Insights from below deck 01/08/22
Google’s Core Web Vitals report, a cookie phase-out and changes to Google’s content algorithm are just some of the topics that have got the team talking this month. Here, we discuss the latest news from the digital marketing landscape and how we expect brands to be leveraging updates throughout September and beyond.
We’re Storyblok’s partner of the month!
With a simple, intuitive and component-based approach, Storyblok is our CMS of choice for our headless builds. We’re proud to announce that our latest headless build – the new ANDYSMANCLUB website – secured our position as Storyblok partner of the month! There’s been an increased number of men visiting the ANDYSMANCLUB website since UFC champion Paddy Pimbett’s impassioned speech on mental health, further highlighting the importance of an easy-to-use website that offers access to lifesaving support.
With some ANDYSMANCLUB end users choosing to travel to support groups farther afield to avoid bumping into people they know, we needed the functionality to show multiple groups within a radius so the end user could see which locations were available in that area. Storyblok allowed us to create this functionality, while enabling progress in development speed, quality and efficiency overall.
‘Tis the season to advertise on Pinterest
Pinners are notoriously organised, so the festive calendar on the platform starts earlier than you may think. The Sparkler UK 2021 Christmas study (April 2021) entitled ‘Among monthly Pinners, comparison against non-Pinners who say the same about competitive social media platforms’ showed that Pinners say they are 33% more likely to plan for Christmas shopping early compared to non-Pinners, while festive Pinners who start researching early spend 30% more than the average Pinterest user. And for marketers, it truly pays to be prepared.
Saying that, you shouldn’t focus your advertising efforts solely on big events; focus on smaller, more niche moments for Pinners to celebrate, and create more opportunities for your brand to win. After all, of the searches on Pinterest, 97% are not product or brand specific, highlighting that users are open to new influences and ideas. This gives your brand a huge opportunity to get in front of shoppers at the inspiration stage of the retail journey, when they are open minded and undecided on how they want to celebrate their festivities throughout the year.
Easily create your own YouTube video ads
Google has launched a new feature called ‘Ads Creative Studio’, which gives creators a platform for customising video and display ads. The search engine has also announced a new feature allowing advertisers to quickly create video ads for YouTube. The templates are made specifically for YouTube and designed ‘to help drive results’. It’s likely the ad templates have been designed based on campaign data collected by Google, to increase the chances of the ads converting. As always, it’s best practice to test your own ad variations against Google’s templates and then prioritise the winning variation, to help increase the return of your campaigns.
YouTube partners with Shopify
It’s the partnership we never knew we needed. After all, people don’t visit YouTube to shop… right? Well actually, in a sense, they do. YouTube has always been an invaluable source when it comes to making purchase decisions – just consider the impact of influencers, unboxings and reviews. It’s for this reason that a partnership between YouTube and Shopify makes total sense – once consumers have been made aware of the product and convinced it would make a good purchase by watching a YouTube video, the Shopify integration enables them to make that purchase there and then, in a seamless shopping experience.
Meta descriptions: to optimise or not to optimise?
While it’s long established that meta descriptions don’t affect page rank, there’s often discussion around whether they’re worth optimising at all. This has been even more hotly discussed since Google announced that it has the ability to produce its own meta descriptions and may do so, ignoring the submitted ones. That’s why, when Semrush published its split test results on the importance of writing effective meta descriptions earlier this month, it made for a very interesting read. In a nutshell, the data shows that manually optimised meta descriptions do seem to correlate with increased traffic, thanks to an improved click through rate. Our advice? Keep writing them yourself – those little details can go a long way.
GA4 makes waves in data
Google Analytics 4 (GA4) is not simply a new reporting platform but rather, it represents a seismic shift in data, reporting and the wider digital marketing sphere. From better tracking in a world of increasing digital privacy, to bringing together cross-device data and creating custom reports, we’ve already discovered several features we like about the new platform. And, with the end of UA in sight, we’ll be diving as deep into GA4 as we can to find more tools and reporting to help us stay abreast of the ever-evolving world of the web.
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Written by Alice MacLaverty
Resident wordsmith Alice is dedicated to creating top-quality content that turns heads, builds audiences, gets clicks, and makes money.