Digital Trends Wrap-Up: March 2018

Augmented reality marketing concept. Hand holding smart phone use AR application to check relevant information about the spaces around customer. City and flare light background

SEARCH

Google’s John Mueller Announces New Information About the Mobile-first Index. At SMX Munich, Mueller revealed new details including the fact that Google will notify users when a site is moved to the mobile-first index, and that they intend to move individual sites to the index that are the most ready for it. Click here for further details.

Google has recently lengthened SERP snippet length. In an effort to provide descriptive and useful snippets, Google has increased the character allowance for SERP snippets to upwards of 300 characters. Learn about this new change here.

Google Adds Captions to Thumbnails in Image Search Results. Google’s new image captions will consist of the page title where the image was published, allowing for optimization by modifying title tags that provide context to what the image is about. Read more about how to optimize title tags here.

Google Launches a New Umbrella Program called Shopping Actions. Shopping Actions will extend existing relationships with retailers and enable universal checkout across platforms and devices. Read more here.

Google’s Newest Search Result Page Test Displays Answers Without Any Search Results. Organic listings will be hidden for queries where searches rarely use full search results, yet search results can still be accessed with the ‘Show all results’ button. Yet, after only a week of experimenting, Google put a hold on the test.  Read more about the initial testing here, and the decision to cease testing here.

Bing Entity Search API is Now Available. Similar to Google’s Knowledge Graph Search API, the Bing API allows developers and creators to programmatically pull in Bing Knowledge Graph information. Read more about Bing’s API here.

Google Tests New Search Result Feature That Shows Answers Under ‘People also ask’ Results Box. In addition to showing additional questions that people might ask around a query, Google is now testing showing a snippet of the answer directly below the question. Read more about the test here.

Use Podcasting to Boost your Reputation and Search Engine Rankings. With podcasting rapidly increasing in popularity, there are many SEO benefits to guesting on podcasts. Click here for tips on how to boost SEO by guesting on podcasts.

Google Tests New Feature Which Allows Google My Business Pages to Publish Offers. The new feature is built into Google Posts, and allows GMB owners to create a new type of post for offers which can include a photo, up to 300 words of text, post time, start and end date/time, an optional coupon code, and a link to the offer. Learn more here.

Google’s New Mobile Ranking Algorithm Emphasizes Page Speed. Google states the speed update will “only affect pages that deliver the slowest experience to users and only affect a small percentage of queries,” yet now is the time to push for faster page loads. Learn more here.

Google is Making the Change to Mobile-first Indexing. With the new shift, mobile-first indexing means Google will mostly use the mobile version of websites’ content for index and ranking. Learn more about how to prepare your website here.

 

SOCIAL MEDIA

After much controversy over the new engagement based algorithm, Instagram reported its plans to revert back to a chronological feed. Click here for more details about the new timeline feed, along with other improvements.

Instagram users can now include hashtags and profile links in their bio. Read more here.

Snapchat introduces ‘Explore’ on Snap Map to give users automatic updates when friends take a road trip, fly, or visit a landmark, as well as reports on breaking news, events, and trends.  

Snapchat positions itself as close competitors to Instagram with its new campaign, and first T.V. commercial, that states “Snapchat is a camera.”

Click here to learn about Facebook’s new video chat option in Messenger Lite, now available to Android owners.

After large debates over privacy scandals, Facebook is making their privacy tools easier to find. Read how here.

Twitter’s new ‘Timestamps’ feature lets anyone “Tweet a live or replay video or replay a video starting from the exact moment they want to discuss.” Read more about the new feature here.

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