This week, we have exciting major updates from industry leaders. From Google’s insistence on valuing technical SEO to Snapchat testing its new ad-free subscription Snapchat+, let’s review the latest digital marketing news!

Stay in the Know About the Latest in the SEO/Google Realm


Google Values Technical SEO Over Chasing Trends

Google Core Update for August 2023Google's Search Relations team emphasizes the importance of mastering technical SEO basics and prioritizing high-quality, helpful content over chasing trends. 

In their Search Off The Record podcast, Gary Illyes, Martin Splitt, and John Mueller underscored the need to address foundational technical SEO issues like crawlability, indexing, and page rendering. 

Illyes highlighted the common oversight of critical technical aspects, urging website owners to ensure their content is helpful and useful to users. 

The team also cautioned against the misconception that high traffic equates to high-quality pages, emphasizing the significance of user engagement and satisfaction metrics in evaluating a site's success.


Google Ads Will Update Location Asset Requirements

Google Core Update for August 2023Google Ads is set to update its location asset requirements in December to provide clearer guidelines on which types of location assets are not allowed. The clarification aims to help advertisers understand restrictions better. 

Prohibited location assets include closed locations, those unrecognized by Google, locations not matching the business in the ad, and assets featuring products or services inconsistent with the specified location. 

Advertisers benefit from using location assets to showcase vital business information, such as address and phone number, enhancing conversion potential. 

Adhering to these requirements is essential for providing accurate details and maximizing return on investment.


Google Says Site Quality Is Simpler Than You Think

Google Core Update for August 2023Google's podcast featuring John Mueller, Martin Splitt, and Gary Illyes discussed site quality, emphasizing simplicity and practical considerations. 

The experts suggested reading search engine documentation to understand site quality. They also highlighted the lack of specific tools for diagnosing site quality, emphasizing the need to interpret traffic metrics effectively. 

Ultimately, site quality is tied to the value you deliver. Don’t create redundant content already abundant in search results.

Illyes suggests breaking into competitive niches indirectly by offering unique written perspectives. The podcast underscores the significance of understanding user needs and providing genuinely helpful content to enhance site quality.


Unveiling the Latest in the World of Social Media

Snapchat Testing Ad-Free Subscription - Snapchat+

Google Core Update for August 2023Snapchat is testing a new ad-free subscription plan, Snapchat+, in Australia. 

Priced at $10.50 per month, the subscription allows users to explore the platform without interruptions from Story and Lens ads. However, sponsored places or AI responses may still appear. 

The move aims to gauge user interest in ad-free experiences. 

Snapchat+ comes in three tiers: a monthly plan at $3.91 (with all ad formats), an annual plan at $2.73 per month, and the ad-free monthly plan at $10.50. 

While the impact on ad reach and campaign performance is uncertain, Snapchat relies significantly on ad revenue and is likely to carefully navigate any changes.


TikTok Embraces Conversational UI for Better Customization

Google Core Update for August 2023TikTok is embracing conversational UI with a new "Customize Feed" feature, allowing users to specify content preferences within their "For You" page settings. 

This option enables users to enter text-based guidance, such as "I'd like to see more posts from creators I follow," to tailor their in-stream experience. The move aligns with the conversational UI trend, reflecting users' evolving habits. 

While this customization tool may offer a more personalized experience, it also raises concerns about users' ability to accurately express their preferences and the potential impact on content discovery. 

Nonetheless, the development underscores the broader shift toward conversational UI in various platforms.


Pinterest Shares Key Findings Regarding the Value of Promoting Luxury Brands

Google Core Update for August 2023Pinterest has released a report highlighting the platform's value for promoting luxury brands, particularly in high-end fashion engagement. 

The study, conducted with PA Consulting, emphasizes Pinterest's positive environment for brand experiences and its role in driving discovery. 

Key findings include 70% of the Pinterest luxury audience being under 35, with four out of five luxury shoppers being women. Moreover, a third of luxury shoppers on Pinterest have annual incomes exceeding $100,000. 

Pinterest users spend 87% more on luxury goods and are 27% more likely to purchase premium products. The platform is identified as the top destination for inspiration and research when shopping from luxury brands.


What Is Breaking Ground in Generative AI & Content Marketing?

Sam Altman Returns As OpenAI CEO

Google Core Update for August 2023OpenAI announced Sam Altman's return as CEO after a brief yet turbulent departure. 

Sam Altman was fired on November 19, according to insiders, after a letter several OpenAI staff researchers sent to the board of directors warning them about Q*, a powerful artificial general intelligence (AGI) discovery.

Altman was replaced by CTO Mira Murati serving as interim leader. Notably, OpenAI employees collectively signed a letter urging the board's resignation. The top brass, especially Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, were openly critical of Altman's firing. 

Many essential OpenAI employees announced their move to join Microsoft if the board doesn’t get overhauled and Altman doesn’t get reinstated.

OpenAI seemingly caved to these demands, reinstating Altman and creating a new board of members.


Amazon Introduced ‘AI Ready’ With 8 Free AI Courses

Google Core Update for August 2023Amazon has launched the "AI Ready" initiative, offering eight free AI and generative AI courses to train 2 million individuals by 2025. 

Fueled by a demand for AI skills and the potential for higher salaries, the program targets both professionals and students. 

The initiative includes AI courses like "Introduction to Generative Artificial Intelligence" and "Low-Code Machine Learning." 

With a focus on addressing the AI talent gap, Amazon's move emphasizes the importance of AI skills and aims to make education accessible, shaping the future of AI applications in various sectors.


OpenAI Introduced Free ChatGPT Voice Capabilities for Mobile

Google Core Update for August 2023OpenAI has introduced free voice capabilities in the ChatGPT app, making voice interaction accessible to all users. 

This update opens opportunities for marketers and SEO professionals to explore voice-optimized strategies, setting a new standard in AI-user interaction. 

Content marketers can leverage this feature for interactive and personalized campaigns, enhancing customer experience. For search marketers, the update offers avenues to experiment with voice search optimization. 

Voice functionality promotes inclusivity and accessibility, ensuring a wider range of users can engage with AI effortlessly, potentially reshaping content creation and search engine strategies.


What’s New in the Video Industry? Let’s Loop You in!

YouTube Deliberately Offering Suboptimal Experience to People Using Ad Blockers

Google Core Update for August 2023YouTube has acknowledged intentionally creating a suboptimal experience for users employing ad blockers, introducing a deliberate five-second delay in loading video pages on browsers like Mozilla’s Firefox. 

Despite initial speculation on browser specificity, YouTube clarified that users across all platforms may encounter loading delays. 

This intentional delay is part of YouTube’s ongoing campaign to discourage ad blocker usage. 

While encouraging users to disable ad blockers expands advertiser reach, it may increase advertising costs and impact targeting effectiveness. 

Achieving a balance between reach and targeting is crucial for optimizing return on investment in marketing strategies.