It's no secret Google is constantly tweaking & testing its search product, but is the 5-result SERP pictured below the future? And to what end goal - quality or cash?
Just over two months ago, Google unveiled the 7-result SERP
to concerns about the diversity of results being shown.
In the instance from earlier today I took a screen shot of, I'm likely just a lab rat. There are lots of tests being run at any given time, with its team meticulously measuring the results from Google's Mountain View HQ
They've said many of their tests never see mainstream release, although, Google's new layout for search results
announced Tuesday was something the team here at 352 Media began to get occasionally a month or so ago. (Update: Analysis of that layout change
My main question to this test, though, is what's the motivation? Is the hypothesis being tested that 5 organic listings and 4 ads will provide the searcher with a better experience, or Google with more ad clicks?
For the record, I neither found what I was looking for nor clicked an ad. So, if you can remember a story from the last year or so about a stink created when a car giveaway ended with the contest organizer winning, let me know in the comments.