(Updated post: See below) I’m always looking at various markets and places to earn good money online and what better niche than mortgages (perhaps refinancing is still better), but imagine my surprise when I started searching various mortgage related terms only to be greeted by Google comparison ads like these:
I searched these terms on another computer that’s on a different network and didn’t see the above results which tells me Google is probably just testing them right now. But either way the signal is clear – Google is effectively cashing in on the lucrative mortgage lead generation business but claiming the top search result and cutting deep into the businesses and websites that are built up around these keywords. Yes they’ve entered the market via sponsored results, but look at how much these don’t look like ads. I guarantee the CTR on these Google mortgage ad search terms are much higher than typical ads.
As far as I can tell the only space they’re doing this in right now is related to mortgages. Look at this url:
I don’t own any websites that compete in this space but this certainly makes it a less attractive market to go after. My prediction is that Google is going to continue doing more of this where the information being searched for isn’t overly complex. i.e. it’s pretty clear what someone is looking for when they search “mortgage calculator” so why not just give it to them courtesy of Google?
The lesson I see here is that the more unique and difficult to replicate your content is the lower the chance that Google will horn in on your business.
What do you think about this? Anyone else seeing the same results I am?
Update: Well, serves me right for trying to break SEO news when I’m not an SEO blogger: Turns out this was already announced back in October 09. Thanks Jonathan!
I believe my lesson still stands though: If your content is unique and difficult to easily replicate by Google then there is little chance they’ll horn in on your business