Here’s everything that happened in August in the ever-evolving world of web and digital marketing.
In this month’s roundup, we’ll delve into key developments that shook the digital landscape, including TikTok’s algorithm change and Google’s August 2023 Core Algorithm Update.
Let’s jump right in!
August 2023 TikTok Updates
#1 TikTok Algorithm
To comply with the European Union’s Digital Services Act (DSA), TikTok has revealed its plans to introduce a new feature for users within the EU region. Soon, users in the EU will have the option to disable the platform’s recommendation algorithm. By opting out of the personalised For You Page and LIVE feed experiences, these users will encounter a different content experience. They will be presented with “videos from both their local region and from around the world,” as opposed to content tailored specifically to their individual interests. This significant change is anticipated to be fully implemented by August 28, 2023, aligning TikTok with the DSA regulations in the EU.
What does this mean for businesses and creators using TikTok?
The implications of this update are clear, but we do know users who have opted up will not be shown content based on their interests. Businesses are going to have to work much harder to get on the FYP of its target market. With little specifics available at this time, we can only assume that local businesses will benefit from more increased localised exposure.
#2 TikTok Ads Targeting
There’s good news for advertisers on TikTok. TikTok is currently in the testing phase of a cutting-edge ad-targeting tool, known as PrivacyGo, which is designed to bolster data privacy protection for its users.
PrivacyGo operates much like a secure data clean room, allowing separate entities to input multiple sets of data and identify commonalities without disclosing the original sources of that data.
Why This Matters:
If PrivacyGo performs as anticipated, it will be a game-changer for marketers, granting them deeper insights into their target audience. This newfound knowledge will empower them to make more data-driven decisions, ultimately boosting campaign performance. Moreover, PrivacyGo promises to elevate TikTok’s ad-targeting capabilities, enabling brands to connect with both their intended audiences and previously untapped segments. The critical aspect is that TikTok intends to achieve these advancements while complying with evolving data privacy regulations, which should foster advertisers’ trust and confidence in the platform. This trust is poised to drive increased ad spending on TikTok.
The Inner Workings:
PrivacyGo utilises a cryptographic technique called multi-party computation (MPC), as reported by Business Insider. This sophisticated technology can identify shared audiences among various datasets while guaranteeing that none of the involved parties can access the raw data. Notably, the U.S. Government also employs a similar approach to analyse census data. TikTok is banking on this method to demonstrate to regulators that its data privacy protection measures are robust and reliable.
In summary, PrivacyGo represents a promising step forward for TikTok, offering enhanced data privacy for users and potent tools for advertisers. If executed effectively, this innovation could reshape how marketers harness data insights on the platform and, in turn, drive greater advertising success on TikTok.
#3 TikTok Ad Regulation Changes
TikTok is making major changes to its ad products to ensure it meets EU regulations.
TikTok has introduced a series of noteworthy updates aimed at enhancing user experience and transparency, as well as ensuring it meets EU regulations. Here’s a breakdown of these changes:
- Additional Reporting Options:
TikTok is making it easier for its EU users to report ads they deem unlawful. To streamline this process, the platform is rolling out new features that include complaint categories such as hate speech, harassment, and financial crimes. This empowers users to take an active role in maintaining a safe and compliant environment.
- Global Content Enforcement:
Content that violates TikTok’s Community Guidelines will now be removed from the platform on a global scale. Moreover, if content doesn’t breach the guidelines but infringes upon the law, it will be taken down within the specific country where the violation occurred. This approach ensures a consistent and responsible content ecosystem.
- Ad Personalisation for Teens:
TikTok is introducing a ban on personalised advertising for teenagers in Europe aged 13-17. This means that young users will no longer receive ads tailored to their online activities, whether within or outside TikTok. This measure aims to protect the privacy and well-being of young users.
- Increased Transparency:
In a bid to foster transparency, TikTok plans to provide creators with more detailed insights into its content moderation decisions. Creators will be informed about whether these decisions were made by AI or human moderators, offering greater clarity regarding the actions taken.
August 2023 Google Updates
#1 August 2023 Google Core Update
Google continues to refine its search algorithm to provide users with the most relevant and high-quality search results. In August 2023, Google rolled out a core algorithm update for the second time this year.
This update underscores the importance of creating valuable, authoritative, and user-friendly content. Businesses must prioritise their SEO efforts, focusing on high-quality, people-first content for optimal site performance.
This tweet from Google on August 22nd, announced the changes Google has planned, as they assured followers that they would update their ranking release history page, which may take up to two weeks to complete.
Core updates represent substantial modifications to Google’s search algorithms and infrastructure, with the potential to have a profound influence on the ranking of your web pages.
Nonetheless, as per Google’s assertion, core updates are not designed to single out particular pages or websites for targeting. Rather, their primary objective is to enhance the overall assessment process used by Google’s systems to evaluate content quality and relevance.
What does Google recommend for boosting page performance post core update?
For pages experiencing a persistent decline in performance, it’s essential to recognise that there may not be any inherent “issues” that require immediate fixing. Instead, Google recommends that underperforming websites shift their focus toward creating high-quality content. To aid in this endeavour, Google provides valuable resources, including a set of self-assessment questions designed to help generate content that aligns with their algorithm’s preferences.
Ask yourself these questions when analysing your web page results:
- Does the content offer original insights, reporting, research, or analytical perspectives?
- Does the page title provide an informative and valuable summary of the content?
- Are there any spelling or stylistic concerns within the content?
- Is the content mass-produced or outsourced to a large number of creators?
- Is the content authored by an expert or enthusiast with a deep understanding of the subject matter?
- Does the content present information in a manner that instil trust, such as transparent sourcing and references?
By addressing these self-assessment queries, website owners can take proactive steps toward creating people-centric content that aligns with Google’s criteria for favourable rankings.