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News and articles that allow us to stay on top of our game. You might want to read them too.

General: Data, Privacy & more

Future-Proofing Audience Strategies As Cookies Crumble

– AdExchanger

“But that doesn’t mean it’s necessary to switch back to contextual targeting and last-click attribution. There are other cookieless use cases to consider as marketers are forced to take a new approach to first-party data.
That also does not mean all forms of audience planning and measurement are dead. Demographic, in-market and affinity data from the likes of Google, Facebook, Amazon and Pinterest will still be available, because they are first-party by design, and unlike audiences, you buy from data providers, they are free of charge. Retargeting and look-alike strategies will also weather the storm, as long as they rely on cookieless signals and CRM onboarding.
View-through attribution and omnichannel measurement will not go away, but they will only come from walled garden-specific first-party data integration and clean rooms such as Google’s Ads Data Hub and the Amazon Marketing Cloud. “

Planning For Safari Can Prepare Advertisers For Chrome’s Future

– Think with Google

“Advertisers have a prime opportunity to test non-behavioral targeting strategies right now, thanks to Safari’s Intelligent Tracking Prevention (ITP).
Successful Safari strategies will likely give the cookieless a central role in the targeting and buying strategy. While there’s no need to completely abandon cookies, at least not yet, adopting this kind of thinking in Safari can prepare advertisers for the coming large-scale changes.”


Google: Organic, Ads & Analytics

How to Structure a PPC Campaign in the Age of Automation

– Search Engine Journal

“Automation doesn’t require simpler account structures. We still need to run the structures that make sense for our business. If anything, we should devote more time to measuring conversions correctly rather than wrangling account structures into some weird shape we think will help the machines.”

Google mobile-first indexing to be applied to all sites within a year

– Search Engine Land

“Google is sending out notices via Google Search Console with “mobile-first indexing issues detected” alerts. In those emails it communicates the issues Google has when it comes to moving that site over to mobile-first indexing. It also says “Google expects to apply mobile-first indexing to all websites in the next six to twelve months. “ “

Google is Expanding Shopping Ads to Gmail

– Search Engine Journal

“In an email sent out to Google Ads advertisers, the company says Shopping ads will be eligible to appear on Gmail starting on the week of March 4, 2020. This includes both Product Shopping ads and Showcase Shopping ads. When Shopping ads are rolled out to Gmail, data will be reported under
the Google Display Network. Standard Shopping campaigns will be
automatically enabled to run on Gmail, as long as the campaigns are
opted into “YouTube, Gmail, and Discover.”

How to fight back against excessively deep pagination and regain rankings

– Search Engine Journal

“Use categories or tags to cross link so that you have a handful paginated pages per type, from where you link to the blog posts. Keep a good & balanced hierarchy, not too flat, not too deep.”

Optimization scores, recommendations and their impact on Google Partner agencies

– Search Engine Land

” “Over the years, we’ve all seen various automated scorecards used by aggressive SEO or PPC agencies when they audit a company’s marketing efforts. Typically these things are meant to find fault and to achieve a specific goal [that’s] not 100% aligned with the client’s objectives,” said Andrew Goodman, founder and president of digital marketing agency Page Zero Media, which has Google Premier Partner status. “Google’s scorecards are a highly sophisticated version of the same phenomenon. Recommendations as aids to busy / stretched account managers are certainly a good idea.” His concern comes in using them to judge account or agency performance. That “is jumping the gun, IMO,” said Goodman. “

Google Explains Gradual Declines in Ranking

– Search Engine Journal

“In a Webmaster Hangout Google’s John Mueller answered why a site might be gradually losing traffic. Once you know the reasons you’ll be better positioned to take action to reverse a traffic decline.”

Google’s new treatment of nofollow links has arrived

– Search Engine Land

“As of Sunday, Mar. 1, Google is treating the nofollow link attribute as a hint, rather than a directive, for crawling and indexing purposes. Google is already treating all link attributes (sponsored, UGC and nofollow) as hints for ranking purposes and has been doing so since it made the original announcement in September. “

Does Word Count Matter for SEO?

– Search Engine Journal

“Reaching a certain word count will not help a page rank better. Stay relevant to users. Relevance for Google is understanding what users mean when they type a keyword and matching that to a page that answers the question. Before writing a single word, check out the search results and try to understand what users mean when they type a search query.”

What happens if you stop doing SEO

– Search Engine Land

“The ugly truth is that it’s hard to reverse momentum once a website starts going in the wrong direction. I am a firm believer that all things online should be scaled as the business grows, SEO included.”

How a newly won partnership in France could signal Google’s broader TV ambitions

– Digiday

“Google has long pitched YouTube as an alternative to traditional TV advertising, but it’s never managed to make a move into the $170 billion global TV ad market itself. But as more linear TV viewing shifts to digital devices and platforms, Google is quietly making inroads on one of the few areas of digital advertising it doesn’t yet conquer.”

6 Reasons to Run Responsive Display Ads (& 2 Reasons Not To)

– Search Engine Journal

“Since 2018, responsive display ads have been the default ad type for the GDN. It might be time to take another look at them — for six good reasons. But at the same, there are two good reasons why you might not want to.”

Paid search marketers can find success with top of funnel campaigns

– Search Engine Land

“Paid search is often thought of as being really low funnel – and it absolutely can be! But it can also span up the funnel and, when done correctly, can even rival other top-of-funnel channels. Targeting informational queries, for instance, is a great way to engage folks that are beginning to look for solutions to their problems – which is a key piece of the Awareness stage. Equally, if not more important, is knowing how to handle the traffic that you receive from top-of-funnel campaigns. Since that traffic is cold, sending those visitors to the same low-funnel CTAs as your other campaigns will likely lead to high bounce rates and low conversion rates.”


Social: Facebook, Instagram & others

Changes to Web and In-Stream Placements

– Facebook

“Starting Apr 11 2020, Audience Network will no longer fill any ad requests to your web and in-stream placements.
We’ve made this decision based on where we see growing demand from our partners, which is in other formats across mobile apps. We also remain committed to moving our mobile app network into bidding.”

3 tips for optimizing paid social campaigns for seasonality

– Search Engine Land

“Planning your paid social campaigns well ahead of your peak periods — whether seasonal, holiday or promotional — help ensure you hit your goals.”

How to tackle rising Facebook CPAs

– Search Engine Land

“With more advertisers and bigger budgets crowding onto Facebook and Instagram, acquisition costs are climbing. Advertisers can make their social ad dollars go further by re-thinking campaign fundamentals. You need to make sure you’re scaling your available inventory for
click-through rates, mirroring your audience, and being dynamic.”

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