Many of you have been searching on Google for a specific product when you look at the right column where the sponsored results are only to see a new method for advertising. Rather than show strictly text ads, the first three sponsored results have been transformed into picture advertisements. The only text is below the image, and it states the products price and the website it is sold on.
This feature of AdWords, called Product Listing Ads, is still in its Beta form and is currently available to a select few advertisers. The requirements to qualify for this Google beta platform is to have a Google affiliate merchant account network. This costs $1,000 and there is a $500 monthly fee to keep your advertisements showing. The websites also receive a commission of your sales. Does it seem like Google is taking over affiliate marketing? YES IT DOES!
This is a horrific thing for affiliate advertisers. How can you compete with Google? That makes tons of affiliate marketers rethink their strategy of generating revenue via the World Wide Web.
Another new change to Google is the localized searches have begun to implement AdWords. There is a blue pushpin signalizing that this is a paid localized search result. This does help make it convenient to differentiate those rankings that are organic and those that are paid. Hopefully, this feature will not removed, but knowing Google it likely will be in the near future when testing has been completed. This means people can outbid your natural search rankings for geographically targeted search terms. This just shows that Google is looking for new ways and opportunities to remove the organic listings and start reaping the benefits of paid or sponsored results advertising.