For mobile searches, Google plans to expand AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) support and display AMP results throughout the SERP, not just in the Top Stories section. Though there is no direct ranking boost for AMP results, this move gives sites, including non-news publishers, more chances to have AMP pages appear in the organic results.
Google announced that Hangouts On Air are moving to YouTube Live. The feature that enables multiple people to participate in a free, live-broadcast conversation will no longer be part of Google+ as of Sept. 12.
Google released Google Duo, a free new app for making one-to-one live video calls. Called a "no-frills FaceTime competitor," the standalone (and non-integrated) app is available for download on Android and iOS phones globally.
Local businesses can now add structured data for critic reviews, even specifying the snippet they'd like to display in a local Knowledge Graph card in Google SERPs.
Google put out a help document explaining exactly what is meant by impressions, positions and clicks in Google Analytics.
Google AdWords Express users can access some newly launched features. The automated service geared for advertisers who don’t have a website but want to run search ads now includes: more information about incoming phone calls (including area code and call duration) for Verified Calls; new capability to schedule the days/hours when an ad will run; and a new Map Actions chart.
Social media site Instagram launched Stories, a new feature that lets users post photos and videos that disappear after 24 hours. Similar to Snapchat, these ephemeral images and videos can be enhanced with text and drawing tools.
In its continuing fight against spam, Facebook is now targeting clickbait headlines. Using clickbait wording in post headlines can now trigger the News Feed algorithm to demote the individual post as well as the Page.
The rivalry between ad-blocking proponents and Facebook heated up this month. After the social media site for the first time said it would circumvent ad blockers and show ads even to people with such software installed, popular ad-blocking company Adblock Plus published instructions for overriding Facebook ads on desktop computers. Facebook responded that the measures "don't just block ads but also posts from friends and Pages" and cause a poor user experience. So the battle isn't over yet.
Facebook wants to become a "more video-centric network." Besides the new Stories feature in Instagram, new photo and live video filters are being tested in Facebook's mobile app. Users authorize a camera to sit above the News Feed; the filters work Snapchat-style but have few options so far. The test feature is available only to iOS users in Canada and Brazil, and Android users in Canada.
Facebook's new Page design is rolling out to all business Pages. The new design changes the left-hand tabs into simple text links, which looks more like a typical site navigation. Also, the profile photo no longer overlaps the cover photo and right-side display ads have been removed for a cleaner look.
Bing Ads rolled out Upgraded URLs, a new capability for advertisers to manage the final URL, custom parameters and a shared tracking template. Bing's Upgraded URLs make tracking ad clicks and changing landing page URLs more efficient and offer URL enhancements such as an increased character limit, separate mobile URLs and more. Google launched a similar feature last year, and Bing Ads is enabling advertisers to import their Upgraded URLs from Google AdWords.
The Federal Trade Commission is getting tougher on celebrity endorsements in social media, which the agency says must include disclosure if there was any compensation to the celebrity, including free products. The FTC is aggressively communicating the guidelines, which say simply adding #ad or #sp or other hashtags may not be enough, and filing complaints against brands such as Lord & Taylor and Warner Bros.