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Weekly News: SEO community feels blindsided by November core update as Google defends timing

SEO community feels blindsided by November core update as Google defends timing

Yesterday, Google announced the November 2021 core update. While there’s nothing new about these periodic algorithm changes, many SEOs are wondering why Google decided to release it right before one of the busiest shopping periods of the year.

The holiday shopping season. The weeks encompassing Black Friday and Cyber Monday already add pressure to businesses looking to meet customer demand as well as their own revenue projections. Throwing a core update into the mix could make this even more complicated. This has made some SEOs wonder if Google is out of touch with both the business and search communities.

The SEO community response. Many in the search community are questioning Google’s timing on this update. Some marketers responded to Google Search Liason Danny Sullivan’s explanation, including SEO Rich Missey, who identified possible issues that could arise with business stakeholders

Read more: SEO community feels blindsided by November core update as Google defends timing

Amazon will stop accepting Visa payments in the UK starting in January

Amazon has announced that it will longer accept payments from Visa cards in the UK, according to Reuters. “As a result of Visa’s continued high cost of payments, we regret that Amazon.co.uk will no longer accept UK-issued Visa credit cards as of 19 January 2022,” an Amazon spokesperson said in a statement.

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Forms of payment are still accepted. The e-commerce platform will continue to accept MasterCard and American Express credit cards, Eurocard and Visa debit cards.

“We continue to work toward a resolution, so our cardholders can use their preferred Visa credit cards at Amazon UK without Amazon-imposed restrictions come January 2022,” a Visa spokesperson said in a statement.

Brexit enabled the fee hike. After Brexit, the European Union’s fee limits imposed on credit card issuers no longer applied to the UK, meaning that issuers can freely raise fees. Last month, Visa did just that, increasing its fee from 0.3% to 1.5% for online credit card payments between the UK and EU. It also increased its debit card fee from 0.2% to 1.15%.

Before Visa, MasterCard also raised its fees from 0.3% to 1.5%, according to BBC. It is not clear why Amazon’s new policy only affects Visa.

Other retailers may follow suit. These charges are known as “interchange fees” — transaction fees applied to the merchant’s bank account whenever a customer uses a credit or debit card to pay for a purchase from their store. These fees are paid to the card issuer and cover fraud, bad debt, and handling costs. Naturally, they can apply to all businesses that accept credit or debit, not just Amazon.

Read more: Amazon will stop accepting Visa payments in the UK starting in January

Demand forecasts, consumer interest and audience insights are coming to Google Ads’ Insights Page

Four new features — consumer interest insights, audience insights, change history insights and auction insights, and demand forecasts — will be rolling out in beta to the Google Ads Insights page globally in the coming weeks, the company announced Thursday.

The consumer interest and audience insights enable advertisers to learn more about how customers are searching for their offerings, as well as the themes they’re interested in and the ad copy that most resonates with them.

Zooming out, Google Ads’ product updates and offerings over the last few years have been designed to make advertising easier for SMBs, which may not have the resources to hire a full-time PPC professional or enlist the help of an agency. The Insights page is free and these features are likely to provide actionable information to all advertisers on Google’s platform, but its benefit will be greater for businesses that otherwise may not have had access to these trends.

Consumer interest insights. This feature aggregates and anonymizes the top-performing search query themes that drive performance in your campaigns. It tells you the number of people who searched for each theme, the theme’s growth, and how it performed in your account.

Audience insights. This feature is aimed at helping advertisers learn about the interests and affinities of audiences that are seeing their ads, particularly the user groups that Google’s automation has identified as driving strong performance. Additionally, audience insights can enable advertisers to identify what creative resonates with their audience.

Demand forecasts. Instead of focusing on historical performance trends, demand forecasts use machine learning and past seasonal search trends to predict emerging search interests over the next 180 days.

Change history insights and auction insights. This feature can be used to better understand how shifting auction competition or changes you, the advertiser, made in your account affect performance.

Read more: Demand forecasts, consumer interest, and audience insights are coming to Google Ads’ Insights Page

Twitter rolls back AMP support, no longer sends users to AMP pages

If you are noticing less traffic to your website’s AMP pages coming from Twitter, turns out there is a reason for that: Twitter has subtly updated its AMP guidelines page on its Developer site to say support for AMP will be phased out by the fourth quarter.

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How that might affect you. Previously, if a mobile user clicked on a link to your site, Twitter would redirect them to the AMP version of that page if an AMP version was available. Now, that won’t happen and users will just load the native mobile/responsive version of your content.

Thanks for telling us. We’ve heard anecdotally that publishers have been seeing AMP traffic fall, especially since Google started putting non-AMP pages in its Top Stories section. But it was David Esteve, audience development specialist, and product manager at Marfeel and technical SEO consultant Christian Oliveira who spotted the update in Twitter’s documentation.

Read more: Twitter rolls back AMP support, no longer sends users to AMP pages

Google logo schema markup now requires logos to look good on white backgrounds

Google has updated its logo schema markup guidelines to say it is now required for the logos you submit in the schema looks good on purely white backgrounds.

The new guideline. The new guidelines added a new line to the required properties section that reads “make sure the image looks how you intend it to look on a purely white background (for example, if the logo is mostly white or gray, it may not look how you want it to look when displayed on a white background).”

google logo schema white backgrounds 1

Where the logo can show. Where does this logo show in the Google Search results? It can show in the knowledge panel, maybe top stories and other areas.

Read more: Google logo schema markup now requires logos to look good on white backgrounds

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