Google Ads Pitch Making Google Your Homepage

It can seem odd that people search for “Google” on Google, but they do. And for those who do within Google News, the company has been running ads encouraging them to make Google their homepage.

I noticed this happening in the middle of last month, and you can still see it happening today:

The ad says, “Make Google Your Homepage” with the message “Access Google Conveniently By Setting It As Your Browser Homepage,” as you can see in close-up below:

I’ve seen at least one other variation, pitching “Google At Your Fingertips,” as shown below:

Clicking on the ads takes you to a special page pitching Google as a homepage option:

Using the “Get Started” button there unveils the instructions for making your browser open by default to the Google home page. The instructions were specific to Chrome or Safari, when I went to the page in each of those browsers.

Google’s run house ads promoting its various services for years, but this particular campaign — which runs only in Google News — felt new to me, especially that landing page. I did ask Google when it began and if the page was new, but the company never provided a follow-up answer.

Related Topics: Channel: Industry | Google: Marketing | Top News


About The Author: is a Founding Editor of Search Engine Land. He’s a widely cited authority on search engines and search marketing issues who has covered the space since 1996. Danny also serves as Chief Content Officer for Third Door Media, which publishes Search Engine Land and produces the SMX: Search Marketing Expo conference series. He has a personal blog called Daggle (and keeps his disclosures page there). He can be found on Facebook, Google + and microblogs on Twitter as @dannysullivan.

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  • Brian Whalley

    *makes Google his homepage*
    *uses homepage to search for “Google”*
    “Awesome, removed an unnecessary step. Thanks Google!”

  • fjpoblam

    Seems to run afoul of their decision to get rid of their “iGoogle” attraction. I’d prefer either techmeme or

  • Andrea Moro

    Uo Uo … those instructions were specific to your browser at the time you reach the page?
    Is Google cloaking the page? It looks like giving the candy with one hand and slapping it with the other.
    Something am I missing?

  • Danny Sullivan

    Google defines cloaking as when you show something only to its spider. If Google goes to this page, it’ll get whatever the page would show for an unknown browser, rather than some custom tips just for Googlebot.

  • Alan

    Wonder if this a precursor to Google putting ads on the homepage. We did see that Nexus ad a little while back.

  • Andrea Moro

    I’m afraid but Google definition of cloaking is not much different from the one in the dictionary

    which in technical details is showing something different to users and search engines as reported here too:

    So it’s not just a Google cloaking or Bing cloaking.

    And reason for asking about “cloaked” message was the way I initially interpreted your message and if this was limited to just two browsers. Serving ad-hoc HTML content (not CSS aka responsive site) to me looks like a very border-line cloak. IMHO.

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