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Industry News

Catch up on interesting new discussion and industry news.

    Google: Nofollow Link Attribute Is Working Fairly Well

    by rustybrick
    Apr 23, 2019 at 5:18 AM
    Google's John Mueller said on Twitter that the nofollow link attribute has been and still is working fairly well. He added hasn't "seen many cases of sites causing themselves significant issues, or of pages not getting credit in quite some time."

    How product managers can get better at their skill gaps

    by Rian van der Merwe
    Apr 22, 2019 at 3:53 PM
    Marty Cagan posted another great installment in his series on how to be a good manager of product managers. In Coaching Tools — The Plan he describes the different ways he would encourage product managers to skill up in areas where they need to grow.

    It’s hard to pick just one quote to post because the whole article is excellent, but these paragraphs on collaboration particularly stood out for me:

    Modern product management is all about true collaboration between product, design...

    Product specifications: our template and process

    by Rian van der Merwe
    Apr 21, 2019 at 9:30 AM
    My previous article on the dangerous rise of “crazy-busy” product managers generated quite a bit of feedback. One part of the article that was a bit of a throwaway, but became a focus of many of the questions I received, is on the way we have our team leads work on product specs. As a recap, here’s what I said:

    The point is to think about areas where you do all the work or where you’re a bottleneck and you don’t need to be. In our case at Postmark, I frequently got overwhelmed with...

    Why it’s important to watch (and understand) your product churn

    by Rian van der Merwe
    Apr 21, 2019 at 8:53 AM
    Shaun Juncal has a good overview of the importance of watching your churn numbers carefully in his post Churn: The Most Important Product Metric for SaaS. It’s especially important to figure out why people leave when they do:

    But you can also learn something from that lost customer, namely why they left. Were they drawn to a competitor? Did the value your solution offered fade over time? Was a missing key feature causing them to bail out? Answering these questions can inform what...

    Navigation Removal Trick Impacting Google Rankings Algorithm?

    by rustybrick
    Apr 18, 2019 at 5:36 AM
    An SEO, I believe his name is Alexander, asked John Mueller of Google in this morning's video hangout if Google is aware of a trick some sites are using to combat any negative impact from the August 1st medic update. John was unaware and confused by the strategy, saying he would only see a downside to removing a site's navigation in terms of how it would hurt the site's ranking in Google.

    How to build trust, and other advice for product manager soft skills

    by Rian van der Merwe
    Apr 17, 2019
    Claire Lew’s article on the 9 mistakes you don’t know you’re making as a new manager is written specifically for people managers, but I found a lot of good advice in there that relates to the product management role as well. For example, on how to build trust with a team:

    However, in our survey of almost 600 people, we found that team-building activities were in fact rated as the least effective way to build trust. What was rated as most effective? Being vulnerable as a leader,...

    Google: Some Other Google Bugs May Be Related To The De-Indexing Bug

    by rustybrick
    Apr 17, 2019
    It seems like the past month or so has been a tough one for the Google engineers. We have seen bug after bug, many we haven't even covered yet over here. The question is, are they related and when will most of them be resolved. Of course, one thing we can expect, mistakes will happen in the future.

    Common mistakes less senior product people make, and other good hiring questions for PMs

    by Rian van der Merwe
    Apr 16, 2019
    Shaun Clowes shares some really good hiring advice in his post Picking good Product Managers – insightful interview questions. He starts it off with a good reminder that “bad product is worse than no product”:

    A product manager without a systematic approach to their discipline has less context than the team members so is less likely to make good decisions naturally. Thus a bad product manager is more likely to cause the team to make mistakes than no product manager at all.


    Google's Indexing Bug Spreads Like A Virus To Coverage Report, URL Inspection Tool & More

    by rustybrick
    Apr 15, 2019
    The Google de-indexing bug, which took about 6 days to resolve and is supposedly resolved as of last Thursday is now causing issues within Google Search Console. The coverage and enhancement reports, as well as the URL Inspection tool are all impacted according to Google.

    The dangerous rise of “crazy-busy” product managers

    by Rian van der Merwe
    Apr 12, 2019
    Over the past few months I have become fascinated by what I like to call “crazy-busy PM” thinking in the product management world. I’m sure you’ve seen a few tweets or articles about this yourself, but here’s a small sample, all from fairly big voices/blogs in the industry.

    From 15 Things You Should Know About Product Managers:

    It is common to go through the whole day as a PM, and get absolutely nothing done. Your calendar is stacked. The meetings are booked. There is a ton of...