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Showing posts from May, 2020

Weekly Update: May 30, 2020 - YouTube, COVID-19, Groups

To all the 2020 grads out there: congratulations! This is a rough time to be launching the next stage of your life, but hopefully things will get better. The big news this week is that venerable Google Groups is rolling out a new interface. Plus there are a number of small updates this week for video creators, webmasters, business owners and more. Video and Live Streaming YouTube Poll Cards are being discontinued as of June 10 . You have until July 10 to download your poll card data. Why the change? Poll cards were “rarely used”.  Video Chapters are rolling out to all channels . Add timestamps in the video description (starting with 0:00) and markers will appear at the bottom of the video player. This makes it easier for viewers to jump to specific sections of your video. If you watch YouTube videos on your Android phone, you will now see optional topics in your subscription feed , including “Today”, “Continue Watching”, “Unwatched”, “Live” and “Posts”. The YouTube app for iOS devices

Weekly Update - May 23, 2020: Blogger, AdSense, Google Photos

This weekend we celebrate Memorial Day in the US, to honor military personnel who died serving in the US armed forces. In normal years many folks treat it as the first weekend of summer, with barbecues and trips to the beach. This year, with many of us still mostly confined at home, it will be a quieter holiday, with perhaps a bit more reflection than partying. There are new features this week for Blogger bloggers, AdSense publishers, YouTubers, along with updates to video calling tools and more. Google Cloud Next is Google’s annual conference focused on cloud technology. Originally scheduled for the first week of April, it’s been transformed into Cloud Next OnAir , a free 9 week online event. Starting July 14th, it will include presentations, interactive demos, breakout sessions, and 1:1 meetings with Google experts. Every week will focus on a new topic, from industry insights, tools for productivity and collaboration (the sessions I'm most interested in), infrastructure, secu

Try the new AdSense Earnings Checklist to optimize your earnings

If your AdSense earnings have dropped, the new  AdSense Earnings Checklist  can help you review your reports to understand why your earnings decreased, and offers best practices to optimize your earnings.  Note that the troubleshooter is for AdSense publishers monetizing a website or blog. If your YouTube earnings have dropped, check out the YouTube Creator Academy courses on using YouTube Analytics to understand your earnings . Use the Revenue tab in YouTube Analytics to understand where your revenue comes from and review your channel's ad revenue metrics . An earnings drop can be caused by a decrease in the amount you earn per ad click (CPC), a decrease in the number of clicks on your site's ads (CTR), a decrease in the number of ad impressions, or a combination of those factors.  Understanding all the factors that affect your earnings and updating your site will take some time. I recommend setting aside the time to go through all the troubleshooting steps thoroughly.  How to

New Blogger is coming soon - try it now!

Blogger announced that the new account interface will be the default for many users by late June. Currently new Blogger users are defaulted to the new interface. And by late July you will no longer be able to revert back to classic Blogger. Update August 7, 2020: Blogger now shows a notice that the legacy interface will only be available until September 1 (previously August 24). Be sure to send feedback! The new Blogger interface has a mobile-friendly responsive layout, new look, and has features that make it easier to manage your blog's content, comments, stats and settings. The  first bits and pieces of the new interface  were launched last September. For now you can still switch between new Blogger and classic Blogger.  Click the big orange  Try the new Blogger  button at the bottom of the left menu to try the new interface.   If you want to switch back to the old interface, click the  Return to Classic Blogger  link.  And let the Blogger team know what you think! Click the ? i

Weekly Update - May 16, 2020: YouTube monetization, Google Play Music, Google Meet

Are you tired of video meetings yet? This week you can start or join a Google Meet meeting in Gmail, easily find Zooms new security features, or video chat with friends in your favorite Discord Server or Facebook Room. Plus you can finally move your music and playlists from Google Play Music to YouTube Music, YouTube shows when your video is being “checked” for ad suitability, plus updates for live streamers, businesses owners and more.  YouTube Updates   You can now transfer your playlists, purchases, uploaded music and likes from Google Play Music to YouTube Music. You can also transfer your podcasts to Google Podcasts . YouTube Music originally launched in 2015 as a music-centered app, then relaunched as a music streaming service in 2018 . Google Play Music will eventually be retired, but YouTube says “we’ll provide plenty of notice ahead of users no longer having access to Google Play Music later this year.” YouTube will now display a “checking” icon when your monetized video

YouTube Monetization Update: new "checking" icon

YouTube has added a new "checking" icon that shows when your video's advertiser-friendliness hasn't been determined yet. Once you see the green "On" monetization icon your video will start showing ads.  Previously you might see the monetization icon flip back and forth between the green "on" icon and yellow "limited ads" icon while in this state. Ads are not shown during the "checking" process, so YouTube recommends that your video initially be set to Private or Unlisted. Once you see the green dollar sign icon, you can then make your video Public. Checking usually takes less than 20 minutes, and YouTube says it should take one hour at most.  But a word of caution. YouTube also states :  A video's classification may change in the first 24-48 hours of upload. It generally stabilizes after 48 hours, but bear in mind that it can change again based on how viewers engage with your video. So you may want to

Weekly Update - May 9, 2020: Duo, YouTube, AR

Happy Mother’s Day weekend to all you moms out there! If these were normal times, this coming week would be Google I/O. That usually showcases Google’s new software and hardware, and gives a picture of Google’s general focus. Last year the theme was “getting things done for everyone”, with accessibility, privacy and security at the forefront. Of course Google I/O was cancelled this year. I expect we’ll be hearing at least some of the software and hardware announcements that would have been highlighted at the conference. But the company’s priorities almost certainly have shifted. Some Google products (like Meet) now seem to have a higher priority, while other projects may have been put on the backburner. And what I’ll miss is getting a glimpse of the bigger picture of where Google is heading, which I think is harder to glean from isolated product announcements. That said, there are a number of updates this week, from Meet and Duo communication tools to cool new augmented reality featur

Weekly Update - May 2, 2020: Meet, AdSense, YouTube and more

Happy May! I hope you all are keeping on keeping on. Good news: this week Google is making Meet video calling free to everyone. Bad news: Google’s ad revenue has had a “significant slowdown”, which may affect publisher and partner earnings. Useful news: YouTube is showing fact checks for some searches in the US, and will be rolling out selectable topics on the YouTube homepage.  Plus there are updates for businesses, advertisers, and more. The big news from Google this week is that Meet video calling is being made available to everyone for free . Until now, Meet has only been available to paid G Suite accounts. If you have been using classic Hangouts video calling, you’ll find Meet has nice features like 16-person grid view, automatic captions, and the ability to present high quality video and audio. And you can have up to 100 participants. All that’s required is a Google account. Check to see if it’s available for your account, or sign up to be notified by emai l. M