Non-mobile friendly sites won’t disappear from the mobile searches, Google’s senior vice president and chief business officer Omid Kordestani said during the company’s Q1 2015 earnings conference call. He added that mobile friendliness is an important factor, but end of the day it is just one of the over 200 search signals Google uses to evaluate the best results. In case a website offers good content that users want, it’ll still rank high in search results. He also mentioned that it’s still very early to speculate if these changes will impact monetization. According to Kordestani, Google is not just looking at the most relevant and timely content, but also how easy or difficult it is to read it on a mobile phone with smaller screens.
Answering an analyst question, Kordestani said that Google is very excited about improvements in mobile websites in general. He said the company is constantly reassessing where it can deliver the best answers to its users – be it through an app or on the web. They’re working with developers, webmasters and publishers to deliver their content in the best format possible. He also mentioned that they’ve enabled voice queries on the search engine.
Another issue Kordestani touched upon was the work Google is doing to index apps similar to how it indexes web content. He mentioned that so far 30 billion links within apps have been indexed. He added that the Google app on Android now provides updated services info from over 40 apps.
TrueView driving ad clicks on Google sites: Google’s chief financial officer & senior vice president Patrick Pichette said that the assumption that negative growth trends for paid clicks on Google sites & network sites and cost-per-click were due to difficulties Google faced with monetizing search on mobile is incorrect. He also reminded that in case of TrueView, Google’s skippable ad format on YouTube, user’s choice to skip an ad is also counted as a click.
Pichette mentioned that the increase in TrueView ad volumes was one of the major reasons for the growth in Google sites’ clicks. He added that currently TrueView ads monetize at lower rates than ad clicks on Google.com, however since video ads tend to reach the target audience earlier in the purchase funnel, their pricing profile is markedly different from that of typical performance search ad. Pichette pointed out that one of the reasons for the 45% year-on-year (YoY) increase in TrueView ad volumes is that YouTube has also expanded geographically over past couple of quarters.
Programmatic ad buying: Kordestani pointed out that the investments in their DoubleClick platform continues to be a big positive for the company. He mentioned that recently TrueView has been made available through the DoubleClick suite. Kordestani also informed that they’ve added online TV content to Google’s Ad Exchange through M Dialogue, a company Google acquired last year.
Google Wallet: Answering an analyst question, Kordestani mentioned that Google is currently focusing on a new set of APIs for payments and plan to call in Android Pay, through which they hope to further reduce the “friction that our users encounter today on everyday shopping experiences.” He also mentioned that in the US the overall response from merchants, banks and users have been encouraging.
Google Maps: Kordestani claimed that Google Maps currently has over 1 billion active users. Around 200 countries and territories have already been mapped. He mentioned that Google is focusing on both integrating Google Maps services in other services that the company offers, but also on partnerships which will see the Maps service in native formats being integrated with many partner services that can take advantage of it.
Chrome for mobile: Kordestani claimed that Chrome for mobile currently has over 400 million users. In a recent update to Chrome for mobile, Kordestani mentioned, they’ve made it easier for users to add their favorite sites to their phone’s home screens and get helpful opt-in notifications from sites they visit regularly.
Google Play: Kordestani claimed that currently over 1 billion users on Android devices are using Google Play, and that over the past 12 months the company has paid more than $7 billion to developers on the platform.
Google for Work: G4S moved 70,000 of their employees to Google for Work, during Q1 2015. This, among other developments, Kordestani said was responsible for Google for Work continuing to “grow at an impressive pace.” He also mentioned that Google recently launched Android for Work to encourage the general adoption of Android devices at work places.
Headcount: Google hired just over 1800 employees during Q1 2015. In total Google ended the quarter with about 55,400 full-time employees.