D2C Digest #53 | Shopify to acquire Checkout Blocks, Google's data leaks, and FB Marketplace

Hey there, great people of the D2C community who are building fantastic things! This is your host Berkay writing.

Take a 5-minute break and dive into D2C Digest for a quick overview of what’s happening in the D2C market worldwide!

💰 Shopify Acquires Checkout Blocks to Boost Checkout Customization

For years, we've all wished for more customization options for the checkout interface on Shopify. It seems they finally heard us!

Shopify has acquired Checkout Blocks, a no-code tool that helps merchants customize their checkout processes. Announced by Checkout Blocks founder Gil Greenberg, the acquisition will now make the company's Starter plan free for all Shopify Plus merchants.

A spokesperson from Shopify stated, “We are thrilled to welcome Checkout Blocks to Shopify and continue our mission to make commerce better for everyone.”

Since its launch in September 2022, Checkout Blocks has become one of Shopify’s most popular apps. It enables merchants to add custom fields, control delivery and payment options, and design branded checkouts.

Research by PYMNTS Intelligence shows that a smooth checkout experience is crucial for customer loyalty, with 91% of customers highlighting its importance. Key features like payment options and order confirmations are essential for a satisfying checkout.

Shopify is also expanding features like installment payments to physical stores, aiming to unify the online and offline shopping experience, according to CFO Jeff Hoffmeister.

We’ll see how much they’ll achieve with these new features 👀

😮 Google's data leaks have left marketers feeling misled

Are you ready for some good old "let's break down the data leaks of a huge corporation"?

Last week, SEO expert Erfan Azimi leaked thousands of Google search documents, shedding light on the elusive Google algorithm. This revelation is significant as it uncovers over 14,000 ranking factors, including several that Google has previously downplayed.

In a revealing video, Azimi claims that businesses have been misled for over a decade about the algorithm’s workings, aiming to promote transparency with this leak.

Now let’s talk about some key discrepancies exposed:

  1. Domain Authority: Google has denied measuring domain authority, but the documents mention a 'site authority' score, indicating that providing helpful content and quality backlinks remains crucial.
  2. Clicks for Rankings: Despite Google's claims, the documents describe NavBoost, a system tracking various clicks, including 'last longest clicks,' which consider the time spent on a page. This underscores the importance of user engagement on your site.
  3. New Site Sandbox: Contrary to Google’s statements, the documents reveal that new sites are segregated from established ones without trust signals like reviews and awards, meaning new sites take longer to rank.
  4. Chrome Data: Although Google has denied using Chrome data for rankings, the leak shows that Chrome visits are used as a real-time ranking metric, indicating that site traffic fluctuations can impact search rankings.

The takeaway? Building brand authority and creating engaging, helpful content is more vital than ever. While this leak offers valuable insights, it doesn't specify the most critical ranking factors, so continuous testing and learning remain essential.

📈 Zuckerberg's Facebook Marketplace Outpaces Amazon

🤔 Did we focus too much on our own channels and forget about Facebook?

Because the news says, Facebook Marketplace has outstripped Amazon with four times the number of users.

Initially launched in 2016, Marketplace has seen explosive growth, now boasting 1.2 billion users engaged in commerce on the platform.

Marketplace's integration with Facebook's massive social network, which has over 3 billion monthly active users, facilitates easy communication between buyers and sellers through Facebook Messenger. This user-friendly design has made it a popular choice, especially during the pandemic when e-commerce saw a significant boost due to disrupted traditional retail channels.

Gen Z has particularly embraced Facebook Marketplace, using it not just for shopping but also as a social tool. Young users like Dre Vez spend hours daily on the platform, engaging with sellers and creating content for social media. This demographic appreciates the platform for its economical shopping options and the social interactions it facilitates.

Despite its success, Marketplace faces challenges with scams and fraudulent listings. Meta, Facebook's parent company, is actively working to address these issues by swiftly identifying and removing such listings.

Zuck is watching 👀

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