UPDATED NEWSFLASH: Google is Now a Personalized Ad Agency First, Search Engine Second

Have you ever wondered why Google has been collecting so much information on each one of us and storing it? Well, I’m about to share with you what I believe to be happening.

Google is now a personalized ad agency, so searchers need not count on receiving helpful information for many of your queries anymore, but rather short popup ads that Google has amassed from numerous websites that pay them to display their ads… and it wouldn’t surprise me if they also get paid when/if you click on those ads too.

screen print of Google search for "teen acne"

It truly looks to me though Google’s primary concerned is no longer to provide their users with a search engine only, as I’m betting that marketing to each one of us with products Google gets paid to present to us with, will soon be their primary source of income.

For those of you with eCommerce websites and online stores, Google is now YOUR #1 competitor in search results. It seems that some pros believe that Google is threatening to turn eCommerce websites into mere suppliers by forcing the owners to compete on price alone. Apparently, Google is even handing the payment process for a lot of items purchased from their ads found in search results.

Will this method even truly offer us with the best prices for these products?

Probably not.

Especially considering the many online shops that cannot afford to cross the Google hand with silver. And, thus their products will NOT appear in those Google popup ads.

Ever wonder why Google started ranking sites really low in SERPs (search engine results pages) that only offered items for sale with a brief description?

Well once again, now you can guess, right?

Too much competition, plain and simple.

Google has been professing that more information is necessary if those types of websites want to rank well in SERPs anymore, while claiming that offering their users more information is most important.

LOL, right.

Once upon a time, Google never ranked paid for ads in the SERPs. Then they started offering the first 2 or 3 search results with paid advertising and NOW… now they offer 3 or more paid for ads.

It looks though soon Google’s page one will be entirely paid for advertising.

So, if you are a researching looking for information you will need to find a solution to this dilemma, right?

Even Sartpage.com, a search engine that blocks Google from monitoring your search history, BUT even they still provide those top 3 or more paid for ads in the SERPs delivered from Google… though the popout ads, thankfully, do not appear.

screen print of StartPage.com search results for "teen acne"

Now let’s take a look at Bing, a search engine owned by Microsoft.

Yup, there’s those popout ads Google displays, though Bing has them top and center of their SERPs. This way, their searchers cannot miss them, though they only display the one row of ads in their search results for the same search I did in Google.

screen print of Bing search results for "teen acne"

Then there is Yahoo’s search engine that is owned by Verizon Media. And, this search engine also offers the same sort of popout ad that Google displays… though, so far only one product… and, no paid advertising in the SERPs.

Yahoo search results for "teen acne"

Don’t know about you but this looks to me like we need a new Alta Vista team who can come onstream and provide a REAL search engine that is not influenced by the almighty dollar, but rather provide truly honest to goodness information when searchers are seeking information only.

Note that I did NOT use the keyword “buy” in my test searches shown in my screen prints here.

I first noticed this type of pushing for buying products on users searching for help with Google while doing research during a writing phase where I needed studies to refer to, and I have to admit this does concern me a lot.

Google has become a monster, and we have allowed this monster to start pushing their agenda on to us… the seekers of information.

Have you tried Google searching for software assistance lately? Those hidden gems are still hidden and many times I have to seek another search engine to simply find the necessary help in resolving a software issue.

Back in the Alta Vista days, when searching for a term, the results were displayed accordingly. If the keyword was only mentioned once in an article, then it might be ranked lower than a website with a focus around the keyword that provided lots of information.

It was back in 2011, when trying to discover what could be possibly eating my impatiens that I found myself literally Google searching over the course of six months, off and on, before I FINALLY found one tiny little forum post written by a Douglas Allen who was able to prove to me what was eating MY impatiens. [If you want to know more about that topic, you’ll need to click the preceding link.]

In the days of Alta Vista, that forum post would have been displayed on page one of their search results within my first few searches the first time that I sought help, I’m sure of it.

Over the years now, I have noticed more and more sites that want to rank well must cross the palms of search engine companies in order to even rank on page one in SERPs.

For businesses with big budgets this is all well and fine, but what about other smaller businesses who turned to the internet in hopes of making the marketing playing field a bit more equal?

It truly looks like that playing field has become even smaller given that many search engines are now becoming personalized marketers first, and real search engines second.

Soon enough we could end up with more levels on the internet developing. One level where most lazy users will go (using Google, because most devices come with Google installed by default), and one for those who want REAL and honest information.
screen print of Dark web explained

Then of course, there will always be the dark web which NONE of us… well, most of us… will never venture.

Now, off to check out the DuckDuckGo.com search engine, and as you can see in the screen print below here, their paid for advertisers are off to the side of their search results.

Personally, THIS makes DuckDuckGo the NEW and better search engine for those of us seeking REAL information.

screen print of DuckDuckGo search results for "teen acne"

And, this is search engine that is NOT omitting many harmless websites from appearing in their search results like several of the other search engines are now doing.

Founder of DuckDuckGo, Gabriel Weinberg apparently decided to challenge Google, and I for one am very GLAD he did. It is being said that DuckDuckGo does NOT track their searchers… and, they are NOT into pushing sales related to your search phrases… yet. (Notice that I’m trying to stay impartial here.)

Google tracks you. We don't. Search better at DuckDuckGo. com
DuckDuckGo takes aim at Google’s privacy practices. (photo credit: Courtesy DuckDuckGo.com)

For those of you who are about to tell me that you can use Google incognito, as Weinberg explains, “Incognito is a complete myth. It doesn’t stop anyone from tracking you.”

Weinberg also states that “We make money the same way other search engines make money. When you type in “car,” you get a car ad. We syndicate Microsoft and Yahoo ads through the Microsoft Yahoo Search Alliance.”

Yet, all of my searches using DuckDuckGo have NEVER had popout adds pushed at me in their search results.

Google’s move toward being a personalized ad agency now makes me even more reluctant to use their search engine when seeking medical studies as soon I’m sure I’ll have all sorts of medical equipment and procedures offered to me instead of the studies I am seeking.

Guess what Google, not all searching for information is for my own personal use… Daaaah!

Here’s more proof that Google is no longer looking to help their users: Google treats their employees as poorly as many other industries across North America.

Okay… I’m off my soapbox once again.

Google is Hogging Half Your Traffic: How to Get It Back [webinar by SEMrush replay]

Want your say? Then please leave me a comment below.

And, if you don’t believe me, check this REAL newspaper story out that was published 20 Oct 2020, How does Google’s monopoly hurt you?

Please, do remember that my post explaining this very thing to you, was published over a year ago now.

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Header Image: by Carol M. Highsmith [Public domain] – Snake-oil Salesman

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Given my passion for genealogy, is it any wonder that I eventually wanted to publish my work? Learning to use a personal computer was a natural step once I was introduced it in the 1990s. Then the internet offered a second means to "publish" and now, here I am with a personal blog.

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