SEO Warning – Have Too Many Ads? Get Downgraded by Google
If my website has too many ads, will it get downgraded by Google? If you have to ask, I think we all know the answer. Remember, like in any algorithm update, Google will always make changes to bring the best and most relevant answers to their searches. So if your website is full of ads, don’t be surprised if Google does not want to show your website in their results.
Webmasters rely on advertising to bring in income and pay the bills. This is a known fact of life in the online world and it is generally accepted among website visitors as well (most website if visit on a daily basis are ad supported). While advertising is common, Google has recently made changes to its algorithm that could negatively impact website rankings with too much advertising on their sites.
Are you worried your site is in Google’s cross hairs? Give me a call, I am available for a search engine optimization consultation.
Too Much Advertising
According to Google, websites with a large amount of advertising above-the-fold could be penalized by Google. This means that if you have too many ads on the upper portion of your pages, your site could go down in the Google rankings. Does this mean that having some ads on the top of your page will automatically move you down in the rankings? Not necessarily. Google says that this will affect less than 1% of sites on the Web.
If my website has too many ads, will it get downgraded by Google? If you have to ask, I think we all know the answer.
Who Will Be Affected
Since only a small number of sites will be affected by this change, the majority of website owners can keep doing what they’re already doing. Those who are most likely to be affected by this are those who have an abundance of ads at the top of the page, and you know who you are. When it is difficult to find any original content on the page, this reflects negatively on the site and the user experience.
For example, when you see multiple pop-up ads and banner ads on the top of the page, this could cause a site to be downgraded in the eyes of Google. If the top of the page is all advertising and it doesn’t have any content until you scroll down, this is a negative for the user. This is considered spam and can hurt your site in the Google search engine rankings.
Factors That Are Unknown
Although the basic idea behind this policy is simple enough, the specifics are held by Google. Webmasters can’t really be sure of several factors in this regard.
• What is too many ads? This is a pretty vague area that webmasters can get confused on.
• What is considered above-the-fold? The fold is different for various monitors and for different browsers.
• How much does it negatively impact you in the rankings?
Can I Fool Google with CSS Design?
Although this change has the potential to impact site owners, it may not be as big of a deal as some are making it out to be. In some cases, you may be able to get around this issue with CSS design elements. For example, you could put all of your advertisements towards the bottom of the page and then use CSS design elements to display the ads up towards the top of the page. Because of this, Google will not be able to see where your ads are being displayed unless they manually check the site. This lowers the likelihood that your site will be downgraded in any way due to where the ads are placed on the page. On the other hand, Google has proven itself to be sharp when catching such cheats. If they don’t find you out now, they will and you will most likely pay… just ask scrapers.
This is pretty simple, if you are worried that you have too many ads, read what Google has to say http://insidesearch.blogspot.com/2012/01/page-layout-algorithm-improvement.html. If you see a drop in rankings, I would stop wondering and start eliminating ads from above the fold.