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Another SERPs Knowledge Layout - No Organic Above Fold

     
3:00 pm on Mar 11, 2015 (gmt 0)

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I have stumbled to another Google SERPs Knowledge layout connected with some country searches.

For a competitive searches with 3 AdWords ads there is no organic above the fold even on a big screens.

The example below shows what I see when I search for "camping France"

[i.imgur.com...]

Click on the country area links leads to another SERPs for searches focused to this country region.

Is this something new or has it been seen before?
3:07 pm on Mar 11, 2015 (gmt 0)

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I do not get the same results as you do aakk999 I see no adwords and organic results even on a small screen.
3:14 pm on Mar 11, 2015 (gmt 0)

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Seeing the same screen as @aakk9999 - however without the side ads. Haven't stumbled before on this type of screen though. With the risk of sounding newbie-ish how long is this organic in to local above the fold change been around?
3:18 pm on Mar 11, 2015 (gmt 0)

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You can get pretty close to that within the US Serps as well.

[i.imgur.com...]

One organic result, though I suspect it's only showing because ad inventory for campsites is pretty low.

Edit: Some other serps with nothing, or almost nothing organic above the fold: [imgur.com...]
4:28 pm on Mar 11, 2015 (gmt 0)

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Try "best" and some genre of music. Not much in the way of ads, but a huge chunk of real estate:

[google.com...]

Works for a lot of different queries with "best" in it.
4:42 pm on Mar 11, 2015 (gmt 0)

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I'm not seeing any ads at all for the OP's sample query.

For netmeg's, I see no ads or Knowledge Graph content, although I do get a carousel for "best [type of music] [additional keyword]".

Google does like to test things in the wild.
5:15 pm on Mar 11, 2015 (gmt 0)

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Try "best" and some genre of music. Not much in the way of ads, but a huge chunk of real estate:

[google.com...]

Works for a lot of different queries with "best" in it.


I'm less offended by the carousel, and more offended that they consider Talking Heads punk.
5:27 pm on Mar 11, 2015 (gmt 0)

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I'm less offended by the carousel, and more offended that they consider Talking Heads punk.


If you ask directly, you get "new wave" and "post punk" :)

[i.imgur.com...]
4:22 pm on Mar 12, 2015 (gmt 0)

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I see much the same as the OP on .co.uk
5:58 pm on Mar 12, 2015 (gmt 0)

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I'm not seeing that same SERPs as aakk9999, but as we know, it can be personalised.

Importantly, the lack of organic really is a concern.
6:06 pm on Mar 12, 2015 (gmt 0)

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It seems any query with a location in it is ripe for injection of non-organic results, given they have enough data.
9:53 am on Mar 13, 2015 (gmt 0)

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When I search for my site - the business includes the name of the city - I get one adwords then my site as the first organic then the local results. The rest of the organics are below the fold, nice for me.

The way in which non organics are injected seems to vary a lot but a two word search with a place name is definitely a magnet for non organic results.
2:56 pm on Mar 13, 2015 (gmt 0)

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I'm getting the same organic result as the OP on .co.uk today. On a 27" monitor it's a large chunk of real estate that is taken up. What it means is that there is only a single title tag from an organic result above the fold meaning more cash for Google I suspect....
1:35 pm on Mar 16, 2015 (gmt 0)

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I see the same results as aakk9999 - scary to think that on a 27 inch monitor you can hardly get to see any organic returns, I also checked the search term on bing.com and half the page on a 27 inch monitor is now showing adverts. On a 15 inch laptop screen 1 organic search can be seen above the fold for bing and on Google not one is visible.
How long can independent websites last when both search engines basically are taking the piss as being search engines rather than simply paid advertising pages
2:17 pm on Mar 16, 2015 (gmt 0)

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How long can independent websites last when both search engines basically are taking the piss as being search engines rather than simply paid advertising pages

That's waaayyyyy too big a question to answer here!

Now imagine for a second if this wasn't a dysfunctional market place with a monopoly provider..... :-)
2:36 pm on Mar 16, 2015 (gmt 0)

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Google doesn't consider itself a search engine anymore.
3:26 pm on Mar 16, 2015 (gmt 0)

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Google doesn't consider itself a search engine anymore.

What is it then? If you Google 'is Google a search engine' the answer appears to be yes...according to Google.
3:31 pm on Mar 16, 2015 (gmt 0)

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But couldn't this not only hurt small sites, but also big brands, in cases where there are enough ads at the top to push the organic results below the fold even when they are dominated by big brands? Or does it usually only happen when the ads are for big brands and/or there are some small sites at the top of the organic results?
4:06 pm on Mar 16, 2015 (gmt 0)

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Good question Aristotle however this discussion started off about the Google SERPs Knowledge layout.

The issue I have always had with this is whilst I agree with the whole 'giving the end user what they want easier' argument I take issue when they lift the data they use from the top ranking organic sites and don't credit them for it.

The Knowledge boxes along with "OK Google" voice search are just another step towards talking directly to the computer on the bridge of the Enterprise. This works brilliantly in the utopian future where money has been forgotten and man works together across the entire planet but we are not there just yet and people still have a living to make.

The extension of the Knowledge boxes in the SERPS simply sucks traffic from existing providers of that knowledge.

I guess this really hammers home the reality that organic search is not a given and that if you want to get in front of prospective customers you need to pay for an advert. Sort of like Directories and Newspapers and Magazines and....oh, did we already go there?
4:13 pm on Mar 16, 2015 (gmt 0)

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Google doesn't consider itself a search engine anymore.

Google Inc. is a company.

Google Search is a search engine.

Are we talking about Google Inc. or Google Search? (If we're talking about Google Inc., we're in the wrong forum.)
4:15 pm on Mar 16, 2015 (gmt 0)

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What is it then?

It's exactly what you called it previously - a monopoly. The only thing is that the search division of their company is monopolized and they use that dominance to propel their other properties, investments and ventures to success. It's far from a free/fair market and the small guys have a much harder time adapting to this reality. The big guys have larger budgets, traffic, etc. to negotiate with Google for more favorable advertising rates, display advertising and as history shows a quick bounce back from penalties. Sure, no organics above the fold will adversely impact most everyone except Google, but better rates for paid placement benefits the big guys.

[edited by: mrengine at 4:16 pm (utc) on Mar 16, 2015]

4:15 pm on Mar 16, 2015 (gmt 0)

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What is it then?


A knowledge engine. i.e. if they can answer the query themselves, without taking the user to another site, they will do so. As we are now seeing.
4:20 pm on Mar 16, 2015 (gmt 0)

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Barbados
The main topic of this thread is cases in which the Google's organic results are pushed below the fold. We've already had many previous discussions about Knowledge Graphs and where the information in them comes from.
4:22 pm on Mar 16, 2015 (gmt 0)

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A knowledge engine. i.e. if they can answer the query themselves, without taking the user to another site, they will do so. As we are now seeing.


Which has been predicted for a long time of course. I think we'd be hard pushed in a thought experiment to conceive of a successful search engine that'd want to achieve something less 'hands-on' with content.

Who knows, with augmented reality and VR possibly becoming the next tool of choice for users, it may well end up being less 2-D and "above or below the fold".
5:39 pm on Mar 16, 2015 (gmt 0)

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A "knowledge engine" (a term that sounds clumsy to me) is still a search engine. The nature of the results may vary, but that doesn't mean "wdc-2100 widget" or "history of widgetonia" isn't a search query.
6:08 pm on Mar 16, 2015 (gmt 0)

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Google does have a name for sites that serve up auto-generated scraped snippets of other people's content based on search terms.

It's not "search engine" :)

Edit: For anyone that missed the funniest Google related tweet I've ever seen (https://twitter.com/danbarker/status/439125570115223552)
7:55 pm on Mar 16, 2015 (gmt 0)

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What shows varies as you click on different areas (with the "camping france" search) ads, local, or main organic listings.
10:02 pm on Mar 16, 2015 (gmt 0)

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People aren't dumb though, they will eventually realise what is an advert and just skip them.
Its a bit like newspapers. When was the time you paid any attention to the ads in a newspaper? You just ignore them and focus on the news stories. Hopefully that is what it will be like when users have become more educated.

The real problem in my opinion is not the ads themselves, but the way google is allowed to try and disguise them to make them look like the serps. They should force them to put a big block of background colour on, like they did in the old days
1:16 am on Mar 17, 2015 (gmt 0)

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The real problem in my opinion is not the ads themselves, but the way google is allowed to try and disguise them to make them look like the serps. They should force them to put a big block of background colour on, like they did in the old days.


I find that the yellow "Ad" icon is much more obvious than the old colored background was (especially on my laptop's display).

As for there being too many ads on a page, that depends mostly on the query. SERPs for obvious commercial queries are likely to have a fair number of ads, but do users mind? Presumably not, since Google has a reputation for being a data-driven company and does a lot of user testing. Sometimes ads are more useful than organic results: On occasion, when buying products that a lot vendors carry, I haven't gone beyond the Product Search ads myself. (Who wants to spend more than 60 seconds finding a retailer of [brand name] boxer shorts?)
3:59 am on Mar 17, 2015 (gmt 0)

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I find that the yellow "Ad" icon is much more obvious than the old colored background was.

I'm sure it is, but I'll bet they would love to have the old background back. That change wasn't some sort of egalitarian gesture.

I assume the yellow icon was the CTR winner out of whatever choices they had left that would satisfy the FTC. ([ftc.gov ])
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