Friday was a busy day at Google AdWords. I reported at Search Engine Land two significant things.
Google has renamed the long standing label of their search ads. For as long as I can remember, the ads in the web search results have been named "sponsored links." In fact, the earliest picture I have taken of an ad on Google was in 2004 and it was named "sponsored links."
Google changed them all over to "ads" as of this Friday. Google tested this for about a month or so and made the switch just before the weekend. Ben Edelman spotted the switch over, since it is so subtle, and let me know.
Google confirmed this, saying:
Yes, I can confirm this rollout. We are always experimenting with the look and feel of our search result pages, including the delivery of relevant advertising. This is on English language domains now and rolling out to all languages and domains.
That is right! Like 3 ads at the top isn't enough, Google is giving searchers the option to see more ads. This currently seems to be a limited test, a reader sent me screen shots.
As you can see, the first set of ads is 3, with an expand link to see eight additional ads:
Clicking on it, pretty much evaporates all the organic listings from the page and let's the paid results rule: