January was chock full of some pretty major Google updates, including a core algorithm update, the massive featured snippet update, a SERP redesign, and the introduction of the organic product carousel.
Despite all this, we still had time to sneak in some fun events. Our team enjoyed Dan Morrison from Aimclear’s take on paid social at this month’s MnSearch event.
And last Friday, our team member Abby Reimer also got the opportunity to speak with MnSearch at the Student Advertising Summit on How to Get Your Digital Dream Job.
That’s our Uproer update, now onto the search world’s. Read on to see what you missed from February’s newsletter, and don’t forget to subscribe so you’re in the loop next month.
The Story: Google has rolled out a new expanded online shopping experience. This new means of shopping indexes product data from over 1 million online stores, organizes the data, and creates listings for various clothes and accessories, with pricing & provider information listed for all available options.
Why it Matters: This could be a game changer for B2C e-commerce. For starters, there is more organic real estate up for grabs, which makes well-outlined and Google-friendly product listings critical for online success. Plus shopping ads will no-doubt continue to become more important for companies looking to compete with larger retailers on the platform.
But on the flip side, the option to “buy on google” could take away significant revenue from all online stores, especially those that rely heavily on “you might also like” upsells and checkout-stage add-to-baskets.
Overall, the update only exacerbates the need for a thoughtful, deliberate e-commerce marketing strategy that uses PPC & SEO in lock-step to drive revenue in an evermore competitive space.
The Story: Czech-based cybersecurity company Avast will “wind down” its marketing analytics subsidiary, Jumpshot, after months of investigations into the extent of the company’s data harvesting & selling practices.
Why it Matters: Jumpshot has supplied data to many SEO tools, including Moz, SEMrush, and Ahrefs. It’s possible that losing this data might impact some of the reports and tools that we as marketers rely on.
That said, there’s no clear timeline for when Jumpshot will stop sending data, and SEO tools often rely on data from many sources. So, it’s unclear how we’ll all be affected.
Things will likely stabilize soon, but for now, the best we can do is keep our ear to the ground and our eye on our dashboards to see if any drastic changes shake the metrics in our reports.
The Story: The Story: Alan Coleman of Dublin-based Wolfgang Digital shared insights from the company’s annual E-Commerce KPI Study. The study is designed to help marketers benchmark their own performance and help predict trends going forward.
Why it Matters: When it comes to e-commerce, the focus has often been on the bottom of the funnel. Wolfgang’s study points to a reversal of this trend: dollars are now flowing back to the top and it’s paying dividends. As an agency, we can vouch for the importance of top-of-funnel content to our clients, including e-commerce sites. If you’re an e-commerce business, don’t neglect the top of the funnel; it will pay off in the long run.
Among Wolfgang’s other interesting insights is the fact that the average number of sessions per user is 2 and the average number of sessions per customer is 5. In other words, successful e-commerce marketers invest in creating seamless experiences that keep users coming back. SEO and PPC are critical for getting users to your site but UX is what turns them into customers once they arrive.
by Search Engine Roundtable
The Story: Google has clarified that having an image show in a featured snippet will not prevent a URL from showing in the organic results.
Why it Matters: It’s always nice when Googlers come out and clarify some concerns with users and SEOs alike.
Danny Sullivan of Google has clarified that if a “featured snippet shows an image from a different website, that image URL will not be “deduplicated.” Meaning, if your image shows next to someone else’s content, don’t panic – your URL will still be present in the “10 blue links” section of the SERP.
He also clarified that he’s heard the feedback and will “push for improvements.” Expect more changes to the SERPs, friends. Their work isn’t over yet.
Other Interesting Stories
by MIT Technology Review
by Samuel Schmitt