We’ve witnessed a lot of widespread disruption and technological advancements happening in the month of November. There were a lot of digital marketing updates this season, from YouTube granting its AI-generated elements and WhatsApp chat lock codes to Facebook removing hobbies from their user profiles. With the right digital strategies and emerging trends, you can stay ahead of your competitors in your space. Let’s learn and explore more of these topics in detail.
1. Instagram Adds Song Lyrics Display In Reel Clips
Instagram now permits the inclusion of song lyrics to Reels, similar to how it does in Stories, giving users another entertaining musical option within the platform. Users may now select their desired font, highlight key areas, and include personalised text components into their Reels with this upgrade.
This move corresponds to the growing prominence of music on social media platforms, with TikTok leading the way in music industry integration and live events. While this feature does not represent a big change in the Reels experience, it does simplify the process for customers who previously had to add song lyrics to their videos manually.
2. Threads Roll Out Improved Web Posting Options
Threads is constantly releasing new upgrades to match the capabilities of its competitor, X, and capitalise on the growing user interest.
Threads users can now alter the alt text on videos and photos when posting from the online version, which improves accessibility for all users. This feature was first introduced in August for the mobile app, allowing users to provide personalised descriptions for their visual material. Furthermore, web users can easily attach files to their Threads postings by dragging and dropping them into the composer.
This new feature simplifies the process of creating Threads updates, making it more user-friendly. Furthermore, the site has included additional data insights, allowing customers to obtain a comprehensive list of people who have quoted or reposted an update by tapping into the Likes count. This enhanced functionality allows users to gain a deeper understanding of post activity, facilitating effective engagement tracking and audience resonance assessment.
3. Meta Launches Reels Creator Tools: A/B Testing & Incentives
Meta is launching many new tools and features to provide artists with more information about content success and to help them fine-tune their strategy. As Meta works to attract more contributors, particularly for Reels content, several of these techniques are appealing, with Meta even offering additional reach and visibility as a reward for contributing.
One of the most significant changes is a new A/B testing option for Reels makers, which allows them to experiment with different ways to their content. This feature enables Reel producers to test four versions of each Reel, each with various subtitles and thumbnail images. The system then distributes each version to a subset of the initial audience, with the winning version determined by the highest engagement after 30 minutes.
4. Youtube Adds Additional Safeguards And Alerts For Young Users
YouTube is adding new safeguards to protect young users from excessive exposure to potentially harmful content while simultaneously stepping up efforts to encourage young users to take breaks from the platform.
Based on insights gathered from collaboration with child development specialists, the platform has enhanced its recommendations strategy, resulting in a better knowledge of content that can negatively effect teenagers through repeated exposure.
As a result, YouTube will now limit content recommendations for teens in some categories, such as content that promotes physical attribute comparison, idealises certain body types or fitness levels, and depicts social aggression in the form of non-contact fights and intimidation.
5. Google Alters Adsense Payment Structure And Ad Delivery Thresholds
Google has announced an anticipated change to its AdSense payment structure, which will transition publishers from a flat-fee revenue-sharing approach to an impression-based payment scheme. This move may have an impact on the revenue sharing for website adverts, while Google claims that the vast majority of websites will be unaffected.
The actual impact will be obvious only after the new structure is implemented. In essence, Google is splitting the price structure to ensure that most websites continue to receive a similar income share. The particular cost, however, will vary depending on factors such as the individual ad campaign and its aims.
6. Youtube Combats Ad Blockers To Boost Revenue
YouTube is stepping up its attempts to combat online ad-blocking programs by restricting viewers’ access to YouTube videos whenever an ad-blocking tool is discovered. As stated in the notice message, YouTube has been notifying users for several months that they either disable their ad blocker or add YouTube to their allowed list in order to view content via the web app. While this technique was initially deployed in limited testing in June, more users have now reported encountering the new pop-up notification. YouTube confirmed to The Verge that it is expanding its anti-ad block campaign.
7. Google Rolls Out November 2023 Core Update
Google has initiated the rollout of the November 2023 core update, representing the second significant alteration to its search algorithm within a short span. This occurrence is relatively rare. Website owners experiencing impacts from the update should consult Google’s recently updated core update guidance for valuable insights.
8. Google Search Adds Green Discount Labels To The Deals Section
Google is experimenting with displaying prominently bold green product labels in the product grid section. While some users may see more subtle white labels, others, like Khushal Bherwani, have seen distinct bold green labels.
9. Google Bard Offers Real-Time Responses, Similar To Competitors
Google Bard is now equipped to provide real-time responses, allowing users to observe the “typing” of the answer as it formulates the response. This feature aligns Bard with the functionality of Bing Chat and other AI chat tools. Additionally, Google has introduced a setting within Bard’s gear/settings area, enabling users to opt for the “respond once complete” mode and turn off real-time responses.
10. Instagram Explores New Features For Private Group Sharing
Instagram emphasises private interaction by testing several recent changes to boost minor group interactions. Users in the testing phase can now respond to Notes using multimedia options such as audio samples, photographs, videos, GIFs, and stickers. This addition of response features intends to vary and deepen Notes interactions among friends.
Notes, which Instagram debuted last December, have gained popularity, particularly among younger users—an essential demographic that the network wants to keep rather than lose to competitors like TikTok. As a result, Instagram has increased its emphasis on Notes over the last year, constantly introducing new interactive elements such as tunes and looping video clips. Instagram is exploring the concept of Events.
This feature would enable users to establish in-stream chat groups centred around specific functions or gatherings, fostering more personalised and focused interactions within the platform.
11. X Introduces Timestamp Links For Video Uploads
X has added a new function to help users navigate longer movies within the app. Uploaders can now include timestamp URLs in the attachments to their video clips. Users can put timestamp listings in their posts, as shown in a clip uploaded by Lex Friedman, allowing others to rapidly touch on these links to jump to specific segments during playback.
This feature is currently only available on iOS, as the blue links indicate. On the other hand, X hopes to expand this feature to a more extensive user base. In August, X first demonstrated its timestamp functionality, demonstrating how users may insert references into their post language. Include time markers in your X video uploads to include timestamps.
12. Meta Tests Opt-Out For Read Receipts In DMs
Meta has announced a new feature allowing users to disable read receipts for their direct messages (DMs). Individuals can now control when the “Read” and “Seen” markers appear — or do not — for the sender in message threads.
For example, Instagram will soon have a setting to disable read receipts, with ambitions to expand similar functionality to Meta’s other messaging services. Users can choose not to disclose that they’ve viewed a DM by removing the “Seen” indicator, keeping the sender in the dark about their interaction status.
This feature can alleviate concerns where individuals get sidetracked, move on to other tasks, and forget to reply while the recipient knows the message has been seen.
13. LinkedIn Plans To Delete Past Carousel Posts Next Month
LinkedIn recently stated that carousel posts, profile videos, and the in-image linking feature would be phased out. It will result in the removal of previously shared carousels and the deactivation of in-image links.
The decision to delete these options was initially reported in June and appears to be driven by consumers’ perceived lack of interest.
The loss of carousel postings is significant, given their propensity to create significant engagement for many users. LinkedIn released its native carousel publishing functionality in July of the previous year, following a time when producers constructed their makeshift carousels by uploading PDFs, each page representing a unique slide. This native carousel option is still available for the time being.
14. Youtube Experiments With A Shorts Discovery Feature To Boost Usage
YouTube is venturing deeper into TikTok territory by testing a new feature—a random feed suggestion to direct people to Shorts content.
This question occurs when users need clarification about what material they want to access within the app, as demonstrated by an example given by Android Police. This approach marks a notable departure from the usual user behaviour on YouTube, where individuals typically visit the platform with a specific purpose.
. Unlike TikTok, where users often explore their “For You” feed to discover algorithm-curated content, YouTube’s Shorts feed doesn’t typically draw the same browsing behaviour.
However, introducing a random feed prompt could potentially yield similar results, driving increased usage and engagement by encouraging users to explore Shorts content in a more extensive way.
15. Whatsapp Enhances Security To Protect Users’ Info
WhatsApp has recently updated its security measures, including a new method for hiding your IP address when using the app and a defence mechanism against cyber attacks via audio calls, even if the calls go unanswered.
Regarding IP masking, WhatsApp’s encryption protects your data during calls, but the internet connection can still be used to identify you. To address this concern, WhatsApp has developed a system that reroutes your call through its servers, preventing other call participants from accessing your IP address.
16. Google Search’s Local Panel Experiments New Layout For Reviews
Google is testing a new user interface for reviews accessed via the local panel listing in search results. Google now links users to a summarised reviews card within the search experience rather than showing reviews in a separate window that overlays the search results.
17. Google Search Console Revamps Page Experience Overview Screen
Google Search Console’s page experience overview report appears to have been altered. The overview screen now resembles a primary informational screen with significantly less data than the original version. This is one of the expected modifications to the page experience report.
18. Google Tests Multiple Local Packs In Search Results
When visitors scroll down the page, Google is experimenting with displaying various local packs in its search results. Because not all users can replicate it, this function seems part of a restricted test.
Christian Kunz replicated this behaviour by scrolling through the Google search results page and seeing various local packs appear. On X, he posted a video and screenshot of the incident.
19. Instagram Rolls Out An Option To Share Reels And Feed Posts With ‘Close Friends’ Only
Instagram has formally announced the expansion of the “Close Friends” sharing option to all users after initially exposing the tool to a restricted group of users in September. Individuals can use this feature to share their feed posts and Reels with only those they’ve added to their “Close Friends” list.
The new version allows users to change the audience for their feed updates, allowing them to share items with only their “Close Friends.” This update intends to create more intimate interactions and participation within the app by providing a more private sharing option.
Instagram first introduced the “Close Friends” list for Stories in 2018, allowing users to choose a group of up to 100 people for more private sharing rather than public broadcasting. Instagram has included Notes and Reels in this enclosed group engagement feature, expanding beyond Stories. However, not all users could initially share these content types with their private groups.
Instagram has confirmed that starting today, all users will be able to share Reels within their “Close Friends” circle, broadening the scope of content available for private group engagement.
20. Instagram Launches New Creation Tools For Reels And Stories
Instagram has confirmed that starting today, all users will be able to share Reels within their “Close Friends” circle, broadening the scope of content available for private group engagement. Meta has released a slew of new upgrades for Instagram production, focusing on Reels and Stories. These improvements include additional filters, updated audio elements, and improved draught functions, among other things.
Among the upgrades are more English text-to-speech voices for producers to choose from and a variety of new text fonts and styles. These additions attempt to adapt to the rising trend of text-to-speech and provide artists with more creative choices for delivering their material.
Meta is also exploring the ability to add audio clips into Reels using Meta’s GIF “Clip Hub.” Users can include popular memes in their images and videos, creating another exciting and participatory option for content production.
21. Meta Brings Inbox Notes To Messenger
Instagram has confirmed that starting today, all users will be able to share Reels within their “Close Friends” circle, broadening the scope of content available for private group engagement. Messenger has announced the arrival of Notes, a feature similar to Instagram’s inbox Notes that allows users to post text-based prompts accessible to all Messenger contacts. This new feature attempts to spark conversations and increase involvement within the app.
Users can now post text-based prompts that their contacts can respond to immediately within the app with Notes incorporated into the row of profile bubbles at the top of the Messenger inbox.
While the addition of Notes may not fundamentally transform the platform, it reflects Notes’s unexpected popularity on Instagram. Notes have gained popularity, particularly among younger users. According to Meta, over 100 million kids shared a Note in the previous three months, and teens are writing Notes rapidly.
22. Threads Initiate The First Test Of Topic Tags In Posts
Threads has announced the launch of topic tags within postings, allowing users to correlate their Threads updates with a broader range of posts on the same subject.
With this upgrade, Users can now attach their writing to a certain topic, entity, or common debate trend. This is accomplished by tapping the hash icon, which allows them to tag their text with an active link. This functionality functions similarly to a hashtag but without the requirement of including a hashtag. As a result, users will no longer need to know which tags to use, simplifying the process of tying their updates to relevant topics.
23. YouTube Grants Premium Subscribers Access To Its AI-Generated Elements
The rise of social platform subscriptions has accelerated in 2023, owing primarily to shifting ad marketplaces and changes in digital privacy rules. This year has seen a huge shift in social apps as they look for additional revenue streams besides advertising.
Higher-ups are concerned about decreased ad spending across numerous social networks, forcing a reevaluation of income models. Elon Musk’s concentration on subscriptions at X has also affected this move, which has inspired new considerations among these platforms.
The most recent addition to this subscription trend is YouTube, increasing its subscription services to lure more users to subscribe to its Premium service.
One significant inclusion is early access to YouTube’s generative AI projects for Premium subscribers alone, aiming to capture users’ interest.
24. Whatsapp Announces A New Sponsorship Deal With The Mercedes F1 Team
WhatsApp has announced a significant relationship with the Mercedes AMG F1 racing team for the 2024 Formula One season and beyond.
It marks WhatsApp’s inaugural foray into sports sponsorship, with the collaboration involving exclusive content sharing on WhatsApp, with a specific emphasis on WhatsApp channels. WhatsApp Channels was introduced in July, a feature that allows for one-to-many group chat. The Mercedes team embraced this function quickly, developing a noticeable presence through these media.
Since launching WhatsApp Channels in September, the Mercedes F1 team has garnered an audience of over 650,000 followers on the service. This relationship is WhatsApp’s strategic entry into sports sponsorship, utilising its platform for exclusive content delivery and engagement with Formula One.
25. Google Search Labs Adds Notes To Search Results
Google Search is currently testing a new feature that allows users to include personal notes within search results and browse notes left by others on those results. This experimental Search Labs feature is available for opt-in, deployed in the United States and India, and is accessible on mobile devices and via the Google app.
This feature allows users to make and retrieve notes in Google Search and Google Discover. Users who opt into the Search Labs experiment will notice a new “add note” icon alongside search results. Furthermore, the quantity of notes will be displayed if other users have left messages on a certain search result.
By clicking the “add note” icon, users can input a note that is viewable by anyone. Similarly, clicking to view the messages allows users to peruse notes left by other searchers on that specific search result. This innovative feature enhances user interaction by facilitating the sharing of personal insights and opinions related to search outcomes within the Google Search and Discover platforms.
26. Google Search Adds Follow Feature
Google is launching a new search function allowing users to track specific subjects. By choosing the “follow” button, Google will make the selected topics more visible in your Discover feed. Furthermore, the function will prioritise and display more items related to the following themes within Google Search.
This feature is distinct from the follow button on knowledge panels, the “get updates” option, and the Google News tool. Furthermore, it differs from Chrome’s follow feature. This new feature seeks to personalise users’ content experiences across Google Search and the Discover feed by emphasising and providing more relevant material on specified themes.
27. Bing Chat Now Names Copilot
Microsoft has officially renamed Bing Chat to Copilot. The transition is effective immediately, with Bing Chat and Bing Chat Enterprise now recognised as Copilot. This rebranding includes implementing commercial data protection measures for all eligible users signed in with Microsoft Entra ID. This announcement was made by Microsoft recently.
28. Facebook’s Removing Hobbies Section From User Profiles
Starting December 13th, Facebook will remove the “Hobbies” section from user profiles. Ahmed Ghanem, an app researcher, revealed this change by sharing a screenshot of the notification given to users. Surprisingly, many Facebook users may be unaware that they may add hobbies to their profiles. This tool allows users to showcase their interests, and Facebook uses this information to connect them with other users with similar hobbies or interests.
According to Meta, Facebook’s parent company:
“By adding hobbies to your Facebook profile, you can express yourself and find friends with similar interests.” The chosen hobbies are always open to the public, and there is no limit to how many you can add.”
While the platform provides users with a preset list of hobbies, it also allows individuals to search for and add hobbies that may not be included in the predefined list. This adjustment marks a shift in how users present their interests on the platform and may impact how they connect with others based on shared hobbies.
29. X Brings Back Post Headlines To Link Previews In-Stream
As you may recall, in response to Musk’s request in October, X removed post titles and preview text. This change has drastically changed how publishers and social media administrators distribute links within the app.
Elon Musk believes that link previews are more aesthetically pleasing without the accompanying text elements. However, unless the poster offers an explicit explanation in the post, this alteration leaves users unaware of the narrative topic.
While this shift may stimulate original content creation, it has created a problem in which many social media administrators have had to resort to workarounds. They now direct visitors to view the post by tapping on the image, making up for the lack of typical text previews. This adjustment has implications for how information is communicated and received on the platform, requiring users to engage more actively to access the details of shared stories.
30. Meta Expands API Access For Efficient Data Research
Meta is expanding access to its updated Content Library and API tools, allowing researchers to analyse Facebook and Instagram content. This initiative aims to uncover usage trends and insights to inform and improve social platform policies. While Meta had previously limited access to researchers after the 2018 Cambridge Analytica scandal, the company is now relaunching its data tools, potentially opening the door to a broader range of research projects.
31. YouTube Escalates Efforts Against Ad Blockers With Load Delay Measures
YouTube is ramping up its anti-ad blocker efforts, lately acknowledging that it is purposely slowing down page load speeds for visitors identified as using ad-blocking programs. This is a step up in YouTube’s strategy to discourage ad-blocking, which has included outright bans for select users discovered using such programs. This new strategy, initially revealed by Android Authority and now verified by YouTube, includes imposing load delays, with users facing waits of five seconds or more due to employing ad blockers on the platform.
32. Meta Spotlights Factors Behind Increased Engagement In Threads
As Threads usage grows and companies rethink their position on X (previously Twitter), businesses are faced with a critical question: what techniques work on Threads, and how can one improve their Threads presence for optimal engagement?
Despite ongoing development on the Threads backend as Meta strives to satisfy rising demand and scale the platform, there are some noteworthy observations to examine at this early stage. During a recent CreatorIQ Connect conference in Los Angeles, Meta’s Marketing Director, Jacki Pimentel, emphasised a few essential things.
33. Google Tests New Flight Prices Rich Result
Google is experimenting with a novel form of rich results for displaying flight prices. In this test, a dedicated section is visible beneath the flight search snippet, showcasing pertinent information such as dates, trip details, and prices.
This discovery was made by Antoine Eripret, who consistently triggered this display over several days while in Spain. Attached is the screenshot he shared on X.
34. Follower Count Fully Live In Google Search Result Snippets
Google has completed the rollout of follower counts within search result snippets for various social media platforms such as YouTube, LinkedIn, Instagram, X, and others. This feature, which underwent testing in April, was announced by Google to go live last week along with personalised features. The rollout is now fully active.
35. Bing Chat To Offer Always Read-Aloud Option
Microsoft is working on a feature or setting for Bing Chat that will allow searchers and users to have responses read aloud without the need for manual requests each time. Microsoft’s Mikhail Parakhin acknowledged that the team is currently working on integrating this feature. In answer to Nhan Nguyen’s question regarding letting Bing consistently read responses aloud when typing rather than requiring voice commands, work on such a feature is underway.
36. Google Experiments With Extended Local Justifications From Third-Party Sources
Google is in the testing phase of displaying more extensive justifications in the local results. As illustrated in the example shared by Miriam Ellis on X, Google is experimenting with showing longer-form descriptions or justifications, with Yelp providing an extended explanation in this particular case.
37. Instagram Chief Offers More Insight Into Content Ranking In Threads
Threads must prioritise current topics and enable smooth real-time conversations around critical events to compete with networks like Twitter. This has been a significant source of criticism for Threads, as users frequently turn to other platforms for the most recent updates on sports, global events, and celebrity material.
One noteworthy disadvantage of Threads is the lack of a Trending Topics panel. While the platform is still exploring subject tags in some countries, the inability to arrange search results chronologically hampers staying up to date on breaking news articles within the app.
In response to these concerns, Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri revealed the Threads team’s point of view over the weekend. He explained that the reluctance to adopt a comprehensive list of every post with a specific word in chronological order stems from the potential for abuse. Allowing such a feature could expose the platform to spammers and malicious actors who might flood the view with content by exploiting relevant words or tags.
38. Threads Expands Keyword Search To All Regions
Threads is rolling out its extended search capabilities to all users worldwide following an initial test of keyword searches in specific countries last August. Users may easily find posts mentioning their chosen phrases using this functionality, providing an extra way to discover relevant and topical information within the app.
Search results will include posts with hashtags and topic tags relating to the search terms, with tags presently being tested among Australian users. Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri has stated that the new search tools will support all accessible languages in the app and that additional search advancements are coming.
39. Meta To Launch Threads In The EU Next Month
According to a recent Wall Street Journal report, Meta intends to introduce Threads for users in the European Union in December. Threads was initially not offered in the EU due to evolving privacy legislation, which necessitated a thorough review by the Threads team. Meta is now said to be sure that the software will comply with the new Digital Services Act (DSA) standards, with one exception for EU users.
To comply with EU legislation, Meta will allow EU users to use Threads simply for consumption without creating a profile that allows them to publish their posts. By the new rules, this includes a data opt-out mechanism. Users will also have the choice to create a Threads profile as usual and engage in the app like any other user.
40. YouTube Enhances Analytics And Simplifies ‘Product Drops’
YouTube is updating its Product Drops feature within live streams, introducing new analytics cards and launching a testing phase for a changed format on its TV app.
YouTube is changing the conditions for Product Drops to make it more accessible to a broader range of creators. Product Drops were previously available only to developers with connected Shopify stores or access to Google Merchant Centre. In addition, artists were required to organise and schedule Product Drops in advance via the Live Control Room. YouTube’s adjustments aim to broaden access to this tool, allowing more producers to display their products during live streams.
41. Whatsapp Adds Chat Lock Codes For Extra Privacy
WhatsApp has added a new security feature that allows users to apply a lock code to individual chats. This unique code, distinct from the phone’s unlocking code, gives an added degree of anonymity. Users can set a password for their locked chats, and the Locked Chats folder can be hidden from the main chat list. It restricts access to these encrypted chats, which can only be revealed by entering the secret code in the search bar.
42. Google November 2023 Core Update Finished Rolling Out
The Google November 2023 core update has concluded its rollout, spanning just under 26 days. This duration surpassed the average core update rollout by almost two weeks and coincided with significant shopping events like Black Friday and Cyber Monday, overlapping with the November 2023 reviews update. The update was officially completed at 11:32 am ET on November 28, 2023, having commenced on November 2, 2023, at 3:09 pm ET.
Marking the lengthiest documented core update rollout, it exceeded the previous record set by the August 2023 core update, which took 16 days. While less extensive than some SEOs anticipated, it is history’s lengthiest core update rollout. It’s worth noting that while not the lengthiest update overall, as the December 2022 helpful content update held that record with a 38-day rollout, it remains a significant milestone for core updates.
43. Google SGE Tests Search By Image Feature
Google SGE, the Search Generative Experience, is experimenting with a feature that allows users to submit queries through text and upload images, essentially testing image-based searching.
44. Google Tests Removing Cache Link From Search Results
Google appears to be trying to remove the cache link from the “About this result” box in the search result snippet. The cached link is missing in my current test, yet it is still intact when users try it without signing in. It shows that Google is experimenting with removing the cache link option.
45. Google Search Adds Vacation Rental Structured Data, Rich Results & Reporting
Google has announced its support for new structured data for vacation rentals, improving the display of rich results on Google Search for pages containing vacation rental listings. Along with this advancement, Google launched a new Google Search Console and an updated Rich Results testing tool explicitly designed for structured data.
While Google initially used a data feed to incorporate these listings primarily for larger partners, the introduction of this new structured data means that individuals of any size managing vacation rental listings on their websites now have the potential to showcase rich results in Google search results.