Google News: March – April 2021
Every month, Google comes up with updates to create a better user experience. Therefore, in our SEO work, we have an interest in adapting ongoing efforts to the algorithm, so that we stay ahead of the competition.
We, therefore, give you here the latest updates from Google as well as the influence it may have on the prioritization of your optimization on the website.
Google makes hotel booking links free
Google has made ” hotel booking links ” free to use. This, therefore, provides a new way to increase its organic traffic. Previously, these results were only displayed as ads on the search engine.
In future, both hotels and travel companies will therefore be encouraged to optimize towards this visibility.
Users searching for hotels will see hotel ads showing relevant information including prices. This allows hotels to increase their growth at a time when the industry needs it extra.
The free booking links will therefore now be displayed under where the ads are displayed.
The pattern for making ads traffic-free is similar to a pattern from Google that recently also made Google Shopping a free source of traffic. Good news for the travel industry these days.
If you are already using hotel ads, you do not need to make any changes, as the lists are displayed automatically.
Local Search Updates
In March, Google again came up with new updates regarding the local search. This is again based on Google My Business data.
Google My Business is a tool for businesses and organizations to manage their overall presence on Google based on business data. This affects the traffic coming from users via Maps and search results.
In this update, Google is adding more data options to companies that offer grocery delivery and ‘pick up’.
The information that Google adds to Search and Maps includes:
Pickup and delivery windows
Google is starting to roll this out in the US, and then the plan is to expand further.
Google updates PageSpeed Insights results
In early March & April, Google announced that PageSpeed (PSI) Insights performance would increase for websites worldwide.
The PageSpeed Insights tool contains reports that show the speed of a website (domain). An insight that is now more important than ever – especially if you are running an international setup with Top-Level-Domains (TLD). This is due to Google’s more focused view on-page experience.
The tool provides reports for both mobile and desktop, including insight into the various errors that exist. The report contains both laboratory and field data.
Google has updated how PSI collects information. This is based on how they switch to using HTTP / 2 protocol to connect a website.
HTTP / 2 is an advanced network connection protocol that enables faster data transmission and has fewer limitations than the previous HTTP / 1.x protocol. So therefore HTTP / 2 gives you a performance boost in PSI.
Wix and Google expand the partnership
For many years, Wix has been criticized for not being as good as WordPress or other SEO-friendly CMS. But with an expanded Google partnership, Wix websites are now gaining an even stronger local search presence on Google.
The extended partnership integrates Google My Business (GMB) with Wix. Companies can therefore now access GMB data and manage their profile directly from Wix. This is a really good improvement for those who use Wix.
Some of the other integrations you know are:
- Google Search Console.
- Google Workspaces.
- Google Analytics.
- Google Tag Manager.
- Book with Google.
Google has been updated with “Full Coverage” in Google News
Google News gets the “full coverage” feature for news results. This provides more context about stories from multiple sources in both national and international markets.
When searching for news story information, you can see the “Views Full Coverage” button at the end of the carousel. This button can also be found by selecting More news on… under the carousel for the top stories.
A part of Google’s view of the quality of ‘full’ coverage. Something that in this case is most relevant to pages that do in Google News.