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Search vs. URL

Watching the TV last night I saw an advert for EMA (Education Maintenance Allowance) which instead of giving a URL suggested that the viewer “search for EMA online”. This is the first time I’ve seen this type of advertising in the UK, although strangely only last week the article about search terms taking over from URLs in Japan over at cabel.name was doing the rounds. Searching for EMA across Google (first both paid and natural), Yahoo! (first paid, second natural) and Live (first paid, third natural) seems like this works in this instance, but I can’t help but fear the torrent of spam that will start to follow major ad campaigns that feature particular terms.

As Cabel says in his article this change seems inevitable for all the reasons that he lists, but it sure is going to make management of search placement a lot more complex over the next few years.