Have you noticed your organic ranking drop?

Have you noticed your organic ranking drop?

The search marketing rumour mill is rife with discussion around the apparent roll-out of mobile-first testing from Google.

Ensuring your website is mobile responsive means focusing on the key concerns for mobile users – performance and usability. This means making sure that your website loads quickly, and is easy to use on mobile.

To check how your website performs on mobile, take a look at Google’s TestMySite toolkit, which provides a free audit of how your site performance on mobile.

If you would like to talk to anyone about the points raised in your Google Test My Site audit, we are on hand to explain the results and let you know how to fix it.


Latest Digital News – November

Latest Digital News – November

This month, we have seen a number of interesting little changes to Facebook, including some new features, metrics and plugins – alongside a couple of Google updates.

Google will now feature icons for PDFs and PPTs in search results

This is a subtle but useful change from Google, showing labels on search results for raw PPT and PDF files uploaded to websites, so the user will know what type of content will open when they click on the link.

It’s clean and consistent with other Google labels, it will only appear if you are linking to a direct PPT file, not one that’s embedded onto a web page. It has the potential for increasing click throughs if people are specifically looking for this type of content – such as people looking for evidence or reports.

Facebook releases a new Messenger Chat plugin for websites

This month, Facebook revealed details about its latest version of the Messenger platform – featuring a customer chat plugin for business websites.

The move was after huge demand, with businesses wanting to reach their customers in new ways – customers are already using messenger, so companies want to speak to their customers in the environment that they are already present on.

The plugin will allow businesses to continue conversations seamlessly between their website and Facebook Messenger without losing any of the chat history.

You can find out more about the messenger plug in on the Search Engine Journal.

Facebook introduces a simple polling feature – including GIF functionality

This month, Facebook rolled out a new feature to both business pages and personal profiles, allowing users to post simple polls and include GIFs to make them engaging and stand out in news feeds.

The polls are simple, they will include one question and a choice of two answers. They are found by creating a status update and scrolling to the bottom of the menu to find the poll option.

I think this is something we will start seeing a lot of on our Facebook feeds!

Facebook inform publishers of the pages who have shared their videos

Another new bit of Facebook news this month, Highlighted Shares. This feature gives brands, publishers and creators more information about who is contributing to their video views.

It’s done via a tab on all pages that will list the top 5 pages that have shared your videos on Facebook. This new Highlighted Shares metric will be accessed through video insights.

It’s hoped that this new ability to see who is engaging with your content the most will encourage businesses to then in turn share their content, creating a network of businesses who engage and share with each other’s content – helping each other grow their audiences.

A really helpful metric, and certainly something worth including in your regular monitoring.

Make sure your site is secure & ready for next Google update

Make sure your site is secure & ready for next Google update

Google is now prompting all users clicking on unsecured websites to be careful, as they are about to enter data into a potentially ‘unsafe’ website. But what does Google count as an unsafe website?

To Google, an unsafe website is one that has no encrption – one that doesn’t have an SSL certificate or (more simply) HTTPS at the beginning of the URL (instead having HTTP – which is the standard protocol).

The SSL in SSL certificate stands for Secure Sockets Layer, which is a very high-level encryption standard. SSL enables a secure connection between the client and the server for which information is sent over. Google (understandably) wants everything on the web to be travelling over secure channels, so now they will flag any unencrypted websites as not secure whilst using their Chrome browser – displaying a red ‘X’ over a padlock in the URL bar.

This change means that Google is making it very clear that it believes the internet should be surfed securely, wanting all sites to be served using HTTPS. HTTPS is basically a secure layer on top of the usual HTTP web protocol.

It’s a move that is welcomed by companies and tech experts, noting that the change is a strong idea. Right now, HTTP is still common place, however it isn’t secure and presents a potential danger to website users and brands.

Encryption has been encouraged on websites by Google since 2014, with HTTPS contributing to their ranking algorithm.

If you would like to learn more about security on your website, drop us a line at [email protected]

Is your website mobile responsive? Now it needs to be for Google Rankings.

Is your website mobile responsive? Now it needs to be for Google Rankings.

The SEO blog

We all know that Google is one of the (if not THE) biggest considerations for directing traffic to your website. We all need to keep up to date with how Google is updating its algorithms, making sure to keep our website in line with the changes to maintain those all-important search rankings – and there is one big change coming. The Mobile-First Index.

A study from earlier this year found that 55% of all web traffic comes from mobile and is continuing to rise.

What this means is that Google will begin to index your mobile site first. In plain English, Google will now be looking at your website’s mobile performance over desktop, when ranking it for search results. Google already put a lot of weight behind mobile, but soon it will not take desktop performance into consideration at all.

So, the question that should be on everyone’s mind right now – is my website mobile friendly? If not, what do I need to do?

According to a recent article on Search Engine Land, to be seen as responsive, your page needs to have the same content on mobile as it does on desktop. If you are removing content on mobile to streamline readers experience this will score negatively as Google doesn’t want to see your users not getting the full package on your website.

So – key points to look out for on your site:

  1. Make sure all content is the same on both desktop and mobile – if they aren’t equivalent then it’s not responsive.
  2. Have one URL that is responsive across both desktop and mobile, don’t use 2 different sites as even when the mobile version does come into the ranking considerations if there are any differences between the two then tip number 1 comes into effect.
  3. If you do have a mobile site, make sure you have all of your desktop content on there!
  4. Pop ups – most people find them annoying anyway, and turns out so do Google! They see them as a negative user experience and will now be penalising them.

Some good news – if you have content hidden behind drop-down boxes (accordions) or separate tabs in the hope that it makes the user journey easier on mobile, now this content is being taken into consideration by Google – so you can chunk up the content to help with readability.

Wrapped website on laptop Wrapped website on phone

So, when will this change come into effect?

Right now, it’s really important for you to have a  responsive website, optimised for mobile. It is already taken into consideration by Google, and let’s face it – if 55% of your customers are viewing your site like that, then you should be wanting to help them out anyway. However, we don’t have a confirmed date yet for when the mobile-first index will come into play. It’s said to be early 2018, but we don’t have a definite deadline.

But, early 2018 will be with us soon, so if you want to talk to someone to check whether your site is responsive, or ask about how to make your website responsive – drop us a line either using our live chat or email [email protected] and our digital team can help.

7 things to know about the GDPR update

7 things to know about the GDPR update

With just over half a year to go until the GDPR deadline (25 May 2018), you are bound to be asking questions about what the update includes and how your organisation can get ready for it. To help out, we have outlined 7 principles of GDPR – meet these and you are on your way to being compliant.

The GDPR update is for personal data, so this doesn’t include organisational data or data that has been put out into the public domain.

The 7 principles of GDPR

Know what you need and why

The main thing I am picking up about GDPR is the ability to justify every field of data that you are collecting. Why do you need to know ethnicity, is it relevant for the function of your organisation, or is it analysis? I’m afraid analysis or ‘just in case’ is no longer good enough. Know exactly what information you need to collect and document why you need it.

Be transparent

Gone are the days that privacy notes are small print buried in a sea of terms and conditions. Now you need to be clear about what data you are collecting, why you need it and what you will do with it. This has to be prominent on the page that you are collecting the data on – not buried in footnotes.

Keep the data secure

It sounds obvious but you would be surprised! Make sure all personal data is encrypted and kept on a secure server. The system needs to be trusted and compliant with DPA. It’s your responsibility to thoroughly check where your data is stored, so complete an audit before the 25 May 2018 to ensure that your data is safe and secure.

Don’t keep data longer than you need to

As part of the privacy notice you need to let people know how long you will keep their data for, and stick to that. Make sure you cleanse your data regularly and get rid of old information – or get consent and update it.

Dispose of data securely

When you are archiving old data, know that you are deleting it securely.

Don’t send data internationally

All of Europe needs to conform to the new GDPR update, but other countries may not match up to the standards and requirements of the law – so you need to ensure that if you are sending your data to any third parties, that they are also compliant to the regulations.

Ensure data you have is kept up to date

Another principle showing how important data cleansing is. You are responsible for making sure your data is up to date and correct – so book in time regularly to do a data check, if emails bounce then delete them. If you send data to third parties you are also responsible for sending them updated data, making sure they are up to date too.

SO basically, make sure you document:

  • What we have
  • Why we have it
  • Where did it come from?
  • Who are we sharing it with?

The main message from me is – don’t panic. There is lots of noise out there at the moment, but for more information about GDPR visit the ICO website for guidance and advice.

Disclaimer: This blog post is not legal advice for your company to use in complying with EU data privacy laws like the GDPR. This blog provides background information in relation to understanding GDPR and its effect on you and your marketing practices – this is not the same as legal advice. If you would like legal advice on your GDPR practice, please contact a solicitor.

Latest digital news – September

Latest digital news – September

Emily's digital news banner

Hello, I’m the Social Media and Digital Comms Manager at Wrapped, and each month I am going to be rounding up the latest news that our Digital Team have spotted around SEO, PPC, social media, websites and content marketing.

In this month’s blog, Google have been busy preparing for a switch to mobile-first indexing and launching a book now button in the local knowledge panel. Whilst Facebook work on cover videos, integrating with Instagram stories and 360-degree adverts.

Is your website ready for Google’s switch to a mobile-first index?

Mobile search

After previous tweaks to Google’s algorithm in the last couple of years to favour sites that are mobile responsive, they have now announced that in early-to-mid 2018 they will be switching to a mobile-first index.

It means that it is now crucial for your websites to be updated and checked to confirm that it is mobile responsive, ensuring you don’t lose your place in search results once the switch takes place. There are no confirmed timelines as yet for the switch, and websites that are already responsive shouldn’t notice any issues.

You can read more about the change in the Search Engine Journal. If you want to talk to us to conduct an audit on your website to determine if it will be affected, contact us at [email protected].

Google will now let you ‘book’ directly from the results page

Google Book Now feature

Back in 2015, Google began testing the ability for searchers to book appointments using the local knowledge panel on a search results page. In the last month, the functionality has become available for everyone who is logged into a Google account and using Chrome.

It’s another effort to make user journeys quicker, more efficient and more mobile-friendly.

When you initially search for the brand, you get the prompt ‘check schedule’. If you click on this, it takes you to a maps page, letting you select a date, time and service.

Facebook launch cover videos

Facebook cover video screenshot

Have you visited our Facebook page recently? If so, you may have noticed something different about it – a little more movement perhaps?

Facebook has recently launched the ability to replace cover images with videos, with the aim of making business pages more engaging for the visitor and to provide richer experiences. We love this concept and plan to use the functionality to showcase our latest portfolios, campaigns, and people stories.

Facebook test using Instagram stories on the main app

Instagram photographs of food

Facebook is determined to have Stories featured on its app – it’s now testing the functionality with Instagram. It introduces a new option for photos and videos created with Instagram to be shared to Facebook directly from their app, as well as to Instagram Stories.

It will be interesting to see if this Stories functionality if made live, will stick – as previous attempts to add Stories to Facebook have not appealed to users. Watch this space!

John Lewis becomes the first UK retailer to use Facebook’s 360-degree adverts

John Lewis Facebook advertisingIt’s getting towards that time of year where all marketers start watching John Lewis keenly waiting for hints of their Christmas campaign. But, this week they popped up on our radar because they became the first retailer in the UK to start using 360 adverts on Facebook. Online shoppers are now able to view select goods from all angles before purchasing through a quick buy process. Speaking to The Drum, John Lewis’s Senior Manager for Social Marketing says:

“Facebook is such an important platform to reach customers and as Facebook’s research has found 51% of people say they’re excited that VR will play a part of their shopping experiences in the future.
This trial forms part of our strategy to offer our customers more inspiring experiences both in shops and online.”

If you would like to talk to us about any aspect of your brand or marketing, contact us at [email protected].