SEO

This day in search marketing history: February 5

Moz upgrades its Domain Authority metric

In 2019, SEO tool Moz announced an update to how they measured Domain Authority (DA).

Basically, DA is a score, from 0-100, that “predicts how likely a website is to rank in search engine result pages.”

Curious about what changed? Read all about it in Moz upgrades controversial ‘domain authority’ metric.

To be clear, Google does not use Domain Authority to determine ranking. “We don’t use domain authority at all in our algorithms,” according to a tweet. by Google’s John Mueller.

I bolded that part above because the DA metric has caused confusion within the SEO industry, as many have basically assigned it value as a meaningful SEO metric, akin to the old visible Google PageRank scores. And you will often see it in spammy SEO and link building emails.

Even Rand Fishkin, who created the metric, essentially disowned Domain Authority as something he didn’t care much about anymore (“I know. I created it, but still”) during Milestone’s Engage conference in August 2022.

Also on this day

Justice Department homing in on Google Ad Manager in antitrust probe

2020: The feds were interviewing publishers and ad-tech rivals about whether Google has too much control “over the monetization of digital content.”

Tripadvisor’s new ‘Review Hub’ lets restaurateurs manage reviews from multiple sources in one place

2020: The subscription-based product could also be used to identify review trends across sites.

Video: Jim Boykin on how link building has evolved over two decades

2020:  In this installment of Barry Schwartz’s vlog series, he also chatted with Boykin about Google penalties, algorithm updates and the importance of featured snippets and people also ask for SEO.

5 takeaways from Google’s Q4 2018 earnings for search marketers

2019: Google executives discussed search experience, campaign, device and performance updates.

Google adds new SEO Audit category to Chrome’s Lighthouse extension

2018: The popular auditing tool used by developers and search marketers enabled users to run basic SEO checks against site pages.

Google dedicates engineering team to accelerate development of WordPress ecosystem

2018: Google’s partnership with WordPress aimed to jump-start the platform’s support of the latest web technologies, particularly those involving performance and mobile experience.

Google Search Console AMP report error now corrected

2018: “Major content mismatch” were due to a processing error on Google’s side. 

Google Has Penalized A Link Network In Japan

2016: After being quiet for over a year on link network penalties, Google said it had penalized a large, Japanese-based link network.

AdWords App For Android Now Supports Universal App Campaigns

2016: New conversion columns were also available in the latest update.

Sorry, No Emoji Allowed In Google PLAs (Frown Face)

2016: Google updated its store name guidelines in the Merchant Store policy center to specifically cite emoticons and emoji among its don’ts.

Search In Pics: GoogleBot Costume, Google Maps Peghog & Fancy Google Coffee Maker

2016: The latest images showing what people eat at the search engine companies, how they play, who they meet, where they speak, what toys they have and more.

Official: Twitter To Give Google Access To “Firehose” Of Tweets

2015: Twitter confirmed that it had a deal again to supply Google with access to its full stream of tweets.

As Apple-Google Deal Expires, Who Will Win The Safari Default Search Business?

2015: Would it be Bing, Yahoo or Apple itself that supplied Safari’s search engine?

Marketers Spent $4 Billion On Click-to-Call Advertising In 2014 — Report

2015: Lack of keyword attribution created a “blind spot” for search marketers.

Google App Indexing Statistics & Errors Being Emailed To Webmasters

2015: Google Webmaster Tools email notifications drove app deep linking awareness in terms of errors and impression and click statistics.

It’s Done: Google Settles Search Antitrust Case In Europe

2014:  Google escaped any significant fines or penalties. More coverage: Wow! See How Much Screen Real Estate Google Is Giving Rivals In Its EU Antitrust Settlement

Google’s Latest Manual Action Penalty: Spammy Structured Markup

2014: How to get it: marking up content that was invisible to users, marking up irrelevant or misleading content, and/or other manipulative behavior that violated Google’s Rich Snippet Quality guidelines.

Official: Google’s Sridhar Ramaswamy Takes Over Ads & Commerce As Wojcicki Heads To YouTube

2014: Ramaswamy and Wojcicki shared the title of SVP, Ads & Commerce, and had been jointly running the ads division for the prior year.

SEMPO Search Survey: Nearly 70% Of Agencies Say Client SEO Budgets To Increase In 2014

2014: Only 47% of respondents from within a company said there would be a significant or, at least, some increase to their SEO budget.

Yelp Reports $233 Million In Revenue For 2013, Up 69% From 2012

2014: Active local business accounts on Yelp grew to 67,000 in 2013, up 69% year-over-year.

Microsoft’s $15 Million Check-in: Will Redmond Buy Foursquare?

2014: Microsoft had reportedly signed a multi-year agreement to license Foursquare data for both mobile and Bing on the PC.

Bing Launches New Winter Olympics Search Features & Counter To Track Gold Medals

2014: When Bing users searched on specific sports and athletes the search engine would include Olympic-related schedules and content in its search results.

“When Do The Olympics Opening Ceremonies Start?” Search Engines Compete To Answer

2014: How Google, Bing and Yahoo stacked up in this Olympic effort.

Telenav Thinks Scout Can Take On Google Maps

2014: Apparently because Scout had higher user ratings than Google Maps in the Google Play store at the time.

Will A Google Crackdown On Shady Search Toolbars Hurt AVG & IAC?

2013: Either they needed to change their ways — and become much more transparent and easy to use — or they would apparently need to look elsewhere for ads. More coverage: IAC: We Comply With Google’s Toolbar Standards

Survey: Half Of Small Businesses Never Update Their Listings Online

2013: 70% of SMBs said they didn’t have the time to manage listings on all of the sites that consumers use.

Study: Are Public Record Ads Placed On Google Racially Biased?

2013: The study found that ads associated with black identifying names were more likely to have ads with the word “arrest” in them than ads that were associated with white identifying names. 

Dilbert: SEOs Control Content On The Web

2013: A Dilbert cartoon once again took a jab at SEOs and what they do or can do.

When Is the Super Bowl Start Time? The NFL Finally Gets It Right

2012: In past years, organizations like the NFL, the playing teams, and the failed to show up in search results because none of their sites answered the question.

Turning The Tables On The Google Toolbar & Disclosure Claims

2012: Google didn’t seem to occupy any higher ground than Microsoft when it came to using data gathered from browser add-ons to improve its own services, including its search engine.

What Time Does the 2011 Super Bowl Start? A (Continuing) Lesson in Search Visibility

2012: The NFL and FOX were still nowhere to be found.

Google Recommends The Competition On Your Business Place Page

2010: The content block, called “Nearby places you might like,” appeared below reviews on the place page and show up to 10 recommended businesses.

Microsoft Extends Bing Search Deal With Facebook

2010: Deal included a more robust Bing search experience on Facebook. Also, Bing would power Facebook search outside of the U.S., to all Facebook users, worldwide.

Siri: Not A “Search Engine” But You Might Use It Like One

2010: The highly-anticipated iPhone app was intended to enable you to do more with your voice and your phone in fewer clicks or moves.

Super Bowl 2010 Winners: Google, Yahoo & Bing Are Ready

2010: All three had Super Bowl shortcuts/oneboxes in place.

2002 In Review: Google Powers AOL; AdWords Go Cost-Per-Click

2010: Major events from the year 2002 in consumer search.

Google Earth Adds World War II Imagery

2010: Y could compare, side by side, the earth as it is today versus how it was during World War II.

Search In Pictures: Bing Hat, Yahoo Balls & Yahoo Karate

2010: The latest images showing what people eat at the search engine companies, how they play, who they meet, where they speak, what toys they have, and more.

Google Continues AdWords Product PlusBox

2009: It was still a limited beta to test the effectiveness of engaging potential customers for advertisers.

Google Books Search Goes Mobile

2009: If you viewed the book on a mobile device, they would try to extract the text using OCR and show you plain text, not scanned text.

A Bad Month For SEO’s Reputation

2008: Although the bad reputation issue had been out there for years, demand for SEO services was as strong as ever.

MicroHoo: Boon Or Bust For Yahoo?

2008: There seemed to be mounting cynicism and detachment among Yahoos.

2008 elections

Google Releases New Link Reporting Tools

2007: You could view and even download thousands of links to your site via Google Webmaster Central.

Google’s Click Fraud Team Writes On Commonly Raised Concerns

2007: They analyzed IP address, duplicate clicks, and various other clicking patterns to detect click fraud.

Searching For Super Bowl XLI

2007: Although there were improvements over 2006, this year was still lacking in terms of integrating their offline and online ad efforts.

YouTube Pulls Videos That May Not Violate DMCA Law

2007: Google didn’t know whether a video was infringing. It simply knew it was reported as an infringement.

Krillion Launches ‘Actionable Local Search’

2007: Krillion helped consumers find where they could buy products in their markets after conducting online research.

Major UK Mobile Companies Look To Start Mobile Search Engine

2007: The companies included Vodafone, France Telecom, Telefonica, Deutsche Telekom, Hutchison Whampoa, Telecom Italia and Cingular.

FAST Introduces Private-Label Contextual Ad System

2007: It let publishers manage and serve their own advertisements, bypassing Google, Yahoo and other third-party contextual advertising services.

Will Tagging Replace The Dewey Decimal System?

2007: 28% of internet users had tagged or categorized content online such as photos, news stories or blog posts.

Past contributions from Search Engine Land’s Subject Matter Experts (SMEs)

These columns are a snapshot in time and have not been updated since publishing, unless noted. Opinions expressed in these articles are those of the author and not necessarily Search Engine Land.

< February 4 | Search Marketing History | February 6 >

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About the author

Danny Goodwin

Danny Goodwin is Managing Editor of Search Engine Land & SMX. In addition to writing daily about SEO, PPC, and more for Search Engine Land, Goodwin also manages Search Engine Land’s roster of subject-matter experts. He also helps program our conference series, SMX – Search Marketing Expo.

Prior to joining Search Engine Land, Goodwin was Executive Editor at Search Engine Journal, where he led editorial initiatives for the brand. He also was an editor at Search Engine Watch. He has spoken at many major search conferences and virtual events, and has been sourced for his expertise by a wide range of publications and podcasts.

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