Ads on Google aren’t viewed in the order they appear.
The second ad attracts more attention than the first!
We have already conducted an eye tracking study on Google pages, using a sample of 24 participants (9 French, 7 Japanese and 8 Americans). In our previous newsletter, we outlined some of the results that were brought to light.
Before presenting those results, however, we decided to check them by conducting a second study.
For the second study, we used a sample of 20 users (10 French and 10 Americans, no Japanese). The results obtained are consistent and reliable. They no longer vary when participants are added.
We obtained the same results as in the first study.
The following results have been confirmed by two totally independent studies.
In this newsletter we show you
- How users scan sponsored links at the top of the page
- How users scan organic results
- How users scan sponsored links on the right of the page
- How ads at the top of the page influence the visibility of those on the right
- How images can impact the way results are scanned
How users scan sponsored links at the top of the page
Sponsored links (or ads) aren’t viewed in the order they appear on the page.
In fact, users tend to look at the second sponsored link more than the first:
Example showing a page with two ads: the second ad is the most looked at
The second sponsored link is looked at a lot. After the first organic result, it is at the second most looked at element on the page.
Example showing a page with three ads:
the second ad is the most looked at
When the page only contains a single sponsored link, this becomes the third most looked at element after the first two organic links:
How users scan organic results
Unlike ads, organic results are looked at in the order they appear.
The first result is looked at 1.6 times more than the second:
How users scan sponsored links on the right of the page
Just like ads at the top of the page, sponsored links on the right aren’t looked at in the order of their ranking on the page.
The sixth sponsored link is looked at more than the fourth or the fifth. This is probably due to the position of the web page’s scroll line or “fold”.
How ads at the top of the page influence the visibility of those on the right
It is better to position ads at the top of the page: ads at the top are looked at 2.14 times more than ads on the right.
What’s more, the more ads there are at the top of the page, the less the ads on the right are looked at.
How images can impact the way results are scanned
The presence of images changes the way results are viewed.
The result located just above the images is less looked at.
The result located just above the images is clearly at a disadvantage.
The influence of images: example 1
The influence of images: example 2
Our next newsletter will show you that websites aren’t read in a triangle, F, Z or Gamma pattern, or in any other letter shape for that matter!