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TechShu Marketing Digest: May 2020

This curated list includes important digital marketing updates and insights from the month of May. To stay updated on the latest updates from the digital landscape, read our Digital Marketing Apple Page.

Digital Advertisement 

1) Google to update the requirements for the Business Operations Verification program. The announcement read

Advertisers who are required to complete the program will be notified and given 21 days to submit the verification form, instead of 30 days. 

2) Google adds curbside pickup badge that can show on products available for store pickup. The announcement read

Using local inventory ads, retailers can show users that the products they are searching for are available for nearby store pickup. Now, you can indicate if you offer curbside pickup, right in your local inventory ads. This feature is available in the countries where local inventory ads have launched: Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, the UK and the U.S.

3) Instagram to introduce ads in IGTV. The announcement read

IGTV ads will initially appear when people click to watch IGTV videos from previews in their feed. The video ads will be built for mobile and up to 15 seconds long. We’ll test various experiences within IGTV ads throughout the year - such as the ability to skip an ad - to make sure the final result works well for people, creators and advertisers.

4) Google to sunset Gallery Ads beta, focus on Image Extensions. Read more here

5) Facebook expands test of skippable mid-roll ads in videos. Read more here

6) Google publishes a new set of research designed to help marketers evolve their digital marketing strategies. Read the full guide here

7) YouTube launches a new way to buy advertising with YouTube Select. The announcement read

This year, we’re introducing a new offering called emerging lineups in the U.S. Emerging lineups provide an easy way to efficiently extend the reach of your campaigns among up and coming or niche channels, with the added benefit of brand suitability controls. 

Beyond our lineups offerings, YouTube Select can now help advertisers reach new audiences across top YouTube apps and verticals like YouTube Kids, Sports, Music and Originals with sponsorships and programs. Across markets, advertisers should work with their local teams to customize the right YouTube Select plan for their needs.

8) Facebook expands its brand safety controls for advertisers. The announcement read

Today we are expanding the availability of tools we’ve been testing to give advertisers more control over where their ads appear within in-stream placements.

Publisher whitelists for Audience Network let advertisers designate which third-party publisher apps to run ads on.
Content whitelists offer video-level whitelisting for advertisers working with Integral Ad Science, OpenSlate and Zefr. This allows these partners to dynamically review and customize suitable videos for in-stream campaigns on Facebook.
Delivery reports provide advertisers with access to impression data at the publisher and content levels, giving greater transparency into which individual pieces of content their ads were embedded in so they can properly validate brand safety risks of our placements and publishers.
Live stream exclusions allow advertisers to opt-out of the test of in-stream ads in live streams from vetted partners. We offered this at the campaign level, and are now providing this control at the ad account level.

9) YouTube brings more ad formats and measurement to TVs.The announcement read

With media mixes becoming increasingly reliant on streaming, it’s more important than ever to measure its impact. As a result, we’re accelerating the launch of Brand Lift for YouTube on TV screens. For viewers, this means surveys are now optimized for the big screen and interactivity with a TV remote, so people can easily respond or skip the survey.


1) Google releases May 2020 Core Algorithm Update.

2) Google introduces Web Vitals: essential metrics for a healthy site. The announcement read

Measuring the quality of user experience has many facets. While some aspects of user experience are site and context specific, there is a common set of signals — "Core Web Vitals" — that is critical to all web experiences. Such core user experience needs include loading experience, interactivity, and visual stability of page content, and combined are the foundation of the 2020 Core Web Vitals.

3) Page experience to become a ranking factor: Google. The announcement read

We will introduce a new signal that combines Core Web Vitals with our existing signals for page experience to provide a holistic picture of the quality of a user’s experience on a web page.
As part of this update, we'll also incorporate the page experience metrics into our ranking criteria for the Top Stories feature in Search on mobile, and remove the AMP requirement from Top Stories eligibility. Google continues to support AMP, and will continue to link to AMP pages when available. We’ve also updated our developer tools to help site owners optimize their page experience.

4) The state of nofollow, UGC, & sponsored link attributes in 2020 (research). Read more here

Key points -  

  • 10.6% of all backlinks to the top 110k sites are nofollow.
  • Only 0.44% of referring domains to the top 110k sites use rel=”ugc”. 

5) Core Web Vitals report replaces Speed report in Google Search Console. Read more here

6) Google makes it easier for merchants to transition online. The announcement read

Get discovered: Merchants who are verified on Google My Business will soon be able to add attributes like “online classes,” “online appointments,” or “online estimates” to their Business Profiles to let people know how they’re operating. Today merchants can add one of these attributes using Google My Business, and in the coming weeks it’ll be visible on merchants’ Business Profiles in Search and Maps. 

Online service bookings directly on Google: We’re expanding Reserve with Google to help merchants offer easy appointment bookings for online services so customers can quickly find available times, book a slot, and add it to their Google Calendar—all directly from a merchant’s Business Profile. 

7) Bing announces 3 additional features migrating into the new Bing Webmaster portal. The announcement read

URL Submission – The most popular tool in Bing Webmaster, Submit URL, is now updated. Using this tool, users can submit URLs to Bing for real time indexation
Block URL – This tool can be used to temporary prevent any URL from appearing in the search results. This feature can also be used to clear Bing’s cache for a URL in case you have updated the page
Crawl Control – This tool can be used to control the speed of crawling of your site by Bingbot. It lets you set the hourly crawl rate using a template or through a custom setup based on your site’s traffic pattern

8) Bing can answer queries with a simple ‘Yes’ or ‘No’. Read more here

9)  Listen to Google's podcast “Search Off the Record” that takes you behind the scenes of Google Search and its inner workings. Check here

10) Google announces support for Guided Recipes in Search Console.

11) Google penalties research: key pointers. Read more here

A Single Bad Link Does Not Lead to a Penalty

Reputation Doesn’t Matter to Google When Interpreting a Link's Unnaturality

Google doesn’t necessarily discriminate based on the source of your inbound links; if a link demonstrates manipulative or unnatural tactics, it will be marked down.

When Penalizing, Google Goes for Full Embargo

Social Media 

1) Facebook and Instagram roll out Shops. The announcement read

Facebook Shops make it easy for businesses to set up a single online store for customers to access on both Facebook and Instagram. Creating a Facebook Shop is free and simple. Businesses can choose the products they want to feature from their catalog and then customize the look and feel of their shop with a cover image and accent colors that showcase their brand. This means any seller, no matter their size or budget, can bring their business online and connect with customers wherever and whenever it’s convenient for them. People can find Facebook Shops on a business’ Facebook Page or Instagram profile, or discover them through stories or ads.

This summer, starting in the US, we’re introducing Instagram Shop, a new way to discover and buy products you love in Instagram Explore. You can get inspired by collections from @shop, browse selections from your favorite brands and creators, filter by categories like beauty and home, and purchase the looks you love all in one place. 

Now, we’re making it easier to shop for products in real time. Soon, sellers, brands and creators will be able to tag products from their Facebook Shop or catalog before going live and those products will be shown at the bottom of the video so people can easily tap to learn more and purchase. 

2) Facebook launches 15 new FREE courses that cover the fundamentals to help businesses transition online. Read more here

3) Post creation becomes available on Facebook's Creator Studio App. The announcement read

The new experience gives you:
Control: Always post as one of your Facebook Pages. With the Creator Studio app, you’ll never worry that you’ve accidentally posted from your personal Facebook profile.
Convenience: Manage content in the same mobile app that features your insights and communication needs for all your Facebook Pages.
More features for video posts: Post videos with these options:
Video metadata fields: Add a title and description to your videos to give viewers more information about your content and entice them to watch.
Thumbnail selection: Upload a thumbnail from your mobile phone's library or use our thumbnail selector to pick one from the video you've uploaded

4) Instagram introduces Badges in Live. Read more here

5) Twitter lets users choose the audience who can reply to their tweets. 

6) Facebook Messenger Rooms can be created from Instagram.

7) Twitter brings native tweet scheduling and the capacity to save tweet drafts to its desktop app. 

8) Facebook starts verifying identity of people behind high-reach profiles. The announcement read 

Moving forward, we will verify the identity of people who have a pattern of inauthentic behavior on Facebook and whose posts start to rapidly go viral in the US. We want people to feel confident that they understand who’s behind the content they’re seeing on Facebook and this is particularly important when it comes to content that’s reaching a lot of people. 

9) Facebook rolls out some new AR tools for its Spark AR Studio. The announcement read

Creators can now easily build AR effects that respond to music. To do this, you can import and use your own legally licensed music files or you can let people pick a song they like from the thousands of free tracks in Instagram’s music library. This feature is available for Android users today and will be coming to iOS soon.

10) YouTube rolls out its new chapters segmentation display for video clips. 

11) LinkedIn publishes an overview of its new 'dwell time' metric. Read more here

12) LinkedIn merges LinkedIn Events and LinkedIn Live for a new virtual events solution. Read more here

13) Instagram to let users pin comments to the top of posts. Read more here