The November 2021 Search & Digital Marketing News Round Up

November was a busy month for Google, and for the many webmasters and SEO professionals who follow every move they make. 

Google started the month with a spam update at the start of the month, stating their intention is to better deal with content that doesn’t meet their guidelines.

Some eagle-eyed observers suggested that the ‘Automatically generated content’ guidelines were updated on the same day, so if you’re looking for a clue on what changed and what you should stop if – horror – you are bending the rules.

Later in the month Google commenced the roll-out of the November 2021 Core Search Algorithm update, which completed on the 30th of November. Although a major update, we have not seen a high degree of fluctuation in the organic rankings that we have come to expect with core updates.

Desktop Page Experience will be a ranking factor

Google also announced that from February 2022  page experience on desktop sites – Core Web Vitals –  will become a ranking factor, meaning the only factor that doesn’t apply to both Mobile and Desktop ranking is (somewhat obviously) mobile friendliness.

Three SEO Heads are (much) better than one

Three of Google’s most high profile members of their Search Relations team John Mueller, Gary Illyes and Martin Splitt got together to discuss the future of SEO, and it’s well worth a listen below if you have 45 minutes to spare, or a read if that’s more your thing. There’s a very interesting section on making browser-based applications accessible to search engines, and the technical design decisions that might entail during development.

Facebook Targeting Sensitive Targeting

November also saw some updates from Facebook who are making changes to detailed targeting options for advertising. From January 2022 through to March 2022 Facebook will remove Detailed Targeting options that relate to topics people may perceive as sensitive including options referencing causes, organisations or public figures that relate to health, race or ethnicity, political affiliation, religion or sexual orientation. Clearly this will make advertising targeting harder for some brands, but if you place faith in the Facebook targeting algorithms, there’s a good chance the right creative will find its way to the right people…