Google’s Branded IE7?

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When you search US-Google for IE7 (or Internet Explorer, IE, Internet Explorer 7*) you may see a Google-sponsored advertisement for “Free IE7 Download” on top, the snippet reading “Google recommends upgrading to the new, safer Internet Explorer 7″.

Clicking on it brings you to a special Google page with a download of Internet Explorer 7 that has a couple of add-ons, including the Google Toolbar, and Google search set as the default search in the browser.

Nothing fishy going on here, but I think someone at Google management is very concerned people might download a Microsoft product that doesn’t have any Google in it! And I bet Google is getting nice click-thru rates too, considering they’re about the only ones allowed to use the word “Google” in their AdWords ads… perhaps increasing the likelihood searchers overlook the “sponsored link” disclaimer, thinking it’s an official search results recommendation.

*The AdWords traffic estimator predicts a daily search budget of $400 – $760.

[Thanks Haochi, Ionut and Jason Grant!]


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Philipp Lenssen from Germany, author of 55 Ways to Have Fun With Google, shares his views & news on the search industry in the daily Google Blogoscoped.

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