Content, SEO and social media news: weekly round up

Google +1’s do not affect ranking

Head of webspam Matt Cutts has confirmed that Google +1’s do not have a direct correlation with the search engine’s rankings. Speaking during a recent online ‘hangout’ with the Google team, Cutts stated “We’re still going to have to study and see how good the signal is, so right now, there’s not really a direct effect where if you have a lot of +1s, you’ll rank higher.” Although Cutts did not rule out the possibility of +1s having an influence in the future, it seems that it is in fact authorship that could become the crucial defining factor. “It’s just the case that the picture is just more likely to attract attention. It’s just a little more likely to get the clicks, and you know, it’s almost like an indicator of trust…as we start to learn more about who the high quality authors are, you could imagine that starting to affect rankings,” he explained.

Twitter trialling advertiser surveys

Most brands have a presence on Twitter these days, so it’s no surprise that Twitter is tailoring some aspects of their services to their needs. As AllThingsDigital’s Peter Kafka explains, “Some users will see a tweet asking them to take a survey, and if they click on it, the message will expand within their timeline, and trigger a brief series of questions.” The surveys are intended to give business users a more detailed insight into user perceptions of their products and services. If the tests prove to be successful, you could be seeing a similar tweet in your timeline very soon!

IE10 could mean less access to online content

Microsoft’s latest offering, IE10, is set to bring a host of positive features to web browsers, but there is one feature which may prove limiting for heavy content consumers. The ‘Do not track’ function, which comes with the new browser, will automatically prevent advertisers from tracking the online activity of users. The US Association of National Advertisers (ANA) has criticised the feature, stating that “if Microsoft moves forward with this default setting, it will undercut the effectiveness of our member’s campaigns and, as a result, drastically damage the online experience by reducing the Internet content.” Whilst privacy is always of paramount importance, Microsoft should consider the impact of this setting on the content available to its users before it’s too late.