The Harvard Business Review recently shared 4 Tools to Help You Identify the Skills You Need to Grow, wherein article author Dana Rousmaniere provides a lead-in and jump to a nifty self-assessment tool.
Prior to the assessment, however, Dana makes this lasting observation:
According to research, we fail to achieve our goals50% of the time. But motivational science shows that phrasing your goals as if/then statementscan increasethe likelihood of reaching them.
She goes on to suggest, “If/then statements prompt action by taking advantage of how our brains are wired. Stating “If it’s Monday morning, then I will sit down and plan out my week” creates a trigger in your brain so that when it is Monday morning, you automatically know that it’s time to plan your week.”
Local business reviews have become an area of discussion again for the search giant. On August 4 Google announced that “food- and drink-related searches will now return reviews from top critics and include best-of lists”. Beyond web searches, the Google (search) app is also seeing an update when it comes to how local business reviews are handled.
Here’s the rub:
Google has been featuring specific critics’ reviews – arguably – in an attempt to provide relevant and yet qualified content based on user interest. (Sure, it’s helpful to get reviews on places, right?)
A bit of contention, however, was added to the mix as Google’s list of local business critics included Zagat (a Google owned company), and it did not/ does not include the likes of Yelp, or TripAdvisor.
This obviously is/ was a slight to the Yelp and TripAdvisor crowd (in their eyes), outcry or possibly a tinge of conscience has since compelled the search giant to make the August 4 announcement to open it’s list of critics’ reviews (even to Yelp and TripAdvisor critics) if users apply for the qualification.
Arguably, this is a clean set of moves. Or, do you agree with Yelp CEO that it’s a monopolist play on Google’s behalf? What do you think? Tell me below.
Google AMPed Up
Another entry into the news of late for Google includes the addition of landing pages as a content type that can qualify for being shown as Google AMP content.
Here-to-date AMP pages (or accelerated mobile pages) have been limited to news article or blog related content types. Yet, there’s incentive to make more of the web instant.
As Media Post points out, About 40% of consumers will leave a page that takes longer than three seconds to load — and still, in July 2016 the average U.S. retail mobile site loaded in 6.9 seconds, according to Google data. It’s no wonder that Google estimates that 40% of those navigating to a landing page from an ad will likely not bother continuing to the page and instead click away.
About 40% of consumers will leave a page that takes longer than three seconds to load — and still, in July 2016 the average U.S. retail mobile site loaded in 6.9 seconds, according to Google data.
I anticipate that the number of page types allowed in will continue to grow. It’s possible that other page types – say, sales pages, or functional pages such as navigational or directional pages could be added to the list.
Aside from speculations, we know, Google continues to refine and redefine what it serves up to users in SERP – rich cards are a good example of how the engine and SERP continue to evolve. (Rich cards are an evolved form of rich snippets announced in May of 2016 – for more on that see – Introducing rich cards.)
That’s it for now.
Thanks for reading. Don’t forget to tell me what you think about what you think below. You do have an opinion about that, right?
For those interested, The Next Web offers a pretty convincing forecast of the future of the Internet of Things (IoT).
In a recent article regarding interest the Department of Homeland Securities has in knowing more about Blockchain technology, the author points out a potential connection that both government and business have in using Blockchain technology to secure and support IoT innovations.
Here’s a snippet from the article:
The blockchain, for those unfamiliar, is a new type of database developed alongside the cryptocurrency Bitcoin. It has become even more popular among security experts and tech firms, because it has the ability to verify transactions autonomously, making it a “permissionless” and public system that doesn’t need to rely on secure logins or passcodes.
A Blockchain database, “is a distributed database that maintains a continuously-growing list of data records secured from tampering and revision.”
A “permissionless” and public system that doesn’t need to rely on secure logins or passcodes.
It’s potential for unlocking the IoT, by covering the security issue so many legitimate concerns about, is what makes this technology so interesting.
Someone responding to the article put it succinctly:
“The Blockchain tech will solve one of the major issues and fear people have when it comes to IoT – security and protection of data.”
The DHS aren’t alone in getting excited about blockchain technology. Developers are said to have already begin pushing new products to the blockchain.
Investment companies are also weighing in. Gartner and IDC separately forecast 26 and 30 billion dollar investments in IoT via smart devices over the next 5 years.
Samsung and IBM imagine how a washing machine could become a “semi-autonomous device capable of managing its own consumables supply, performing self-service and maintenance, and even negotiating with other peer devices.”
As companies, investments, and developers get more involved, it is becoming more clear that the blockchain’s very nature as a secure encrypted and autonomous network could help empower other smart applications to also be linked, autonomous, and secure – thanks to the Blockchain.
It’s that time of year again! This is the 30th (wow, really?) year of the South by Southwest (or SXSW) convention. Once again there are a variety of events being live-streamed out to the interwebs direct from Austin. Here’s your guide to what’s live in 2016.
*Note: all times are CT, which is 1 hour behind ET.
The interactive portion of south by ends on Tuesday, but you can get a full list of live streaming events on the site (extending through March 18), or follow the conference twitter account for live sxsw news.
Perhaps you heard about the Facebook phone this week, well we’re not here to talk about chat heads, or Facebook Home today. Though we will soon.
Today, we’re going to review three fundamental user experience changes that are coming to Facebook this year. In short, they include the following…
Graph Search – Your social data uncovered
What is graph search, and why do I care? Graph search is Facebook’s search engine of user profile data. In all fairness, they would likely suggest it is a search engine of the entire social graph – your profile info., page info as well as like button and other off-site user activity. However you define it, Graph Search is poised to shake things up.
Graph Search is not meant to be a Google search replacement (in the short term). It is a different kind of search. Today it is a potentially confusing tool. Users have noted the strangeness in the areas of both the search functions and structure, as well as question the usefulness of the information available by the service. There is much yet to be discovered by Facebook and it’s users around the potential for Graph Search.
Graph Search has something to provide both advertisers and users. By including Facebook’s Nearby Places service, the social network looks to create more local reviews of businesses from users within a close geographic proximity. Incentive programs, useful information and the opportunity to champion a new area of the online space makes Graph Search + Nearby Places an enticing offer for local businesses and online marketers alike.
Once more test cases prove out; once more sharpness in the system arrives, Graph Search will fundamentally change the Facebook user experience.
Newsfeed – Unifying the experience with a mobile lead
Newsfeed is a unification of the experience with a heavy mobile lead. It will, predictably, become one more somewhat minor user interface updates in a whole series of enhancements as Facebook iterates it’s layout, design and user experience to be more and more mobile-friendly.
Today, this change seems fairly significant, but I predict in the not to distant future newsfeed will be just another update in a long continuum of updates (don’t they all seem to go this way?).
Overall, this will provide a more seamless experience across device types. I’m interested to see how they handle (if they address) click options differently. Commonly, mobile interface, or design features big buttons to accommodate a users ‘clicking’ with their thumbs. Desktop hyperlinked text phrases and other ‘click’ options don’t require such large buttons (or accommodation). In this age of the responsive website this aspect of the user experience is pretty fascinating.
Combined these UI changes – navigation changes, information retrieval and display processes – have and continue to change the look and experience of Facebook, we’ll see what this unification does to put Facebook into the mobile-future for users.
Threaded Comments – Our coversation re-organized and renewed
Already started for many larger pages, threaded comments also stand to shake things up a bit. I see this update as one that may help further lead the web-space into a frenzy of personal conversations going in a million different directions.
Threaded messages ‘help organize’ conversations by fragmenting them into new and subsequent conversations. This update alone, I don’t think will turn our world upside down. However, I do look at this as one more iteration in a continuum of updates that (combined with a tech-thirsty, wired-world) will demonstrate further how we are moving swiftly into an age of communication that might even more readily be classified as ‘controlled chaos’.