MSN Studies Searcher Behavior

Filed in Searcher Behavior by Matt McGee on January 16, 2007 0 Comments

Here are two solid posts this week with analysis of a recent MSFT eye-tracking study of search engine user behavior:

I’m with Danny about a study of 18 people being a bit difficult to really trust, but if you’re willing to make that jump, here are some of the takeaways:

1. Most people view at least the top 4 listings no matter which one they click on. Participants said they “highly agreed” with the statement “I expect the information I’m looking for to be in the top five results.”

2. Most people look at about 8 listings without clicking before trying a new search.

3. Snippet length impacts search “success”, but it’s dependent on the type of search being performed; i.e., is the searcher looking for a web site or a piece of information? Shorter snippets are more effective for the former; longer snippets for the latter.

Both articles I’ve linked to above are good. Danny’s is the more exhaustive.

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