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Weekly News: YouTube to automatically link to places mentioned in videos

YouTube is launching a new link format within the video description box that provides “an easy and visual way for viewers to learn about locations mentioned” in the video, the company announced via its Creator Insider channel. Named “Places Mentioned,” this feature will be visible on the mobile app for iOS and Android for food and drinks videos where YouTube can detect places. The company has not released a timeline for the rollout or stated whether Places Mentioned will expand to more video categories.

Until now, the only way to add information about a location mentioned in a video was to manually add a text link. Automatic detection and link creation for places that are mentioned will decrease some of the legwork for content creators in the food and restaurant vertical.

By default, the video description box is minimized in the YouTube app — users must expand it to view the description, which may undermine some of the benefits of adding links to the description. YouTube said that Places Mentioned will give viewers an engaging way to learn more about places in the video, but the company has not released screenshots of what the feature will look like or how it will work given the current description box setup.

Read more: YouTube to automatically link to places mentioned in videos

Google Analytics vs. Google Analytics 360

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Today, data is the currency of the digital economy. Marketers need data-driven insights to understand who their most valuable customers are, which experiences led them to act, and how to get more of them.

And when it comes to analytics platforms, Google Analytics dominates the space. Cardinal Path research shows that 77% of the Fortune 1000 rely on Google Analytics to drive their data analytics practice.

Read more:  Weekly News: Google makes it easier to remove images of kids from the search results

Google Analytics 360 is designed not only to help you collect data across your digital properties, but to turn raw data into insights, and then to take action on those insights across the broader Google Marketing Platform.

Read more: Google Analytics vs. Google Analytics 360

How marketers can prepare for what’s next in page experience

When Google’s Page Experience update finished rolling out in early September, it changed how the search engine evaluates websites — namely, a new emphasis on user experience signals. In his session at SMX Next, Patrick Stox, product advisor for technical SEO and brand ambassador at Ahrefs, noted some important alterations to this update that took place in the months following, which continue to leave many SEOs confused.

“Safe browsing is already out,” he said, “And cumulative layout shift has changed a bit. It’s the five seconds where the most shifting occurs. Google has also removed AMP from Top stories requirements and many news sites are looking at dropping it.”

One of the key pieces of the Page Experience update — Core Web Vitals — is also one of the most hotly debated. SEOs and agencies have questioned how big of a difference these metrics make in terms of rankings, leading many, such as Stox, to take a deeper look at the data.

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“We looked at about 5.2 million individual pages, which I think is the largest data set that’s been studied now,” he said. His study found that only 11.4% of them met the recommended standards for Core Web Vitals.

This begs the question: Is Core Web Vitals optimization necessary?

Read more:  Weekly News: WordPress Security Just Leveled-Up

“Maybe these are small ranking factors,” said Stox, “But I think if you argue this from an SEO standpoint, you’re going to fail. Many Google employees have now said these are small factors, that these are tiebreakers signals.”

Read more: How marketers can prepare for what’s next in page experience

Although Google Ads and Google Marketing Platform aren’t using vulnerable versions of Log4j, marketers that have built their own API integrations with any of the Google APIs should ensure that whatever they are using isn’t affected by the CVE-2021-44228 vulnerability.

Additionally, if you are using an Ads API Client Library and Apache Log4j versions 2.0 to 2.14.1, you should upgrade to the patched version 2.15.0, Google said on its developer blog.

More on the news

  • “Our security teams are investigating any potential impact on Google products and services and are focused on protecting our users and customers,” Google said.
  • The flaw, which was discovered on December 9, may allow hackers to attack unpatched Apache servers in order to take control of a system.
  • “To be clear, this vulnerability poses a severe risk,” Jen Easterly,  director of the U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, said in a statement, “We will only minimize potential impacts through collaborative efforts between government and the private sector. We urge all organizations to join us in this essential effort and take action.” 

Read more: Google Ads unaffected by Log4j vulnerability

4 elements that help create compelling SEO content

Creating content for SEO purposes is often associated with keyword-stuffed articles that lack quality and voice. But, as Google continues to push search marketers towards optimizing for humans instead of algorithms, that kind of content is rapidly losing visibility in the search results.

Read more:  Weekly News: How to make a GA4 landing page report in 10 easy steps

High-quality content, that’s designed to address the user’s needs as efficiently and effectively as possible, is now the standard. At SMX Create, Alli Berry, SEO director at The Motley Fool, provided an overview of the principles and tactics she uses to create content that not only ranks well and drives traffic but also speaks to searchers.

Structure for scanability

Even the most comprehensive content will fail audiences if it’s not presented in a digestible format. And, the narrow aspect ratio of mobile devices adds another factor to consider as it influences how much content a user can view at one time. This is why it is so important to organize your content so that users can find the exact information they’re looking for.

“Whenever I’m training new writers, the first thing I explain is the inverted pyramid of journalism,” Berry said, adding, “Nobody does this better than journalists . . . Their formula for writing content is really aligned with what search engines are looking for.”

alli berry SMX create 2021 s5
Image: Alli Berry.

The inverted pyramid is a way to organize content by leading with the most relevant, impactful information — in other words, the information the user is presumably seeking — at the very beginning.

Read more: 4 elements that help create compelling SEO content

More news:

Google Local Search Ranking Algorithm Update Last Week

Upgrade to the Google Ads API for even more features

3 tactics to improve CTAs for increased relevance and conversions

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