Search Behavior: The Warm Up — A Study with SurveyMonkey

We partnered with SurveyMonkey to conduct a three-part study on how people behave online. In our first installment, we get granular with an investigation into behavioral search patterns.

There are tons of data sources marketers can use to gather information about peoples’ online search behavior, if you want to get the best data available, you’ve got to do it yourself. That’s why we partnered with SurveyMonkey Audience for a study that gives us actionable insight into search patterns.

Check it out to see what we learned.

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What do people search for?

40% of the survey respondents stated that they search for eCommerce related items online
No big surprises here. But it does remind us that search isn’t the only way to target new visitors for eCommerce sites, and that eCommerce still has a lot of ground to gain. The eCommerce market isn’t as saturated as many would like to believe.

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Is search advertising effective?

65% of respondent stated they don’t click on search advertisements which shows a pitfall of  running a campaign that is purely focused on search advertisements. A balance between paid and organic search will always be crucial to running an effective search campaign. While we do highlight the 65% of respondents who don’t click, the 35% of respondents who do click on advertisements are likely to respond to both forms. Which brings us to our next point.

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Who clicks on ads?

50% of respondents can’t tell the difference between search ads and search results. Crazy, right? This adds a lot of credibility to the idea that paid search is an effective medium for communicating ideas about a brand, and qualified traffic towards sites. Just because it’s paid, doesn’t mean people don’t trust it. They don’t even know what it is. (Or at least half of them don’t.)

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Who visits the second page of search results?

In SEO, we put a lot of pressure on ourselves to achieve number one rankings. In our minds, page one on Google is like the front page of the New York Times. (Except that it isn’t, really.) Your average Joe doesn’t mind clicking on that second page of search results. As a matter of fact 90% of users regularly check the second page of search results. This is welcoming news for those smaller websites that are having a hard time getting on page one because they are competing in the same space with large brands and sites.

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While being listed on the second page of a search result is not the end of the world, you may want to consider who will go to the second page of that search result. The likelihood of a visitor visiting the second page increases with age and they are more likely to be college educated and in the middle class. And surprisingly 18% more of them are men. Which is useful information to know especially if the content on your website caters to that particular demographic.

Check back tomorrow for part two of iAcquire and SurveyMonkey Audience’s study, which focuses on Mobile Behavior.



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iAcquire Search Behavior Study
iAcquire Search Behavior Study