Updated 14. April 2021 by Thomas Bogh

Google News: March 2021

Google News: March 2021

Every month Google releases updates to create a better user experience. Therefore if you work with SEO you’ll have a natural interest in adapting your ongoing efforts to the algorithm. By doing this you’ll stay ahead of the competition both now and in the future.

We therefore give you the latest updates from Google as well as the influence it may have on your search engine optimization.

Google makes hotel booking links free

Google has made “hotel booking links” free to use. This provides a new way to increase organic traffic for a website. Previously these results were only displayed as ads on the search engine.

Google makes hotel booking links free

In the future both hotels and travel companies will therefore be encouraged to optimize towards this visibility.

Users searching for hotels will normally see hotel ads showing relevant information including prices. This allows hotels to increase growth at a time when the industry needs it even more.

The free booking links will therefore now be displayed under where the ads are displayed.

The pattern for making ads traffic-free is similar to a pattern from Google who recently also made Google Shopping a free source of traffic. Good news for the travel industry these days.

If you are already using hotel ads you do not need to make any changes, as the lists are displayed automatically.

Local Search Updates

In March Google again released new local search updates. This is again based on Google My Business data.

Google My Business is a tool for businesses and organizations to manage their overall presence on Google based on business data. This affects the traffic coming from users through Maps and search results.

In this update Google is adding more data options to companies that offer grocery delivery and ‘pick up’.

The information that Google adds to Search and Maps includes:

  • Delivery providers
  • Pickup and delivery windows
  • Order fees
  • Order minimums

Google is starting to roll this out in the US, and then the plan is to expand further.

Google updates PageSpeed ​​Insight’s results

In early March Google announced that PageSpeed Insight’s (PSI) performance would increase for websites worldwide.

Google updates PageSpeed ​​Insight's results

The PageSpeed ​​Insights tool contains reports that show the speed of a website (domain). An insight that is now more important than ever – especially if you are running an international setup with Top-Level-Domains (TLD). This is due to Google’s more focused view on page experience.

The tool provides reports for both mobile and desktop including insight into the various errors that exist. The report contains both laboratory and field data.

Google has updated how PSI collects information. This is based on how they switch to using http/2 protocol to connect a website.

Http/2 is an advanced network connection protocol that enables faster data transmission and has fewer limitations than the previous http/1.x protocol. So therefore http/2 gives you a performance boost in PSI.

Wix and Google Expand Partnership

For many years Wix has been criticized for not being as good as WordPress or other SEO-friendly CMS. But with an expanded Google partnership Wix websites are now gaining an even stronger local search presence on Google.

The extended partnership integrates Google My Business (GMB) with Wix. Companies can therefore now access GMB data and manage their profile directly from Wix. This is a really good improvement for those who are using Wix.

Some of the other integrations are:

  • Google Search Console.
  • Google Workspaces.
  • Google Analytics.
  • Google Tag Manager.
  • Book with Google.

Google has been updated with “Full Coverage” in Google News

Google News gets the “full coverage” feature for news results. This provides more context about stories from multiple sources in both national and international markets.

Google has been updated with “Full Coverage” in Google News

When searching for news story information, you can see the “Views Full Coverage” button at the end of the carousel. This button can also be found by selecting More news on… under the carousel for the top stories.

A part of Google’s view of the quality of ‘full’ coverage. Something that in this case is most relevant to pages who optimize for Google News.