The f/stop: This Week in Digital Marketing

digital marketing updates“I Can See Clearly Now…”

Or, at least it’s easier to see the full picture of user behavior in Google Analytics. Currently, GA separates users on AMP and non-AMP pages, which makes it not so user-friendly to navigate across the two-page formats.

But we’re getting an update in the way GA is counting and reporting site visitors to AMP and non-AMP pages by having the user IDs unified. Since the change includes bringing AMP together with non-AMP data, there will be a few reporting fluctuations to look out for, such as:

  • User and session counts will decrease as Google starts recognizing the IDs as one user (AMP and non-AMP).
  • As IDs are reset, the New Users metric may spike temporarily.
  • Other metrics such as pageviews per session, bounce rate, and time on site will not be looked at as multiple sessions between AMP and non-AMP pageviews. This will affect metrics until users who have viewed AMP pages previously are unified.

AMP pages served from the Google AMP Cache or any other cache will not be affected. Google’s focus in on fixing the issue for public domain user visits first.

Source: Marketing Land

Hotel Reviews Get an Upgrade in Google’s Mobile SERPs

You may have noticed new changes available in local results in Google’s mobile SERPs. The goal is to help searchers find hotel reviews easier and in one spot. Now, Google allows users to read reviews from popular sites like and in both a consolidated or individual view. The biggest change on mobile is the reviews based on traveler type:

Additional updates include third-party reviews popping up in a carousel for some listings. And, the review overview section has stronger colors and reviews based on how helpful or how recent they are, etc., all in the name of making the booking and buying decision more user-friendly for travelers.

Source: Search Engine Land

Google Says: “I Award You No Points” for Your Backlinks

Google is reminding webmasters about the rules around link building through article campaigns. Put simply: when you build links from article websites to get a backlink to your website, that’s a no-no. They deem them as providing no value to readers and creating a bad user experience overall.

Sites in violation of Google’s guidelines may negatively be affected in site rankings. However, there are a couple of tips to keep your content from getting dinged with a penalty. Add a rel=”nofollow” tag on external links, and as a general rule of thumb, large scale link building campaigns should be executed with care.

Here are some of the guidelines of what NOT to do as shared by Google:

  • Stuffing keyword-rich links to your site in your articles
  • Having the articles published across many different sites; alternatively, having a large number of articles on a few large, different sites
  • Using or hiring article writers that aren’t knowledgeable about the topics they’re writing on
  • Using the same or similar content across these articles; alternatively, duplicating the full content of articles found on your own site (in which case use of rel=”canonical”, in addition to rel=”nofollow”, is advised)

Source: Google Webmaster Central Blog

Miss last month’s f/stop? Catch up on it here.

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