Is Google aware

Users consciously skip Google ads

"The users are aware that the first search results are advertising - they deliberately skip these ads," explains Gesine Quint, co-founder and managing director of Usability.de. From the first ad space, users often jump straight to the first organic search hit. "For users, ads are usually only relevant if they are looking for a specific provider or if they already know exactly what they want," continues Quint.

For the study, the surfing behavior of 15 women and 15 men was examined, each of whom had to process different, predetermined search queries: information-oriented, transaction-oriented and navigation-oriented searches. The eye sales of the test subjects were measured by eye tracking up to the first click.

Almost all participants targeted the organic search results. "The majority of users rely on organic search results. This is clearly shown by the number of clicks," sums up Quint. In 70 percent of the cases, the first click came on an organic hit, an ad was clicked in only 14 percent. "The results of the study show that search engine optimization is more important than ever," says Quint. In order for the ads to be clicked at all, they would have to be directly relevant to the specific search query and ideally come first. The study can be downloaded free of charge from the Usability.de website. ie