Google are changing the way ads appear, instead of having a maximum of 3 top ads above the organic results there will now be times when they display 4 ads.
Google state 4 ads will be displayed for what they term as highly commercial queries.
This major change from Google aligns with how their ads appear on mobile and tablet. There will continue to be as many as 3 ads at the bottom of the first page, below the organic listings.
What Does This Mean To You As An Adwords Advertiser
- Instead of a maximum of 11 possible positions to display your ad, it is now reduced to 7.
- It’s highly likely average CPCs will increase for the top 4 ad places because these represent the only ad positions above the fold.
- You will no longer be able to advertise in the right sidebar.
- WordStream report there won’t be a noticeable drop in the number of clicks, as to date 85% on average already from the top ads.
- All ads will have the opportunity to display extensions. This wasn’t the case with ads on the right had side.
- It will be even more important to work on increasing quality scores to grab a top 4 position.
What Does This Mean To You As A Content Marketer
- Unfortunately your content will be pushed further down the page.
- You should search your most popular keywords to determine whether Google deems them as highly commercial queries.
- Google searchers will initally be confused that the fourth listing down is no longer the top organic result, but instead an ad.
What To Do Next Following These Google Adwords Changes
I recommend you sit tight and review your data over the next few weeks to determine whether you are as competitive with your Adwords bids. Critically focus on your conversions, and find out if they have been affected by the changes.
Managing and optimising Adwords campaigns has always been about studying the data and reacting to changes in a strategic manner. To this end nothing has changed, though I grant you it is a big change.