Relevant content in organic search results distracts people from clicking on sponsored search advertisements.
— Bill Slawski (@bill_slawski) July 11, 2014
I know that’s a really long title for this post, but I wanted to get to the point with the headline. We all want to know the real reason why Google removed Google Authorship Photos from the search results, right?
I wrote in my post about Google removing Google Authorship photos that John Mueller from Google responded with a reason. Now, I understand a little bit more about his statement to me. John said it is all based on CTR behavior:
Our experiments indicate that click-through behavior on this new less-cluttered design is similar to the previous one…
Well, uh, yeah. I know really understand. It’s really about the Click-Thru behavior on a less-cluttered design.
When there are less photos in the search results pages, then users click more on Google AdWords ads. It’s all about the money. And while Google won’t come out and publicly state this is the reason (I wouldn’t do that if I were them), I truly believe that by putting the Google Authorship photos in the search results they made less money with Google AdWords.
It’s all about the money.
Those of us who routinely had their photo show up in the search results benefited from increased clicks to our websites and the awesome content that we write. But Google doesn’t care about that. They’re in it to make money. And by removing the Google Authorship photos from the search results, it’s a less cluttered design, and Google’s internal tests showed them that they make more without Google Authorship photos.
Remember, Google is a public company. They have shareholders to report to. And Google is going to make changes to their search results that benefits their bottom line.
Well, that’s not enough? Larry Kim, in a LinkedIn post, has proof that the removal of Google Authorship photos “was based on authorship photos’ impact on the CTR of paid search ads…”. Mr. Kim “examined the CTR of the ad above both before and after Google’s announcement. We found hard evidence that the CTR of the ad improved significantly when author photos were no longer being displayed in the SERP.”