August Online Marketing Roundup
Time to read the most important news of the month. Don't miss all the news that your business needs to know to be up to date. Read our August Online Marketing Roundup!
1. Google Announces: AMP to Show In Organic Results
There are over 150 million Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMPs) in Google’s index from 650 thousand unique domains. Only a fraction of those AMPs ever get found by searchers because, until now, the only way for AMPs to get surfaced in search results was through the “Top Stories” carousel.
Google is unveiling an early preview of expanded AMP support across the entire search results pages. This means you will start to see AMPs surfaced in the blue links alongside other non-AMP pages.
You will be able to tell the difference because AMPs will be designated by the familiar lightning bolt icon.
There’s a live demo which you can try for yourself by navigating to g.co/ampdemo. Within the demo you can try searching for virtually anything to see how AMP can provide a faster searching and reading experience on the mobile web.
Google emphasizes that this is not intended to lead to a ranking change for sites. Pages will still be ranked as they normally would in search results, while Google highlights which pages provide a faster end-to-end user experience.
It’s also an opportunity for publishers to get their AMP content seen by more people. News publishers were able to blaze a trail for how AMP HTML could impact speed on mobile devices, and now e-commerce sites appear to be the next in line.
Ebay alone has up to 8 million AMPs, but the likelihood of an eBay product page ever showing up in the “Top Stories” carousel is extremely low. The same goes for pages from Disney, Genius, and Reddit — all of which have embraced AMP.
Initially designed for the news industry, AMPs are now being published by e-commerce, entertainment, travel, and recipe sites to the tune of 4.2 million AMPs per week.
2. Facebook Business Pages Get A New Look
Facebook Pages have a brand new look. The new desktop Facebook page layout design, includes a new navigation and a prominent call-to-action button.
The layout change is nice and clean. For the most part, all of the same elements you’re used to remain, Facebook has just reorganized them.
So what’s changed and what hasn’t? Here are five things you need to know about the new Facebook Pages layout.
A. Profile Pictures
Your profile picture now appears at the top left of your Page above the new navigation. Profile pictures will no longer appear over your cover image.
Your minimum Facebook profile picture size remains unchanged, at 180×180 pixels (displays 160×160 on desktop).
B. New Navigation
Below your profile picture and page name you’ll find a new navigation, where users can go to sections of your Facebook page, such as About, Videos, Photos, Posts, and Events.
You can customize the navigation section depending on your type of business. You could create a tab to showcase content from your other social properties (Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube), reviews, quiz, or encourage people to subscribe.
C. Cover Images
Now that cover images have been repositioned to the right, your profile picture will no longer interfere with your cover image.
There’s more good news: Facebook cover images remain the same size (828×315 pixels). However, if you created an image to workaround your profile picture in the past, you might want to think about updating it.
D. Call to Action Button
Beneath your cover photo is a new prominent blue call-to-action button. You can use this button to invite your Facebook fans to take an action on your website, whether it’s Book Now, Shop Now, Sign Up, Watch Video, or Learn More.
E. Pages Are Ad Free
The new pages are entirely ad free. In the past, ads have appeared on the right side. Desktop ads aren’t a huge driver of Facebook’s revenue anyway, as 84 percent of Facebook’s ad revenue is from mobile.
3. Pinterest Is Changing The Way It Sells Its Ads
Pinterest is changing the way it sells CPM campaigns, as marketers will now be able to bid on inventory through an auction process.
Previously, CPMs -- or cost per thousand impressions -- were only available on a fixed priced basis. Meanwhile, the company also added that marketers can now add frequency capping, which will allow them to specify the maximum number of times a person can see their campaign.
4. Confirmed: New AdWords Interface Rolling Out to More Users
In March of this year, Google announced a sweeping change to the interface of AdWords, a product that hadn’t had a significant facelift in quite some time.
Some days ago, a few AdWords users were surprised to see the new UI showing when they hopped into their accounts. Google has confirmed that the interface is rolling out to more AdWords users.
Yatin Mulay of Zen Online Marketing logged on to see the above new tab-less interface (with data redacted). He went on to state that some features were hard to find in the new interface and that it was a “radical” change.
In regard to the new interface surfacing, a Google Representative has confirmed that the interface is rolling out to more users. Previously, Google has stated:
Through 2016 and into 2017, we’ll continue to build out this new AdWords experience, and invite advertisers along the way to try it out and provide feedback. Invites will be sent based on a number of factors, therefore not all advertisers will be able to test the new experience right away.
It should be noted that this move is purely an interface design change — it will not change the core functionality of AdWords.
5. Instagram Adds Two New Rather Significant Video Features in Quiet Update
Instagram released an app update for both iOS and Android users — and while the quiet announcement may seem minor in the wake of the addition of the Snapchat-esque Stories, the update adds two pretty significant video features to the app’s camera.
The update now allows users to zoom while recording a video by swiping up or down. The feature is similar to what Snapchat has had for over a year, but it’s new to Instagram’s 3-to-60 second video clips. The feature was added to both the iOS and Android versions.
Apple users get one more feature — during a recording, users can double tap the screen to switch between the cameras. That means users can swap from the front-facing selfie camera to the back camera, shooting both themselves and something else of interest in the same clip.
While the update was a quiet one — without even an official Instagram blog post announcing the changes — the change could be a significant one for users that use the app’s built-in camera to shoot video.
6. Facebook Rolls Out New Video Metrics
Facebook is rolling out new video measurement metrics to its Page Insights and Video Library, according to a blog post.
New metrics include:
- Audience demographics for video
- Viewer engagement with live video
- Video views from shares and crossposting
The new metrics started rolling out last week and will be accessible to all Pages in a few weeks. The metrics are based on feedback from publishers who want to learn more about the audience for their Facebook videos.
7. Google Wants Pop-Ups Gone by Jan. 10
Starting on Jan. 10, Google says it will slam sites that block content on mobile devices with popup ads and interstitials. On that exact date, most noncompliant websites will drop in search results.
That’s what Google Product Manager Doantam Phan posted on Tuesday in Google’s Webmaster Central Blog. What’s more is sites will stop being marked as mobile-friendly — Google will simply expect that to be the case.
It may be interesting to see if Google’s move revitalizes the display ad business. Google will allow those ads and, coincidentally, offers them, as well. (Ahem, Google Display Network.)
Mark Bauman, CEO of ad block prevention tool provider ReviveAds, says he thinks only Google will benefit from this algorithm update.
“Only time will tell,” he says, “[it] could mean higher rates for display advertising or more aggressive forms of advertising out of display.”
But there may be a quick fix.
“Convert the pop-up ad into a banner ad,” suggests Michael Bertini, in search marketing at iQuanti, a data-driven digital marketing company that works with Fortune 500 firms. “This should help control the loss of clicks from the pop-up ad.”
Meanwhile Publishers may be hit the hardest by this potential ranking drop for mobile sites with “intrusive interstitials.”