Opinion & Thought
piece written on the 4th August 2015 by  

This morning I was looking through some ranking reports for a few clients in different industries and I noticed that in two instances websites that were ranking higher were website’s owned by none other than Google. This got me thinking, does Google give it’s own ventures preference and more SERP love? I remember reading an article quite some time ago that stated that Google does not give ventures it backs a helping hand in terms of where they appear in the search engine results pages. I find myself thinking two things:

  1. Google dominate the search space, if they did give extra value to their ventures would they annoy enough people to threaten their market share? Probably not.
  2. If I had built a massive tool and could use it to better propel other ventures that belong to me, would I? Probably, isn’t that just good business?
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The next logical thought that came to mind was around just how many industry’s Google have their claws in? There is a Wikipedia Page that showcases all the acquisitions and mergers that Google has been involved with. Google also have Google Ventures which has a comprehensive portfolio.  Then on top of this, Google Capital also exists. Altogether Google have a massive spread of interests across hundreds of different industries. They most certainly do have fingers in many pies!

I decided that I’d do a little investigation into this and put together some lists. Screaming Frog to the rescue, crawl website, isolate html and external.. bob’s your uncle:

  1. A list of all the website’s under Google Ventures – download
  2. A list of all the website’s under Google Capital – download

What I really wanted to do from here was select 2 or 3 primary keywords for each site, run ranking reports and get an understanding of how many of the sites actually do rank within the top 3 positions on Google. Unfortunately, at this point I’ve really gone off topic as I’m meant to actually be working and not researching! So I decided to perform a few searches to see if any one else had perhaps done this already. That’s when I came across a post written by Jacob King who has gone forth and done a lot of investigation into this topic and whether Google are perhaps favouring their acquisitions. I had a good chuckle when I saw that Jacob had written his post just 24 hours before I started writing this one! Legend :)

If Google did give each of these mergers, acquisitions or backed ventures extra SEO attention they would be in a position to literally rank in position 1 for almost every single industry. Again, it might annoy some people but it’s just good business if you ask me? If you stop for a second and think about it, imagine just how much space they’d have covered on the Internet? And, if Google does give extra SEO value to company’s it is involved with, is Google Ventures the investment company to turn to? I mean, we all live on the internet these days, where better to acquire customers from than the world’s biggest search engine which just happens to be owned by the investing company.

A really interesting piece of research that probably shouldn’t end here but has to. I may revisit this again in the future but right now I need to get back to work!