Google has confirmed that a search ranking algorithm update was made last week after speculation of a change arose over the weekend. Unlike core Search Algorithm updates, this change was not pre-announced by Google as are the many, less-noticeable updates made on a weekly basis. Those affected by the update reported a +/-30-50% shift in rankings and traffic. Tracking tools such as SEMRush and Mozcast did not detect significant ranking shifts, so content creators are advised to monitor their analytics and GWT.
The Apple Card has been reported to grant women lower credit limits than male applicants, sparking an investigation into Goldman Sachs, the company responsible for developing the allegedly gender-biased algorithm. The issue was first brought to light by Basecamp SaaS Founder David Heinemeier Hansson, who noted his wife’s credit score was 20x lower than his own, despite the fact they file their taxes in a joint return. Apple’s response so far has been to point to Goldman, who backs the card but denies discrimination of a wide scale. The bank has agreed to review credit limits on a case by case basis. David was recently featured in SaaS mag.
1Password has recieved a series A round of funding for $200 million after 14 years of operation without VC backing. The passwords manager, developed by AgileBits, accepted the investment from Accel, a firm with a history of funding mature companies that prove to scale quickly and remain profitable, such as Atlassian and Qualtrics. The Series A round will be the largest single investment in the firm’s 35-year history. 1Password CEO Jeff Shiner made a statement saying with increased resources, the company plans to invest in developing go-to-market programs with sales, marketing and finance teams.
New in FE exclusive listings, this week we have an Affiliate Business in the in the Outdoor Power Tools niche. This listing is priced at $855,000 and offers a vast content library with a robust backlink profile. Ranking for c.43,000 keywords, this business has built a substantial SEO foundation and online reputation in the Outdoor Power Tools niche by providing detailed and informative pressure washer guides and reviews based on hands-on testing. With over 4.3 million lifetime visitors and earnings rising at a c.67.3% CAGR over the 2016 to 2018 period, this listing provides an opportunity for a new owner looking to acquire a lucrative business with simple operations and high margins. If you are interested in this business, please follow the link above to request a prospectus.
In events news, FE International Founder, Thomas Smale, attended the 2019 Chiang Mai SEO Conference this past week. At the SEO event, Thomas got to meet and exchange ideas with SEO entrepreneurs, super affiliates, ecommerce magnets, investors and influencers from all over the world. Next week, Thomas will be in San Francisco for Salesforce’s 2019 Dreamforce Conference. If you will be in the area and would like to set up a meeting with Thomas, feel free to reach out. Looking ahead, the FE International team is gearing up to attend SaaStock Australasia in early December for the annual SaaS conference, so please get in touch if you will be in the Sydney area and wish to meet with a team member.
Continue reading below for more on Google, Apple, Goldman Sachs and 1Password!
- Firm foothold in the lucrative power tool niche
- Half a decade of operational history, leading to a trusted and well-known brand
- Steady traffic with more than 4.3M lifetime visitors
- Rapid revenue growth with earnings rising at a c.67.3% CAGR over the 2016 to 2018 period
- Vast content library and robust backlink profile helping secure keyword rankings for c.43,000 keyword
Yearly net profit: $267,000
Asking price: $855,000
- Three years of operational history leading to a firm positioning in the cooking and recipes niche
- Impressive volume of traffic with c.1.8 million visitors over the LTM
- Strong SEO foundation with c.400 articles keyword rankings for c.133,000 keywords
- Lean and scalable cost structure driving high net margins
Yearly net profit: $99,000
Asking price: $300,000
In the News…
Google Confirms Search Algorithm Update Rumors
Over the weekend, questions surfaced regarding a potential Google search algorithm update. Individuals reported significant shifts in organic placement or traffic results ranging from 30-50%. Google has released a series of tweets confirming updates to the search algorithm were made last week. One tweet confirming the changes stated, “We did, actually several updates, just as we have several updates in any given week on a regular basis.” This news reveals Google makes frequent updates but does not always notify the public. This means content creators are susceptible to unforeseen changes in ranking, and should constantly monitor rankings to catch changes.
Goldman Sachs to be Investigated after Apple Card Algorithm Controversy
A regulatory investigation of Goldman Sachs has been launched over the Apple Card algorithm controversy. The inquiry began when a heated twitter thread from Basecamp Founder David Heinemeier Hansson turned into a national uproar when it was discovered the Apple Card’s algorithm, developed by Goldman, grants women lower credit limits than male applicants. The SaaS developer began the discussion by tweeting, “My wife and I filed joint tax returns, live in a community-property state, and have been married for a long time. Yet Apple’s black box algorithm thinks I deserve 20x the credit limit she does.” Apple has recently made a statement claiming they do not make decisions based on gender, and points to Goldman for the gender-biased system.
1Password Receives Series A Round of Funding
1Password, the 14-year-old password manager has just received it’s first ever round of venture capital funding. The Series A round is being led by investing firm, Accel, which is backing the company for $200 million. This is the largest investment in the firm’s over three-decade-old history. Accel reports the reason they are funding 1Password is because the company has been profitable since day-one and are successfully scaling at fast rate. The tech company has developed successful business tools serving a market ranging from consumers to enterprises and with additional capital, they plan on expanding by hiring more employees and acquiring the right partners.