Our team reads hundreds of articles every week from Search Engine Optimization and Pay-Per-Click Advertising and Web Design and just general news. We strive to stay on top of the current digital trends as well as keeping and eye ahead for what’s to come. This information search is highly important for not only our company but industry in general. Each week we recap the top articles to provide our readers with the main stories they need to be following. If Google released a new algorithm, or an apps blowing up on the market you’ll hear about it here. So if you didn’t get a chance to read your usual feed or are just looking for a way to cut down on read time we have you covered. Come back every Friday for a new collection of our favorites and the most noteworthy pieces from the digital news sphere.

What we are Reading for February 17th


Wall Street Journal Backs Out of Google “First Click Free” Program

Google’s First Click Free program allows searchers to access a limited amount of publisher content without a paywall barrier, typically three stories per day. The intention of the program is to minimize users’ annoyance from paywalls, while potentially converting those users. The Wall Street Journal confirmed this week that it took down its content from the program. Now, search results from WSJ have a subscription label. The publication doesn’t expect that this change will impact CTR or conversions. (Contributed by Sr. Online PR Specialist Ellen Borza)

Prioritizing Link Building Efforts

Link building can be a tricky task, especially if the reason for wanting to link build is unknown. Some reasons might be to rank higher for a specific keyword, grow ranking authority, or be more visible. Whatever your reasoning might be it’s important to keep that in mind when creating a plan. It’s also important to evaluate anchor text and domain/rank authority. When you compile a list of possible link opportunities go through and evaluate them on their metrics. Some will have better authority over others when it comes to fitting the needs of your plan. Some important questions to ask are, “will the link give me direct traffic” “is it a nofollow or follow link” and “are there any risks associated with this?” Once the link opportunities are evaluated and analyzed it’s time to start building those links. (Contributed by Online PR Specialist Michelle Arnold)

Google Is Bringing Back Emojis

For a small amount of time site owners were able to put emojis in their title tags and meta descriptions however, it seemed that they were abused and Google stopped displaying them. It has now been confirmed that Google is indeed bringing them back for relevant queries. Searches related to emoji’s may display the characters but it is all up to the discretion of the algorithm. (Contributed by Sr. SEM Specialist Anna Horn)

Reverse Machining the Google Algorithm

Figuring out just how webpages rank has been a conundrum for SEO’s since the beginning. Years ago it was much easier as updates to the search algorithm affected all industries across the board. In today’s search world however, updates can be real time, slight, and subliminal. We may not even know they happened until late after the fact. Finding patterns is hard but as we ourselves rely on machine learning it just might be possible to learn more about just how the algorithm works. (Contributed by Sr. SEM Specialist Anna Horn)


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