Update on Title Tags, Changes to Google My Business Products, Posts & Justifications

Google My Business Products

Before we dig into what’s happening around the web this week, let’s tackle the latest on the Google spam update and title tags rewrites we discussed last week. We’ll be quick.

1. Google Search Central confirmed on Twitter the spam update is now complete.
2. Danny Sullivan shared in an official blog post on Google’s changes to how they generate web page titles.

Writing Pages Titles Is Still Important for SEO

Google did say that “of all the ways we generate titles, content from HTML title tags is still by far the most likely used, more than 80% of the time.” So for those of you thinking you no longer have to bother with writing page titles for the pages and blog posts on your clients’ websites, you are mistaken.

We’ve also said that beyond the page title, your title tags (H1s, H2s, H3s) are extremely important. They help Google to better understand the content on the page, they help the user to scan headlines on a page or post – and they help with SEO.

Since Google is now sometimes pulling the title tags and displaying those in search in place of a page title, you need to make sure you’re paying even more attention to the H1s and H2s especially.

Google claims they made more changes after what happened last week with the title tags, and most issues should be resolved. We confirmed that this title – which was pulling incorrectly last week – is still pulling incorrectly this week.

We did a site search for another team member’s page because we wanted to see what title Google displayed for the search. They used the title tag we provided for this page, and in fact, the meta description too. At this point, it seems there is neither rhyme nor reason to their methods.

If you’re finding sites that Google is generating titles for pages on your client’s website that don’t make sense you can share that information with Google’s John Mueller here.

Google My Business Will Now Be Approving Products Before They Are Published

It seems Google is now going to be approving products added on a Google My Business (GMB) listing. Glancing through the Google Product Approval help doc, it does not appear they’re going to stop businesses from adding services in the product section.

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We did a test on our Google My Business listing. The product went into pending immediately and was approved within 10 minutes.

What Else Is Happening With Google My Business?

Over on Street Fight there’s an interesting read about personalization authored by Damian Rollison. Damian says, “When I refer to personalization, I’m talking about various means of customizing search results to conform to the specific details of what the searcher is looking for.”

He points out that the “GMB mission is to have businesses provide as much relevant information for as many content areas as possible.” This lines up with all the features made available in the GMB listing for us (as local marketers) to complete for businesses.

Google My Business Justifications Comes Up Again

Damian continues by pointing out that Google is using the information the business provides in the GMB listing to personalize the search results. To demonstrate relevance they show justifications or mentions, as we have referred to them before.

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Joy Hawkins’ team released a helpful how-to explaining the different types of justifications within a Google My Business listing, and which ones are indicators that the justification influenced the appearance of the business in Google Maps.

Is Google Sharing Your GMB Posts on Third-Party Sites?

When putting up a Google My Business post this week, this message was spotted at the top: “Your posts will appear on Google services across the web, like Maps and Search, and on third-party sites. Your posts must comply with Google’s policies.”

As of now, we don’t know what third-party sites Google is referring to. It will be interesting to see how that turns out.

Google Will Always Be Making Changes

Just as you can count on Google to always be making changes, you can count on us to help with your listing management needs. Go ahead and request a demo and take a tour of our listing management solution today.

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