The inclusion of Real Time content (from Twitter and Facebook) in the search results of Google (GOOG), Bing (MSFT) and Yahoo (YHOO), all of whom have jumped into integrating real-time data into search results have been talked about with great fanfare. I posted about what the impact of the inclusion of Real Time search will mean to many marketers and advertisers. The marketing firm OneUpWeb just concluded an interesting “eye-tracking” survey/study .pdf, that explores the effectiveness of the recent efforts.
The study entitled, “Search Gone Wild” looks at how a small group of users–split up into to groups called “consumers” and “foragers”–reacted to the Google real-time search results. Here is just one of the heat-maps included in the study:
As it turned out, the results did not live up to the hype around putting real-time search in engines:
- The consumer group averaged 9 seconds to the first fixation on real-time results, where as the information foragers took a full 14 seconds.
- The consumer group had 10% fewer clicks on the real-time results than the information foragers.
- In-attentional blindness is a phenomenon found to afflict the task-drive consumers—they don’t see what they aren’t looking for.
- 25% of the participants were familiar with the real-time component prior to the study.
- 55% of the participants could easily find the real-time results.
- Only a quarter of the consumers cared for the real-time results compared to 47% of the information foragers.
- The majority of the participants surveyed were indifferent to the real-time results.
To get the full report/pdf please click here.
You can also look at a study that I published last week that illustrated the phenomenon called banner blindness.
Related articles by Zemanta
- Google Real-Time Search Now Includes A Fraction Of Facebook Status Updates (techcrunch.com)
- Yahoo! signs Twitter real-time search deal, but why? (downloadsquad.com)
- How Google, Yahoo and Microsoft Think About Real-Time Search (gigaom.com)