WebmasterWorld members have gotten into a heated discussion about whether Google is manipulating organic search results to increase ad revenue. The idea is that they're making a lot of money when the organic results are irrelevant, according to forum members.
While Google says that organic ads do not have any correlation to paid ads, forum members contest that this may not be true.
I am thinking that there IS a strategy to the madness and to me it seems that whatever they have in their Ad inventory IS effecting the SERP's. If you can't find what you are looking for on the first pages you are more likely to click on one of their ads, because the ads sure seems to be accurate!
However, not all members feel that this is the case. These observations may not be intention on Google's part. Other reasons discounting the original claim include the following:
- They don't have to, SEOs do it for the sake of AdSense, affiliate and other such programs
- They must not do so, otherwise the first semi-official insider comment on this would be the end of their public company
- They can't do it because their infrastructure doesn't allow them to do so
- They don't really wanna do it, because it'd hurt those who work at Google.
The debate is rather heated with many members taking extreme (and not so extreme) stances on this idea. What are your thoughts?
Forum discussion continues at WebmasterWorld.