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BizReport : Advertising archives : January 20, 2012


Google takes aim at sites that are 'top heavy' with ads

If your webpages contain too much advertising above the fold then Google will now start to penalize you in search results.

by Helen Leggatt

Some website owners feel the need to cram all their advertising on to the tops of webpages. This means anyone who visits the page has to scroll down past the ads to find the content they were seeking.

Following complaints from users about these "top heavy" pages Google has launched new algorithms that determine "what are the things that really matter, how much content is above the fold".

So, if your webpage layout is top-heavy with ads your ranking could be penalized.

"We understand that placing ads above-the-fold is quite common for many websites; these ads often perform well and help publishers monetize online content. This algorithmic change does not affect sites who place ads above-the-fold to a normal degree, but affects sites that go much further to load the top of the page with ads to an excessive degree or that make it hard to find the actual original content on the page," explains Google's head of webspam, Matt Cutts, on the company blog.

"This new algorithmic improvement tends to impact sites where there is only a small amount of visible content above-the-fold or relevant content is persistently pushed down by large blocks of ads."






Tags: above the fold, algorithm, online advertising, page layout, search engine, website design








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