ADOTAS – Search engine users are more likely to be click away on specialized content within general search results – more so than within vertical search results, a new study found. Search engine marketing firm iProspect today released the iProspect Blended Search Results Study, conducted by JupiterResearch.
In the past year, the major search engines (Google, Yahoo and MSN), have been returning blended results for a certain percentage of searches conducted. Blended results contain a combination of one or more specialized search result types, such as news, images and videos. They appear alongside traditional Web pages in the results.
Prior to Google’s launch of Universal Search in May of 2007, blended results were only returned when a specifically targeted vertical search was conducted.
Highlights from the study:
• 36% of search engines user click “news” results within blended search results, while only 17% click a “news” result after conducting a news-specific search
• 31% of search engine users click “image” results within blended search results, while 26% click an “image” result after conducting an image-specific search
• 17% of search engine users click “video” results within blended search results, while only 10% click a “video” result after conducting a video-specific search
• While images are the most clicked type of result after a vertical-specific search, news items are the most clicked type of result within blended search results
“Since users have historically ignored the vertical offerings of the major search engines, a marketer might conclude that users aren’t interested in that type of content, and as a result, not invest in producing or optimizing digital assets,” said Robert Murray, president of iProspect, in a release. “But that would be a mistake — the findings of this study make that quite clear. Marketers have a great opportunity to claim more search shelf space by optimizing their news, image and video assets.”
The study suggests that optimizing a wide range of digital assets will give interactive marketers a distinct advantage over their peers – especially as appearance on the first page of search results continues to gain importance from a traffic-generating and a branding perspective.