We’re well into 2019, and the regular improvements to Google services keep coming as they always have!

In this article, we’ll be covering a new security-related feature for the Google Search Console, improvements to text ads, and the addition of voice input and spoken results for mobile search.

Search console

As Google prepares to move away from the older version of Search Console, it’s continued migrating features into the new version.

Google recently announced the option under the new version for security issues – an area where you can be informed by Google of any security-related problems or notifications relating to your website.

The list for these is extensive, so it’s worth being aware of the migration of the feature. Via Search Console, site owners can easily see issues relating to harmful downloads, deceptive website pages and more common – but still important – issues like hacked URLs and most forms of malware.

The malware notifications, in particular, are quite in-depth, with separate notifications for SQL and code injection, cross-site malware warnings and more.

As you might expect, the new UI is as clean as it always is with Google, and it’s great for site owners and marketers to have an easily accessed, easily digested rundown of any work that needs fixing on their or their client’s sites.

Text ads expand

YouTube ads have been growing in sophistication and functionality for some time now, and it’s never been a better time for a business or marketing agency to start experimenting with the platform for advertising.

Recently introduced features like TrueView CTAs (calls to action) and location extensions are going hand-in-hand with the new ability to show your Google text ads on YouTube. In essence, Google is continuing to incorporate the YouTube platform into its network of Search Partners.

A key note here is that Google says it’s observed similar performance on text ads for both Google and YouTube. If this is true, there’s no reason to be afraid of having your ads shown on both platforms.

Best practice, though, is to tread carefully until your own performance data builds up on any campaigns you’re running. It should go without saying that although users can now see the same ads on both platforms, their priorities and reasons for browsing will differ for each – and that can impact how well your ads perform.

Mobile web search: Voice is here

Google continues to encourage the use of voice search and has expanded voice input and spoken results into mobile web searching for Android phones.

This functionality already existed in a different way, with users being able to search on mobile web by using the Android keyboard mic. The new feature, however, makes the use of voice plainer and more accessible – and discoverable – by the average user.

Beyond adding in the microphone icon inside the search box on Google mobile search, the new addition also lets users hear spoken results if they’re on Android phones. This opens up voice search to more practical situations, such as when the user is driving a car or is occupied visually otherwise, such as when making dinner. Yum.

So what’s Google’s goal here if the feature was already present?

For one, consistency of experience. This feature helps make voice easier and makes the Google Assistant more ubiquitous and will probably drive further overall usage of voice on mobile.

This form of conditioning or training is an interesting indicator of Google’s usual drive to encourage voice search – worth thinking about for business owners and marketers who are, or will be, using Google ads.

Food for thought

An interesting roundup of what Google’s been up to recently! We’re grateful to see you stop by the blog. Be sure to bookmark and return regularly for more updates on AI and marketing technology in general.

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