What We Learned in March - The Digital Marketing Month in a Minute

It's been another busy month in the digital marketing world. Google has announced a brand new version of one of its major products, and a proposed redesign for another. Facebook is ramping up Instant Articles, in preparation to take on Google Accelerated Mobile Pages. It's also been a busy month for Distilled too, with a number of noteworthy blog posts to sink your teeth into.

March's biggest stories

Google announces Analytics 360 Suite

The search engine behemoth has announced a new analytics platform, called Analytics 360 Suite, aimed at enterprise-level companies. The new platform will include a selection of tools, including Audience Center 360 (a data management tool), Optimize 360 (for site testing and personalisation), and Tag Manager 360.

Read the full story (Marketing Land)

Google mobile-friendly algorithm getting May boost

While it may not be quite like the so-called Mobilegeddon of last year, Google has announced another update that will “increase the effect of the [mobile friendly] ranking signal. If your site is already mobile friendly, you will have nothing to worry about, as this update will only further diminish the value of non-mobile friendly websites in the SERPs.

Read the full story (The SEM Post)

Facebook preparing for full Instant Articles Launch

Ahead of allowing all publishers free reign of Instant Articles in April, Facebook has teamed up with publishing platform Steller to allow brands to create articles that can be shared on IA. A WordPress partnership has also been announced, with the website-hosting giant launching an Instant Articles plugin.

Read the full story (Marketing Land)

Physical Web experience tested on London buses

In a move that is being labelled as  “the world’s first deployment of a Physical Web consumer engagement experience”, the MyStop project uses Eddystone web beacons attached to London buses to transmit timetable information to commuters’ phones.

Read the full story (Marketing Land)

Have CPCs increased after Google desktop SERP changes?

Google confirmed the end of ads on the right sidebar of its desktop version last month, primarily to bring it in line with the mobile version. Since the change, the cost of ads has been the subject of intense debate. Wordstream CTO Larry Kim ran a number of tests on this and discovered that, while CTRs are up slightly, CPCs have remained relatively steady.

Read the full story (Search Engine Land))

Google preparing Adwords redesign

Despite having a plethora of features added across the years, Google AdWords has remained relatively unchanged (from a design point-of-view) since its launch back in 2000. Google has announced a long-overdue redesign, which will include consulting with users to identify what changes are needed, but it could be more than a year before the new design is rolled out.

Read the full story (Marketing Land)

How does Google Work?

The SEO industry’s relationship with Google is a complex one. However, a recent SMX talk from Paul Haahr, a senior Google software engineer, has given a number of insights into how and why Google chooses algorithm changes and updates. There is also an excellent breakdown of the presentation and an ongoing discussion on Sugarrae.

Watch the Video (SMX)

Distilled news

With little over a month to go until SearchLove Boston, tickets are available here, while the exciting lineup of sessions can be found here. Tickets have also gone on sale for SearchLove London, with a record number of attendees grabbing their flash sale tickets.

Over on the Distilled blog, CEO Will Critchlow has been speculating on the possibility of Google removing links as a ranking factor, as well as guiding you through the challenge of SEO due diligence. Analytics Consultant Tom Capper has created a detailed guide to offline interactions in GA, while Analyst Sam Nemzer has been looking into the continued importance of Keywords.

More news

Microsoft proposes helper bot boom (BBC News)

Apple News opening up to more publishers (Marketing Land)

AlphaGo beats world-class Go player (The Verge)

Inside Facebook's memory factory (Wired)

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