Forget mobile-first indexing, it’s mobile-ONLY indexing… and Google may delete your brand’s web site from its index in a matter of months if you’re not compliant… A new Wordpress feature might give your company’s content more reach, but is it the RIGHT thing to do?... Ipsos identify five important trends you should know about going into a pandemic-laden holiday season… and your spreadsheet is going to get smarter soon.
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EPISODE TRANSCRIPT and SOURCES:
Today: Forget mobile-first indexing, it’s mobile-ONLY indexing… and Google may delete your brand’s web site from its index in a matter of months if you’re not compliant… A new Wordpress feature might give your company’s content more reach, but is it the RIGHT thing to do?... Ipsos identify five important trends you should know about going into a pandemic-laden holiday season… and your spreadsheet is going to get smarter soon.
IT’S Thu, Oct 15, 2020.
Happy national pug day.
I’m Tod Maffin from engageQ digital. And here is what you missed, today in digital marketing.
Google Drops Desktop
If you’ve been listening to this show for a while, you’ll know that I’ve been warning you that mobile-first indexing is coming from Google soon.
That’s a big deal for some web sites. What it means is that Google will ONLY index the MOBILE version of your web site. To be completely accurate, they’ve actually been using mobile-first for more than a year now, but only for sites new to their index.
But — we learned this week they’re taking it a step further now, and if your brand’s web site serves different content to people on desktop than they do on mobile, please listen.
Come March of next year, NOT ONLY will Google start only indexing mobile versions of your brand’s web pages, but they will actually DELETE your pages from the index which are only accessible via desktop. They’ll also drop any images that are in a desktop version of a site.
Remember… nobody is deleting pages from your actual web site. What we’re talking about here is they removing your pages from their index — meaning it’ll no longer be findable on Google.
But this is the first time they’ve said they’re actually going to straight-up remove pages that aren’t compliant.
So - if you have anything you want to be in Google, it needs to be available on mobile. And you have until March to do that.
I guess really what GOogle should be calling this isn’t mobile-FIRST indexing, but mobile-ONLY indexing.
Google may be the dominant index, but they’re not the only one. Bing’s still there — and today they rolled out a new version of their Site Explorer tool.
This is a part of their Webmaster Tools platform. It’s more than a revamp, though, it’s really quite a full overhaul.
Site Explorer’s job is to show you exactly how Bing’s search bot sees your brand’s web site as it rolls around the web. Everything on your site it can touch, including redirects, broken links, and web pages that are being blocked by robots.txt.
This is presented in a kind of file-explorer interface it’ll also let you see backlink counts and you can request manual indexing there as well.
Blog Post to Tweetstorm
I completely dropped the ball on a story yesterday. I saw some news about Wordpress integrating Twitter threads and I thought — meh, okay, whatever. Sure, you can make a Wordpress blog post that embeds a bunch of tweets in a row. No big deal.
Actually, turns out, I had it backwards. And what it ACTUALLY does might have some value for your content marketing.
Rather than embedding tweets in a blog post, it will turn a blog post and into a Twitter thread.
And every part of your post will go in — including images and videos.
You’ll need their Jetpack addon for it. You basically click a few options, it previews where it’ll break it up, and then it’ll tweet it all out. That could be a LOT of tweets, depending on the length of your post. So, you know, don’t just do this for everything. And, shy of manually deleting every single tweet in that storm, there’s no Undo.
I’ll be honest, I don’t really know that many use cases for this in the real-world. Maybe if you write short posts this is valuable. Always remember — just because it CAN be automated, doesn’t necessarily mean it SHOULD be.
We’re getting closer to the holiday season, and with the pandemic affecting everything, many digital marketers are getting a little anxious about what’s to come this year.
Google and Ipsos has released some data from a study they did over the summer. It was all done in the U.S., so caveat emptor, fellow non-Americans. They found five trends you should be aware of.
- A month-long Cyber Monday: 62 percent say they'll start holiday shopping earlier to avoid crowds. This means retailers will need to rethink the usual timelines for Cyber Monday and Cyber Week.
- Digital newcomers driving growth: 69 percent plan to shop online for the holidays more than in previous years.
- 77 percent of holiday shoppers intend to browse for gift ideas online, not in-store. I don’t think any of us are surprised by that.
- But here’s one I didn’t expect: 66 percent of shoppers say they will shop more at local small businesses. I might interject to remind us all that what people tell a pollster they’ll do, and what they’ll ACTUALLY do are often two different things.
- And a third of shoppers reported purchasing from a brand that was new to them during COVID-19.
A link to the full study is in the transcript of this episode. See the link in the notes.
Sounds on Snapchat
Snapchat has released a feature that lets users to set their creations to music. This is, of course, a direct copy from TikTok.
You can add the music either before or after you shoot, and the licencing is in place for you to share it as you like.
They wouldn’t say exactly how many songs are in their catalog, other than the disappointingly vague “millions.”
Like TikTok, users will be able to TAP to view the song and artist name and there’s also a link to play the full song on any major streaming platform. UNLIKE TikTok, though, that tap won’t show you other videos that use that sound.
In the U.S., Snapchat reaches 90% of all 13-24 year-olds — which the company says is more than Facebook, Instagram, and Messenger combined.
It’s live on iOS right now, coming to Android later.
Here’s the story for my beloved data nerds out there… Google Sheets adding something we’ve all wanted for a while now: Smart Fill. This will learn patterns in your data between columns and try to autocomplete data entry.
“For example,” said Google “If you have a column of full names, you may want to split it into a column with first names and a column with last names. As you start typing first names into a column, Sheets will automatically look for patterns. If Sheets detects a pattern, it will generate the corresponding formula, and then autocomplete the rest of the column for you.”
So that’s cool.
Also, starting today, you can use Dark Mode with Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides on iOS devices. What’s that Android users? You’re always getting shafted? Nope, you actually had this before all the Apple people.
If you’ve got a marketing position you’re trying to fill… or maybe you’re LOOKING for that next great gig… consider a Classified Ad right here. It’s just $20 and you can book it online. Link in this episode’s description.
Busy day today at the agency, so I’ll spare you the usual blah blah — talk to you tomorrow.