If you haven’t heard, May has been a busy month for Google. On May 4th – aka Star Wars Day – Google confirmed a core algorithm update. May the force be with us all.

Uproer has also been keeping busy. Last week, Uproer achieved Google & Bing Partner status, which opens the door to more tailored support and promotional offers for our paid search clients. Congratulations to Dan Tyler and John Smith for making it happen!

We also attended MnSearch’s very first virtual event. We loved learning about structured data strategy from the Schema queen herself: the CEO and Co-Founder of Schema App, Martha Van Berkel.

Our team members have kept ourselves occupied outside of work as well: Baking sourdough, moving house, hanging out by the lakes, yard game tournaments, and of course, lots and lots of Netflix.

Now onto this month’s newsletter. Read on for more info about transitioning your content strategy, a free version of Google Shopping, and Rand Fishkin’s long-awaited market research tool.

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How to Create Content for the New Normal

by Siege Media

The Story: The talented content team at Siege Media offers up practical advice and insights on how companies can tweak their content strategies for the “new normal” created by the global pandemic. By adjusting your keyword targeting with modifiers like “safe”, “clean”, “remote” and “virtual”, you’ll be able to stay relevant in front of changing search behavior.

Why it Matters: We’ve observed large shifts in search demand as the world has adjusted to the personal and professional effects of COVID-19. Content creators must be nimble and creative to stay in front of their audiences and remain competitive in search engine results.

We need to adjust our content strategies to the immediate impacts of the pandemic (e.g., furloughs, stay-at-home orders, priority on “essential” items) and anticipate the long-term implications of emerging trends (e.g., more remote employment, increased automation, “safe” social interactions, the pet “baby boom”) on our businesses.

New Free Version of Google Shopping Rolling Out Now

by Search Engine Land

The Story: Google is expanding shopping with a free, organic version of Google shopping open to all online merchants. The move comes amidst a tectonic shift among retailers toward online shopping and an ever-growing amazon market share.

Why it Matters: This is a huge shift, and in our opinion, it’s a harbinger of what’s to come. Not only does it underscore the sustained importance of a joint SEO and Paid Media strategy, it confirms that online shopping is only going to grow. And google wants to dominate it — or at least to limit Amazon’s domination.

The search giant has been expanding shopping ads and features for a long time, and opening the platform up to organic listings increases its overall shopability with more products and more data. This is a great opportunity for ecommerce right now, but we expect even more opportunities to come from it down the line.

Google Will Make All Advertisers Prove Their Identities

by CNBC

The Story: In an effort to create more transparency, Google has announced that advertisers will now need to verify their identities and locations. Political advertisers have been required to prove their identity since 2018 but the requirement is now being extended to all advertisers on the platform.

Why it Matters: Transparency is essential for a healthy and functioning advertising ecosystem. Unfortunately, with COVID-19, there’s been a surge in fraudulent ads for fake products and companies. Google’s new identity requirements will not only filter out the most nefarious ads but also allow consumers to better understand the ads they see once COVID-19 has passed.

If you’re advertising on Google, be sure to verify your identity within the 30 day allotted time window. You’ll need to submit legal identification for the company and yourself before doing a final in-account identity check. If you don’t submit verification in time, Google will suspend your account until you’ve done so.

Our Collective KPIs: Survival & Stability

by Uproer

The Story: You’re probably tired of reading these. We are. But we wanted to take a look at our situation — at the turbulence and the rapid changes– and give our thoughts about what paid media should do for you, and for everyone around you in a time like this.

Why it Matters: Even though things are turbulent, there is a strong case for staying the course with digital marketing. What matters now, however, isn’t sales or ROI. What matters is how well you can pivot to help people. We all have questions, and we’re all looking for reliable information and reliable services.

We all want some semblance of normal. If your business is knowledgeable, there is an opportunity to help address those concerns through digital marketing. And if it’s done right, that approach can lay the long-term framework for engaging a new set of customers.

Marketing in a Recession: Budget Cuts – The Scalpel vs The Sledgehammer

by Seer Interactive

The Story:Wil Reynolds of Seer Interactive instructs readers on how to avoid collateral damage when making budget cuts by making data-backed decisions.

Why it Matters: There are two ways to uncover data: you can use a sledgehammer to knock down everything in your path and eventually piece the puzzle back together – or you can use a scalpel to precisely access and use the data you mine. Seer captures that feeling all data driven marketers have had, where you’re trying to make sense of a dataset and you just know it’s going to take the rest of your day.

In times like these, marketers don’t have the time (or the budget!) to spend cleaning up and putting data back together to make it usable for clients or executives. This article gives you strategies using Power BI to cut down on data mining and make it more efficient.

Other Interesting Stories

Free Tool of the Month: SparkToro

Industry icon Rand Fishkin released his long-awaited tool, Sparktoro, to the public last week. This tool helps businesses discover the websites, podcasts, social accounts, and publications that their audience follows.

Sparktoro is offering 10 free searches, with the added bonus of donating $2 per search to COVID relief efforts.