Internet Marketing News Update #237, May 15, 2015

Google mobile search results shift away from displaying URLs.
Google has announced that in order to make its search results more user-friendly on mobile screens with limited space, its mobile search results will no longer use the web page's URL to identify it. Instead, these search results will use a more descriptive form of identification, including the name of the web site and the subject matter of the specific page.
Search Engine Watch

Bing now accounts for one-fifth of the US search market.
Microsoft's Bing crossed the 20 percent threshold in US search market share, rising from 19.8% in February to 20.1% in March. Google remains dominant at 64.4%, despite seeing its market share drop by 0.1% in March. Yahoo's share fell by the same amount last month, as they have now sunk to 12.7% after initially seeing their share rise to 13% in the immediate wake of becoming the default search engine on Mozilla.
Search Engine Watch

Mobile-only Internet users surge past desktop-only users.
According to ComScore, for the first time the number of people who access the Internet exclusively via mobile devices exceeds those who do so via desktops, by a margin of 11.3% to 10.6%. The key word, though, is "exclusively" as crossover is increasingly prevalent. People accessing the Internet exclusively via desktops dropped by almost half from a level of 19.1% last year.
Search Engine Journal

Google's mobile-friendly algorithm change is having a big impact on search results for some sites.
An early analysis of Google's move to incorporate mobile-friendly criteria into its search results shows there have been some big winners and losers from the change. According to Searchmetrics, Reddit, NBC Sports, and Motley Fool are among the biggest losers, while TV Tropes, Foreign Affairs, and the Washington Times are prominent names among the biggest gainers.
Search Engine Journal

Microsoft attempts to regain influence by embracing app developers.
Having fallen off the leading edge of software development because app developers have flocked to the Android and iOS operating systems, Microsoft is attempting to woo those developers by offering a new tool that makes it easy to convert apps written for those other platforms so they will run on Windows 10. As an incentive, Microsoft is forecasting that there will be a billion devices running Windows 10 within the next two or three years.
The New York Times

YouTube faces a subscription vs. advertising dilemma.
As happened previously when traditional print publications went online, now it is pioneering social video company YouTube that is wrestling with whether a subscription-driven or ad-driven model will be more effective. YouTube announced a new subscription service which offers users ad-free videos and gives content creators a healthy slice of the subscription fees. However, the catch is that siphoning off devoted viewers in this way could lessen advertiser interest.

Consumers are getting more serious about buying via smartphones.
To this point, PCs and tablets have enjoyed an edge over smartphones as platforms for retail purchases, but recent statistics show smartphones making up ground. While still trailing other devices in terms of these metrics, smartphones saw conversion rates and revenues per visit more than double in the past year, while average order per visit and cart abandonment rates improved more for smartphones than for other devices.

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