The Digital Marketing Monthly Round-Up: 10 Things That Happened in April 2018

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Hello and welcome to the fourth instalment of the monthly franchise that is the Digital Marketing Monthly Round-Up! The chocolate has been cleared as our diets returned to normal in the Ricemedia office. With the weather giving us a a tease of summer before reminding us that it isn’t supposed to be warm yet, we huddle for warmth in the hope that May finally sees an upturn in temperatures. April was full of journeys as members of our team went as far as Brighton and Cardiff to pass on their expertise to other SEO professionals.

Talking of franchises, April was a huge month for the Marvel Cinematic Universe as Black Panther sailed past Titanic to become the 3rd highest grossing movie at the U.S. box office and the 9th highest grossing film of all time at the worldwide box office. Adding to that was Marvel Avengers: Infinity War – we saw it Hulk smash the first worldwide weekend record with ticket sales, in excess, of $630m (£457m). The MCU is certainly here to stay. In other news, athletes from around the world wowed audiences at the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Australia with the handover to our home city of Birmingham taking place, Arsène Wenger announced he would be resigning from Arsenal after 22 years as manager, North and South Korea are in groundbreaking talks for peace and ABBA have reformed with two new songs recorded. Mamma Mia!

It has been another month full of new happenings in the world of digital marketing. As always, our enthusiasm levels are through the roof, So, take a chance on me and have a look at the latest happenings in April’s Digital Marketing Monthly Round-Up digest!

1. Google confirms it is using Chrome usage data to measure site speed

Everybody knows that Google ranks websites based on a number of elements and the speed in which a page loads is one of them. However, it was never clear exactly how they evaluated this. Now, it has been revealed that Google is getting this data from those Chrome users who have opted in as a datapoint. Previously, it was thought that Googlebot was the source of this data but  could not give the accurate results Google obviously craves. You can read more about this revelation here.

2. Google releases its latest algorithm update to target content 

Monday 16th April saw the new release of another broad core algorithm update which, as we know, is something Google do routinely throughout the year (you’ll often here SEOs scream in panic when they happen). It was speculated that the update was released to target low quality pages when in fact, the update was designed to ensure that users continue to the results that best answer their queries. This is a clear sign that your content needs to be more relevant to those who are searching for it. You can find out more about this change here.

3. Fake News will affect your SEO

April saw two brave members of the Ricemedia team, take to the stage for the very first time at the ManyMinds – Give It A Go SEO event during a scorching day in Cardiff. Coral Luck and Mali Lewis joined five other debut speakers in an event designed to give a platform for new voices in the world of SEO. With only a 32% trust in the media and with over 81,000,000 fake profiles on Facebook, it’s no wonder that people are worried about fake news. With trust a huge element in Google’s SERPS and algorithms, making sure you are the real deal is a bigger deal than ever before. You can read more about fake news and its impact in SEO, along with Coral’s round up of the event here.



4. Martin Lewis sues Facebook over fake ads

Talking of fake things on the internet, the founder of Money Saving Expert, Martin Lewis, has officially taken Facebook to court to stop the number of fake adverts using his image to scam users of the social network. 50 fake Martin Lewis adverts have been seen with false promises and endorsements. Even on the day of presenting his case to the High Court, fake Martin Lewis adverts targeted news pages carrying the story. You can read Lewis’s statement here.

5. Snapchat’s promoted stories get a re-brand to the advantage of marketing campaigns

Snapchat is changing the way its self-serve ads manager can allow companies to target its intended audience. Previously only available to advertisers as a slot fixed near the top of the discover feed, Story Ads will now include similar targeting options to Promoted Stories and auction-based pricing as Snap Ads. This will allow advertisers to build a campaign around their story ads and reach more people. You can read more about this here.

6. Mark Zuckerberg faced the US Senate 

Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg took questions from 44 US senators about the abuse of citizen’s data in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal that has rocked the social media giant. During the two days, he claimed his data had been harvested alongside millions of others as well as saying that his company is in an “arms race” against Russian operators. You can read more about the trial here.

facebook removing interested in targeting

7. First Batch of Google Mobile first indexing notifications sent out

A month after Google announced the rollout of mobile-first indexing, SEO’s and webmasters have been receiving their first notifications via Google Search Console for their sites being available for the process. The notification will simply say “Mobile-first indexing enabled for…” followed by the URL with a brief description of what Googlebot Smartphone will do to make sure users access the mobile site instead of the desktop version. You can read more about this here.

8. GDPR Preparations are underway

With the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulation fast approaching, companies are now making sure they are compliant with the new rules introduced by the European Union. GDPR will impact marketing in elements as simple as email marketing to customer match retargeting through Adwords. With this in mind, we at Ricemedia had a look at how you can prepare for GDPR.


9. Keyword Attribution Returns to Google Search Console

SEO professionals have struggled provide correlative insights and data to clients within Google sources as Google Search Console & Google Analytics data did not attribute exact keywords to URLs. Search Engine Journal have found that this might be changing as search console can now allow you do this. You can read more about this here.


10. Brighton SEO April – Big Links for £0

To round off April, our very own Head of Search, Laura Hogan took to the stage at the Brighton SEO event. Her main point, to a packed crowd, was that you don’t need to spend a lot of money to achieve top quality links. There are better tactics for achieving this. You can see Laura’s full slideshow and links to other speakers here.

This month will see Ricemedia attend the first ever Search Birmingham event. Be sure to watch out for us!