What We Learned in July 2018: The Digital Marketing Month in a Minute

Daily Mail, Topshop, Argos flagged as ‘not secure’ in Google Chrome

The latest version of Google Chrome (Chrome 68 went live on the 23rd of July) displays security warnings for websites that still use HTTP. As of July 2018, approximately 20% of the top 500 websites worldwide utilise HTTP. Multi-million brands like Daily Mail, Topshop, Argos, Sky Sports and many more seem to have not switched to HTTPS yet, risking losing customers at the expense of secure competitor websites.

Read our blog to learn how to perform an emergency HTTPS migration using Distilled’s ODN and avoid the security warning.

Read the full story (BBC)

Facebook close to buying London-based start-up to fight fake news

Facebook is reportedly in the process of acquiring Bloomsbury AI, a London-based startup that develops natural language processing (NLP) technology to help machines answer questions based on information gathered from documents. Facebook has plans to use the new AI technology to address content issues, such as fake news.

Read the full story (Techcrunch)

EU fines Google €4.3 billion over Android

Google has been given a record fine by the EU for ‘illegal behaviour’ as it allegedly used Android to establish its ‘dominant position’ in by forcing manufacturers to use their services and thus make Google the search default. With Android being the dominant smartphone operating system in the EU (approximately 80% of all mobile phones use it), the tech firm is guilty of forcing manufacturers to pre-install Google apps and Chrome in exchange of their access to Google’s Play Store. As expected, Google has plans to appeal.

Read the full story (BBC)

How an Offer to Sell Wistia Inspired Us to Take On $17M in Debt

As those of you that are regular visitors to the Distilled blog will know, we love Wistia! Chris and the team have one of our favourite products out there. In this post they openly discuss how they chose not to sell the company, chose to take on a huge amount of debt to buy out investors, and continue to focus on building a brand that they love running.

Read the full story (Wistia)

Google Tag Manager not recommended for Structured Data

John Mueller shared this piece of news on Twitter, suggesting that it is not ideal to use GTM to implement structured data. In the past, there have been a lot of doubts around why Google had not shared any guidelines on how to implement structured data with Google Tag Manager. Despite this recent tweet, GTM still continues to be effective for certain SEO changes when there is no other way of getting a change made.

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Read the full story (The SEM post)

Facebook fined half a million pounds for data breaches

The Cambridge Analytica scandal continues as Facebook has recently been hit by a £500,000 fine for its involvement. The penalty derives from two breaches of the Data Protection Act since the tech giant was not able to protect users’ data and did not act transparently.

Read the full story (The Guardian)

Google Speed Update has rolled out to all users

Google has revealed that the Speed algorithm has been rolled out to all users, meaning that page speed is now a ranking factor for mobile searches. This update will only affect ‘pages that deliver the slowest experience to users and will only affect a small percentage of queries’.

Read the full story (Google Blog)

Google My Business Insights has a new report

Google My Business has launched a new report that aims to show the most frequent search queries that trigger a local listing.  This new feature, called ‘ queries to find your business’, will be rolled out to an increasing number of businesses starting from July ‘18.

Read the full story (Search Engine Land)

Referral source updated for Google Images

In news that will alleviate the difficulties webmasters have in tracking the role of Google Images in terms of driving traffic, Google Images traffic will now have a new referrer URL - which will automatically show up in Google Analytics. The URL will have the same ccTLD (country code top level domain) as the images search engine itself:  https://images.google.com is the default option, while https://images.google.co.uk will be used for google.co.uk.

Read the full story (Google Blog)

Google’s 2017 Webspam Report is released

As every year, Google has released the new annual Webspam Report. The main trends of 2017 were outlined (website hacking being the most popular), together with new guidelines to help webmasters prevent webspam.

Want to know more on how to detect spammy backlinks to your site? Read our blog post on how to identify bad backlinks in 2018.

Read the full story (Google Blog)

Millions of fake Twitter accounts shut down

Twitter has been working hard to detect fake and suspicious accounts since May with the intent of improving public conversation on the platform. The tech giant recently acquired Smyte, a business whose services focus on ‘keeping people safe online’, fighting spam, abuse and fraud.

Read the full story (BBC)

Google Job search feature available in the UK

After releasing Google for Jobs in the USA in 2017, Google has now expanded this functionality in the UK. Ad-hoc schema markup has been rolled out for job listings to be eligible in Google for Jobs.

Read the full story (Search Engine Land)

Speakable mark up released for news to be read by Google Assistant

Google has released new markup that allows publishers to tag parts of a news page to be selected and read by voice assistants, such as Google Home. This functionality is currently available in English only for publishers in the US. For more information on its implementation, Schema.org fully covers the speakable the markup here.

Interested in voice search? Read our blog post on 2018 voice marketing tactics.

Read the full story (Search Engine Land)

Distilled News

We kick off the Distilled news this month with a flurry of posts from Will Critchlow. On the back of Chrome 68 flagging sites as insecure, Will shared a case study on how Distilled ODN was used to deploy an emergency migration getting a client onto HTTPS quickly, along with more information on how the ODN can help other enterprise businesses and new ODN features.

Off the back of his talk at SearchLove Boston Will continued to investigate Google research papers and shared his learnings on research into how children aged 8-11 are using image search to solve search queries.

Analyst Sally Poundall took her recent experiences of performing backlink audits and wrote up the blog post she wishes she’d had before kicking off that task. Learn how to spot patterns in your backlink audit to speed up the process of spotting spammy links.

From the US side of the pond, our New York consultant Samiul Huque helps us understand what UX is and why it matters within SEO and highlights some terrible UX in the American elects.

Creative Lead, Jo Harris-Cooksley helps us through the tough times when the creative juices just aren’t quite flowing with her post and tips, “5 creative blockers and how to break through them”.

Feel free to leave any comments below, or come and say hi to us over on Twitter. Until next time!

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About the author
Tim Allen

Tim Allen

Tim joined Distilled in March 2013 after making a considerable impression upon Duncan and Tom Anthony by wearing a Panda jumper to his interview. Originally moving from Lincolnshire to London to study acting at Reynolds Performing Arts, Tim soon...   read more