Google Demotes Official Chrome Landing Page in Search Results

Chrome_new_logoGoogle has managed to shoot itself in the foot thanks to someone in the company thinking that it was a great idea to have paid posts for Chrome. Google has aggressively promoted its browser Chrome, across television, print and internet media. A recent look at the search query “this post is sponsored by Google Chrome” gives thousands of results.

This lead to questions about the practice of Google Chrome was buying links from bloggers to promote the landing page to download Chrome with a link. This practice is discouraged by Google itself.

Ideally the paid link should have had the NoFollow tag that indicates to Google it was a paid link.

Matt Cutts the head of Google web spam team, put out a post explaining the action Google would be taking. In a quote, Cutts explains the action that Google Web Spam team will take against paid links by Google Chrome.

In response, the webspam team has taken manual action to demote for at least 60 days..

If you now search for the query ‘Browser’ or ‘Chrome’ the landing page for Chrome does not show up in the first few results at all. I decided to check the best query for the landing page to show up first which was ‘Download Google Chrome’.


Yes, even if Google has demoted a link to their landing page, they have promoted with an sponsored link.

Will it have an impact on Chrome?

No. Chrome is already a very popular browser and it might have a small impact on the number of downloads. Anyways if the download link still shows up as a sponsored link so that might not really impact its downloads.

This will probably add to the confusion over how and when one should use nofollow tags on links.

On the other hand, I am glad to see Google own up to its mistake and be transparent about what has happened instead for trying to cover up (which usually end up in further embarrassments).

What are your views on Google Chrome’s landing page getting demoted? Do drop in your comments.


Imran Soudagar January 5, 2012

Google’s best quality is its transparency in everything. If they wanted then they would have covered up the issue but they did not. This show Google’s dedication to its users. This is what I like about Google.

Ricky January 5, 2012

This reminds me of same practice followed by Godaddy(which was exposed by Yoast few weeks back), where they insert the link in the footer.
This should not affect the business much since Google chrome has already got enough fame.

Mohul January 5, 2012

Scintillating story! Yes, Google had hired a third party marketing company (strange!) to promote its Chrome download.. several mom-n-pop bloggers were contacted to place contextual links on their blogs.. google shot its own leg.. reminds me of the story of, when their colleagues in Japan did the same thing, and guess what.. was dropped from ranking! Thanks for the share, Aditya.. as always, you were brilliant 🙂 for more info:

Eric January 5, 2012

Nice move but they are a bit late…it has absolutely no value now, when Chrome is very popular browser. They just showed that they don’t play this game by their own rules.

Aditya Kane January 5, 2012

@Eric: I agree the move came a bit late and was in response to a blog post. But I doubt these paid posts really got a lot of traffic or adopters to Chrome. A majority of them are low ranked blogs.