Google Testing Related Ads in Sponsored Listings - Continued
Last week we revealed that Google have started to test related searches in the sponsored listings. This week, it appears they have gone a stage further, and are now testing this feature on brand terms.
For example, see the search below for “Barratts Shoes”. Previously there were a handful of ads showing for this brand, the brand themselves and the occasional competitor, now Google is listing alternate brands that a user may also want to consider in their hunt for shoes.
So what determines who gets listed in the related searches? At the moment this isnt 100% clear. It appears this is determined by the other related searches suggested at the bottom of a Google search, however how does Google determine which brands appear out of that list? For example, if we consider the example above, Dune, Dolcis & Clarks are not the only brands listed in the related searches, Next, Office & New Look Shoes are listed at the top of the other related searches - so why aren’t their ads showing?
Whilst this could lead to more revenue for Google, through the potential of more clicks, what does this mean for the advertiser? What will happen to clickthrough rates and conversion rates on brand terms? Ultimately could this have a detrimental effect on campaigns, as Google are encouraging users to look elsewhere, but also will this change the way users search? Will users now type in brand terms, not to look for a brand directly, but to look for what other brands are in the market?