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  • Search Behavior

    Pressure Mounts to Meet Google’s Mobile Device Requirement

    With the April 21, 2015 deadline approaching, Google is attempting to reach website owners and Internet marketers are scrambling to help their clients. However, unless marketers understand how to build and test web pages and software applications that run on all platforms and devices, all they can do is send warnings about sudden drops in rank and search engine traffic. Google’s mobile test is not user testing, nor is it going to determine if web pages are user friendly on every digital device.  Websites built with old HTML are not designed for Responsive smaller screen layouts.  Pages with large images, parallax designs with layers, mega menus with sub-levels requiring a mouse and pages with videos are at risk of failing…

  • Android Screenshot
    Blog,  Search Behavior,  User Testing

    Google Mobile Friendly Does Not Mean User Friendly

    Google’s announcement that websites must pass its mobile device test has everyone in a panic. However, in the effort to redesign websites to meet this new criteria, user experience is not improving. In fact, some companies are destroying the usability of their desktop layouts while trying to adapt to Responsive design specifications.  And worse, basing mobile tests on what Google says passes its mobile readiness does not automatically translate to a better user experience on all mobile devices. Do I Need to Be Mobile Friendly? For small businesses and organizations such as churches, non-profits and hobby sites, this news from Google presents a dilemma. The cost of owning a successful website is high enough, when you factor in keeping the…

  • Search man with magnifying glass
    Blog,  Search Behavior

    Are Personal Beliefs Shaped by Search Engines?

    Despite advances in computer technology and our growing dependency on asking questions from the Internet, we may not trust the answers we find. A fascinating 2013 study by Ryen W. White, from Microsoft Research, and published online April 18, 2014 in the Wiley Online Library presents the hypothesis that searchers approach search with pre-conceived biases and opinions about the answers to their questions. “Participants who had strong presearch beliefs related to a particular outcome were unlikely to change those beliefs even in light of significant contradictory evidence when we manipulated the result list.” Information retrieval research has focused on the impact of rank position, domain preference and captions and text that appear within the top search results. This is what…