Over the past few days you may have looked at Google’s search results and wondered if your mind was playing tricks on you. We’ve predicted this would happen for a while, but Google are rolling out increased frequency of its paid search results.
There are now four paid search listings on top of the page, with the right hand side listings being removed altogether.
In my opinion this new look could work well for PPC advertisers, as the likelihood of conversion is a lot more with less adverts appearing on the page.
More clicks
We’ve been analysing the statistics from Move Digital’s PPC customers and found that adverts in the banner position receive x10 the click through rate than the same adverts on the right hand side.
Other benefits from having a champions league esque search results are that we can provide much clearer reporting as the Average Position is going to be much more accurate with only 4 listings being displayed on the page.
More expensive
One downside of this is that with less paid search results, the competition is going to be more fierce, which will mean for competitive industries cost per click (CPC ) will increase.
What does it mean for SEO?
With PPC budgets increasing as a result of this the need for SEO is even more important. An effective SEO campaign will reduce the need for you to rely on PPC for customer acquisition.
It will be interesting to see what changes Google make to the natural listings over the next 12 months. I predict there will be a more shake-ups with even more focus on mobile and geo targeting.