate communications office and into the hands of individual brand marketers.
Retailers are lagging behind consumer demand for mobile commerce sites.
According to a study by Brand Anywhere and Luth Research, 51% of mobile phone users say they would use mobile commerce sites, but only 5% of retailers have them. Consumers showed the greatest interest in mobile sites from auto dealerships and auto parts stores, and the lowest level of interest in mobile sites for grocery and specialty food stores.
Just in time for the holidays: an Amazon price-check app for iPhones.
Amazon.com has launched an app for iPhones that should help it aggressively capture online sales from in-store shoppers. Simply by scanning an item's bar code, snapping a picture of the item, or saying its name, a customer can find Amazon's price for the same item--and be just a click away from purchasing the item, if desired.