A recent article by Aaron Harris has sparked a lot concern and controversy lately over Google’s organic results on the SERPs. It claims that only 13% of Google’s SERPs are dedicated to showing organic results. This information has a lot of uniformed SEO’s and marketers going crazy.
The problem with this lies in the way they calculated their findings. The page was only calculated with what was shown above the fold on a 13in MacBook Air, not the entire page. The way he breaks up the content on the page isn’t exactly a science either, more so it is a bad assumption.
Even Search Engine Land has added their two cents on the issue, citing “if you measure the page not by pixel count but by actual listings, the situation is brighter than some of the “death of organic listings” proponents might think.” They also go on to say later in the article that if we look at the total number of listings, and not the pixel count, we find that the “Total paid versus unpaid: 70% to 30%” and “Paid versus unpaid, middle column: 50% to 50%.” These numbers are again counting the listings “above the fold” and not the entire page.
When I ran the same search on my 11 inch Chromebook here in Chicago, I found that there were 6 ads and 4 organic listings above the fold, making this a 60/40 spit between paid and organic results respectively. When we consider the entire page, we find that there are 11 ads and 18 organic listings, meaning that we are seeing close to 62% organic listings, and only about 38% paid listings. This is painting a completely different picture.
So, you can now make the decision to fear Google and believe that it is trying to kill organic and useful listings, or you can be a grown up and realize that you are just consuming garbage information without researching it for yourself. What will it be?