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Good morning, Marketers, 

Google’s expanding use of natural language understanding algorithms — BERT, passages indexing and misspellings being key ones — represents a significant evolution in how it determines what content gets surfaced in the search results. The aim, of course, is to give users more relevant search results. The upside for SEOs and content writers, though, will be that we can pay greater attention to the people we want to reach rather than on how Googlebot will evaluate the content on our pages.  

“If anything, these updates move us toward a world where we can focus more on users and not worry as much about bots, from a content and ranking perspective,” says Dr. Pete Meyers, marketing scientist at Moz. 

The flexibility to move away from organizing content for search engines should afford SEOs more freedom to instead create content that matches the searcher’s intent, in the form that makes the most sense for the subject matter and the audience, whether that is long-form or laser-focused, writes George Nguyen. 

“I wouldn’t abandon [keyword research], but adapt it to intent research,” says Hamlet Batista, CEO of RankSense. Increasingly, the words you use on your page will not have to match what users type into the search bar for Google to understand you and the searchers “on the same page.”

And, if you want to learn more about how users are experiencing your site once they get there, Microsoft’s free solution for visualizing UX is now out of beta. Microsoft Clarity offers heatmaps, session replays and more. 

Ginny Marvin,
Editor-In-Chief

 
 
 
Social Short
 

LinkedIn members up 9% YoY

The number of users on LinkedIn increased 9% again year-over-year to 722 million last quarter, Microsoft reported this week. LinkedIn revenue increased by 16% and sessions rose 31% year-over-year. 

Why we care. LinkedIn’s “membership” continues to tick up steadily. Microsoft said LinkedIn saw “record levels of engagement” again last quarter and that revenue growth was “significantly ahead of expectations” as the advertising environment improved. That marks a recovery from the previous quarter when LinkedIn revenue growth was hurt by a weak job market and cuts to advertising spend amid the pandemic, the company said.

 

Compare 13 top marketing automation platforms

MarTech Today’s “B2B Marketing Automation Platforms: A Marketer’s Guide” examines the market for B2B marketing automation software platforms. This report includes profiles of 13 leading B2B marketing automation vendors, capabilities comparisons, pricing information, and recommended steps for evaluating and purchasing.

Get it now »

 
Search Shorts
 

Google Ads and elections

Google Ads real-time alerts. Google Ads added new features for campaign setup, including real-time alerts, faster draft campaigns and an easier way to make new campaigns and see disapproved ads.

Bing search quality during COVID. Frédéric Dubut of Microsoft said that his team has not seen a degradation of search quality in Bing because of working from home during COVID. In fact, he said his team is working harder and longer.

307 redirects and Google. Google’s John Mueller has a short video on how Google handles 307 redirects.  The short answer is that it does not, since GoogleBot does not see a 307 redirect.  Basically it is like any other redirect. 

 

4 ways to craft an engaging e-commerce experience for the holidays

Sponsored by Cloudinary

Brands with an e-commerce presence this holiday season have a big opportunity to engage with the rising number of online consumers and take a piece of the growing pie. To grab market share in an uber-competitive environment, they must invest in the right digital tools to create an engaging online customer experience.

From enhanced product views to shoppable videos to microbrowsers, these tactics will help you make sales as well as increasing customer satisfaction and reducing returns. 

Read More »

 

Don't miss Areej AbuAli's SEO keynote!

Join us online December 8-9 for expert-led search marketing training, featuring just-announced keynote speaker Areej AbuAli, SEO Manager at Zoopla!

See what's in store »

 
 
 
What we're reading
 

We've curated our picks from across the web so you can retire your feed reader.

An update on our efforts to help Americans navigate COVID-19 – Google Blog

Do SEOs Trust SEO Sources – Search Engine Roundtable

Emboldened Featured Snippets: A Subtle Hint for SEO Relevance – Brodie Clark Consulting

Get caught up to speed on the US elections so you can cast an informed vote – Bing Search Blog

Google follows Facebook in banning political ads after election – The Washington Post

Google Joins World Series Celebrations Of Dodgers With Fireworks Display On Search Page – CBS Los Angeles

Merkle Q3 2020 Digital Marketing Report Released – Merkle

Partnerships for advanced weather and climate prediction – Google Blog

Share of Voice – A 30,000-Foot View of Your Organic Rankings – RankRanger

What Are PPC Services and Why Do You Need Them? – BruceClay