The Line Between Paid & Organic Search Disappears…
Just a couple weeks ago Google made another change to their “Ad” label for paid results in the SERPs. The new label has a thin green border on a white background. To the naked eye, many people will miss this label. It’s almost transparent. These labels are pervasive across mobile and desktop, iOS and Android.
This is yet another expansion in Google’s never-ending quest to own the search engine results pages. In some results, you will not see an organic listing above the fold. Take a look at the image below from Search Engine Land. The image shows the same results across different devices. As you can see, no organic results.
How Long Has This Been Happening?
Well, I’m glad you asked :). This evolution started in 2005. But take a look at the image below. The ads now look almost identical to organic results.
What Does This Mean For You?
Now more than ever, your paid and organic strategies need to be buttoned up. Ongoing Adwords testing (along with landing page design and CRO) is crucial. And, of course, you need to do SEO the right way.
Speaking of SEO, take a look at the image below from @chrisgreen87 on Twitter. The image shows how much the rankings fluctuate after page one. HINT: It’s a lot.