Google’s Search Engineer Matt Cutts spoke last night at SMX Advanced in Seattle, WA, to an eager SEO crowd. He explained that brands worried about optimizing their sites for higher-quality user experiences should balance the number of ads and organic web content above the fold on their unique pages.
Cutts explained that if sites have the same or fewer ads than Google does in its search results, the engine’s top-heavy algorithm won’t be triggered. The discussion came up during the Ask The SEO session, where Cutts participated in a Q&A forum with the crowd.
This insight should come as no surprise to marketers who have payed close attention to search experience optimization (SXO) best practices over the past 12 months. Brafton reported on SurveyMonkey data that found the No. 1 reason search engine users would block websites from view is if they contain too many advertisements above the fold.
Consumers want custom content when they search for information and clickthrough to websites found in SERPs. Using Google results as a model for design, brands can make sure their pages provide visitors with the best possible experience, and hopefully increase conversions.