In this weeks digital news to watch, our Senior Performance Marketing Manager Tom, and Senior Performance Marketing Executive Kylie, discuss decreased online shopping this Black Friday, Google issuing credits, the ‘Global Resignation’ and Google’s core update.
Adobe Analytics saw that online shopping fell just short of the Black Friday total for last year at $8.9 vs $9 the year previous. With Black Friday extending even longer this year with some brands starting nearly almost a month in advance, plus fewer COVID restrictions allowing customers to return to store and problems with availability, we were always likely to see this year struggle to compete.
Adobe reported out of stock messages were up 124% year on year as well as many electronics seeing higher price points due to chip shortages, meaning older tech could have cost even more than last year. Overall for this Black Friday to come as close as it did to last year despite significant hurdles, this news will likely be seen as positive.
If you were impacted by the Google Shopping CPC bug back on November 12, then you’ll see that Google will now have credited your account with the overspend. Only Shopping Ads that use smart bidding were impacted by this increase. This available to see under the Transactions section of your Google Ads account.
If you think you were impacted and you haven’t received credit yet then it’s worth picking this up with your Ad rep, however, Google are usually quick in getting these turned around.
The ‘Great Resignation’ is happening across the globe and across all working sectors, FT theorises that many workers are simply moving to be better renumerated/more rewarded/better balance in which case both the workers and businesses could benefit from a better relationship.
However, the US has also seen 4m drop out of work completely, with the UK seeing excess retirements due to either long term illness or early retirement. For many it looks like COVID has caused a revaluation of what’s important in their lives. With a new variant potentially on the way and the current pandemic not over yet, we’ll soon see what the long term impacts are on the economy as well as how workers choose to live their lives. Jobs that offer better work life balance and flexibility are likely going to be able to pick up more skilled workers. Read about how we offer a different way of working for our team.
Google announced last week that a broad core update to their algorithm is now rolling out over the next two weeks. Core updates generally happen a few times a year and focus on improving search results for users by providing them with the sites that are going to be the most useful for their searches.
Therefore, sites that have been following Google’s guidelines in terms of updating their sites regularly and consistently publishing new content will likely benefit from these. On the other hand, sites that have let this slip, will likely notice drops; not because they are being penalised, but because sites doing more than them are being rewarded and therefore pushing them further down the SERPs.
There’s no need to panic about a core update, as it is unlikely there is any quick technical fix that could rectify any drops seen, but we would suggest keeping an eye on your rankings over this time. Once it’s fully rolled out, if you’ve experienced a dip, you may want to revisit your SEO plans and ramp up content creation.
Google has added several new features to their Map listings to enable shoppers to have a better shopping experience over the Christmas shopping period.
Features added include:
- Area busyness – to show how busy an area is at the time you are searching, and how busy they predict it will get throughout the day, so users can choose a quieter time to shop if they wish.
- Directory tab – gives more information about stores within shopping centres, including a full list of all stores in there, their star rating and what floor each store is on.
- Grocery shopping – a feature added earlier this year which allows customers to order groceries to pick up has been expanded to over 2,000 stores in 30+ states throughout the US.
- Restaurant information – Google now provides more information about local restaurants based on information provided by other customers in reviews, such as price ranges, whether they offer delivery or pick-up and more.