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Search News Recap: June 2020

Search trends

Search News Recap: June 2020

Welcome to the Wildfire search news recap

In these posts, we look back over the past few days and draw out interesting tidbits of digital news. Although these posts focus on search news, there may also be inclusions from paid advertising, social and other marketing channels. Sometimes we may also include information regarding tech companies which have been prominently featured in the press

1) Google: It Is Not Cheating Using AMP for Speed Optimization & Ranking – 23/06/2020

I saw this post on SEO Roundtable:

Apparently some webmasters became worried that creating AMP pages could be seen as gaming Google’s ranking algorithm(s). Rest assured; this is not the case

Google’s John Mueller said it is not cheating to use AMP. The question came up when someone asked which version will Google use, which we already answered above, the version Google serves to the searcher

Webmasters grew concerned when Google announced their 2021 “page experience” update (not yet released). You can read more about that here

It’s always interesting to see how update documentation from Google can be misinterpreted by those in the search industry

2) Black Lives Matter Impacts Search – 22/06/2020

This I find very interesting and inspiring. Recently I saw this tweet from Google:

The tweet directs users to this short URL, which redirects here. This chart shows an uptick in individuals seeking to support their local black communities:

It’s great to see that web users are seeking to back the Black Lives Matter movement, not just with words – but with their money to! It shows that people are really committed to taking action, in addition to speaking out

The Black Lives Matter ‘topic’ on Google Trends, has also seen strong uplift during early June:

In terms of related topics and queries, these are currently the top ones for Black Lives Matter:

It is of no surprise that the “George Floyd” query is most related. What I do find interesting, is that the most related topic is the “Petition” topic. This shows that web users may be seeking to engage in political action. It’s wonderful to see web-users coming together like this

3) Web-Users Look to Start Businesses – 22/06/2020

Google are claiming that web-users are looking to start their own businesses, in record numbers:

You can check out Google’s Tweet here:

This doesn’t surprise me at all. Lockdown has forced people to revaluate what they spend money on. By helping each other with haircuts and budgeting-sheets, communities are slowly realising that they have the skills to solve their own problems (by trading services, with their neighbours). The days of super-organisations buying out smaller businesses with ease and influencing our daily lives, could well be numbered

I foresee a future where there are fewer successful large businesses, and more numerous, more successful small businesses (or tradesmen / contractors)

Blue chip companies offered stability and security, but when we live in such tumultuous times (Brexit, Covid – to name a couple of disruptive forces) – how realistic does that extended carrot appear to be?

Most of us who have at some point worked in larger companies, did so to gain financial security and stability (even though the cumbersome nature of large companies and all the red tape drove us nutty). Without security and stability on the table, how many of us will be willing to continue working in such inflexible, restrictive environments? My guess is: not many!

We welcome the onset of smaller, more interactive businesses, perhaps operating as part of a larger and more flexible (national or international) community of businesses. Business seems set to become more granular, yet more rewarding with a return to stronger relationships between individuals working in different companies

4) New in Data Studio: Improved Data Source Replacement – 19/06/2020

Google have upgraded Data Studio’s data-mapping capabilities, for users who are changing data source. For example, copying one report and then swapping the back-end Google Analytics data to another account, for a different client or website

Read Google’s tweet here:

This should be great news for any web-agencies whom are currently using Google Data Studio to help drive reporting efficiencies

5) Google Release a Video on Search Manual Actions – 18/06/2020

Google have

Check out the video from Google here:

In this video, Google’s Daniel Waisberg outlines the types of activity which may result in a manual action (through Google Search Console). Following this, Daniel explores some of the possible manual actions which Google can apply:

Once the issues are fixed, webmasters should apply for reconsideration

A good review request apparently contains three main ingredients:

  • It explains the exact quality issue on your site
  • It describes the steps you’ve taken to fix the issue
  • It documents the outcome of your efforts

As we know, reconsideration requests are seldom small / quick fixes. Google have to see thorough documentation on the efforts which have been invested. The key message from Google is, invest genuine effort – go above and beyond, or your domain is likely to stay banned

6) Actions Builder & Actions SDK: New Tools Optimized for the Google Assistant – 17/06/2020

Google have released new tools for developers working with Google Assistant:

This is what Google have to say:

Since the launch of the Google Assistant, our developer ecosystem has been instrumental in delivering compelling voice experiences to more than 500 million active users. Today, we’re taking a major step forward in helping you build these custom voice apps and services by introducing a suite of new and improved developer tools: Actions Builder and Actions SDK. These tools make building Conversational Actions for the Assistant easier and more streamlined than ever

I also found this comment very interesting:

Actions Builder is a web-based IDE that lets you develop, test, and deploy directly in the Actions console. The graphical interface lets you visualize the conversational flow, manage Natural Language Understanding (NLU) training data, and debug with advanced tools

Google released these ‘codelabs’ to help developers get started:

Written by

SEO & digital marketing specialist of nearly 10 years. A master of Google Data Studio, XPath and more. Applied data-driven analysis, to increase revenue and on-site conversions. Architecting information, to bring you closer to your online audience!

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