Why do some AdWords ads appear on top of the organic listing and not in the right-hand column?
So Google can make more money, of course.
How do you get your ads to appear on ‘top’? There is no guaranteed path, but here are the relevant facts.
- There will not be top slots available for all keywords. Google decides which searches will display any top-listed ads. They also decide if there are 1, 2, or 3 slots available.
- There is a minimum bid to get positioned on top. Of course it’s a secret. If you’re already at #1 on the right and want to force your way to the top, raise your bid – it may or may not work, Google will almost certainly get more money in either case, but at least you’ll find out.
- If your bid is above the minimum required to be on top, but your ad rank (bid x quality score) your ad may ‘jump over’ other advertisers who had a higher ad rank but a lower bid. This jump will put your ad on top, while your competitors stay on the right.
There are significantly higher click-through rates seen by ads that make it to the top, above even those ranked #1 on the right. I’ve heard estimates as high as 3x-4x.