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April 2024: What’s Happening In Digital Marketing

Digital marketing is always changing, and it’s crucial to know what’s now and what’s next.

Here are some of the latest digital marketing news headlines you’ll want to be mindful of:

Google’s New Product Structured Data Type

Structured data helps Google and other digital services categorize and interpret content on websites. This new data type makes it easier for Google search bots to relate 3D product models to specific products when they’re displayed on pages where multiple products are being shown. Using this structured data type has the potential to help your pages rank more effectively against competitors who offer similar products to similar audiences.

What does it mean? Websites that use 3D product models in their marketing should implement the new structured data type promptly to enhance their product page search engine visibility and user experience.

Google to Roll Out New Generative AI for e-Commerce

Google has already worked hard to make it possible to compare deals and shop for products directly within the Shopping interface. Now, they’re testing features that will bring the idea to the next level. The new concepts make it easier for users to find products, and include Shopping elements like Related Style Recommendations and Virtual Try-Ons. An expanded selection of model photos and more filters are also in the works.

What does it mean? While these features will be most visible to end users in the short term, they are sure to become connected with new directions in search engine optimization in e-commerce – so stay tuned for more.

Search Generative Experience Impacts Top Results

Search Generative Experience (SGE) “transforms” the search experience by using generative AI to supplement search results. A recent study shows that when an SGE box is expanded, top organic results become much less visible – dropping by more than 1,200 pixels. Likewise, more than 60% of SGE links come from domains that remain outside the top ten organic results. All verticals are impacted, with e-commerce high on the list.

What does it mean? Search Generative Experience will become a major factor in search engine optimization, impacting businesses in all verticals. Marketing agencies need to start testing a structured SGE SEO approach.

Google’s March Spam Update Demolishes Websites with AI Content

Throughout March, Google unleashed a wave of “manual spam actions” – that is, checking over websites that were believed to have gamed the system with low quality AI-generated content to raise their search result position. The verdict is in, and thousands of websites were de-indexed as a consequence. That means they simply do not appear in Google results and are effectively invisible to the world’s biggest search engine.

What does it mean? Business owners need to pump the brakes on AI-generated text content, no matter how “well-written” it appears at first glance. Google can clearly detect AI-generated content and plans to penalize it. A content marketing strategy developed and executed by humans is the only way forward.

Using YouTube for Video Marketing? Don’t Delete Your Videos

Video storytelling is some of the most popular and sought-after content online. Video is more memorable and motivates viewer behavior far more than text alone. A consensus is developing that if you use YouTube videos for video marketing, you should never delete them, even old ones. Deleting videos can mean a particular user no longer gets counted among the custom audience you can advertise to on the platform.

What does it mean? The content in your YouTube videos might occasionally go out of date, but there are real alternatives to deleting your videos. One of these is to simply de-list them so they no longer appear publicly. Video privacy settings allow selected videos to be semi-private so they’re accessible only via their URL link.

What Are We Looking Forward to for Digital Marketing this April?

No one can predict the future, but here’s what we see when we break out our digital marketing crystal ball:

  • April is full of major digital marketing conferences where big names in the field will share their findings.
  • AI-generated text content is the albatross around websites’ necks – are more penalties on the way?
  • More platforms are moving toward a cookie-free approach to tracking users and gathering data.
  • Will TikTok, a major video marketing platform, be headed for a ban in the U.S.? April may tell us.

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