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Google To Prioritize AI Overviews Ads Over Organic Search

Speakers at Google's Marketing Live demonstrated how AI Overviews will trigger multimedia shopping ads that push organic search out of view

AI Overviews Ads

Speakers at Google’s Marketing Live event demonstrated how they will utilize user search queries and AI Overviews content to show interactive shopping ads that will push organic search results even lower, stating that Google is “focused on opening up new opportunities for your business.

We like to think of the Google Search engineers as in charge of the search results, but as the DOJ anti-trust trial revealed, the engineers are increasingly just co-contributors to the SERPs, with other teams in Advertising and layers of Business SVPs also contributing and making decisions about what those SERPs ultimately look like. I suspect that if the search team had their way the SERPs would look different from what they’ve become.

Google: We’re Not Just Building A Better Search Engine

The first speaker, Philipp Schindler, SVP & Chief Business Officer at Google, said out loud what Googlers normally don’t when he said that the purpose of search results is to show advertising.

He made the remark in the context of a new AI video tool that will help YouTube creators make more content.

At the 18:19 minute mark of the event, Schindler boasted:

“We’ve been collaborating with some really talented film makers, musicians and artists, and the results have been simply incredible. Soon we’ll bring video to shorts, opening up a whole new world of creative possibilities for you and your brands. Just imagine every creator with the power of AI in their pocket.

So what does all of this mean for you? More creators creating more quality content attracts more viewers, which means more reach, engagement and ROI for you. We’re not just building a better search engine or a better YouTube. We’re focused on opening up new opportunities for your business.”

Screenshot Of Google Marketing Event

The statement that Google is using AI Overviews and Search to build reach and ROI for advertisers is not the only one. The next two speakers made the same point.

Search And Shopping Ads In AI Overviews

The next speaker was Vidhya Srinivasan, VP/GM, Advertising at Google. She begins by describing how search experiences will drive traffic to websites. Then quickly switches gear to show how interactive advertising will push organic search listings literally beyond the view of users who are making the search queries.

At the 30 minute mark of the video, Srinivasan explained:

“AI overviews will appear in search results when they are particularly helpful beyond what search offers today. As we continue to test and evolve the search experience, we are going to stay super focused on sending valuable traffic to publishers and creators. But then, more avenues for user exploration leads to more choice and more choice leads to more opportunities for advertisers.

You may have noticed that we already show ads above and below AI overviews. These ads are matched to the user’s search query. We will now start testing, Search and Shopping ads ads in AI overviews for users in the US.

What is also new with this is we are going to match these ads not just to the query context, but also to the information within the AI Overviews. And, as always, ads will be clearly labeled.”

1. AI Overviews – No Organic Listings

2. Scroll Down For Shopping Ads

She next went on to describe an example of wrinkled clothes while traveling and turning to Google Search to find ways to prevent the wrinkles. She shows a search activity for travel hacks and shows how organic search results are pushed beneath the AI Overviews feature and new Search and Shopping ads that contain product images and pop out far more than any search results do.

She explained how the new AI Overviews shopping ads will be there to convert searchers:

“With the AI overview, I quickly found some common travel hacks that sounded promising. As I browsed the many options that showed up, I found a really nice fix, a wrinkle release spray that I’d never heard of before. So perfect. I want to try that.

Now, with this feature, I can just click on this ad right away, right there, and buy it.

So as you can see, we’re just making it easier and faster for consumers so that they can take action right away. So this is just one example of how we are using Gen AI. There are many more, and we’re going to start with more applications in search ads.”

3. Targeted Ads Based On AI Overviews

Google Search Is The Bait

Google search engineers are using the most advanced technology and data to create the most useful search results of any time in Google’s history, this is the best it’s ever been. But according to the people who are really in charge at Google, the purpose of Search is not “to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful” but to build more “reach, engagement and ROI” for advertisers. Sam Altman was right to call what Google is doing dystopian.

SEOs Were Social Engineered

Social engineering is the management of people’s behavior in order to get them to perform a certain way.  Google encouraged a significant portion of the web ecosystem to buy into into concepts like Core Web Vitals (CWV) and also Experience, Expertise, Authoritativeness and Trustworthiness (EEAT) in order to rank in Google and satisfy users. A lot of time, effort and money was spent to upgrade websites and that was all managed by Google.

But to what purpose? Was it all in service of “opening up new opportunities” advertisers?

It’s not the fault of the Googlers who put their hearts into perfecting search. They do an outstanding job. But it’s clear that Google’s mission may no longer be to make information accessible and useful. If we take what said at this conference at face value, it appears that it may have all been in the service of building more reach and ROI for advertisers.

Watch the Google Marketing Live Keynote 2024

Featured Image by Shutterstock/pikselstock

SEJ STAFF Roger Montti Owner - at

I have 25 years hands-on experience in SEO and have kept on  top of the evolution of search every step ...

Google To Prioritize AI Overviews Ads Over Organic Search

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