Ash Nallawalla's blog

Google does not want to be in the SEM business

Recently I blogged that Google is an SEO agency because its purchase of DoubleClick also included the latter’s SEO service, Performics.

Tom Phillips, Director, DoubleClick Integration has announced in the official Google blog that Performics Search Marketing will be sold. He said,

It’s clear to us that we do not want to be in the search engine marketing business. Maintaining objectivity in both search and advertising is paramount to Google’s mission and core to the trust we ask from our users. For this reason, we plan to sell the Performics search marketing business to a third party.

What? The company that hijacked the term “search engine marketing” (SEM) and coyly restricted its meaning to what the rest of us know as “pay-per-click” (PPC) advertising is getting out of SEM?

Actually, no. There is no need to dump your GOOG stock. I think Tom meant “search marketing” the first time, as he said in the next breath. He was, of course, referring to Performics – its SEO arm. I don’t think anyone is surprised that Google couldn’t be in the PPC business and the SEO business. At least the Performics staff have a sporting chance of having a job when someone buys this arm, unlike the 300 DoubleClickers who are being laid off. Perhaps they can still have Google on their resumes.

Added: Link to Matt Cutts’ post about this.

Ash Nallawalla

Search strategist experienced in large, complex websites. Ash's Google+ profile

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