The Week in SEO: 6/11

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Welcome to the week in SEO! Every Saturday, Supersede Media will trawl the internet and bring together a delightful smörgåsbord of the top stories, updates, tips and general happenings in the world of tech. Here’s what you need to know from the past 7 days!

The Headlines

This week sees more dire forecasts thanks to the global chip shortage, a rebrand within Google and some exciting innovation happening over at Microsoft. Let’s get into it!

Chip Crisis Likely to Cause Disappointment for Christmas Shoppers

Avid readers of The Week in SEO will remember that a few weeks back we reported on warnings from Apple about the global chip shortage’s impact on Christmas. Since then, the severity of the situation has become all the more stark. Companies including Honda, Toyota, Nintendo and Sony have had to cut production. Some experts are predicting that the crisis won’t be over until Christmas 2022.

Speaking at the Web Summit event in Lisbon, Simon Segars, Chief Executive of Arm (one of the biggest chip makers in the world), had a bleak warning for Christmas shoppers:

“If you haven’t bought all of your devices yet, you might be disappointed. It has never been like this before.”

Indeed, Segars claims that the current gap between supply and demand is “the most extreme” he has ever seen.

Tech and car manufacturers in particular have seen production slow and profits fall. As with most global trends, this is the result of a number of factors. The pandemic caused a surge in demand, as people relied more heavily on personal transport and digital devices to travel and communicate during a spate of lockdowns. The US sanctions on Huawei and a rise in crypto mining encouraged certain groups and companies to stockpile chips. Here in the UK, a truck driver shortage (caused largely by the pandemic and Brexit) has further exacerbated supply chain issues.

If an electronic device or some new wheels sit at the top of your Christmas list, we suggest you hit the shops ASAP!

Goodbye Google My Business?

Tech companies love a good rebrand and this week Google announced that Google My Business is soon to become Google Business Profile. The rebranding will start over the next few weeks and the Google My Business name and accompanying app will be completely retired at some point in 2022.

Google says it is making this change to simplify things for small to medium businesses. Rather than using the GMB interface to manage and make changes to business profiles, owners will now be able to do this directly through Google Search and Google Maps. You can also claim and verify a business listing this way.

As for large businesses with multiple locations, they will continue to have access to an interface. It is called Business Profile Manager, but it works very similarly to GMB.

With a focus on web integration, this update should make life a little easier for small businesses keen to keep their business profile up to date. If you prefer the mobile experience of the GMB app, there’s no need to worry—you can access your Google Business Profile through the Search or Maps app.

Microsoft Teams to Introduce 3D Avatars and Environments

Microsoft Teams app icon on phone screen Image source: Dimitri Karastelev (via Unsplash)

There’s nothing worse than being invited to a last-minute virtual meeting when you’re still in your PJs and rocking some serious bed head. If you use Microsoft Teams, this common conundrum could soon be a thing of the past!

The company recently announced that it is adding Mesh, its collaborative platform for virtual experience, to Microsoft Teams. This will give users access to 3D avatars and environments, creating an immersive meeting experience.

Avatars can be customised to reflect your physical appearance and can imitate movements and gestures. For example, if the microphone picks up that you are talking during a meeting, your avatar’s mouth will move accordingly. The best news is that you won’t need a VR or AR headset to get involved in the fun! 2D and 3D avatars and environments will all be available through a range of computer devices.

Microsoft’s exciting announcement came hot on the heels of Facebook’s news that it is working on virtual chat rooms of its own. Both tech giants are clearly gearing up to enter what is being called ‘the metaverse‘.

The immersive meeting features on Microsoft Teams are due to be released in the first half of 2022.

Other tech news on our radar…

Step up your SEO game

Use the below handy guides and tips to brush up your SEO and content skills!

Workplace wellness

Whether you’re back at the office or still holed up in your WFH den, here are some gems of wisdom (this week’s come courtesy of the guys over at Trello) that will make a difference to your professional and personal wellbeing. You’re welcome!

Hand holding phone with low battery symbol
Image source: Alexander Andrews (via Unsplash)

Energy is defined as the strength and vitality required for sustained physical or mental activity. Work often falls into one or both of those categories, depending on what you do for a living. If you look at it that way, then energy is the strength and vitality required for you to work.

In 4 Ways To Manage Your Energy And Have A Balanced, Productive Workday, Sam Milbrath discusses the importance of effective energy management and offers some great advice on how to manage your energy levels throughout a typical workday. Give it a read!

And that’s a wrap! Thanks for checking out the latest edition of The Week in SEO. We’ll be back in 7 days with more tech news and tips. Until then, have a great weekend! Ta-ra!