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Monday, April 15, 2024

Are You Putting Web Search Results at Risk with Paid Advertising?

If you bid on keywords for a term or phrase that you rank well for in a search engine, might your organic result be filtered in some instances, when your ad appears on the same page?

A newly granted Microsoft patent is the first I recall seeing which discusses such a possible interaction based upon the appearance of paid listings and Web search listings for the same page (URL) on a single search engine results page. The patent, Systems and methods for removing duplicate search engine results, explores filtering organic results when there’s more than one URL pointing to the same page (i.e., http://www.example.com, http://www.example.com/home.html) on a search results page. It adds the possibility of removing a Web search listing from a search results page when there’s also a paid listing pointing to the same page.

Keep in mind that just because there’s a patent for this process doesn’t mean that it is happening. I described some aspects of this process in more detail at SEO by the Sea, but I wanted to put this question out there for the Search Engine Land community. I know I’ve seen results pages that show an ad for a page, and a Web search result for the same page. Have you seen any instances where a Web result might have been filtered out because of an ad for the same page?

Opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land. Staff authors are listed here.

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