If you logged onto Google from your desktop computer and executed a search, you might have noticed something a little different these past couple weeks. Gone are Pay-Per-Click ads on the right side of SERPs, and in its place is a large blank space.
Now, this isn’t some sort of minimalistic artistic statement from the search engine giant. It’s actually a way to position make the site friendlier to mobile users. Because of the responsive design on many pages, putting PPC ads in front of the eyeballs of means stacking them above the map in a single column. With a mobile device, no purpose is served by placing ads outside of a user’s field of vision. And because good pages should be coded with responsive design, it makes sense for their SERPs to appear vertically.
So where do those ads ultimately go? In the name of profitability, it doesn’t serve Google to eliminate text ads entirely. So instead, they will now appear both at the top and bottom of the pages.
At the same time, Google has created a fourth paid advertising position at the top spots, giving license to more companies to showcase their products and services in what we like to call “beachfront real estate.” We saw with some of our customers that the cost for those paid positions has increased, as well. (Simple supply/demand economics would have indicated this as well.
In any case, swift unexpected changes only reinforce how essential it is to constantly work on your organic listing. PPC is a great way to bolster sales, but in no way is it as critical to keeping one of the top position on a SERP. It can be costly, and as in this case with elevated prices, you are forced to pay more at the drop of a hat.
60% of all traffic goes to a site with a top-three ranking, so making an effort to get to that position and stay there remains the most cost effective option for your business.
If you need help with your organic listing, or need someone to guide you through the new changes in on-page ads, contact us at SteerPoint today.