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It’s time for another round-up of digital marketing news with the SEOverview. Let’s not waste any time and get right to the news!

 

Google says it values all local reviews, both positive and negative

Google has updated its reviews help document page in the Google Business Profile support area to say that Google values all reviews, not just positive ones. Now Google says it is “more trustworthy” to see a mix of both positive and negative reviews on the business profile.

This probably won’t impact rankings in any way, but it might be a sign that if a business has 99% all positive reviews, maybe – just maybe – Google will flag that business and manually audit the reviews of that business. It is simply not natural for all customers to only leave positive reviews on a business online.

 

Nike courts next generation of athletes with new Roblox platform ‘Nikeland’

Nike is taking its first big step into the metaverse with the immersive new Roblox platform, an online sports park and showcase for the brand’s products, new and old. A move like this was potentially expected after reports surfaced in recent weeks that the company had filed trademarks related to virtual sneakers and apparel.

The effort targeted at Gen Z and Gen Alpha enables users to tie activity measured by accelerometers in their mobile devices to online play, so movement in real-life informs in-game actions like long jumps or speed runs. To promote Nikeland, the brand created a special Snapchat lens tailored to its House of Innovation location in New York. The lens lets shoppers apply an augmented reality filter to the kids’ floor of the retail store that surfaces Nikeland avatars, games and Easter Eggs. It goes live in December.

 

Lost SEO traffic in 2021? Here are 3 potential reasons why

If your SEO traffic is on the decline, let’s take a look at three potential reasons why that might be happening.

Page Experience, Site Speed, and Core Web Vitals

The first phase of Google’s Page Experience Update had a three-month rollout this past summer, concluding in early September. This update rewards secure & fast-loading pages on mobile devices which pass Core Web Vitals requirements as described by Google. While the search impact thus far has been largely flat, we’ve seen numerous websites in competitive verticals lose mobile traffic throughout the update. Further, Google has announced they are bringing this update to desktop search results in the first quarter of 2022, presenting an opportunity to improve existing site performance while staying ahead of future updates.If you lost mobile SEO traffic in late summer and failed the new requirements, it may be worthwhile spending time improving your site’s Page Experience and Core Web Vitals metrics.

Being authentic and serving your users

The latest version of Google’s Search Quality Guidelines refines their guidance for content quality, especially pertaining to YMYL industries (finance, healthcare, e-commerce, and so on).  We’ve seen content quality consistently be a key indicator of how your website will perform throughout a Core Update, so it’s always a good idea to stay on top of Google’s recommended best practices and produce content that meets your users’ needs – especially as compared to your competitors. If you lost SEO visibility during June, July, or November, a Core Algorithm update could be the reason, and it’s likely a lack of content quality or a poor user experience may be reasons why.

Link spam & guest blog posts

Quality, relevant backlinks are still a strong indicator of how well a site will rank, and obtaining natural links remains one of the most challenging areas of SEO to get right. Google has a long history of taking action against unnatural links, and we’ve seen the search engine continue to filter out links they believe violate their webmaster guidelines in 2021.

Google rolled out their latest “Link Spam” Update in July, which specifically targets links from guest blog posts, affiliate links, and links within sponsored content.  Why are they focusing on filtering links from these areas? These link tactics scale incredibly well but are often low-value and low-effort. They form easily detectable unnatural link patterns and pose a long-term risk.  This update reminds us of something we’ve seen over and over throughout the years: when a link-building approach becomes too popular, Google will eventually take action. No surprise here, Google is algorithmically filtering out links fitting these criteria.

 

And with that, we have finished another exciting round of digital marketing news. Be sure to check back in next month for another exciting installment.

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