It´s been a crazy year for the world of Digital (isn’t every year!?). We’ve seen big changes in Social and Search and we think it’s likely that these changes are just the first steps into even more changes! Now, about to enter a new year, here at SiteVisibility we would like to join the tradition of creating “best of/round up” lists that bomb our social media updates every December.
So, here we go! The SiteVisibility 2015 Round up.
One of the first events of the year for us SEOs was Mobilegeddon the Mobile Update that rolled out on April 21st. This Google update was meant to boost mobile friendly sites in their mobile-friendly algorithm and it promised to be huge. SEO experts and webmasters hurried to fix their sites and avoid the feared loss in traffic that the update was meant to bring. The day came and went and the effects of the update didn’t seem to be as huge as Google had announced. (Perhaps everyone had already fixed their sites….). Anyway, Google has said that they will continue making changes to the Mobile-Friendly Algorithm so we should probably take a closer look at mobile rankings in 2016.
Very recently Google announced that their machine learning technology, RankBrain, is now a part of the algorithm and is actually one of the most important ranking factors. In fact, it’s been reported that it has become the third-most important signal contributing to the rest of a search query.
The newest penguin update was meant to be launched in December and rolling out in real time. However, it seems that they are still working on it, and because Google doesn’t like to update their algorithm during the holidays, it’s likely that we will see the new penguin update rolling out at the beginning of the New Year.
Google’s Search Quality Guidelines
Just a few weeks ago, Google released its Search Quality Guidelines. It was a PDF of 160 pages aimed at helping Google Search Quality Raters understand how to rate search results that they were testing. In the document, Google revealed what is considered as a quality site and what makes a site worthy of appearing higher in search result pages. It won’t tell you all the secrets behind the algorithm but still worth a read.
Announcement and launch of Microsoft Edge
2015 has also been the year where Microsoft announced their new browser, Microsoft Edge, which will be replacing Internet Explorer and will be the default browser for Windows 10.
The Rise of Instagram
Instagram has slowly become one of the top networks to consider in social media marketing. During 2015 they have started implementing clickable ads and shop now buttons and we’re sure they still have many more tricks up their sleeve to wow us in 2016 and open new possibilities for marketers around the world.
Facebook improves user experience
Facebook continued to improve their user experience by developing their search and organic algorithm and giving every user the chance to prioritise and customise their news feed. In addition, Mark Zuckerberg announced that he would donate 99% of his Facebook shares to charitable purposes…
Twitter has also been busy this year, replacing favourites with likes, cancelling its sharing data and introducing Twitter moments. They also redesigned the #discover tab and rolled out the retweet with comment feature.
New Google+ interface
This year Google also decided to redevelop Google+. They’ve been paying attention to how their users were interacting on the platform and on November 17th they announced that the new Google+ will pay special attention to Communities and Collections simplifying the interface and user experience.
In summary, we believe it’s been a great year for Digital, but predict that, as we usually see, 2016 will be even bigger. We sense that the big players are just preparing the field for something even bigger. The internet of places, IA, eSports, app indexation and live streaming are just a few of the elements that could be key for the future of Digital Marketing.
I’m sure that are many thing that we forgot to consider but let us know what the biggest headline for you was in 2015 and what are you most looking forward in 2016 in the comments.