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The Featured Snippet: September 2021

The Featured Snippet is the official SEO newsletter of Performics and is dedicated to keeping you up to date with the latest SEO industry news, trends, and events—all in an easy-to-read, summed-up format. See below for the latest version of The Featured Snippet:

In the September 2021 issue of The Featured Snippet: 

  • Google Refines How It Generates Titles for Web Page Results
  • Google Search Updates from Search On ’21
  • Bing Content Submission API Now Available to All
  • Microsoft Introduces Microsoft Start
  • Google Updates eCommerce Best Practices Documentation
  • Screaming Frog SEO Spider Updates to Version 16.0
  • Local SEO – Business Listings Trust Report 2021

Google Refines How it Generates Titles for Web Page Results

On August 24, Google introduced a new system of generating <TITLE> tags for web pages, which was covered in the August 2021 issue of The Featured Snippet. The new system relies less on what the HTML <TITLE> tag suggests and more on what Google believes will be the best page description for the user. In practice, Google is increasingly drawing from the <H1> header tag to generate <TITLE> tags as well as from other text on the page it considers relevant. As of September 17, Google updated its system and now relies on the HTML-established <TITLE> tag 87% of the time. Common reasons for not using the HTML <TITLE> tag include:

  • Empty or half-empty <TITLE> tags
  • Obsolete <TITLE> tags
  • Inaccurate <TITLE> tags
  • Micro-boilerplate <TITLE> tags

The official announcement from Google is below:


Google Search Updates from Search On ’21

Google announced several updates to Google Search in its annual Search On event. The announcements are outlined in the Twitter thread below:

Google Search updates and links to Tweet announcements are below:


Bing Content Submission API Now Available to All

Content can now be submitted to Bing’s index through its content submission API. This submission can include URLs, content, images, and HTML. Bing recommends using the API to “reduce BingBot crawl load.” Microsoft has had the Bing Content Submission API in a private beta for the last couple of years. To request this API key, visit Bing Webmaster Tools.


Microsoft Introduces Microsoft Start

Microsoft announced Microsoft Start, a personalized news feed with tailored content. Microsoft Start creates more of a content experience for readers based on interests. Microsoft Start can be accessed through a standalone website, mobile app, Microsoft Edge browser, and a couple of other additional ways. Below is a look at Microsoft Start, and this GIF show Microsoft Start in action.


Google Updates eCommerce Best Practices Documentation

Google made updates to its eCommerce best practices documentation with helpful details on how to improve eCommerce websites for Google Search. Google stated that “when you share your ecommerce data and site structure with Google, Google can more easily find and parse your content, which allows your content to show up in Google Search and other Google surfaces. This can help shoppers find your site and products.”

The following is covered with Google’s updated eCommerce best practices documentation: 

  • Where ecommerce content can appear on Google
  • Share your product data with Google 
  • Include structured data relevant to ecommerce
  • How to launch a new ecommerce website
  • Designing a URL structure for ecommerce sites
  • Help Google understand your ecommerce site structure
  • Pagination, incremental page loading, and their impact on Google Search


Screaming Frog SEO Spider Updates to Version 16.0

On September 22nd, Screaming Frog SEO Spider launched an update titled “Screaming Frog SEO Spider version 16.0.” This new update comes with a variety of new features, enhancements, and bug fixes. Some of the new features include improved JavaScript Crawling, Automated Crawl Reports For Data Studio, Translated UI which now offers Italian, Spanish, German, and French alongside English, and other features.  Read the version 16.0 article to see more specific details regarding updates, bug fixes, new features, and more. 


Local SEO – Business Listings Trust Report 2021

Based on a recent report, the Business Listings Trust Report finds that 94% of consumers used an online directory to find information about a new or previously used business in the last 12 months. The survey examined more than 1,000 US-based consumers to uncover their citation-related behaviors. Respondents were able to choose multiple reasons they had used a business information site in the last year. 66% of consumers used business information sites to find new businesses, while 66% found information on businesses they were already aware of but hadn’t used.

Commonly used sources include: Google, Facebook. Yelp, Instagram and Siri.