August 2022 in SEO

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Hello, super-readers! We hope you’ve been enjoying your summer! The world of search marketing never sleeps, and that’s why we’re back with another brand new roundup. Read on to find out which stories you can’t miss from August 2022 in SEO!

August 2022: the top stories

We’ll start off this month by checking out the new ‘helpful content’ update from Google before taking a look at new research from Pew that suggests today’s teenagers are using social media far differently from their predecessors a decade ago. Finally, we’ll take a look at some new ad formats that TikTok have unveiled just weeks after scrapping clickable shopping in the US.

Google rolls out new ‘helpful content’ update

As search marketers, we’re always working to understand what it takes to rank well on Google. It’s perhaps somewhat ironic, then, that our first story of the month is that writing content specifically for search engines is now officially a negative in the eyes of Google’s own algorithms.

This is because of a new update which Google started rolling out in the past week which specifically takes helpful content into account as a ranking factor. In short, pages that have been written with users in mind will rank more highly than those that were created just to rank on search engines.

The aim is to provide a better user experience by helping searchers to avoid low-quality content created primarily for SEO purposes. Google’s algorithm will now favour content designed for humans—and it’s expected to have a big impact in fields such as education, entertainment, shopping and tech.

It’s also worth noting that this algorithm will be applied on a sitewide basis rather than page by page. As such, if a large amount of the content on your site is found to be ‘unhelpful’, your whole site could suffer.

If you’re worried about the potential impact of this update on your business, it might be time to spruce up your site. Check out Google’s guide to helpful content for some useful questions to ask yourself when creating or editing content.

YouTube most popular app amongst teens; Facebook popularity slumps

It’s now almost impossible to imagine, but there was once a time when almost every teenager was on Facebook. Back in 2013, Pew Research found that 94% of teens had a Facebook account, with 71% actively using the platform.

The world of social media is fickle, however, and Facebook is now largely seen as the preserve of older adults. Teenagers, according to a new Pew survey, are instead turning to rival social networks in droves.

Today, YouTube attracts virtually the entire teen demographic, with 95% of 13–17-year-olds in the US using the app. What’s more, 19% say that they use it ‘almost constantly’. Coming second is TikTok, but it’s a long way behind, attracting 67% of the age group.

Facebook, meanwhile, attracts less than half of the teens it did in its early-2010s heyday. Where 71% used the social network in 2013, today only 32% do. That places it well behind not only YouTube and TikTok, but also Instagram (used by 62% of teens) and Snapchat (59%). Twitter has also fallen in popularity by 10% (23% today vs 33% in 2013).

Three new shopping ad features are coming to TikTok

In last month’s roundup, we discussed TikTok‘s decision to scrap its US launch of clickable shopping videos. Despite this apparent setback, the platform announced that it was moving forward with a new suite known as Shopping Ads.

The aim of Shopping Ads is to give brands the ability to showcase their products in-stream in a variety of ways. There are three formats for advertisers to choose from:

  • Video Shopping Ads: Displayed on the For You page, this format overlays product cards over video creative. When clicked, users will be directed to an in-app landing page. Over time, Video Shopping Ads will replace Collection Ads and Dynamic Showcase Ads.
  • Catalog Listing Ads: This format allows advertisers to highlight entire product catalogues. It does not require the use of video content, with ads instead using images taken directly from the catalogue.
  • Live Shopping Ads: This format will be available in selected markets where TikTok Shop is available: Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam and the UK. Retailers can advertise products via live streams where users can tune in and make purchases.

Despite recent failures in launching new shopping features in Western markets, it’s clear there’s plenty in the pipeline from TikTok. We’ll keep an eye on this to see how the tech giant continues to develop its ad formats over time.


We’d love to cover every story relevant to search marketing here, but this news roundup is all about keeping things to the point! Luckily, some other sites we love and trust have covered some of the ones we couldn’t get around to. Check them out here:

SEO advice we love

There are plenty of helpful tips to be found here on the Supersede blog, but we also draw on the wealth of knowledge available throughout the SEO community. Here are some pearls of wisdom we wanted to highlight this month:

Tip of the month

TikTok logo displayed on a phone
Image source: Franck via Unsplash

“The recipe to success for any business involves several key ingredients: an in-demand product/service, excellent copy, social proof and, most importantly, a brand identity that your consumers can connect to.”

In a month where we’ve highlighted the changing social media habits of Gen Z, what better time to revisit our guide to TikTok marketing in 2022? In this post, we’ll walk you through all the basics and show you how to get up and running on the world’s most popular app.

That completes our August roundup! Check back for more SEO advice and news from the Supersede team soon.