Welcome again to Ricemedia’s digital marketing monthly round-up! Yes, we’ve actually just finished June even though most of us are still waiting for April to start. June was the month that some lockdown restrictions were cautiously lifted with more to come in July, allowing more businesses to operate once again.
With this in mind, it’s no wonder that there were recent updates in the world of SEO, PPC, social media and beyond. Grab a cuppa and put your feet up as we take you through what happened in digital marketing in June 2020.
1. John Mueller opens up on Google’s opinion of Guest Posting
Guest posting has been a bread and butter tactic for SEOs. The process, which involves writing a guest piece for another website on behalf of another website, can be a win-win for link building. However, John Mueller took alarm to SEMRush announcing they would provide a guest posting/outreach service for businesses. His point was that some guest posts create unnatural links “that the webspam team might take action on.” While SEMRush claimed they were not about paying for links and would ask websites if they wanted to publish something, they still postponed the launch of this service. This brief episode has made marketers question how effective guest posting for link building is from this point on. As long as it’s not perceived as being part of a service that manipulates PageRank, you should be okay.
2. Facebook is Testing Email Marketing Tools
Email marketing remains an effective tool for businesses and marketers to keep in touch with their regular customers who have given their permission. To help small and medium-sized businesses with this process, Facebook is testing a new email marketing tool. Businesses with pages on Facebook will be able to upload a mailing list into an easy-to-use interface and send out the latest updates and offers related to their business. Much like other mailing platforms, users can track performance afterwards. Currently, only a few SMBs have access to this for this initial test. Could it be a viable competitor to the likes of Mail Chimp and Campaign Monitor?
3. Facebook Ad Boycott Set for July
Some of the world’s biggest companies are planning an ad boycott on Facebook. The #StopHateForProfit campaign is challenging Facebook on their content policies. Facebook’s goal to make a platform for everybody has actually allowed hate speech to be shown, which divides people further. The rumblings of discontent started during the 2016 US General Election and “fake news” spread by Trump-supporting pages. A lot of companies have signed up, including big hitters such as Unilever, Verizon, Hershey’s and Coca-Cola leading to a $7 billion dent in Facebook’s ad revenue. Facebook has defended their practices on removing harmful content from its site. It will be interesting to see what further changes will be made if this ad ban carries on past July.
4. We shared the Best Competitor Analysis Tools For SEO
Competitor analysis is a key part of a successful SEO strategy. Any business which wants to get ahead of their competitors needs to analyse what they’re doing well to emulate that success, but also identify potential opportunities they’ve overlooked. Luckily, from an SEO perspective, there are tools available for businesses. We explore what you can find in SEMRush, SearchMetrics and Ahrefs in our Best Competitor Analysis Tools for SEO blog.
5. Bing Updates its Webmaster Guidelines
Microsoft ended June by updating its webmaster guidelines, focusing specifically on how it ranks content in Bing. For content marketers and SEOs, optimising for Bing can be difficult with Microsoft previously being vague on certain elements of its ranking algorithms. Some factors noted include: relevance, quality and credibility, user engagement, freshness, location and page load time. It also highlights that content should avoid scraped content from other sites, automatically generated content, affiliate sites that offer little value and malicious and offensive content. You can view the cleaner and clearer Webmaster Guidelines over at Bing.
6. Google testing showing Analytics data in Search Console
We’re often switching back and forth between Google Analytics and Search Console to find vital insights into client websites. While the separate tools should both exist, sometimes having all data in one tool can help find insights quicker. It seems Google thinks the same, as it has been testing showing Analytics data within Search Console. The data available in “Insights” includes page views, average time on the page and referring sites information. The added convenience of this new data insight will allow you to view your data in unique ways. This is a beta release with no information on whether it will fully launch.
7. Instagram will surpass Twitter as a Key News Source
Twitter has been the go-to place for real-time news for the last decade, a place where users can react quickly to the latest developments around the world. However, according to the 2020 Reuters Institute Digital News report, two-thirds of respondents under 25 are now turning to Instagram for news. While Facebook remains the most viewed social media platform for news, Instagram is set to overtake Twitter in the next few years. The report also goes into detail about how trusted social media is as a news source and which source most people go to for news.
8. We shared 10 Effective Ways to Build Your Online Presence
Building an online presence can be difficult for smaller businesses as they try to compete with bigger, more established names. If you’re a new business, this can be even more difficult. However, there are certain things any company can do to build its online presence. Including tips such as paid advertising, having an active social media and working with an SEO agency, you will find your audience.