Originally at https://searchenginewatch.com/2016/05/12/google-ad-4-pack-now-shown-for-23-of-all-online-search-topics/

Brand new research out today reveals that, since Google AdWords removed its right-hand side ads and brought in an occasional fourth paid ad position for ‘highly commercial’ search terms, this fourth ad appears for nearly one-quarter of all search topics.

It’s been an interesting time for search marketers, with lot of early research indicating various different trends and anomalies for the new look SERP.

The major worry is that paid search advertising will become more competitive and that organic results are getting pushed further and further down the page.

Although one of the surprising developments is that having your ad appear in position 4 may lead to as high CTR as position 1.

Today’s research however highlights the need for paid search teams to align their strategies with customer intent.

As well as the headline stat, BrightEdge has discovered the following important takeaways you need to be aware of:

Searches indicating purchase intent are six times more likely than all other searches to display this four-pack of ads.
Searches with discovery intent have a 69% higher click-through-rate (CTR) for the top five search results, as compared to purchase-intent searches.

23% of all search topics have 4-pack ads

What does this all mean?

That customer intent is everything, and that the ‘micro-moments’ that you will have heard Google recommending you pay attention to, should be right at the top of your search strategy.

What are micro-moments?

As Chris Lake mentions in his post on how to optimise for near me search, Google says micro-moments are the “critical touch points within today’s consumer journey, and when added together, they ultimately determine how that journey ends.”

Or…

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