google+ Sign-in

Last Tuesday Google launched Google+ Sign-In for third party developers, they can now allow users to sign into applications using their Google+ account. This is Google’s latest attempt to get ‘normal’ people using the social network, it will also give the search giant plenty of user data to slobber over.

Google+ Sign-In: Try the red pillGoogle is claiming that its new sign-in functionality is more secure than the likes of Twitter and, in particular, Facebook. It also gives users sharing options so that their social networks aren’t spammed with app updates and activity. Google+ director Matt Waddell released an image taking an indirect (but quite obvious) shot at Facebook with the tagline ‘Try the red pill.’ Facebook have received criticism in the past for ‘social spam’, however, Danny Sullivan took a closer look at Google’s new feature and decided that it’s not too dissimilar.

Take a look at Google’s launch video:

Google: how search works

A busy week for Google, it also released a stunning interactive infographic called ‘How Search Works.’ If you haven’t seen it yet and are thinking, ‘urgh, another SEO infographic’, take a look it’s pretty cool. The infographic itself gives a pretty basic and general overview of how Google indexes and ranks websites, but it also has some useful stuff for professional SEOs.

The coolest part is probably the live spam screenshots which show examples of ‘pure spam’ that Google has penalised. This is updated in real-time and some of the examples are pretty humorous.

These pages are examples of ‘pure spam.’ They appear to use aggressive spam techniques such as automatically generated gibberish, cloaking and scraping content from other websites.

This page also goes on to list the types of spam that Google looks for and takes action on such as cloaking, keyword stuffing and unnatural links to/from a site.

Google also published data for the first time on manual actions, webmaster notifications and reconsideration requests. The data in these graphs is really interesting. The graph below shows the number of websites that have had manual action taken against them over the last 8 years and is broken down by the different spam types.

Google Manual Action by Month


Marissa Mayer, Yahoo CEOMarissa Mayer, the Yahoo CEO, sent an email out to thousands of her employees last week in which she announced she was banning them from working ‘remotely.’

As a result, several hundred staff must relocate to their nearest Yahoo office by June or quit. Mayer’s said ‘to become the absolute place to work, communication and collaboration will be important, so we all need to be working side-by-side. That is why it is critical that we are all present in our offices.’

Those who only work one or two days in the office will have to submit to the new regime. ‘Some of the best decisions and insights come from hallway and cafeteria discussions, meeting new people, and impromptu team meetings,’ she says, ‘speed and quality are often sacrificed when we work from home.’

groupon send andrew mason packing

It came as little surprise last week when Andrew Mason was relieved from his post as CEO of Groupon. The company has been going through a rough patch since going public just over a year ago, and its poor 4th quarter earnings sent its stock reeling.

Rumours of Mason’s exit have been floating around for a while now, and he seemed to be expecting it as on Thursday he released this letter to his employees on Twitter.

‘After four and a half intense and wonderful years as CEO of Groupon, I’ve decided that I’d like to spend more time with my family. Just kidding – I was fired today.’

Mason took full responsibility for his role in Groupon’s recent poor performance and told his former employees; ‘You are doing amazing things at Groupon, and you deserve the outside world to give you a second chance. I’m getting in the way of that.’

Groupon, now valued at less than £2 billion, is searching for Mason’s replacement. In the meantime, Executive Chairman Eric Lefkofsky and Vice Chairman Ted Leonsis are taking the reins.

That’s our weekly RoundUP of industry news, I’ll leave you with this little treat from Qualcomm: