“Google’s back, baby.”
Sachin and Andrew discuss the implications of Google surpassing Facebook as the top traffic referrer to publishers. They consider how algorithm changes and distributed content formats such as AMP and Facebook Instant Articles may have played a role. They catch up on net neutrality and media consolidation news and go +1/-1 on a possible Reddit IPO, Amazon as a publisher partner, and why one does not simply remake LOTR.
Industry news that caught our attention:
0:53 – FCC vote on net neutrality.
4:33 – Media consolidation news, including AT&T and Time Warner and Fox and Disney mergers.
The data that held our attention:
8:16 – Referral traffic from Facebook is down while Google traffic is up, making Google the top referrer to Parse.ly’s network.
“We have Facebook down about 25% across our network and we have Google up about 17%, which is a pretty big shift and it kind of reconfigures the one and two slots here.” —Andrew Montalenti
9:43 – How Google AMP and Facebook Instant Articles contributed to the shift in referral traffic trends. While both distributed content formats were born out of a need for speed, AMP connected publishers with new audiences while FBIA redistributed engagement.
“It was really born out of Facebook and Google wanting to make the experience for users across the internet faster.” —Sachin Kamdar
“What AMP did, I think, is it made it so that some of these premium publishers got some extra juice on the search result pages.” —Andrew Montalenti
16:45 – What insights publishers can take away from the changes in referral traffic data.
“Maybe people aren’t thinking that much about SEO anymore because it feels like an old tactic, but maybe this study could be a reminder that actually it’s still the top source of traffic and so you should be thinking about how people discover your content through search.” —Andrew Montalenti
+1 or -1? Quick takes:
19:00 – Possible Reddit IPO
22:01 – Amazon as a publisher partner
24:35 – Amazon licensing The Lord of the Rings
- Facebook Declines, Google Grows as Battle for News Audiences Continues, Conrad Lee, Parse.ly
- Aren’t you glad you adopted AMP? Google referrals up 17% on the year with AMP traffic., Conrad Lee, Parse.ly
- Referrer dashboard, Parse.ly
- Reddit is reportedly considering an IPO, Graham Rapier, Business Insider
- As Amazon’s media ambitions grow, publishers are wary, Max Willens, Digiday
- Amazon is remaking ‘Lord of the Rings’ as a series because everyone wants their own ‘Game of Thrones’, Laura Prudom, Mashable
This episode was recorded on December 18, 2017.