RSS LinkedIn Google Plus

Call us: 0800 014 9884

Bing’s layout: improved results for search marketers?

Here are some interesting findings from American user experience consultancy User Centric, who have been conducting a bit of research into the ways in which people look at search engines.

The company compared two providers – Google, and Microsoft’s relaunched Bing (whose leapfrogging of Yahoo into second place in the search market was, reports Techcrunch, short-lived) – to see how each captured the visual interest of visitors.

The results showed that the two search engines were fairly evenly matched when it came to the attention paid to natural search listings, with users spending an average of seven seconds looking at that area of the page.

Similarly, interest in the sponsored results above the natural listings was high on both search engines. Over 90 per cent of participants spent time looking at the paid results on Google and Bing, with the duration of interest increasing on task-based (eg. ‘find a new car’) searches.

Differences emerged when it came to the paid adverts that appear on the right hand side of both search providers’ results pages. Bing’s layout was found to be more effective in drawing attention to the sponsored listings, with 42 per cent of users looking at them, compared to 25 per cent for Google.

Heatmaps showing areas of interest on Google and BingThese images show user activity on Bing (left) and Google. Red areas were those that were looked at for more than 4.5 seconds. The colouring on Bing’s sponsored listings show they attracted more interest than Google’s.

Reasons cited for the difference include the space between natural and paid listings being much smaller on Bing, making users more likely to glance across to the sponsored links. Also, Bing’s ‘book-ended’ page design (which has related searches shown on the left) means surfers spend a more even amount of time looking at each section of the page.

Already, some sources are suggesting that this difference may attract advertisers to Bing, as it means their ads are more likely to be viewed. However, the User Centric study showed that click-through rates were about the same on both search engines, so while more people may be looking at Bing’s sponsored links, they aren’t necessarily following them.

For the study, researchers used heatmaps and eye-tracking technology to monitor where on the pages users were looking. theEword employs heatmaps as part of its A/B testing process, using them to track visitor activity across different page designs.

One useful aspect of the technology is that it allows designers to see which elements on the page are attracting clicks, even if those elements are inactive (leading to development questions such as ‘if that static graphic is drawing a lot of attention, would there be any gain in making it clickable, or replacing it with a sales button?’). This enables SEO teams to identify which parts of the page will be instrumental in the conversion process and make use of them accordingly.

Written by admin

Bing implements one small change and one big change Tuesday 14th of April, 2015by Dan Moores Over the past week, Bing has implemented two changes. One appears to be directly influenced by Google, while the other demonstrates independent thinking and creativity.

More on this story »

April UK search market share: Bing revival stutters again Tuesday 5th of May, 2015by James Riches Bing’s mini-revival in the UK search market appears to have stalled, with data from StatCounter Global Stats showing a second consecutive monthly loss.

More on this story »

May UK search market share: Small gain for Google Monday 1st of June, 2015by James Riches Google’s dominance of the UK search market continues, as webmasters focus on mobile and the public search for Election and Eurovision results.

More on this story »
Twitter
theEword - 21 hours ago

If you couldn't make it for #LightaFireJo you're in luck, we've written a blog for you > http://t.co/wJBRlu9ljB http://t.co/dJYhuO3img

Twitter
theEword - 22 hours ago

What do retailers need to know about CRO? http://t.co/aqb8n84nN2 http://t.co/jDWYvSXuWB

Twitter
theEword - 24 hours ago

Got a spare 1 minute and 6 seconds? Spend it enjoying 11 of the best Vines from July https://t.co/jNm70F1oRy

Twitter
theEword - 1 day ago

Make sure you know how to write great #digital content with our free #guide > http://t.co/XSmX4uRoBS http://t.co/PVDE7J7Ff3

Twitter
theEword - 2 days ago

Feel like you should know more about #digital? Book a place at our Eworkshop in September > http://t.co/APGqNn68zD http://t.co/JsCIkm6Wbm

What retailers need to know about conversion rate optimisation Monday 15th of June, 2015by Andy Williams Conversion rate optimisation (CRO) is the process increasing the number of visitors to a website into conversions. See why it's vital for retailers to use it.

More on this story »

What's the best social channel for your retail brand? Wednesday 24th of June, 2015by Dan Moores You already know how vital social media presence is. Here's how you can make the most of three very popular platforms - and not just from a brand-amplification standpoint.

More on this story »

Light a Fire with Jo Leah Friday 31st of July, 2015by Sian English

More on this story »

Who loves theEword

Who loves theEword Who loves theEword