The way ads have appeared on Google’s search results has pretty much been the same for the last ten years. You will commonly get a maximum of three adverts above organic search results, adverts below the bottom of search engine results and a sidebar of adverts to the right hand side of results. However, this is about to all change with Google releasing information that they are to scrap the right hand side area to show adverts and will, instead, display a maximum of four adverts above organic search results for the more competitive keywords.
Saying this, there is going to be one exception: Product Listing Ads (PLA). However, why are Google deciding to change where their adverts show in search engine results? Here is a possible reason and potential drawbacks to this change too.
Right Hand Side Poor CTR
Although Google has not mentioned any reasons other than the fact that they are changing the layout based on intense testing, we can be sure that one of the reasons behind the change is to help increase the overall performance of adverts on Google search results. This is because, at the end of the day, Google takes a profit from every advert that is clicked on – the better the CTR of adverts, the more Google will profit from!
With this in mind, it makes sense to remove the right hand bar of adverts. They have been notoriously known for having low CTRs as compared to adverts above organic search results.
May Increase General CPC
This comes from the old saying ‘supply and demand’ – what Google are going to do is remove all of the right hand side adverts except for PLAs and add just one extra advert for above the search results advertising area. Removing tens of adverts from being shown on the right and only increasing the other areas by one advertising unit will make it harder for advertisers to get their adverts displayed at the same CPCs as before: the demand for the advertising areas has stayed the same. However, the supply has decreased so it will be interesting to say the least how this will affect advertising campaign’s actual CPC as compared to their maximum CPC too.
Organic Traffic Decrease For Websites
As much as Google have stated that this change to PPC advertising has come from intense testing, they cannot have tested how such a change will affect the traffic websites get from being displayed on the first page (for that matter, any page) of Google search engine results. This is because with four PPC search adverts being displayed instead of three, it may actually reduce the CTR of organic links on search results in order to get the increase in paid search results CTR which is the likely reason Google have made the change.
With this in mind, I am mixed opinion about this change. Only time will tell what the actual impact this will have both to PPC campaigns and website organic traffic.
A student in England studying a Masters in Automotive Engineering with Motorsport, Will created AskWillOnline.com back in 2010 to help students revise and bloggers make money developing himself into an expert in PPC, blogging, and online marketing. He now runs others websites such as FreePoemAnalysis.com and RestoringMamods.com You can follow him @willGreeny.