Will Google Organic Rankings stay "Organic"?

In today’s Advertising Age’s “Digital” section, Nat Ives wrote an article about the huge media companies whining to google about not having leverage over organic search engine rankings. It’s an interesting article and despite my background in advertising, I definitely don’t agree with their side of the argument.

Here’s the article. My comments are posted on the Ad Age website and below. What do you think?

Very insightful article. Since I’m on the website development side of business, my opinion might contrast with folks from the pure advertising side. I understand why the “Giants” want more leverage and pull with Google in regards to organic rankings, I’m not all that sympathetic. Here’s why. I too have to spent money too for google adwords. I don’t have nearly the purchasing power that the huge conglomerates do to even secure top ad positions with google. That’s fine with me. It’s business. But organic rankings are not supposed to be influenced by the allure of ad dollars. Organic rankings give us small potatoes companies the opportunity to gain visibility in the big pool. I don’t agree with under-handed tactics to achieve artificially high rankings either, but I don’t see anything wrong with google having a proprietary system that powers their indexing – and not sharing it.

If google offers points or favors to the big ad spenders, what does that leave the rest of us? If it’s paid advertising, the $ should determine positioning and visibility. If it’s “free”, we should all play by the same rules. –Finksburg, MD

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