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Weekly News: Apple Maps: What a maps web snapshot can do for your online content

Apple Maps: What a maps web snapshot can do for your online content

Apple recently announced Maps Web Snapshots, a new static map product. Maps Web Snapshots allow users to create a static map image from a URL that can be used any time an interactive map is not necessary or JavaScript is unavailable. The map image pulls from a URL, making it a fantastic option for web pages and email clients alike.

How it works.  Maps Web Snapshots allow you to visually share points of interest and location details simply by loading a URL. The maps share chosen data points and details, including business locations, geographic boundaries, routing information, and parameters, which can be customized to display different overlay styles, color schemes, and map types, allowing you to choose what information your audience sees and how it appears on their screen. All you need is an Apple Developer account, MapKitJS key information, and a domain to refer the Snapshot from. Once you set up the appropriate credentials, you can utilize Snapshots Studio to build your Maps Web Snapshot.

Unlike Apples Core Maps product, these maps are static and do not offer interactive features, making them perfect for situations where JavaScript is not available.

What it looks like. If you’ve ever used DuckDuckGo, you’ve likely seen Maps Web Snapshots in action.


Apple provides the basic map layout for developers to use as a starting point. They can then add parameters to modify the map display based on the user’s light or dark mode display, in addition to choosing the type of map displayed using the Snapshot Studio tool. Once a location is chosen for the center point of the map, parameters such as map size, language, map or satellite view, color, and marker style can be customized.

Read more:  Weekly News: Microsoft FY23 Q1: LinkedIn up 17%, search and news revenue up 11%

Read more: Apple Maps: What a maps web snapshot can do for your online content

Search marketers entering exact match keywords may see an alert towards the bottom of their Google Ads interface stating, “Broad match keywords are on. Keywords will be saved as broad match.” This message is an error and has no impact on how keywords are saved, Ginny Marvin, ads product liaison at Google, has confirmed.

A screenshot of an incorrect message in Google Ads stating that exact match keywords are saving as broad match
Image: Drew Cannon.

Tip of the hat to Drew Cannon for bringing this to our attention.

Google is working to remove the incorrect message. “This message is an error that we are working to remove,” Marvin said on Twitter, “The message was intended for a potential opt-in experiment, but it has no impact on how keywords are saved or the traffic to which these keywords match. Our apologies for the confusion.”

Read more: Google Ads error tells advertisers exact match keywords are saving as broad match

Search incrementality: How paid and organic work together for better performance

“When people tell me they can pause SEM and be fine with their performance on the holistic level on their site with just the organic listings, how do I react?” Jonathan Kagan, VP of search at 9Rooftops said at SMX Next, “First of all, no, absolutely not — unless your name is eBay, which is one of the few brands that have proven that they can do it without that, it’s not going to work for you.”

When the assumption is that your organic rankings are strong enough to keep traffic stable, some brands may be tempted to cut back on paid campaigns to save money. As Kagan mentioned, that can be true for brands that are household names, but for most queries, the search results page will show a variety of domains and paid search ads can increase the amount of real estate a brand takes up on the page.

Read more:  Weekly News: Facebook changes business ad options in reaction to iOS updates

“So, it’s essentially the concept of if you see it enough times, you’re more likely to go to one [brand] than the other,” he explained. To help brands better understand what’s driving their search marketing, Kagan shared a case study about search incrementality and the steps he uses to evaluate the impact of paid campaigns working in tandem with organic efforts.

For brands that don’t see a significant decrease in their important business metrics after pausing paid campaigns, it may be worthwhile to scale back and let organic do the heavy lifting. However, that’s just simply not the case for the majority of businesses, “So there is a definite need to run organic and SEM in conjunction together for a degree of incrementality and a degree of protection,” Kagan said.

Read more: Search incrementality: How paid and organic work together for better performance

How customer reviews can improve your SEO efforts

Customer reviews aren’t just trust signals for your customers — they can also provide potential SEO ranking boosts when used effectively.

“They [reviews] build trust in your brand,” said Kyra Sammis, customer success manager at Trustpilot, during her session at SMX Next. “Reviews are an opportunity for anyone familiar with your brand to publicly share what they love about your products, services, and customer experience. Having reviews publicly available conveys that you’re safe to do business with.”

Featuring reviews — even if they’re bad reviews — is vital for brands wanting to build customer trust in today’s competitive SEO landscape. And with 53% of all trackable website traffic coming from organic search, marketers would be wise to capture some of that share with customer reviews.

Read more:  Weekly News: Podcast knowledge panels go live in Google Search

“Reviews are a powerful marketing engine in their own right — they’re a way to build trust in your brand,” she said. “You can turn that brand trust into measurable ROI through increased web traffic sales and revenue.”

Reviewing the ultra-specific, long-tail keywords your customers use when searching for your products, services or brand is key to capturing your niche’s audience. But marketers can also leverage the queries used in company reviews, which are highly relevant and amplify customer voices.

“Long-tail keywords get less search traffic, but will usually have a higher conversion value as they are more specific,” Sammis said. “Thinking of every possible descriptor, use case or problem your product solves can be difficult, to say the least. Thankfully, product reviews let your customers become the copywriters, enabling them to share their own unique experience with your products in their own words.”

Read more: How customer reviews can improve your SEO efforts

More news:

Meta will remove targeting options for sensitive topics on January 19

Google Search Console products rich result report error handling updated

SEO 2021 year in review: Endless updates, title rewrites, GMB becomes GBP, and more

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