We contacted our Google representative to get some more specifics on this latest addition to the sponsored results. Here is their official response to our questions:
Google: “We’re always experimenting with new features and tools to help users find information online. We’ve recently enabled a feature on English language versions of the Google search results page in which additional advertisements for related queries or refinements of the user’s original query may appear. This feature provides users with a diverse set of relevant ads, and offers advertisers with relevant broad match keywords another opportunity to reach their target audience.”
TSA: I am seeing “Related to” headers on the right hand side sponsored links, what are these?
These headers are related commercial refinements and are part of an experiment we are conducting on Google.com. They are based on common user refinements for queries taking both search and ads signals into account. We are experimenting with serving ads that are most relevant to those refinements.
How are ads served under these headers?
Ads that appear under these refinement headers are targeted based on relevant broad match keywords in an advertiser’s account.
Am I being charged for clicks under these headers?
Yes, you will be charged according to the standard CPC auction model if a user clicks on one of your ads.
How can I make my ads eligible to appear under these headers?
All ads for broad matched keywords are eligible to appear under these search refinements.
I want to extend our thanks to Google for helping us to keep up with their ever-changing search results page, and for allowing us to share this information with our readers. Interestingly, this doesn’t appear to be the end of the story. I ran a couple of searches this morning, and found some additional examples of these “related to” advertisements, along with yet another new feature:
Based on my search for [padres], Google is using the “related to” feature to serve additional ads based on relevant queries – [padres tickets], [Petco Park]. Now they are also including links to related queries under the heading “Also try.”
Here is another example in which Google serves me the “Also try” links, this time without any advertisements:
In May, Google made a number of changes to its standard results page, including the addition of related queries on the left-hand column under the heading “Something different” and at the bottom of the page under “Searches related to [keyword]”:
So adding links to relevant queries is not new. But as far as I can tell, the “Also try” feature is the first time Google has used the right-hand column – the part of the page which had always been reserved exclusively for advertisements – to serve me additional, relevant queries.
When it comes to search, the only thing you can count on is that nothing will stay the same. What are your thoughts on these latest additions to the Google results page?
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