May 2024 Recap: Unveiling the Latest Google Updates and Their Impact on Digital Strategies

1. Google Policy Update: Restrictions on Promoting Deepfake Sexual Content (May 2024)

Google prioritizes creating a secure and respectful advertising environment. To uphold this commitment, we are revising our guidelines concerning the promotion of synthetic sexual content. Starting in May, Shopping ads will no longer permit:

  • Advertising services involved in producing, distributing, or storing synthetic sexually explicit content or synthetic content featuring nudity. This includes platforms facilitating the creation of “deepfakes” and manipulated imagery.
  • Ads promoting content offering instructions on crafting synthetic sexually explicit material or synthetic content containing nudity.

Examples of Restricted Content:

  • Websites or applications claiming to generate deepfake pornography.
  • Guides detailing the process of developing deepfake pornography.
  • Promotional materials for deepfake pornography services or comparisons between such services.

2. Meta Unveils New AI Tools for Faster Social Media Ad Creation

Meta is making a big push into generative AI for advertisers. They’ve launched a new set of tools to help businesses quickly create social media marketing content. Here’s the breakdown:

  • AI-Generated Image Variations: Businesses can upload existing ad images and get AI-generated variations. Imagine uploading a picture of your coffee product and getting options with different backgrounds or styles.
  • Adaptable Formats: These AI-generated images can also be resized to fit different social media post formats, like Reels and Facebook feeds.
  • Text Generation with Brand Voice: A new AI tool helps create ad headlines. Over time, the AI will learn a brand’s style and tone of voice, making the generated text more consistent with the brand identity.

These features are currently rolling out, with more on the way:

  • Background Image Generation: In the coming months, advertisers can describe a background image using text prompts, and the AI will generate options based on that description.
  • Integration with Llama 3: Meta’s latest large language model, Llama 3, will soon power the text generation features, potentially making them even more sophisticated.

This focus on AI tools comes as Meta plans to “invest aggressively” this year. While some investors are nervous about the increased spending, Meta is betting that AI can be a game-changer for social media advertising.
Meta isn’t alone in this space. Other tech giants, like Adobe with its Firefly model, are also developing AI-powered creative tools for advertisers.

3. Limited Functionality for Suspended Google Ads Accounts (June 2024)

Starting June 2024, Google Ads will restrict what you can do with a suspended account. Here’s a breakdown of the changes:

  • Access Granted: You can still log in to your suspended account and perform these actions:
    • Manage billing: Make payments, download tax documents, and add new payment methods.
    • Account settings: Cancel your account and claim any available refunds.
    • Appeals and verification: Appeal your suspension or complete advertiser verification.
    • Security settings: Update your account’s security settings.
    • Navigate the platform: Access any page within your Google Ads account.
    • Review information: Read details and download reports associated with your account.
  • Limited Actions: You won’t be able to perform any other actions typically associated with Google Ads, such as creating or editing campaigns or ads.

Important Notes: This update only affects suspended accounts. There are no changes to how active accounts function.

4. Google Search Unveils Generative AI Features (May 2024)

  • Generative AI in Search: Google Search introduces new features powered by Generative AI in May 2024.
  • Personalized & Relevant Results: AI personalizes search results to user preferences for a more relevant experience.
  • Dynamic & Visually Captivating Outputs: Search results now include dynamic and visually appealing content.
  • Diverse Image Variations: Users can explore various image interpretations for search queries.
  • Informative Text Generation: Search results include informative and engaging textual content.
  • Enhanced Search Experience: These advancements aim to improve the overall search experience for users.
  • Cutting-Edge Technology: Google’s commitment to innovation is evident in its use of cutting-edge Generative AI.

Google’s commitment to innovation is evident in its continuous exploration and integration of cutting-edge technologies like Generative AI. By embracing AI-driven solutions, Google aims to elevate the search experience, providing users richer and more interactive content that resonates with their needs and preferences.

5. Google Introduced a “Web Filter”

Source: Google Search Liaison

On May 15, Google introduced a “Web” filter that looks like any other filter that can be used to display websites containing only links, in the same way as filtered images, videos, etc. The filter is placed on the top bar of the bottom of the results page, among other filters, or in the “More” section.

6. During the Marketing Live event 2024, Google introduced AI advertising tools at a higher level.

  • These tools are to increase the effectiveness of advertisers and their campaigns.
  • The first is the viewer’s option to have dynamic ads for each user.
  • The last option enables advertisers to boost bids in real-time through the help of AI applications.
  • Google also launched features for autopilot of ad creation and their performance benchmark.
  • All the related enhancements enable advertisers to address intended audiences most efficiently.
  • The new tools use artificial intelligence to enhance ad delivery and achieve more significant outcomes.
  • However, Google keeps improving to fit the demands of advertisers in the changing digital world.

    7. Google also introduced the two Google called googleother-image and googleother-video.

    GoogleOther-Image and GoogleOther-Video are new crawlers that Google introduced to help it enhance its crawling efficiency in fetching images and videos, respectively. GoogleOther crawlers are more specific versions of the search engine, designed to index image and video bytes from web pages efficiently.

    Moreover, Google has revised more active versions of user agent strings related to GoogleOther to create the updated list. This update guarantees that the crawling remains well orchestrated to respond to the current advancement in web technologies.

    These alterations underscore Google’s willingness to enhance its capability to provide various content, including images, in search result feeds. I serve the end-user interested in a wide variety of multimedia objects, and I help website owners who wish to increase their ranking on Google’s search engine.

    8. Massive Leak Exposes Inner Workings of Google Search Ranking Algorithm

    • According to these leaked Google Search documents, thousands of Google Search APIs were disclosed, and the documents were provided to Rand Fishkin as per the report.
    • The following documents may provide sweeping details about Google on search results, its updating algorithm, and factors that influence its ranking.
    • From the leaked documents, it is possible to learn how Google’s search engine functions from within.
    • They inform users of Google’s methods for indexing websites and show how they evaluate a search result’s relevance.
    • SEO professionals should analyze these documents to further their insight into the workings of Google searches and implement changes based on their findings for their own websites.
    • The information leaked through the tickets proves insightful in understanding Google’s search environment and applying its knowledge to SEO.

    9. Updates to Google Business Profile Chat and Call History

    Google Business Profile will stop this service on July 31, 2024, and will remove the option for customers to either chat or see call history. Earlier, customers could communicate through chat, and call history was also accessible on the Business Profile, but it will not be so anymore.

    Nevertheless, your customers can still reach your store through Google Search and Maps. This allows them to find other vital information about the website, business descriptions, and even photos. Also, your Business Profile will receive calls, while other essential indicators, such as web traffic and direction requests, can be analyzed.

    Key Dates:

    • The following stipulated messages apply to Customers who did not start a new chat with your business on Google after July 15, 2024. As the service creates new chats immediately, existing chat users will be notified of the change.
    • However, one of the more significant changes is discontinuing the chat feature at Google Business Profile, effective July 31, 2024. It means new chat messages will not be able to be received, and the history of calls need not be made available through the Business Profile.

    Next Steps:

    • If you want to preserve previous chats or call logs, save them using Google Takeout. It is available until August 30, 2024.
    • For ongoing conversations, look for other chat modes if they exist.

    In today’s rapidly changing digital landscape, businesses face updates and innovations that reshape how they interact with their customers. Adapting from AI-powered advertising tools to policy changes and leaked search algorithm insights is critical. Businesses that remain informed and agile can navigate these changes and thrive digitally.

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