It seems we’re always talking about Google. Whether we consider it a friend or foe, it’s difficult to deny that much of SEO news revolves around every breath Google takes. And it’s true, you don’t hear folks saying “I don’t know, let's Yahoo it.”
In keeping with its nonstop release schedule, Google recently announced several new features.
Google Analytics Tracks Page Load Times
Google is like an inspirational high-school teacher. He sees the potential in you that you have not yet discovered, and he’s always setting the benchmark higher and pushing you further. Google wants you to be the best you can be – for yourself, and for your users.
That’s why with Google Analytics you now have the ability to track your page’s load times with the new Site Speed report.
Site Speed Report will provide you with valuable information; you can do a lot with it, such as:
- Find out which landing pages are the slowest
- Determine impact of load times on conversion rates
- Track varying loading times for different geographic areas
- Measure load speed on different web browsers
To start measuring your site speed, you’ll have to fiddle a bit with your Analytics tracking code, but Google can walk you through that.
Google Business Photos
Like any good teacher, Google continuously offers optional extra credit, giving you the chance to go above and beyond, should you choose to do so.
Google’s latest extra credit assignment comes in the form of its new Business Photos feature.
With Businesses Photos, you can apply to have a Google-sponsored photographer come and take interior shots of your business, restaurant, or store. The photos then appear on your Place Page. You can also upload your own photos, but the Google team will provide their photographic expertise, even doing panoramic photos.
If you have a store with a subterranean lair, this could be your big breakthrough!
Some of you might wonder why interior photos are necessary, and so I will remind you of the extremely over-used adage, “a picture is worth a thousand words.” If people are snooping around online checking out different stores, having some extra snapshots could set you apart from the rest.
People share photos online of everything from their new haircut to their child’s first successful use of the toilet (trust me, I’ve seen it!), so why shouldn’t intimate pictures of your beloved business be out there too?
Google’s New Search Globe
Google is a cool teacher. He isn’t all work and no fun; that’s why Google has introduced the new Search Globe.
Search Globe is a fun little goody that creates a unique visual display of people’s search queries all around the world. The Globe visualizes the searches from one day, with the different colors representing the majority language of the queries.
You’ll see that some areas, such as Africa, are pretty black—it’s hard to Google something without a computer. Google’s ultimate goal is to have the whole globe covered in a beautiful rainbow of colors. Heck, make it a double rainbow.
So thanks again Google, for being that teacher who loves to push us in the right direction while having some fun with us along the way.