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HTTPS becomes a ranking factor in Google, Google Pigeon rolls out, Facebook improves ad scheduling and Twitter ecommerce – Digital Marketing News

Inbound Marketing Assistant

Hello and welcome to Fresh Egg’s digital marketing news. In this edition, we talk about the introduction of HTTPS as a ranking factor, Google’s ‘Pigeon’ update, Twitter as an ecommerce platform and Pinterest’s new direct messaging feature.

Google introduces HTTPS as a ranking signal

A priority issue for Google is security on the internet, making sure all its services have end- to- end HTTPS encryption. Now, Google is introducing HTTPS as a ranking signal in its search algorithms as further ‘encouragement’ for websites to adopt the HTTPS standard. Although the ranking factor is currently only creating a small impact (less than 1% of global queries), it is something Google will look to increase in the future.

Image source: searchengineland.com

Although yet to produce best practice guidelines for this (which have been promised for the coming weeks), Google has given the following basic tips to get started:

  • Decide the kind of certificate you need: single, multi-domain, or wildcard certificate
  • Use 2048-bit key certificates
  • Use relative URLs for resources that reside on the same secure domain
  • Use protocol relative URLs for all other domains
  • Don’t block your HTTPS site from crawling using robots.txt
  • Allow indexing of your pages by search engines where possible. Avoid the noindex robots meta tag

You can find the official Google blog post on this here.

Google Pigeon update

Google rolled out an update to its local search results, nicknamed ‘Pigeon’. This new algorithm is designed to provide ‘more useful, relevant and accurate local search results that are tied more closely to traditional web search ranking signals’. Alongside this, Google says the Pigeon update improves its parameters for distance and location ranking. The update is currently limited to US English results only, and Google have not given details about if and when the update would roll out in other countries and languages.

Barry Schwartz at Searchengineland.com says:

 “Google told us that the new local search algorithm ties deeper into their web search capabilities, including the hundreds of ranking signals they use in web search along with search features such as Knowledge Graph, spelling correction, synonyms and more.”

Although Google has not commented on how much this has affected SERPs, local SEO experts have seen a decrease in seven pack results.

Ad scheduling comes to Facebook Power Editor

Facebook has enabled the option within Power Editor to schedule the hours during which adverts should be shown or not. This expands on the existing option to schedule a start and end date.

Image source: insidefacebook.com

This gives advertisers lot more control on when their advert is showing, allowing them to target when their audience will be most active.

You can find a great guide on the new ad scheduling here.

Twitter exploring ecommerce options

Following the tests of both Facebook and Twitter ‘buy’ buttons, and Twitter’s acquisition of the payments platform CardSpring, users are now reporting that there is a ‘payment & shopping’ option in the official Twitter Android app

Image source: @am_Bix

It’s looking increasingly likely that consumers will soon be able to purchase goods from Facebook and Twitter, but are these the right platforms for shopping? It would give brands added reason to engage on the service, but will users actually use them instead of Amazon and various other ecommerce websites? We shall find out soon it seems.

There are also timeline tests going on to increase engagement and support user retention on Twitter, with favourites and ‘suggested’ tweets being pulled into users’ timelines.

Pinterest introduces direct messaging

From Instagram to Vine, direct messaging has popped up on many apps within the last year. Now, Pinterest has hopped on the bandwagon with the hope it can encourage greater sharing and enable better collaboration between users.

This has simultaneously rolled out on desktop and mobile. More information can be found here.

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