unhappy young woman writes a message on the phoneIf you needed more incentive to invest in paid search on Google, here it is.  Organic search continues to decline as the “natural” listings are increasingly pushed down the page by paid listings.

In the latest research from Merkle, organic visits – which had grown over 50% last year – were down 7.7% this year.  That means it’s getting harder to get clicks from organic search even if you’re doing everything right with SEO.

SELF-DEFINED:  Merkle is a global data-driven, technology-enabled performance marketing agency and the largest independent agency in the US for CRM, digital, and search.

Organic Search is facing tougher competition, especially in the mobile arena where only a handful of listing will show on the first screen behind the paid listings.  Phone and tablets now account for 53% of all paid search click (2Q 2016), up 12% from a year ago, so the adoption of mobile searches has had a profoundly negative impact on organic search.

Google is still the King for organic search

Google produced 86% of all organic search visits in the US and 90% of mobile organic search visits, according to the Merkle study.

FB Ads
SOURCE:  Merkle Q2 2016 Reporter

Facebook ad revenue is growing dramatically, but on average brands saw fewer results from social media.  On average, brands saw social media contribute just 3% of site visits.

SOURCE:  Merkle Q2 2016 Report


For advertisers investing in Facebook since Q2 of last year, investment increased 121% Y/Y, the strongest growth rate we have seen since we began studying Facebook in this report. Over the past year, brands both expanded investment through long runningFacebook advertising campaigns and branched out to test new partners and ad formats, such as Dynamic Product Ads. – Merkle Q2 2016 Report