Tracking User Search Engine Behavior – Clicks and Eye Paths
Following the presentation by Dr. Bonny Brown on Customer Experience Rankings, Gord Hotchkins, President and CEO of Enquiro introduced some interesting research on how searchers read the search result page and how that leads to search engine click through behavior.
Gord first believed that possible influencers in search result choices – type of user, brands, trusted URLs, page position, relevant title. After running a study on user behavior on Google, page position and rankings turned out to be the only significant deciding factors.
27.4 clicked on the #1 listings, 19.5% clicked on the site which was listed at #2, 12.8% clicked on #3, the #8 position got the lowest percent of click thrus, but there was a slight bump for the #9 and #10 results (in a default 10 search results page on Google).
Over 51% of searchers who clicked on a Google AdWords advertisement clicked on the #1 sponsored links.
Enquiro used eye tracking to track the users’ natural eye path when reading search engine results. The most concentrated search activity was at the very top of the search engine results. The majority of activity is, of course, in the top three search results – which includes the top sponsored link when they are served above the organic search terms on Google, Yahoo and MSN.
If users do not find what they are looking for in the top 5 search listings, 60% follow the natural search results down the page. The other 40% move over to the right of the organic search results, where the paid sponsored search advertisements are shown.
Organic search listings which resulted in high eye scan included relevant keywords in the title and description and trusted URLs.
Enquiro should be putting out a press release on this tomorrow with their eye tracking images and I’ll be sure to post them.