Organic Real Estate is Shrinking

Someone recommended this article to me the other day: The Death of Organic Search and while I agree with the facts in this article, that indeed the space allocated to organic search results on Google are shrinking, I think the primary question is if Google search results are mow more relevant or less relevant than before. I think the fact that Google (well…their algorithm) does a great job of determining your search intent and provides more relevant results based on your intent is a GOOD thing – not a BAD thing. As a search user, I prefer Google for that reason – I find what I’m looking for fast. And I also often click on ads when I’m shopping online or looking for something specific or not so ordinary which might be hard to find in the organic results. For example, recently I was looking for a gopher trap to get rid of some gophers that had already killed one of my beautiful Navel Orange trees. When I searched for “gopher traps” on Google I got wealth of information – and some of the information was in the paid ads, pricing, varieties of traps etc.

Gopher Trap SearchIn case you didn’t notice, one of the “Shop for” results is an art print of a dead gopher at Art.com – gross! But maybe if you are a pest control company you might want a framed dead gopher picture in your office… I don’t know. That’s not my style. Anyway, the end of the story is that I did happen to find an amazing gopher trap called a “Black Hole” and it’s been effective 75% of the time. Just wanted to add that little tip in case anyone reading this has a gopher problem.

But let’s look at another example – one that is covered in the above article – and that is the new “carousel”. If we do a search for “things to do in San Diego” we get the carousel – and frankly I think it’s pretty awesome and very relevant to what I’m searching for. If I’m visiting San Diego and want to easily find the local attractions – well, I can just Google it and get these great results. Things to Do in San Diego

I know, I could go to Zagats or Trip Advisor and search there too… but I personally like the Google search results better. In this example, I might want to check out the Organic Listing for “50 Free Summer Things to Do in San Diego” instead of clicking on something in the carousel, but I like having all those choices.

And then if Google realizes that am just searching for information, I am served a really great listing of information in the sidebar. Here’s an example of the results for “John Adams”.

John Adams Search Result
So what does this mean for you? If you are a nonprofit, you should make sure that you have a really well laid out Google Plus Page so that you can be listed prominently in the right side bar. And you also should make sure you get a Google grant so you can have relevant ads that will enable you to reach new donors, volunteers, and also help you educate the public about your cause.