We’ve recently been inundated by requests for helping businesses with the set up and management of Google Adwords. In many cases SEO marketing activity is in place but increasingly there’s a need to also set up, manage and deliver targeted traffic via Google’s Adwords Pay Per Click program.

Is this in response to the Keyword “Not Provided” debacle?

Or is it more likely that businesses are waking up to the fact that running and managing Adwords is something they are going to have to use in order to compete online?

Either way some of you may have noticed Google has now hidden the yellow background behind paid Ads even further and added in small yellow blocks with “Ad” written on each and placed next to each ad in order to obfuscate the difference between paid and organic search results.

Managing your Adwords like SEO? Is it now time?

Notice  the amount of real estate taken up by paid ads and paid product listings?  Google appears to be quietly moving organic results further and further south.

Ad heights are expanding with Sitelink Extensions under most of the top placed ads here and you’ll also notice the Ad button sits under the Ad title so it is less obvious to a user. This means that when the time is right Google can reduce the button in size (or alter the colour of the button) over time and very few will notice.

Our research noted Econsultancy also mentioning their findings:

Our research note Nike’s paid ad layout – it really grabs a major share of on-screen real estate:

Google Adwords example

Nike’s ad places the “35 Reviews” below the domain whereas the other ad has the review alongside. Nike’s ad has 2 further ad blocks with descriptions rather than “just” other  simple site link extensions.

So what is our response to this Adwords change?

We plan to adopt a strategy that will make our client’s paid ads – where relevant and possible – look more like natural, organic listings within Google’s own PPC program.


If more of Google users fail to notice they are clicking on Ads – which is ultimately Google’s overall intentions – then we have to ensure our clients are maximising the number of relevant clicks to their websites.

A case of if you can’t beat them, join them?

Quite possibly, but in the real world we exist to be “all things web” for our customers and help them with any aspect of web marketing, not just SEO (though of course that’s still very important to us and our clients).

We know that with Adwords we are going to have less characters to work with in the ad description than we might get in a meta description of 155 characters or thereabouts – but that’s where an experienced web marketing firm has to cut the mustard right?

Maybe word’s got round that our team have been quietly beavering away, successfully managing client’s Adwords marketing for the past 7 years and more. We discovered a long time ago it was better to dominate the SERPS by using both organic and paid at the same time. Show up in a high ranking position for a result organically and then get a second hit of the keyword pie at low cost, from another click generated by PPC (Pay Per Click).

This doesn’t mean that SEO is going to go away, Google has a far longer game plan than most of us can envisage. They have to make gradual changes that don’t rock the boat – there’s no point losing market share and suffering the wrath of major shareholders!

But in the meantime you might want to check with your internet marketing company they can back up their SEO offering to you with skilled Google Adwords management services, as well as other relevant inbound marketing activities, to ensure that no matter what the longer term future of organic search you can be assured of a reliable stream of relevant  traffic to your website.

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