Google has performed series of tests showing that placement of ads on the Google search results pages greatly affects click-through rates, and ultimately, customer conversions. Based on these findings, Google has rolled out a series of position-based updates over the last year to ensure that ads are performing to the best of their abilities.
I am sure you remember when Google introduced “Top vs. Side” segmentation
over this past summer. Not long after Top Vs. Side was released, select users began to also see ads at the bottom of search pages, leading many to believe that this was the next attempt at testing how position directly effects performance in AdWords.
Last Wednesday, Google officially announced that position options are indeed expanding further to include the space at the bottom of the page. Now, when a user enters a search query on Google’s main search page, they may begin to see related AdWords listings beneath the associated search results. According to the search giant, ads appearing near the bottom of the page have consistently performed better than their counterpart ads that are appearing on the sides of pages.
The reasoning behind the higher performance rates is logical. The professionals believe that when ads appear at the end of a series of search results, it just fits in better with the way that humans read. Because it has a familiar and natural flow of top to bottom, users are more likely to notice the ad at the end of the results and eventually click through, if it is of interest to them.
Each placement is dynamically optimized just like the search results to ensure that individual users are being reached in the most effective manner. That being said, ads positioned at the bottom of the page and ads appearing on the side will be mutually exclusive in search results. This means that if a user sees ads at the side of the page, they will NOT see ads at the bottom, and vice versa. This is to ensure that the search results pages do not become oversaturated, and so that they continue to have a clean, easily legible flow.
Google plans to rename “Top vs. Side” to “Top vs. Other” in the coming weeks. This segmentation will include the new bottom of the page position as well as other experimental placements that may come to be in the future. By visiting this tab in AdWords, you can easily compare positions to see where your ads specifically are performing their best.