Study: Search Rank Drives Traffic

Share this content:
Marketers with listings ranked at the top of search results pages receive much more traffic to their sites than those just a spot below, according to a new study.


The research, released by aQuantive's Atlas Institute yesterday, found that Internet traffic decreases as keyword rankings drop. Overall, a top ranking generates 10 times the traffic as a spot at No. 10, Atlas said. Traffic was found to drop 10 percent for each drop in rank.


"A lot of [marketers'] strategies are driven by their intuition, which tells them the No. 1 ranking is the best to be in," said Young-Bean Song, director of analytics at the Atlas Institute. "What they don't know specifically is what the tradeoffs really are."


Atlas found that ranking affects Web traffic much differently on Google and Yahoo's Overture Services. Google calculates rank based on price and click-through rate while Overture ranks purely based on bid price. Atlas found that Google AdWords' top ranking is a rightfully coveted spot, with traffic dropping off an average of 40 percent to the No. 2 spot. With Overture Precision Match, by contrast, Atlas recorded a drop of 22 percent.


Song warned that many factors affect search ranking, including ad copy, brand name and ad relevance. Marketers must examine each keyword based on their acquisition goals, he said, but the data could be used to forecast how changing the rank will affect Web traffic.


"People need a starting point," he said. "Instead of randomly testing the first through 10th rank, this gives some guidance to where you should start."


Atlas compiled its report using data culled from its Atlas Search product, a bid-management tool built from its Go Toast acquisition in December. Song said the report examined "tens of thousands" of keywords.


close

Next Article in Digital Marketing

Sign up to our newsletters

Company of the Week

We recently were named B2B Magazine's Direct Marketing Agency of the Year, and with good reason: We make real, measureable, positive change happen for our clients. A full-service agency founded in 1974, Bader Rutter expertly helps you get the right message to the right audience at the right time through the right channels. As we engage our clients' audiences along their journey, direct marketing (email, direct mail, phone, SMS) and behavioral marketing (SEM, retargeting, contextual) channels deliver information relevant to the needs of each stage. We are experts at implementing and leveraging marketing technologies such as CRM and marketing automation in order to synchronize sales and marketing communications. Our team of architects and activators plan, execute, measure and adjust in real time to ensure the strategy is working as needed and change things if it's not.

Find out more here »

Career Center

Check out hundreds of exciting professional opportunities available on DMN's Career Center.  
Explore careers in digital marketing, sales, eCommerce, marketing communications, IT, data strategies, and much more. And don't forget to update your resume so employers can contact you privately about job opportunities.

>>Click Here

Relive the 2017 Marketing Hall of Femme

Click the image above