Happy Monday! We’re making some changes to our usual five-story digital news to watch. For even more value and insight, we’re involving another member of the team. Introducing our Digital PR Manager Matthew Fraser, who will be sharing the top stories in PR and the wider digital marketing sector. In our first instalment of this revamped digital news, TikTok search ads could outperform competitors, DuckDuckGo enter the AI race and influencers have the biggest impact on our sustainability choices.
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Google are rolling out a few minor changes to their search results to help users more easily identify businesses, as well as distinguish between paid and organic listings.
Favicons and site names are being added to organic listings to sit above the blue title link, enabling users to better recognise websites before they click through from the SERP. Google will take this information from your site content as well as references to your site that appear online, although it is possible to give Google a big hint about the site name you’d like to appear by adding WebSite structured data to your site.
Clearer labelling of ads is also being rolled out to help users distinguish between a paid ad and an organic listing. The text “sponsored” will now appear above the paid ad in bold text on its own line, so it stands out more than the previously used “ad” text.
The big news last week was TikTok’s entry into the search ads market. Having rapidly grown it’s advertising offering over the last few years and changing the way this generation gets their information. TikTok is now looking to move into search ads, these ads will appear separately to the standard For You page ads and will be targeted based on what users have searched for. For retailers who were worried that TikTok was too broad in its targeting, this may encourage greater use of the platform even if just to understand users. Experts are saying that the recent launch of TikTok search ads has the potential to put the platform ahead of its competitors in a way that will be difficult to match.
DuckDuckGo has recently launched its new AI feature, DuckAssist, to provide users with more direct answers within their platform. DuckAssist is generating answers using Wikipedia information within the traditional SERPs to provide naturally written, instant answers. The new feature is only in beta in English at the moment but may be rolled out to everyone shortly if the trial goes well.
Lush is going ethical with its advertising and cutting budgets across Google and Meta to focus on smaller, open-source platforms. This came after research that showed only 52% of respondents found information on Google trustworthy. In a forward-looking move, Lush wants to move away from Web2 as quickly as possible and towards Web3, working with smaller tech platforms as they go. It’s an interesting way to go and will shine a light on whether the ethical route can also be the effective route.
Unilever has recently conducted some research that found influencers have the single largest impact on consumers’ sustainability choices, ahead of TV documentaries, news articles and government campaigns.