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Greetings from The Internet,

I don't know about your experience, but this year has really flown by for me. I've learned so much this year and have had some amazing opportunities; UpBuild has added four amazing new people to our team; and there's so much more. This isn't our final newsletter of the year, but I'm already thinking about it. 

Anyway, in this edition of our newsletter, we get a little technical (what else is new?) but all the technical stuff is just a metaphor for the larger lessons of marketing. That's how it always is, right? I hope you enjoy it. 

Oh and be sure to check out this section to see how your question could end up answered on our blog. 

Until next time,

Mike Arnesen
Founder/CEO/Geek-at-Large at UpBuild

On JSON-LD Structured Data

Semantic markup and structured data are a big deal. As we approach 2018, these things are no longer a “nice to have”; they're a requirement. It feels like JSON-LD, especially, was the theme at UpBuild last month. Read on to see why.

Mike & Ruth Rocked TechSEO Boost

Catalyst's TechSEO Boost, which went down last week, was the first conference (that we've heard of) that's focused entirely on technical SEO. Naturally, Ruth and Mike had to be there! We gave a joint presentation on how to use Google Tag Manager to deploy JSON-LD in a scalable way. If you missed the event and the live stream, don't worry – we have you covered. You can read our companion blog post on our site or watch the session on YouTube. 

You can also watch a recording of the full 7-hour live stream here.


We're Not Writing Semantic Markup Anymore

In this pro-JSON-LD post, Will breaks down exactly why UpBuild is swearing off inline markup (and you should, too)! In the post, Will notes that Bing is showing signs of crawling JSON-LD as well. As it happens, we then learned at TechSEO Boost (see above) that Bing is really putting the pedal to the metal with JavaScript crawling. The reasons for implementing inline markup are vanishing before our eyes!  

Without further ado, you can read the full post to get our official and in-depth take on the matter

I'll wrap this up by adding a bit of insight from another team member, James, who says "We originally recommended inline markup as well as JSON-LD, in part because Bing and other non-Google search engines didn't support it. Bing has just recently started supporting JSON-LD, though, and our hypothesis is that other search engines will follow suit. So, if implementing it inline is going to be a lot of work for you, I think you could safely leave it out and just have the JSON-LD."

Knowledge Graph Eats Featured Snippets, Jumps +30%

Speaking of structured data, we're seeing big changes in featured snippets (which are powered in part by that structured data). If that's relevant to your interests, you should definitely check out the rundown on recent changes from Moz's Dr. Pete. 

If you're short on time, the gist of it is that Featured Snippets (which come from websites like yours) are being ditched in favor of Knowledge Graph entries (which come from Google's database). Dr. Pete writes that "it's likely that Google is trying to standardize answers for common terms, and perhaps they were seeing quality or consistency issues in Featured Snippets." 

Check out the post in its entirety to learn more. 

Can You Have Traditional GA Tracking and GTM at the Same Time?

The topic of this post was sparked by a question from one of our readers (and friends). Kirk Williams of Zato Marketing asks, “Does having both GTM and GA on a site potentially duplicate data in Analytics? I’ve not seen it obviously do it, but we’re wondering if it would be problematic.”

Laura decided to field the question and it made for a really great post. If you've ever wondered if you can use GTM even if you have the traditional Google Analytics snippet already on your site, this post is for you!

Now It's Your Turn

Want to see a full-on blog post answering your question? Just reply to this email to let us know or hit any one of us up on Twitter. You might end up on the blog! 

The Cost of JavaScript

(and other bloated content)

I've been saying for a few years (only half-jokingly) that JavaScript is the cause of and solution to all of life's problems. I love JavaScript; I also kind of hate it. This killer post from Addy Osmani, who is a Google Engineer working on Chrome, explores the cost of JavaScript from a highly technical standpoint. It may or may not be worth your time to actually read it. 

I share this because, at the surface level, it's definitely a post by a developer for developers. But just below the surface, the core message is that being thoughtful and selective about everything you put on the web (whether that's code, blog posts, videos, tweets, images) is important. Moreover, it's usually to your great advantage to do so.


The perception that "more is more" is still shockingly prevalent, and I think it's to the detriment of much (though not all) of the web. Certainly, when it comes to being effective marketers, the "more is more" model could be detrimental in that it makes everything we do that much less effective. In many cases, it only further convinces our audiences that what we're putting out there is just part of the noise – not the signal. 

I'd place at least some of the blame on blog posts and "studies"  suggesting that audience engagement is simply a function of how frequently you generate new content. "Post 11 times per day on Facebook for maximum clicks and eyeballs!" is a classic. I'll even accept some of the blame by acknowledging that I've made recommendations for things like word count in the past. 

Specific numbers are easy to grasp and provide a good starting point, but with any volume recommendation like either of the above, we must remember that quality trumps everything else. A single great post on Twitter that's highly relevant to what your audience cares about is infinitely better than a dozen auto-scheduled Tweets harvested from RSS feeds. 

The same goes for code and website functionality. We have to ask: are we adding features because "more is more" when we should actually be paring down to provide something much more valuable to our audience? 

Anyway, this one quickly got away from me and we're not really talking about JavaScript anymore. I think that's probably for the best though. I hope you enjoyed reading it as much as I enjoyed typing it. 

That said, you could still share "The Cost of JavaScript" with the developer(s) in your life
Until next time. Thanks for reading!
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