Welcome to Volume 28!
What started as an exclusive invite-only platform in March 2020, quickly became the platform to be on.
Everyone was talking about and dying to get on Clubhouse.
This popularity quickly led to Clubhouse’s downfall, as more established social media platforms decided to cash in on the audio-based app’s idea, such as Twitter Spaces.
But, before we get into that, here’s a peek at what’s to come:
- Google’s page-ranking algorithm’s delayed roll-out
- Social media in 2021
- Rise and fall of Clubhouse
It’s Gonna Be May🎤… June🤨
Remember the Google bug that was discovered last week? The one affecting page rankings. Well, to avoid another misstep, Google has decided to slow down the rollout of its Page Experience Algorithm.
To properly monitor the rollout of this update, Google is pushing the release to mid-June and won’t be using the new algorithm to its full extent until August.
With the Page Experience Algorithm, Google will start to consider a page’s Core Web Vitals when it comes to ranking.
What are Core Web Vitals?
Google indicated the following three metrics make up its core web vitals:
1. Largest Contentful Paint (LCP)
TL;DR: Measuring the page load time
Digging deeper: This is different from general page load time because the user knows the URL works, but it takes its time to load all elements. LCP indicates the amount of time it takes to render the largest content element on site. This is typically video or image content, although it can be a large text element.
2. First Input Delay (FID)
TL;DR: Measuring the latency your website incurs when responding to a user action.
Digger deeper: FID is the time it takes for your site to respond to a user’s action—clicking a link, opening a chatbox, playing a video, etc. Putting the first in FID, Google measures the response time for the first interaction a user makes on-site. This is especially important on sites that require a user to do something, due to its interactive nature.
3. Cumulative Layout Shift (CLS)
TL;DR: Measuring the amount of all individual layout shifts that occur during a page’s lifespan.
Digging deeper: This matters to Google because shifting page elements create a poor user experience. If these layout shifts aren’t noticeable but your page is incurring a high rating, Google recommends interacting with the page to see how it responds and how the score changes.
When it comes to understanding and reading your sites Core Web Vitals, Google has provided this handy chart:
Beyond Core Web Vitals, the Page Experience Algorithm will take into account the following:
- Intrusive interstitial guidelines
And if you’re mad that this roll-out was pushed back because you know that every page of your site is golden and will benefit immensely from this update, it’s time for a reality check.
According to Screaming Frog, only 13% of the 20,000 URLs tested on desktop would pass the Core Web Vitals assessment.
We should all be happy this release has been pushed so we can get our ducks in a row and optimize our pages to pass the assessment and jump up the rankings come mid-June.
Side Note: It is yet to be confirmed, but Google is working on some sort of visual to indicate which pages on the SERP have a high-quality user experience based on Core Web Vitals.
- Time to double-check your page’s Core Web Vitals.
- This delay is giving us time to ensure all pages are optimized for the new algorithm.
Social Media For The Least Social World
I want to preface this piece with a reminder that 2020 and 2021 aren’t and won’t be normal years for data reflection. It’s going to be like using the 2008 stock market as a benchmarking point… well, it won’t be that bad. But things have been different, to say the least.
Many of us are spending more time online than ever before, and frankly, I think some of us have become bored with our “normal” social media platforms. This boredom has led to the willingness for expansion onto new platforms, i.e. the rise of TikTok—and not just among Gen Z.
Does your brand know about these new rising spots? Or are you stuck on OOH…
The folks over at PewResearch have been keeping tabs on the 😎 popular social media sites, and we have the breakdown!
No surprise here, out of the 1,502 surveyed Americans, 69% use Facebook, making it the second most popular platform.
Beating Facebook is YouTube, with 81% of Americans using this platform. That is 12% more than Facebook and 41% more than Instagram, the third most popular.
Interestingly, we have seen WhatsApp rise to 23%, which is now equal to Twitter’s 23% popularity. Since 2019, WhatsApp has grown 3% in popularity while Twitter only climbed 1%. Watch out, Twitter.
With YouTube taking the top spot in terms of popularity and usage, we can expect to see trends continuing to rise in favour of creative video content and Ad Spend on YouTube.
One B2B brand that has been crushing it on YouTube by creating out-of-the-box video content is Shopify.
Shopify rolled out a “Guess My Shopify Business” series on YouTube to diversify their content online. This diversification has resulted in over 1K views a video and, in turn, over 1K brand impressions for their easy-to-consume content.
To wrap this up, our social media landscape is more crowded than ever, with new platforms being rolled out monthly — or at least it feels that way.
With the steady climb of Reddit and Pinterest, and YouTube holding the top spot, we are seeing trends turn to creator communities and away from the typical consumption-based social media sites.
- The market is seeing a rise in creator-based social media platforms.
- Facebook and YouTube are still by far the most popular social channels.
- Video content continues to be an essential part of a successful marketing strategy.
Clubhouse Cannablized by Copycats?
Clubhouse came hot on the scene.
It brought with it a novel idea, an audio-based social experience, ripe for the picking by other social media channels to remix and recreate.
In February 2021, Clubhouse achieved 9.5 million downloads; by March, downloads that month dropped 72% to 2.7 million.
A falling download rate only three months into release is not the best indicator of success.
This is especially troublesome for a platform offering a product that has been replicated by a multitude of other social media platforms.
Twitter, Facebook, and Reddit have gotten in on the Clubhouse-esque audio-based chatrooms, integrating them on their platforms.
Although it’s too early to see the success of these copycat features, we do know that the competitor platforms have much larger audience bases.
It’s turning into a battle of the audience base.
- Reddit has 52 million daily, active users
- Twitter has 192 million daily, active users
- Facebook has 1.84 billion daily, active users
Clubhouse hasn’t released daily active user stats, but they stated 10 million weekly active users on the platform.
The initial hype around Clubhouse is falling to the wayside, while discussion around the platform’s bugs and poor moderation continues to grow.
Due to the existing audience base on the pre-established social media sites that are putting a spin on Clubhouse’s initial offering, it will be an uphill battle for Clubhouse to migrate users onto their platform away from the more established sites.
This isn’t a struggle that’s native to Clubhouse. When Snapchat’s story feature blew up, Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn followed suit. When TikTok took off, Instagram jumped in with Reels to keep its audience engaged on its platform.
Social media is meant for maintaining connections between friends and community members; having a large and connected audience base is key for ensuring longevity.
The reach of established platforms, accessing millions of users a day, creates a competitive moat against all new networks.
- Clubhouse is being defeated by its own creation.
- Distribution and audience reach have created a barrier to entry for all new social networks.
- Gaining users today means having to capture audience share with a unique, unreplicable product offering.
OTHER NEWS OF THE WEEK:
😯 An undisclosed round of Series C funding has reportedly landed Clubhouse a $4B valuation. This came through hours before Reddit unveiled its Clubhouse competitor, Reddit Talk.
🎧 Facebook is pushing further into audio by investing in its own Clubhouse clone, soundbite functionality, podcast support features, and expanding its partnership with Spotify through the “Boombox project.”
🪙 Coinbase became the first cryptocurrency to go public on April 13, opening on the NASDAQ at $250 a share with a market valuation of $65B.
BRAIN FOOD OF THE WEEK:
Decentraland, the happiest place on earth, is reopening on April 30th!
Wait… that’s Disneyland. So what’s Decentraland?
Let’s call it the happiest place online for NFTs.
Operating in a similar way to Second Life, Decentraland has created a virtual world that has quickly become a marketplace for NFTs. More than a marketplace, Decentraland is restructuring how virtual worlds work and how NFTs are displayed.
With most art in the 21st-century being created online through online mediums, these pieces can be displayed in a traditional art gallery. And that’s where Decentraland is making a name for itself.
The entirety of this world is for sale. It’s a virtual organism where everything is up for sale, from selling plots of land to displaying and selling NFT artwork; Decentraland is a scary and innovative look into how we can live all aspects of our lives online.
TWITTER THREAD OF THE WEEK:
WHAT WE’RE WIRED INTO THIS WEEK 🎧:
Originally sent out, by me Cali B, on Thursday, April 22, 2021.
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