Online Advertising Fallacy About Search Engines

In 2015 Google had 66% of the market share compared to Bings 33%. And publishers were worried that search advertising was cutting into their display advertising revenue. Most of which was going to Google, the search engine.

I feel this is a fallacy. Most searches are for information and reference purposes. Using a search engine is a pro active activity. And the final destination is a publishers website. And Google doesn’t own any publisher website. Bing on the other hand has a portal called MSN. So Bing takes 33% of search ads but also a chunk of display advertising as well on its portal. Both companies also have publishers who work with them, where you will see display ads sold by Google and Bing.  Any publisher can be part of these networks. Except major publishing corporations with many websites, like Hearst Corporation, focus on selling ads on their own websites, paying no split to Google and Bing. Though it might also make a lesser type of revenue, that it splits with Google and Bing. The point is that pro active searches take you directly to publisher websites.

Both Google and Bing search engines have requirements of websites in order to prioritize their listing on searching results. These requirements call for a specialist in search engine optimization except that large publishers benefit from there(sic) innate size and quality control, that die hard SEO is mostly practiced by individual websites and smaller publishers that compete with these behemoths.

Google and Bing search ads are direct buy ads that take the shopper to a retail page. Internet users looking for general information would choose a publisher website not click a retail ad. An internet user looking for information will eschew clicking a search ad in favor of an organic search result.

The online video ad market is also taking off. The biggest website is YouTube because a lot of people watch short clips on this website that has more viral and user generated content than it does scripted shows.

Verizon’s purchase of Yahoo will give it another portal, alongside AOL.com and even MSN.com that it sells ads for. It wants to use these three portals to send readers directly to AOL’s websites, like the Huffington Post and Men’s Health (sic). AOL’s content is said to attract more men than women, even counting the ‘HuffPo’, and there’s no reason to believe it will change with the addition of Yahoo’s USA portal, if it didn’t with the purchase of ‘HuffPo’.

A couple of recent developments point to how some publishers have found open waters in this competitive landscape. Some publishers have taken to augmenting their display ad revenue with ‘content sales’ articles (articles that lead you to buy something) and this is in direct competition to search ads. Except a shopper might have already clicked on a search ad and be put off by a ‘content sales’ article if they are looking for real information.

Mighty independent publishers like the New York Times and Wall Street Journal have gone back to focusing on producing information rich articles instead of trying to compete with search ads. These independent publishers want, not shoppers, but content seekers and seekers of practical information.

Shopping is an activity not a type of reader. The fallacy lead many other publishers like the New York Times and Wall Street Journal to be a mall at the same time as a newspaper.

Update:

Affiliate sales bloggers are housewife types who supplement their purchase by writing about the products usage at home. That is its power and it has proven not to translate successfully if you use ‘Kate in a dress’ other than as a substitute for a display ad of the retailer but not as a competitor of search ads.  Unfortunately the affiliate sale commission off that ‘content sales’ article is less than the ad rate of a display ad.