Google penalizes traffic to sites having heavy ad on Above-The-Fold

Google traffic is said to be reduced for the sites having heavy ad on the above the fold as per the changes in the Google page layout algorithms. If visitors need to scroll down to find content, then be sure that this new Google algorithm will surely decrease traffic on your site.

About Page Layout Google Update

The earlier Google panda update use to effect Google search engine rankings for website having high ad to content ratio (i.e. more ads and less content or poor quality content). This led many bloggers to replace their ads and remove low quality content and to generate high content to ad ratio (i.e. more content and less ads). But the new Google panda update, target those sites which have large ads placed on above the fold area, which has high visibility and therefore require no scrolling, hence resulting in high click through rate.

This results in poor user experience as visitors have to search for the content because they are hit by lots of ads and find difficulty in finding content. So the current Google panda update aims to reduce the ads above the fold so that users clicking through search results are landed on good content sites and not in the ads market. In Google’s own word “lot of visible content above-the-fold ” and not just ads.

As ads placed in above the fold results in high CTR, webmasters do prefer to place ads on such sites, so these sites may not be effected, the only sites which would be affected are site having excessive ads on above the fold and less content (or difficulty in finding content).

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How to check whether your site is Ad-heavy or not

Google suggests to use tools such as Browser size tool and many different tools to check your website in different screen resolutions and to check how your site space is used and how ads dominate your site.

This is the example of how this tool works…..(click on image to see enlarged view)

Google Browse Tool

click to enlarge

Is it Difficult to understand…???

I’ll explain it to you, as you can see, there are many different colourful contours marked with different percentage’s, this what actually need to be understood, suppose for instance- 90% contour means that 90% of the people visiting Google have their browser window open to at least this size or larger. One more thing to note is that these are¬†client area sizes, not browser window sizes (so they are without the title bar, toolbars, status bars), which means the screen area visible will actually be smaller.

Testing your site with such tools will actually make you realize that how ads occupy important areas of your site which is seen by large percentage of people lading on your site. So next time you are about to do some changes in your website, do keep this concept in your mind.

JavaScript, ASP.Net & PHP Web Developer. Connect with me on Facebook and Twitter.

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