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Top 5 Rankings or Bust!

September 9, 2008
Jay

Last week Think Eyetracking published a study on their blog showing that eye tracking patterns between 2005 and 2008. Over three years, how users have changed how they search.

In 2005, searchers would look through the top 10 results, patiently reading through the SERPs before finding one that they like. In contrast, their 2008 searchers fixate on the top 5 results and many of them chose in this study to only click on the top 3 results. If they didn’t find what they were looking for, they refined their search.

While this study is certainly thought provoking, 30 participants isn’t a large enough study to conclusively deduce that searchers only gravitate towards top 5 results; however, it does give SEOs something to think about. I for one would like to see a more exhaustive study to conclusively determine if 2008 searchers are indeed ignoring results below the fold.