Dave Naylor did a post yesterday regarding the expansion of the favicon testing in the UK, something which has been getting increased coverage over the last couple of weeks. This doesn’t appear to be widespread testing, certainly on all the accounts I tried it on, there was little or no usage of the new ‘branding features’
Source: Dave Naylor
Testing of the ads was first reported on Search Engine Land highlighting testing in Poland and Germany, however recent observations have been reported in the US and the UK suggesting a much broader test.
Given the recent ‘Vince update’, one can’t be suprised with the increased focus on brand within the search results, particularly given the recent ‘improvements’ to the search pages – in particular the increased snippet lengths rolled out last week. I would suggest the increased snippet lengths, the reduced organic search results and the incorporation of blended search must be dragging eyefall (and subsequent CTR) away from paid sources, thus the incorporation of such a visual component can only have a positive impact on CTR for paid search ads.
Other articles on the Google Adwords favicon testing
Dave Naylor – Online Bingo ads in Google
Search Engine Land – Google expands Adwords fav icon test
Kerstin Baker-Ash – Google uses new partner icons in paid search results