Yep - Google confirms
|First, we thought it was time for a new look: after months of testing, we decided to switch the background color of the top ads from blue to yellow. Second, we've modified what counts as a click in this box to be consistent with what counts as a click for the ads on the right hand side. Instead of clicking anywhere in the box, users now need to click on the link in the top line of an ad in order to be taken to an advertiser's site. Together, these changes help decrease the likelihood that a user will unintentionally click on an ad, while making our highest quality ads more visible. |
Official AdWords blog [adwords.blogspot.com]
"whilst making our highest quality ads more visible"
...or the lowest quality with stupidly high bids.
Its not so bad, if I was google I would have shaded all the free listings and left the ads on a white background, or certainly shaded both results with the aim of boosting profits.
Another thing I just noticed, on one of the paid ads on the right of the page, was a graphic that says "Google Checkout".
As it is the only graphic on the page besides the G logo, it stood out like the proverbial sore thumb. It was on only one of the 8 listings, the third one down and it unquestionably made the visitor look at it almost immediately.
This seems to be a way of favoring one advertiser over another to push a G product.
I'd be pretty upset if I was a competing advertiser... or I would sign up with G Checkout... which I guess is what they want.
[edited by: tedster at 9:44 pm (utc) on April 6, 2007]
I am glad they removed the mouse over click from anywhere in the shaded sponsors..this should help to refine some of the click numbers for the sponsored listings..
personally, I like the new look...jumps out a bit more then the blue...
Just seeing this today for the first time. Canít say I like it, but I would probably be doing the same thing if I were them. Gís up to a lot of stuff, but at the end of the day the revenue comes from people clicking on their adís and it will be interesting to see what changes they make to continually increase that activity.
So everybody should now follow Google's lead and make their ads more apparent as opposed to "blending" them into your site?
G wouldnt be doing this if they didnt think it would mean more clicks - surely?
Perhaps we can all learn something from this?
(Probably best shared on the adsense forum tho) :)