Ask Jeeves Will Cut Number of Paid Listings on Web Results Pages

Ask Jeeves plans to reduce the number of paid links on a search results page from about ten to two or three.

Both the Financial Times and Search Engine Roundtable have info about this and other changes that should be visible on the AJ site by tomorrow.

Bottom Line:

  • Fewer Paid Links on Results Pages
  • Increasing the Amount of Direct Advertising (Jeeves launched their own sponsored listings progam yesterday)
  • Improving the search function in consumer categories such as concert tickets

Back in April, I posted reducing the number of paid ads on results pages by 31%.

I think today’s news is a win-win for both AJ and web searchers. One of the most frequent complaints I hear from potential AJ users is that the number of paid ads on results pages make web results page busy and downright difficult to navigate and use. Reducing the number of ads on a results page will, if marketed correctly, hopefully get more people to take a look at what AJ has been up to since things began to improve past five years ago. At the same time fewer ads will make the ads that are visible more noticeable to the searcher.

From my April post:

The company’s tests show that a smaller number of ads boosts the frequency with which people use the site and aids user retention. As such, Jeeves expects the change to help lift query volumes and ad revenue later in the year.

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