December 2021 – SEO and Marketing News

Dec 24, 2021 by
December 2021 – SEO and Marketing News

Many of us might have assumed that 2021 would be the year where we all bounced back after a pretty bleak 2020. But here we are once again, on the cusp of another COVID pandemic. Thankfully, while the world continues to fall apart around us, Google keeps on being Google.

Indeed, given the rise in remote working over the last 2 years, it would appear that the world of online marketing and SEO is only getting larger. But rather than wax lyrical on the state of SEO in 2021 and where it could all be heading in 2022, let’s look back one last time at the most relevant news stories from this month.

Google confirms update to local search results

Google has confirmed that an algorithm update began rolling out to local search results at the end of November and concluded on December 8. This update involved a “rebalancing” of ranking factors Google considers when generating local search results. Google’s guidance regarding this update is to continue following local SEO best practices.

YouTube automatically to link to places mentioned in videos

YouTube is launching a new link format within the video description box that provides “an easy and visual way for viewers to learn about locations mentioned” in the video, the company announced via its Creator Insider channel. Named “Places Mentioned,” this feature will be visible on the mobile app for iOS and Android for food and drinks videos where YouTube can detect places. The company has not released a timeline for the rollout or stated whether Places Mentioned will expand to more video categories.

Facebook AI automatically removes harmful content

Facebook announced a new AI technology this month that can rapidly identify harmful content in order to make Facebook “safer.” The new AI model uses “few-shot” learning to reduce the time for detecting new kinds of harmful content from months to a period of weeks. Few-shot learning has similarities to Zero-shot learning. They’re both machine learning techniques whose goal is to teach a machine to solve an unseen task by learning to generalise the instructions for solving a task. Few-shot learning models are trained on a few examples and from there can scale up and solve the unseen tasks, and in this case, the task is to identify new kinds of harmful content.

Google Search launches enhanced autocomplete with a second column

Google has officially launched a new enhanced autocomplete search suggestions that may include a second column of predictions, and provide easier access to content related to a search. In addition, Google confirmed it is also testing a new edge to edge autocomplete interface and other full-width elements in the desktop search interface. The new enhanced autocomplete interface may show additional search predictions including people also ask, people also search for and other content that is related to the query.

Amazon Alexa SEO Tools is closing announced that it will be retiring its marketing services after 25 years. Founded in 1996, Alexa was subsequently acquired by Amazon in 1999. It was initially known for providing rankings based on traffic measured through a toolbar but Alexa eventually expanded to provide a full suite of marketing products including site auditing and backlink checking. Alexa Rank is a metric that offers a measurement of site popularity. In the early 2000s, data was collected via an Alexa toolbar that users downloaded and surfed with. The toolbars collected web traffic information from the users which fed into the Alexa Rank site popularity metric.

Google Ads brings image extensions to desktop devices

Google Ads will begin rolling out image extensions to desktop devices in the coming weeks, the company announced earlier this month. This update also applies to dynamic image extensions. Image extensions may help make your ads more visually appealing, which might encourage visitors to click on them. In a few weeks, they will also be available on desktop, enabling you to show relevant images to users whether they’re at home or on the go. If you are already running image extensions on mobile, they’ll automatically show on desktop devices as this update rolls out, so make sure to monitor performance so that you can assess whether this is worthwhile for your brand.

Top Google searches of 2021

Finally, let’s cap the year off with the top 10 trending searches on Google in 2021. Of course, as a marketer, there’s little chance you can do anything with them at this point but it’s still always fascinating to see. It’s also interesting to see how almost half of the list is taken up by cricket. Anyway, all that remains is to say Merry Christmas and see you all next year.

  1. Australia vs India
  2. India vs England
  3. IPL
  4. NBA
  5. Euro 2021
  6. Copa América
  7. India vs New Zealand
  8. T20 World Cup
  9. Squid Game
  10. DMX