Google Instant Impact on Organic & Paid Search

In my previous post, I mentioned about the introduction of Google Instant – an enhancement to the way Google shows its search results based on a predictive model and its potential impact on both SEO and SEM.

These changes can impact the performance of AdWords campaigns and your PPC Advertising campaigns.  Although Google Instant would not change the way ads are served, ads will now be shown for a new “predicted query.”

Even thought it might behave differently depending on your keyword phrases, Google Instant most likely decreases your overall impression levels, increase your CTR and improve the quality of your clicks since it helps people search using terms that more directly connect them.  This could potentially bring down your CPC and improve your overall campaign performance. However, there are other possibilities as well.

When your audience searches using Google Instant, the following scenarios might happen:

  • The searcher begins to type a search query and clicks anywhere on the page (a search result, an ad, a spell correction, vertical searches, or a related search).
  • The user chooses a particular query by clicking the Search button, pressing Enter, or selecting one of the predicted queries. This scenario could hurt the long tail and increase the competition for head keywords which can increase the CPC.  This will help Google maximize its revenue by getting a higher number of clicks at higher CPC while reducing the pressure on their infrasturcutre.
  • The user stops typing, and the results are displayed for a minimum of three seconds. In this scenario, as visitors might not finish typing their query completely, this may dilute the impression data for some phrases.  You can track the impact of this by looking at the referring keywords in your Google Analytics account.

In terms of organic search results and the impact on SEO, there has been no algorithmic change to the way Google ranks sites. Nevertheless, very much like paid search, Google Instant will push the number of organic queries from long to head terms which means that sites that have higher authority and rank high for broader terms will benefit from this change.

It will also make having a first fold position even more important as users may not click on the search button to see the results below the fold.

Filed Under: SEMSEO


About the Author

Nima Asrar Haghighi is an Internet Marketing consultant with expertise in SEM (PPC Advertising), Organic SEO, RSS, Social Media and Web Analytics (Google Analytics IQ Certified). Nima holds an MBA in marketing, B.Eng. in Electrical Engineering, Project Management Certification, and CIW (Certified Internet Webmaster) in E-commerce. You can reach Nima at +Google Plus or LinkedIn.

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