Digital Marketing News & Updates: January 2022

Today we introduce our new blog series, where we’ll go over the most impactful news and updates shaping the digital marketing industry every month.

Yoast SEO, one of the most popular SEO plugins for WordPress is launching its Shopify version, the new Google Partners program requirements go into effect next month, Meta removes targeting options for sensitive topics, and Google is rolling out a new Products Reviews update.


Yoast SEO to launch on Shopify


With more than 12 million active users, Yoast SEO is one of the most popular SEO plugins in the WordPress community, and from January 18 2022, it will be available for Shopify merchants. Unlike the WordPress version, which operates under a freemium model, Yoast SEO for Shopify will cost $29 per 30 days after a 14-day free trial.

Similar to the WordPress plugin, the Yoast SEO for Shopify can help Shopify merchants make sure their site meets the highest technical SEO standards and gives them the tools they need to optimise their content for SEO and overall readability. 

With Yoast SEO for Shopify, you can add all the necessary SEO metadata to your pages, which search engines will use to understand your content better and help you stand out in the search results and Google Shopping and drive more traffic to your Shopify store.

The plugin also automatically adds the correct structured data that help increase your chances to get rich results on Google and control how your pages are shown on Google and social media, among others.


The new Google Partners program requirements go into effect next month


With the launch of the new Google Partners program less than one month away (22nd of February), we would like to revisit the Google partners program and the requirements your company needs to meet to earn the new Google Partners badge.

Google Partners is a marketing program for advertising agencies or third parties that manage Google Ads accounts on behalf of other businesses. When you sign up for the Google Partners program, you’ll get access to a range of benefits, including education, insights, support, and the ability to showcase the Google Partners badge on your website and marketing materials.

There are three requirement categories: Performance, Spend, and Certifications that are checked daily. The required thresholds for each category are the following:

Performance: Your Google Partners registered Ads manager account needs to have a minimum optimisation score of 70%. The optimisation score requirement previously only allowed for the application of recommendations. However, you can now have the ability to dismiss recommendations for clients’ accounts where it may not have made sense to accept.

Spend: Your Google Partners registered Ads manager account needs to maintain a 90-day ad spend of $10,000 across managed accounts.

Certifications: Your Google Partners registered Ads manager account needs to have a minimum of 50% of your account strategists certified in Google Ads, with at least one certification in each product area with campaign spend (for example, Search, Display, Video, Shopping or Apps).

Starting June 2021, partners who meet the new requirements will get access to the new Google Partner badge. Current Premier Partners will keep their status until February 2022. After that date, companies will need to meet the Partner requirements and be in the top 3% of participating companies within a given country to become a Premier Partner or maintain their Premier Partner status.


Meta will remove targeting options for sensitive topics on January 19


Starting January 19, 2022, Meta (the parent organisation of Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp, among other subsidiaries) in an attempt to prevent advertisers from abusing the targeting options they provide will be removing some Detailed Targeting options that relate to topics people may perceive as sensitive.

These options include:

  1. Health causes 
  2. Race or ethnicity
  3. Sexual orientation 
  4. Religious practices and groups 
  5. Political beliefs, social issues, causes, organisations, and figures

Although the options mentioned above will be removed on January 19, 2022, campaigns will continue to deliver until March 17, 2022, which will give advertisers some time to come up with alternatives. The company added that they will also be removing targeting options that have not been widely used because they may be redundant with others or too granular.


Google Products Reviews Update


Back in April 2021, Google shared a product reviews update that was designed to promote high-quality product reviews. Last month the company started rolling out a new search algorithm update named the December 2021 Products Reviews Update. 

Users trust reviews with evidence of products actually being tested, so this new update is designed to better reward product reviews that share original, in-depth research and insightful analysis (especially if the reviews are written by experts or individuals who know the topic well), rather than thin content that simply summarises the product’s features.

The new product reviews update is introducing two new best practices for product reviews:

  1. Provide evidence such as visuals, audio, or other links of your own experience with the product, to support your expertise and reinforce the authenticity of your review.
  2. Include links to multiple sellers to give the reader the option to purchase from their merchant of choice.

These two new best practices, combined with the best practices introduced in the  April update, have now been merged into a single documentation page.