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Industry News

Catch up on interesting new discussion and industry news.

    Accountability, tripwires, and other product management lessons learned on a failed project

    by Rian van der Merwe
    Feb 26, 2019
    This is an incredibly brave and insightful post by Erin Chan that I think every product manager should read. In The Hard Thing About Complex Products & How I’ve Grown as a PM she describes a long, failed project at Shopify in detail, and what she learned. The section on creating “tripwires” for complex projects is something I’m going to start using immediately:

    A tripwire is a mechanism or an indicator that you define, and when it gets triggered, flags are raised.

    For example,...

    What I look for in product management software

    by Rian van der Merwe
    Feb 26, 2019
    I’ve had this vague sense for a while that I need to dig into the product management software space a lot more. So on Friday I just did it — I signed up for a bunch of accounts and started playing around. As I went through each product I realized two things: I didn’t know what I was looking for. Most of the products I was looking at didn’t know why they wanted me to use it either. The landing pages are all great, but once I was in the product, it was like a different (and very confusing)...

    Google Search Algorithm Update Signals On Friday February 22nd

    rustybrick
    by rustybrick
    Feb 25, 2019
    Over the weekend I have been tracking a lot of chatter within the SEO community on WebmasterWorld and other channels of a Google update. Many of the automated tracking tools also show significant changes in the Google rankings starting on Friday, February 22nd through the weekend.

    Nope. Google Does Not Use CTR For Core Search Rankings

    rustybrick
    by rustybrick
    Feb 22, 2019
    I am so so so tired of covering this topic, we've covered it for well over a dozen years and I just covered it a week or so ago. Google doesn't use CTR, click through data, to rank their search results. But of course, Google posted something that is driving huge confusion again around the topic.

    What a Two-Tiered SERP Means for Content Strategy - Whiteboard Friday

    Feb 21, 2019
    Click on the whiteboard image above to open a high resolution version in a new tab!

    If you haven't heard the news, the Domain Authority metric discussed in this episode will be updated on March 5th, 2019 to better correlate with Google algorithm changes. Learn about what's changing below: Learn more about the new DA Video Transcription

    Hi, Whiteboard Friday fans. I'm Will Critchlow,...

    Google Search Console Notifications For Drop In Weekly Clicks

    rustybrick
    by rustybrick
    Feb 21, 2019
    Google is now sending out what I believe are new notifications when a site verified in Google Search Console has seen a drop in clicks, impressions, etc. This alert communicates to the site owner or webmaster that there may be an issue.

    Software should be designed for teachability rather than learnability

    by Rian van der Merwe
    Feb 20, 2019
    Related to the podcast discussion I shared the other day, Andy J. Ko wrote a really good essay called The problem with “learnability” in human-computer interaction. He argues that most software is learned socially, not independently:

    We just have to think about our own personal experiences to see that nearly everyone learns how to use all but the simplest software socially, not in isolation. Our friends and family introduce us to new software and teach us how to use it. Our parents...

    Google Algorithms Detect & Adjust Rankings For YMYL Queries

    rustybrick
    by rustybrick
    Feb 19, 2019
    The Google white paper I just covered mentions explicitly that Google's algorithms can detect if a query is related to YMYL, your money your life, related content and then adjust the weights of the ranking algorithm for those specific queries. There has been some debate in the SEO industry if Google is indeed doing this so now this should clear that up.

    Context Clusters in Search Query Suggestions

    by Bill Slawski
    Feb 18, 2019
    unsplash-logoSaketh Garuda Context Clusters and Query Suggestions at Google

    A new patent application from Google tells us about how the search engine may use context to find query suggestions before a searcher has completed typing in a full...

    Podcast: why customer education should be a priority for all companies

    by Rian van der Merwe
    Feb 18, 2019
    I found this discussion on the Product Love podcast really interesting. Eric Boduch talks to Adam Avramescu (Head of Education at Checkr) about the importance of educating customers on how to use your product. They cover a bunch of topics, including the myth that you don’t need education if your UX is good enough, the right way to approach documentation, and how onboarding is an important part of customer education but not the only thing you need.

    Listen on Soundcloud or Overcast.