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Monday, April 17, 2006

Why You Should be on Top!

Posted by @ 9:19 pm

Search engine users are increasingly abandoning their search queries after the first page, and the importance of attaining top search results within the search engines is becoming more apparent, according to the “iProspect Search Engine User Behavior Study”.

Only 12 percent of U.S search engine users surveyed is searching beyond the first three pages of search results, with 62 percent guaranteed to click on the first page, compared with 48 percent in 2002.

Number of search results U.S users viewed prior to clicking on one
(% of users surveyed)

Response 2002 2004 2006
Only a few 16% 24% 23%
The first page 32% 36% 39%
The first 2 pages 23% 20% 19%
The first 3 pages 10% 8% 9%
More than 3 pages 19% 13% 10%

Source: iProspect, April 2006
The study also shows that 41 percent of users who do not find what they are looking for on the first page change their search terms or search engines, with 88 percent following suit if failing to find results after the third page.

82 percent of users will re-launch an unsuccessful search using the same search engine but add more keywords, suggesting the need for search engine marketers to also consider using longer and more precise keyword phrases to target users that are trying to improve results from their initial search.

What U.S users are likely to do if they do not find what they are looking for on a search engine. (% of users surveyed)

Response 2002 2006
Enter a few more words to better target the search 68% 82%
Switch search engines and try same keywords from initial search 27% 13%
Give up 3% 3%
Switch search engines and try different keywords from initial search 2% 2%

Source: iProspect, April 2006

Interestingly, the belief that companies whose websites feature at the top of the search results are leaders in their industry is slowly increasing, with 36 percent of search engine users agreeing, compared with 33 percent in 2002.

Rene LeMerle Rene is the marketing manager of - a global search engine marketing company. He also leads the marketing for - a web 2.0 style community for online and digital marketers. Rene has been in the industry since 1997 with much of that time spent helping businesses embrace the best of the internet and digital world.

View Rene LeMerle's profile

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