Android’s Back button is great, but makes gesture navigation worse

The lowly, utilitarian Back button makes copying the iPhone X a lot harder.

It’s been a few months since I started using Android’s take on gesture navigation, having enabled it on my Pixel 2 XL smartphone as a beta feature back in May. Now that the feature is out of beta alongside the rest of Android 9.0 Pie, I’m turning it back off again.

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Analyst warns Facebook investors: “systemic mismanagement” poses big risks

With a bevy of negative Facebook headlines, analysts see more risks than rewards.

Headlines over the past few weeks–nay, years–have been hard on Facebook. If it’s not a story detailing how the company mismanaged user data, it’s another scathing report about how it misleads customers, can’t get fake news under control, or is killing the news business.

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What CEOs are doing to increase gender diversity in leadership

Women remain underrepresented in C-suite leadership. 3 CEOs share how they are working to change that.

A lot of companies are paying attention to diversity these days–thanks to increased media scrutiny and incidents illustrating problems that emerge when diversity is not a priority. Pair that with plenty of research that shows a positive link between diverse teams and a company’s bottom line–one might assume that we’d make major progress right now.

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When will tech worker wages start growing again?

Wages increased by just 2.1%. Adjusted for inflation, that’s essentially flat.

We’re all used to rolling our eyes when we see headlines about the obscene wealth in Silicon Valley: Jeff Bezos making $6.2 billion in 5 minutes, Sean Parker’s $9 million wedding in a redwood forest, tech CEOs building expensive underground bunkers in case of doomsday.

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No, there’s not a measles outbreak

Go get vaccinated to ensure measles outbreaks don’t become a reality.

The Centers for Disease Control wants people to know that there is no current multi-state measles outbreak. Yes, people have come down with the preventable illness over the last year, but it’s no more than to be expected—especially when people stubbornly refuse to get vaccinated.

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8 Reasons You Should Join us at SearchLove London 2018

We’re closing in on SearchLove London – it’s on 15th and 16th October – in just a few short month’ time. We’ve been running a conference in our home city since 2009, and I’m as passionate as I’ve ever been about making our events stand out.

You can still get a ticket for under £800 – the classic all-access pass costs £779+VAT – and get access to the whole conference as well as after-show entertainment on both nights.


Here’s why we think our show is special:

1. Quality

The combined outstanding and excellent ratings from a recent conference.

I obviously don’t generally get to see all the feedback other conferences get, but I’d bet ours is right upthere. At one of our recent events, our eight best speakers were all rated outstanding or excellent by over 9 out of 10 people in the audience. Even our twelfth-best speaker was rated outstanding or excellent by 4 out of 5 people in the audience. I’ve never seen another conference where the bottom quartile speaker ratings are still getting into the ~65% outstanding or excellent range.

Speaker quality and consistency is our top priority, and the most common complaint about conferences generally. With our conference being a single track show, we know everyone will see every speaker, so they all need to bring their A game, and they know it.

2. The speakers

We’ve invited some of the best speakers from Boston and San Diego to London 2018.

Speaking of the speakers(!) I’m so grateful to all the people who put such an incredible amount of work into preparing their talks – if you’ve never done it, you have no idea how much work and pressure it can be.

This year, we have:

  • Exceptional speakers: we often invite back speakers who do an exceptional job at our other conferences. Running events on both sides of the Atlantic might bump up our travel costs, but it lets us see great speakers with our own eyes before inviting them to our big stage:

    • To come in the top 4 at our San Diego conference this year, a speaker needed to get over 90% of the audience rating them outstanding or excellent. At this London event, we’re bringing 3 of those top 4 speakers back to wow you, including one speaker who scored a perfect 100%! (*)

    • In Boston earlier this year, our top 3 scored 90+% outstanding or excellent.

  • Returning favourites: 3 of the top 5 all-time best SearchLove speakers (looking at average scores from speakers who’ve appeared multiple times)

  • Brand new speakers: 12 of our 17 speakers have never appeared at SearchLove London before including our 3 community speakers. We’re confident they’re going to will blow you away (see below for more on our prep process)

(*) the other top-4 speaker was Rand Fishkin (DistilledU members can see the videos here). It looks like we need to get him back over to London soon!

3. A great venue

The Brewery adds to the SearchLove London experience.

As a speaker, I’ve rarely come across a stage as good as the one at The Brewery. It’s a huge widescreen, with extra massive screens partway back so everyone can see my slides, the stage is huge, my face is projected far too big alongside the slides giving great trolling opportunities when I pull stupid faces, and the audio / visual setup is top-notch. I trust the A/V team to make me look and sound good, and I get to concentrate on my story.

As a delegate, you get a seat with a desk, power, notebook and pen. You get wifi that works, and you get top-notch food and great coffee. Join us for structured lunchtime work at our Topic Tables staffed by the Distilled team, or just hang out and catch up with friends new and old.

4. A taste of London

Enjoy your time in one of the most vibrant cities in the world.

We know that many of our delegates travel to attend, and so we’ve picked our venues for the conference and entertainment to help you make the most of your trip to one of the greatest cities on the planet.

The Brewery is in The City of London – the historic Square Mile – so you’ll get a taste of the traditional. The entertainment is conveniently nearby, and you’re within easy walking distance of the buzzing Old Street technology hub (with its great hipster coffee) as well as Clerkenwell with its spectacular restaurants and fancy bars. Even in the time I’ve lived and worked in London, I’ve seen a dramatic improvement in the food and drink scene – all great excuses to make the trip to an incredible city.

If you want to spend a bit of time visiting London either side of the conference, you can be anywhere in the centre of London within 20-30 minutes by public transport, whether you want to see the tourist sights or do some shopping. If you want to extend your trip to the rest of the UK, you’re close to the Kings Cross and Euston stations that connect you to almost everywhere north of London (and even to St Pancras for Paris and the rest of Europe).


5. Access to experts, and the chance to meet friends old and new

We work hard to make networking with fellow attendees as enjoyable as possible.

We know that much of the value in attending a conference comes from meeting speakers and other delegates so we set up plenty of opportunities to do that:

  • VIP ticket-holders join the speakers for an exclusive pre-show dinner.

  • We have chosen to have a single-track event, with our main speakers getting a full-length 40-minute session (our community speakers are getting 20 minutes each) – this means that every other delegate has seen the same speakers you have, and so you’ll have plenty to chat about, and all our speakers will be very familiar to you and super-approachable

  • Plenty of opportunities to mingle and meet people – including structured and unstructured lunchtime sessions, regular breaks, a fantastic party on the first night and industry meet-up on the second (which even non-delegates can attend so invite your other London friends)

6. Past delegates would urge you to come

You might have noticed that I’m a bit obsessed with feedback. As part of the conference feedback, we ask our delegates to tell us how likely they are to recommend our conference (out of 10). From this, we calculate a Net Promoter Score (NPS). NPS ranges from -100 to +100, with anything over 50 being excellent. Last year’s London conference rated a 55 with almost half the delegates surveyed (44%) giving it the top possible score of 10.

7. Coming from overseas? It’s cheaper than ever

Without getting too political about it all, our currency has been fluctuating a bit over the last year, and so right now, our tickets come in at only:

  • EUR 869

  • USD 989

There has to be some silver lining, right? If you’re coming from the US or Europe, the exchange rate has never been more in your favour. Your money goes further!

8. We’re working hard to address all the criticisms we’ve seen of marketing conferences

It turns out good coffee is high on people’s conference priorities.

Last year, I put out a call on Twitter to ask for everyone’s common complaints about marketing conferences because I want to make sure that we are doing our very best to avoid them – whether they’re big complaints or small details:

  • We take our code of conduct very seriously and work hard to make our events welcoming and inclusive for all – and I’ve heard good private feedback about our efforts:

    • We remind speakers about it during our prep calls

    • It’s emphasised during our MC’s intro

    • All our staff know what to do in the event of witnessing or receiving a report of a violation

  • We’ve got sessions on hardcore link building and deeply technical topics – we’ve got plenty on content and social, but we haven’t forgotten our roots

  • And a load of details:

    • The food is great – delegate comments:

      • “the general organisation and food etc. were top notch”

      • “really good food”

      • “great food”

      • “great venue and food”

    • The wifi works

      • “good wifi”

    • We have great coffee

      • “coffee was awesome”

    • Complaint: lanyards can be hard to read or flip over. Our lanyards have names printed on both sides – hopefully big enough to read easily

But of course, by far the most common issue people have is with speaker and talk quality. I talked a fair bit above about our speakers but we are by no means assuming that we’ve done all we need to do – we continue to run a speaker selection and preparation process that involves:

  1. Detailed research, including watching previous footage, reviewing past decks etc

  2. Discussion of topic ideas that the speaker has new and interesting ideas about

  3. Content calls with me or a senior Distilled team member to set expectations, discuss the outline, and share information about the conference and audience

  4. Where appropriate / for any speaker that wishes: review and feedback on actual talk outlines and draft decks

We also encourage first-time speakers to review footage of past top-rated sessions and speakers.

I asked a few of our speakers for their thoughts on our speaker prep process. They said:

Emily Grossman:

“The SearchLove team really sets speakers up for success. It all starts with initial planning brainstorms where we talk about the best topic-fit for SearchLove. Will, Lynsey, and the whole team are very open about what works and doesn’t work for their audience. As a speaker, this helps shape how I’ll approach a certain subject and allows me to really tailor both my topic and my deck to the SL crowd.”

Greg Gifford:

Sam Noble:

What are you waiting for?

There’s still time to pick up your ticket, but time is running out. Click the link below and pick up your ticket today. Reply in the comments if there are any last-minute questions you’re burning to ask.

Join us for SearchLove London 2018

How to Make Google My Business (GMB) Work For Your Small Business

What Is GMB?

Before we get into how using Google My Business will help your company, let’s first discuss what it is. Google My Business (GMB) is a free online tool offered by Google to assist with how your business appears on Google Search, Google Maps and Google+. This is an important tool for smaller local business’ as it allows potential customers to easily search, find and interact with their business.

GMB’s main purpose is to help with how your company is displayed on their search network. However, it is also a powerful tool for tracking customer interactions and experiences, as well as posting new or upcoming events your business is launching. These tracked interactions, experiences, and events help other potential customers determine whether or not your business is one they will want to interact with.

How Customers Search Locally

While interactions and digital presence is a huge factor in the decision process, the three main factors that customers take into consideration when searching a local business online are:

  • Pertinence
  • Location/Range
  • Distinction


The pertinence of a local search is based on what the search user is looking for;  i.e. are your services what the customer is seeking? Think about these questions:

  • Are you offering the solution but not the want? (Wants can be the desire for certain brands, models and colours)
  • Are you offering the want but not the solution? (The solutions here would be big brands, but old and refurbished models)

How relevant your services are to the search user is key to hitting this need. Methods you can use to give a boost to your GMB listing includes enhancing the relevance. You can do this by adding all the proper categories for your business, using a number of high-quality, images, as well as creating an SEO-focused business description


The second most important factor of a local based search is the location/range of your search query. Depending on the distance of your location and the users need for a solution, a search user may overlook factors of importance such as pertinence and distinction in order to get a quick solution to their problem.

Depending on the search query location is the only factor that really matters; Gas, Emergency Walk-in, Emergency contractors (Plumbers, electricians, etc…) Local Patio/Bar, etc. With location-based search, the closest answer is often the best answer. Some ways your GMB can assist with your location-based search is providing the business card that appears on the right-hand side of a google search. This will provide the NAP information (Name of Business, Location Address and Phone Number); the accuracy of this information is key for location-based searches. Along with listing the location of your business, you can also list the areas that your business is willing to service. For example, “We service within 500 km of this location,” will not display on the business card, but will also allow Google to show your listing to someone that’s searching up to 500 km away.  


The third and often most overlooked factor for a local search is distinction. While some searches are purely based on the business solutions you can offer your customers, and how far your solutions are from your customers, many searches are based on the prominence of your business. How old your company is, your overall star rating and your both your negative and positive reviews will paint a picture of your company to new customers who have searched you online. Do you have links to known brands and organizations that can augment your business? Capitalize on these factors to help boost your company’s distinction.  


GMB Features to Help Local SEO

Google My Business has a number of benefits to make your digital business presence stand-out to users. However, depending on your type of business and with more and more people going digital, these features have now become a new standard. Key features that allow you to interact with your client base include:

  • Information
  • Reviews
  • Photos
  • Messaging
  • Insights
  • Bookings


The first feature everyone should be focused on when setting up their GMB is the business information section. This section beyond any of the other features is going to be the main factor of your GMB account; no other features will matter if you have provided incorrect NAP information. Once you have included your business information and ensured that it is correct, the next main section to focus on is the business description. When creating your business description on Google, be sure to include your top keywords in order to contribute to your local SEO efforts.  


Another main feature that has always been popular among small business owners is the “Review” feature. This allows customers to leave positive, neutral or negative reviews of the business. While we always hope to have nothing but 5-star reviews, the occasional negative review is not necessarily a bad thing. A negative review is simply an opportunity to showcase your customer service and PR prowess. Often, an accurate and heartfelt response is more powerful than a negative review. This gives potential customers the impression that your business is serious, honest and fair, which are all qualities customers look for in their Google search.


Photos is an older feature like Reviews,  but is often vastly underutilized by business owners because of its seemingly simple purpose of just displaying photos. However, if utilized properly, a good set of photos could very well be the edge you need over your competition. Let’s say for example you’re looking up garden renovation services and come across two competitors that both have a GMB listing, and who both have positive reviews. Difficult decision to make, right? Maybe not. Thanks to the photos section you can see the same blurry image used over and over from one company while the other has a nice set of professional, high-definition photos of their completed work, even showing a few before and after shots. People are very visual and as such will naturally favour the company with better visual imagery.


Posts is a new feature recently added to GMB. It is believed that Posts is Google’s response to the decline of their social media platform, Google+. The posts feature is still new on GMB, and as such, there is a lack of best practices agreed upon by users. This means that the most effective way to utilize the feature is still being debated amongst digital marketers.

This feature has been utilized as an announcement system, using posts to promote upcoming events, sales, and other time-sensitive promotions. The posts feature has yet to gain traction among small and local business, but one thing’s for sure; it can give those with time-sensitive events a leg-up on the competition.


Messaging is an amazing interaction and feedback feature that allows companies to provide a “Contact Now” option, allowing users to message requests, questions, orders and other inquiries directly from Google’s search network. This is very much like Facebook’s messaging system which has been a proven effective two-way communication line between company and customer.


Insights is a valuable feature for local, as it allows business owners to segment their markets and focus digital marketing efforts towards key performance areas that have proven to show a higher concentration of users searching for their business. Some key assets a local business owner can take advantage of in the insights feature of GMB are:

  1. How Customers Search for Your Business – This will break down whether or not users are searching for your business based off a direct search, or if they are finding your business based off of a search based on business category, products or service offered.
  2. Where Customers View Your Business on Google – This breaks down which search service; Search or Maps.
  3. Customer Actions – Depending on which actions people take when they are searching your business GMB will provide quick actions that allow them to search and access the information they need to faster, making the search process a more seamless interaction. Actions provided by GMB are:
    • Visit Your Website
    • Request Directions
    • Call you
  4. Direction Requests – This provides a break down of postal codes and a colour coded map that displays where people are requesting directions from the most.
  5. Phone Calls – This panel attributes how many calls the business received throughout the day and week, which allows for tracking and planning.
  6. Popular times is a great feature for users, as this allows them to see when the location is busiest and plan their visit accordingly.
  7. Photo Views & Photo Quantity – While these are two separate panels they both provide insight into how the images for your GMB are affecting your customer’s searches. Views details how many times your photos have been viewed compared to those of your competitors. Quantity compares how many photos you have uploaded how many your customers have uploaded and does a cross comparison against your competitors giving you a quick glance if you need more participation from customers or yourself and whether or not you are on par with industry competition.


Booking is a simple feature that allows Google to work with the third-party booking features your company uses in order to make reservations right from the search page. This feature allows business’ to stand out from the competition while providing a useful feature that increases direct interactions. Here’s a shortened list of recognized third-party booking services you can use with GMB:

  • Appointy
  • Bookatable
  • Booksy
  • Full Slate
  • Genbook
  • Shore
  • Yocale.

The Google My Business platform offered by Google is a highly useful, free tool available to local brick and mortar stores. It offers a distinct advantage over their competitors that do not use GMB, as well as the opportunity to target your customers at a critical stage of their purchasing decision. While every feature will not be useful to each business type, but all the GMB features are designed to assist you with standing out to and interacting with your customers.

If you would like to learn more on how to boost your organic traffic using GMB, call TechWyse today at 866.208.3095 or contact us here.

The post How to Make Google My Business (GMB) Work For Your Small Business appeared first on The TechWyse ‘Rise to the Top’ Internet Marketing Blog.