With March out the way it is time to get the prosecco in the fridge and look forward to the long Easter weekend. This month the Daily Mail has managed to irritate the entire nation (again), a new Ricemedia baby was born (welcome to the world Babba Dave) and we’ve hired four new people to join the Ricemedia office! There were a few tears cried over the live action version of Beauty and The Beast, and vegans all over the world rejoiced about the release of almond milk version of Baileys. March has been a pretty big month for the SEO, Digital Marketing and Social Media world as well, and we know why you’re here! So, grab a cuppa, put your feet up and find out about 10 things that happened in digital marketing this March!
Google Updated its Fred Algorithm
It’s no secret that Google likes to update its algorithms roughly 600 times a year, but when there’s an unexpected surge or drop in traffic with no confirmed algorithm it’s pretty frustrating. However, Sistrix came to our rescue after their analysis of 300 domains gave them a few answers. They found that sites with heavy advertisements (many using AdSense campaigns) were penalised by the update, with some site visibility decreasing by 75%. You can find out all about it here.
Instagram Plans Major Changes (again)
Once again Instagram hit headlines after stating that they were planning to launch a new feature that would allow users to make bookings through the app. This ever evolving photo sharing app is also considering adding other options such as reviews, and a buy button. This change makes a lot of sense, considering the fact that 80% of Instagram users follow a business. Find out what Instagram’s Head of Business has to say about it here.
Google Tracked 4 Billion Store Visits From Ads
Since September, Google extended their two-year old store visits measurements programme, and has been doing everything in their efforts to tie clicks on ads to store traffic. Google has said it has captured over four million store visits after users have clicked on an ad, up from a billion just under a year ago. Still unsure of whether your business needs Google ads? Then click here if you need convincing!
Here’s What you Need to Know About Google’s Test Cards
If you’ve been on Google lately, you’ve probably noticed a difference in the SERPs. Google Test Cards are taking over, and it’s changing the way we interact with classic 10 blue links we’ve grown accustomed to seeing over the years. There’s a lot to learn about these test cards, and one of Rice’s very own did a little research of their own. Find out what our tech wizard, Liam has to say about them here.
Cortana is now a Feature on the Android Lock Screen
With the rise of Alex, Cortana and Siri it is no secret that voice is changing the way we search, and this month Cortana officially became a feature on the android lock screen. Apple have also made a few changes to Siri in their iOS 10.3 update, to alert users about an array of things. Cortana, Siri and Alexa are becoming so prevalent, that ComScore predicts nearly half of all search queries will be voice initiated by 2020. We’re really interested to see where voice search will take us. Find out more here.
You can now Collaborate & Write in Google Docs with WordPress
WordPress have made things easier for everyone in the Digital Marketing world, as they are now allowing you to write content and publish it on a WordPress site from a Google Doc. This will make it so much easier for collaborative pieces to come together, as Google Docs is the go to for real-time collaboration. We’re pretty thrilled about this – you can find out about it here.
We Looked at why your Site Needs HTTPS
We all know that improving your search visibility increases visits to your website, but did you know, your website’s security also affects visibility, conversions and trust in your brand. Our Technical SEO Manager, Michelle talks about five reasons why your site needs HTTPS, and the frequently asked questions surrounding it. Indulge in her knowledge here.
Facebook Adds My Story Update
At the end of March, Facebook launched a trio of features: a new effects-filled camera a swipe from your News Feed, a space for disappearing ‘My Story’ and a way for you to share straight from your camera to your friends. In a nutshell, Facebook has become Snapchat. This update has been trialled over the last few months, but was officially launched on March 28th. Check it out here.
Google Released a new Guide to Automate your PPC Bidding
Google AdWords is complicated, and understanding the automated bidding in AdWords will help to improve performance and save time. Google put together a guide to help you decide if your business wants to use bid adjustments or automated bidding in AdWords. You can make the decision here.
New Google Algorithm Shrinks Images by 35%
Google’s update to their new algorithm means that you can encode high-quality JPEG images 35% smaller in file size, with hopes to decrease on site loading time. Cutting down the size of the web, one image at a time! You can check it out here.
This month is a pretty big month for Ricemedia, as our Head of Search Laura will be talking at Brighton SEO, and our Senior Account Exec Chloe will be at the #IRX17 Expo.