As stated on the title above, Google will no longer be showing AdWords ads on the right hand side of its search results pages.
Starting on 19 February, Google will now only show ads at the top and bottom of the SERP. Although it may increase the number of ads from three to four if the search query is “highly commercial.”
This change will affect users worldwide in all languages and will bring the desktop experience closer to the mobile experience, although whether the amount of ads shown to mobile users will increase hasn’t been confirmed.
So what does this mean for marketers and users alike?
For regular users, the right-hand space will still be utilised for Product Listing Ads (PLAs) as well as Knowledge Graph Boxes, so you probably won’t notice much of a difference there. However the continual ‘pushing down’ of organic listings will certainly be an issue for many of us.
- For businesses this will mean the organic space is even more precious will therefore lead to an even bigger focus on SEO
- For Paid Search advertisers the change will certainly drive up average CPCs as the competition for the top slots increases. It’s gonna get ugly.
So why limit the amount of space for advertisers on its SERPs? The reason for this may well be because Google has determined the average click-through-rate for Right Hand Side Ads is poor across verticals, and the expected CPC inflation from this major change is projected to more profitable in the long run.”