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Is Google Testing Out Ads on their Main Page?

Screenshot of my Google home page:

Even when I sign out, the SEO Webposition ad is still there:

But, I asked around and my co-workers aren’t seeing it on their home pages.  And apparently it’s browser-specific to Google Chrome, because the ads don’t show up in Mozilla Firefox or Internet Explorer.

Personally, I seriously dislike it.  Google used to have such a nice clean interface; I applauded their spare, utilitarian design.  They’ve been adding more and more links to the main page, which I still find bothersome but I figure is mildly useful for others.

But advertising on the Google main page?  Really?  Even if it’s for Google products and features, this ad is garish and shrieks, “Girls! Girls! Girls!”

What’s worse is that I wasn’t sure if it was actually an ad, so I clicked on it just to check it out, not because I was interested.  Which means the Google split testers are thinking, “Hey, people are liking the main page ads.  Funny how they’re not converting.”

What do you guys think?

 

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Discussion

3 thoughts on “Is Google Testing Out Ads on their Main Page?

  1. Nice meeting you last night at the #SMCDallas movie event.
    I don’t see this when I bring up Google – I see a John Lennon 70th birthday Google graphic and no ads. And I had to log out of Google to see that since I have a custom Google homepage.
    I hope you didn’t get redirected by spyware or something (not trying to make you paranoid).

    Posted by Mitch Todd | October 8, 2010, 12:25 pm
    • And I’m using Chrome, too.

      Posted by Mitch Todd | October 8, 2010, 12:25 pm
      • That’s a good point, Mitch, except I think it would be really unlikely that spyware would put up Google ads, and not their own ads. Since they are Google ads, it must be Google who posted them. (I’ve got the John Lennon graphic as well now). Given that my co-workers aren’t getting the ads on their Chrome browsers, I assumed Google is split testing something.
        It was great meeting you too! I’ll see you at the next SMC Dallas event.

        Posted by Shilpa Nicodemus | October 8, 2010, 3:25 pm

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