True, what grows organically tastes awesome, although with a few exceptions. The same logic applies in the search results when a user clicks a website that top the organic search engine result page (SERP). The argument needs no further verification that paid search, which is only one-third of the click through rate (CTR), is 50% less clicked upon than organic.
However, a study conducted by search engine marketing firms Enquiro and Eyetools has provided a lease of hope for online marketers, which confirms a higher CTR for the top three listings on organic results. The study elucidates the eye tracking behavior of users that scan the rest of the page in an F-pattern, looking laterally at the top results and then vertically, with fewer laterals scanning the further down the list they travel. This is what is called as 'Golden Triangle'. Just like the famous Bermuda Triangle that traps wayward passengers, there is a "Golden Triangle" on Google that "traps" visitors' eyeballs. Although the study is restricted to Google, it can be applied to other major search engines, such as, Yahoo !, MSN, Baidu, etc.
Results under the Golden Triangle, thus, get high probability of CTR due to cent percent visibility reason. Many advertisers set a higher bid for key phrases listed on the top above the organic results for F-factor. For example, if you search 'cheap hotels in India', you'll find the paid listings of the sites above the organic results. Obviously, CTR of these listings will be higher than the right hand listings.
But does higher CTR ensure longer stay duration (LSD)?
The Triangle per se does not ensure LSD of the unique visitors on the site. To put it in another way, a good restaurant is one, which attempts to increase the appetite of people while serving the food. Similarly, a good site is one, which drives to raise curiosity among visitors to discover new or something interesting while supplementing necessary dose of information. The popularity and success of Web 2.0 sites, which thrive on user interactivity, corroborate the above argument of LSD with higher page views.
A good online marketer can not ignore the psychological behavior of the searchers. Enquiro's Gord Hotchkiss argues that searchers have a collection of words in their heads that are more than just the query terms that they type into the search field, but that they will subconsciously scan for in the search results. Those terms will comprise additional related words that are relevant to why they are searching in the first place.
Eye traffic is important but what matters at the end is actual lead generation. In order to turn your searchers into regular visitors or buyers, you need to understand their semi-map. That is, try and think of user motivation and what other terms would be part of their search intent and include that in the page title and content of the page. A site optimized to rank under the Golden Triangle must meet the expectation of …