Online marketing analysts have revealed that search engine giant Google is currently testing a new feature which directs the attention of the user to certain brands or services, depending on the query in question.
The tests were uncovered on the Search Engine Land website, where news editor Barry Schwartz said that some readers had found that while searching for products – often electronics such as digital cameras or laptops – had noticed boxes containing “brands for” recommendations in the search results, which mentioned leading manufacturers.
The inclusion of a phone number among these recommendations makes the new experimental feature ideal for people searching Google on their iPhones or other internet-enabled mobile devices.
Mr Schwartz suggested that such a feature on Google would be of great help for large companies seeking to extend their online marketing, giving them “more exposure in the Google search results than possibly ever before.”
When contacted, Google admitted that “We’re currently testing a feature with a small number of advertisers in which a phone number can be included within the ad to help them more effectively engage with customers who prefer to connect over the phone.”
Mr Schwartz went on to suggest that companies wishing to take advantage of the new Google feature would have to work out how they could get their company name in the recommendation boxes.
He asked: “Are they reserved for only large brands? If so, what is the rational behind Google testing this feature?”
For its part, the search engine has been doing its best to keep business customers informed about the latest advances in online marketing, via its new site Ad Innovations.