2021 Digital Marketing News and Updates: March 1, 2021

The world of digital marketing is rapidly evolving, and it’s only accelerating as the world becomes more and more dependent on digital commerce. With that in mind, Today’s Business is launching a routine digital marketing news and updates post to help users make sense of what’s happening.

Recent Digital Marketing News and Updates from January and February of 2021

Advantages of the Pyramid Site Structure

John Mueller of Google confirmed in February 2021 that the Pyramid Site Structure is highly recommended because it allows Google to understand the conditions of several pages and categories on a site. This structure allows one to organize web pages however he or she would like. Back in 2001, one of the first pyramid structure discussions was Webmaster World’s Theme Pyramids discussion. Ideally, in SEO, we want to avoid taking more than 4 clicks to get from the homepage to the destination. Furthermore, the search industry discovered that search engines were searching for themes in web pages and links.

Today’s Business Team’s take:  

If you have a site that is 10-20 pages, you shouldn’t worry about creating a perfect pyramid site structure. There’s not enough pages. But we are always a big proponent of clustering content pieces together by topic. We currently have a client in the health sector that is struggling due to a flat site structure, where as many links as possible are attempted to be placed in the menu to create instant access. The problem the client is currently facing is that many important pages are not ranking because they aren’t featured in the menu. Switching to a pyramid site structure would aid them in creating not just a better understanding for Google, but an easier website to organize and review.

Google Page Experience Explained

May 2021 is the anticipated date for Google’s upcoming update. Google Page Experience will include metrics in Google’s web vitals such as visual stability, loading, and interactivity. Furthermore, people will have convenient access to information. If there is no sense of awareness regarding this new update, there is a risk of your webpage not being visited. Yes, the page experience is important, but the content is crucial because it must compliment the page experience. 

TB’s Take:

Google’s Page Experience update has a lot to do with focusing on how pages load. Ever have a page load and then things stutter and rearrange? It’s a bad experience, and that’s what Google is trying to avoid. Come May, if your site is having a lot of page loading issues, you may be in trouble.

Total Number of Backlinks is Unimportant

On February 19, 2021, Google’s John Mueller established that the total number of backlinks has no correlation to the search algorithm. Instead of having millions of low quality links, there should rather be a good link from an applicable website. One good link from a reliable source can notify Google about how it should manage the page. Furthermore, Google prioritizes relevance in links that link to a specific website. Therefore, the quality of links outweighs the quantity of links. 

TB’s Take:

Mr. Mueller is reaffirming what TB has long held dear. Getting great links is better than getting 100 links from nobodies. We always tell clients to think about who is linking to them as the company you keep. One note, however: adding weaker backlinks is not necessarily a bad thing, especially if you haven’t been getting many good links recently. Creating new link signals to your website tells Google that the site is still active.

Impact of Tags on Rankings

Tags are to assist site users searching for related topics. Also, they are placed at the beginning or the end of an article. Google’s John Mueller stated in February 2021 that tags do not impact ranking on a blog post, but they can go to category pages. This can help Google explore additional pages about related topics. Furthermore, tags are great for making content reappear again since the content may be buried in the category menu structure. Tags may not be great for rankings, but can be useful for Google to explore other category pages.

TB’s Take:

TB continues to support the use of tags, even though we don’t use them on every site. Similar to what was discussed regarding the Pyramid Site Structure, tags are used by Today’s Business to help create content silos, or clusters of relevant content, just like categories. This method primarily deals with blogs, but we see that it’s a long-term play that leaves Google with a greater understanding of the website’s content themes. This eventually leads to better long term rankings.

Duplicate Content Does Not Negatively Affect Rankings 

John Mueller from Google asserted in January 2021 that duplicate content is not a negative search ranking component. To further support this point, Google algorithms are designed to handle duplicate material. If content is repeated on a website, Google will rank one piece of content and not display the other. This will not cause a site to rank lower in search results. Furthermore, Google will just search for the best page that matches with the content. 

TB’s Take:

While this may be true, the danger is if you use duplicate content rather frequently, you may end up with one page ranking and then several others doing nothing, especially if all of the duplicate content is on a gateway sort of page such as “[Service] in [Location]” areas served pages. Three rules of thumb to keep in mind here. 1) If the page is super important, take the extra effort to make content unique. 2) Do not stress over supporting content such as payment methods or insurance accepted. 3) If you’re using duplicate content, pay attention to how much content is actually unique. Chances are 100 words of unique content is not going to rank for a keyword.

Longer Title Tags than Ones Displayed Have SEO Benefits

Google’s Gary Illyes confirmed in February 2021 that title tags longer than what is displayed can actually be a good thing. If the title tag is one sentence or more, there will be no automatic action. Also, the length does not refer to a small number like 160 or 200 characters. Furthermore, there is no determined amount of length for a title tag. 

TB’s Take:

Stressing less over a title tag’s length can definitely save some time. But don’t go nuts with this potentially newfound flexibility. Google also doesn’t want you to keyword stuff your title tags. If you have a legitimate title tag that you are using to describe the page that happens to hit 75, 85, or 90 characters, don’t worry about it moving forward. But Today’s Business will still recommend to keep your title tags concise, and prioritize your most important keyword towards the beginning of the tag.

Keywords Mentioned in Google Search Snippets 

On February 21, 2021, Brodie Clark observed that labels with mobile snippets are found underneath the title. These words are mentioned in the content of the page and the labels are only displayed where they are an applicable reference point. Also, the labels add extra meaning and give categorization prompts. These keywords should be words that internet users are searching for. 

TB’s Take: 

This is potentially an exciting and interesting development in search for Google. It can help SEOs and content creators understand what it takes to show up for a page. Unfortunately, it’s probably going to be only temporary as Google has done experimentation like this before.

Let’s Talk Digital Marketing

Thank you for reading our January/February edition of Today’s Business’s 2021 Digital Marketing News and Updates. Google’s John Mueller and Gary Illyes were certainly busy with enlightening us so far this year, but chances are they aren’t done. Stay tuned for our next edition of news and updates.

Are you wanting to talk more about Digital Marketing? We’re always game. Contact us today with any questions, comments, or concerns you might have.