Some businesses have been reopening in North America thanks to measures like social distancing slowing the spread of coronavirus in some regions.  What does that mean for us? Now, companies will have to maintain their virtual operations along with slowly adding regular services back in. While this is an opportunity to recoup lost revenue, it also poses additional challenges with adjusting to new sanitization standards and physical distancing requirements. 

On the digital marketing side of things, Google continues to provide freebies for additional support, Facebook added shops, and the impacts of Google’s May 2020 Core Update are far from over. We also found you some resources for productivity. Just to mix it up a little bit, you know?

Get It Done!

It’s so easy to get distracted when working from home, whether you decide to spend 10 minutes learning to make a latte, or your dog wants attention. Let alone if your kids and partner are home too! As thousands of people are working from home, we are learning about proven strategies and tricks that work and help you be more productive. First, don’t treat WFH as a vacation – you have all the same responsibilities, if not more. Having the right mindset is a great first start. Then, set a structure you will actually follow and schedule your days. The rest of the advice is in this article.

Google Updates May 2020

Google Translate Widget Free Again!

An announcement from Google explains the decision to make the Website Translator free again, like it used to be:

In this time of a global pandemic, webmasters across the world—from government officials to health organizations—are frequently updating their websites with the latest information meant to help fight the spread of COVID-19 and provide access to resources.

However, they often lack the time or funding to translate this content into multiple languages, which can prevent valuable information from reaching a diverse set of readers.”

The translator can also translate website content like PDF files, along with website pages. It is easy to install and free for non-commercial sites as of right now.

Google Maps Meets Accessibility

Now, users can find wheelchair-accessible places by checking a box in the Google Maps app. The program will show stores and restaurants with a wheelchair icon next to the price level identified with dollar signs. In the Maps world, accessible means the destination has an entrance suitable for a wheelchair user. Then, the degree of accessibility varies based on the ease-of-use for parking, bathrooms, and seating in the restaurant or place. This will also be indicated in the app. This update seems so intuitive that it is surprising that it has only been released now. 

May 2020 Core Update… Updates

The Core Google Algorithm Update of May 2020 has finished rolling out. Now, we can conduct further analysis on the industries affected the most, and who the winners and the losers of the situation are. This article from Moz highlights an important point – depending on how we look at the data, we can tell a different story. Some experienced large increases in rankings on day two, some did not. If we cherry pick the data, we can tell the story we want to tell. Essentially, it’s crucial to look at the results from the update over a longer period of time, such as a 7-day average. Otherwise, we risk jumping to conclusions or setting unrealistic expectations.

However, according to Marie Haynes, we can say that this update has been very disruptive across the web. In summary, Google is getting better at identifying relevance of search results for users based on their search queries, and Marie Haynes hypothesizes that the update focused largely on understanding content better, likely through the use of BERT. Link quality was a factor as well, since sites with illegitimate links saw drops in rankings. Google may also be valuing links less now, as they are focusing more on the native website content instead. The sites that saw the biggest increases were in the verticals of News, Industrial, and Business. One of the speculated factors rewarded by Google in this update is first-hand expertise so it makes sense that the winners are websites where experts are featured often.

Facebook + Shopify = New Shops

Through a partnership with Shopify, Facebook is launching its own online storefront platform – Facebook Shops, available for Instagram too. 

Facebook Shops allows Shopify merchants to control customization and merchandising for their storefronts inside Facebook and Instagram while managing their products, inventory, orders, and fulfillment directly from within Shopify.

This is huge for small businesses who now have another avenue to find buyers and recoup any lost revenue. The integration between Facebook and the Ottawa-based tech giant is natural and will strengthen the relationship between the two companies. As consumers, we will be able to browse, search, and complete purchases on both Facebook and Instagram. Online shopping has never been so easy

We can write these pieces every day, there are so many changes and updates. To stay on top of everything, read the industry news, and make sure your business and website are using all the tools available to you! There is an infinite amount of possibilities of what you can do. If you need any help with your online presence, don’t hesitate to reach out.

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Sonya Gankina

Sonya Gankina

Sonya is an Internal Marketing Coordinator at seoplus+, managing our social media and all things content. Previously, she worked with our clients in the social media department.