It’s been over a month now since Google changed up the search results pages to no longer include side-rail ads. Business owners and SEOs knew it would change up the search results game, but no one knew how drastic of a change it would be. Turns out, we’re already noticing the side effects of the switch.
Including more ads to the top of search results pages has increased bid prices for those running an Adwords campaign. Not only are there four spots for text ads at the top, but three at the bottom. This change drastically decreases the room left on the page for organic search results — which means more competition to get to the top. So what can one do to make sure that their site gets the most clicks with Google’s new push for ads? Here are a few ideas:
- Rethink Target Keywords. Don’t shoot for keywords that are out of reach. Do some serious keyword research with the help of Google’s keyword planner and figure out which phrases are more obtainable to rank on. Not going for highly commercial search queries will ensure that you are targeting keywords that are more valuable to your business.
- Opt for FAQ-Style Queries. This is something all businesses should be doing, but it has been made even more important with the change in ad positioning. Generate unique content that includes question-based search phrases. For example, if you own a mold company, write a page titled “What Is Black Mold?” The page is more likely to rank higher because it is an important question your customers might ask.
- Choose Product Listing Ads. For ecommerce websites, it’s a good idea to supplement your SEO with PLAs, as they’ve now become commonplace in search results and have proven to be very successful for ecommerce sites. These ads are eye-catching and will almost always appear at the top of a page. Note that it will cost some money to run these ads, but the amount of potential business you can bring in will be well worth it.
Aside from these quick tips, don’t forget that simply ranking number one in organic search results will bring in more business than anything else. Be sure to practice White Hat SEO tactics, or enlist the help of an online marketing or SEO company such as Boston Web Marketing for guidance!