Google Pay Per Click Bidding Goes Up Due to Google Places


These past few weeks have been very busy to say the least if you are in search marketing. Google recently shifted in favor of SEOs with not just instant search, but also the new dominating presence of the local Google Places results. The big change has impacted most queries with “local intent”. This shift in the display of the results for Google organic rankings has created alot of fuss amongst the small business community. I consider it a blessing for those with brick and mortar locations, or those that know how to capitalize on the changes.

Recently, Yahoo Search Marketing, also known as Panama, was folded into MSN after getting final approval from regulators. Advertisers that had great rankings from Yahoo organic search results have suffered huge setbacks. I have seen very few circumstances where high ranked Yahoo listings also ranking well on Bing, MSN’s search engine. The combination of losing the organic rankings and having to transfer or convert Yahoo Search Marketing campaigns to MSN AdCenter has impacted call volumes of most advertisers without a dedicated SEO/SEM consultant.

Google Places local listing results has made an algorithmic shift towards traditional SEO. If you previously have hired the services of a holistic search engine optimized who does local listing optimization, local link building, content strategy, and review aggregation you were not impacted as heavily with the recent shifts in local search.

With all the recent changes in the local search marketing landscape these past few weeks, I have seen business categories across the broad spectrum increase Google AdWords bids per targeted keyword. This obviously is a result of a decrease in phone calls, not as likely to be contributed by a change in Google AdWords, but likely the result of a decrease in calls to advertisers struggling to keep up with all the shifts in search. Good news for my clients is that I stay vigilant and on top of whats to come.

If you need help with your small business search marketing or online reputation management (reverse ranking SEO) give me a call:

7 Responses to Google Pay Per Click Bidding Goes Up Due to Google Places

  1. Google’s search ranking system hasn’t changed. Users tendency towards various search patterns have been changed since Google released ‘Instant’ and the effect was/is on website’s Impression and CTR. You may want to check out my blog for related information.

    Certainly Google’s SERP’s are now more localized and webmasters who have been doing efforts for local listings do have more benefits than before.

    Please note: I am not referring to Google Maps but Google’s localized search results.

    • Mike Stewart says:

      I agree. The local natural organic results have the same ranking factors, yet location has become a key factor in the Places results moreso since the rearrangement of the SERPS. I am sure impression vs ctr has changed the scoring and bid cost for ppc keywords, but I believe the competition has turned up a notch due to the shift towards location based listings, reviews, and local listing optimization. Google is obviously focused on the local landscape, something search engine PageRank and HITS algorythms failed to recognize the demand for in previous years. I also find it interesting that profile pages from local listing sites are now getting a second life so to speak.

  2. “Google is obviously focused on the local landscape, something search engine PageRank and HITS algorythms failed to recognize the demand for in previous years.”

    I found a bit contrast to your views!

    Google is by default set to country level domain extension( for India)where users reach results(maps, websites) from that region. So, priority for organic local listings was there from the time when Google spread its domains based on countries.

  3. So don’t you wanna call the ‘Geographic’ setting for country level domains as ‘Local’ ? 😉

  4. Pradeep,

    Not so much. Coming from a small business yellow pages American background, country level domains have never technically been considered local. Few SMBs service such a large area as the United States. I am sure there are stark contrasts between our two countries. In suburban US markets like Plano that are 100% self sustaining economies, most purchases take place around the “hoods” in our backyards.

    Someone once told me that you could build a fence around the Plano, that was 10 years ago… now you can do it to just about every area in Dallas.


  5. ‘Country level domain’, I was talking about was only about Google’s country extension and the differences it shows in displaying the results when choose between a country extension to a site. And yes Google still shows the difference between in its SERP list.

    And I said that I had found only a ‘bit’ contrast to your views when you wrote that Google failed to recognize the ‘Local Demand’, not entirely 😉

    Though I believe Online marketing should adopt certain ethics from Traditional marketing, there are some differences between. Not everything can work for online. You know it better. 🙂

    By the way, the comment form is randomly set. Found it on your recent posts also.

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