Study finds more than half of searches end without a click

Posted on August 22, 2019


A recent study discovered that the number of searches conducted within Google that ended without a click through to either an organic or paid result eclipsed the number of searches that resulted in a click.

Zero-click searches rising

The study, conducted by SparkToro, showed that ‘zero-click searches’ have been rising steadily over the last couple of years. For the first quarter of the year, these searches accounted for 49% of searches. This had grown from 43% for the same period of 2016. This figure further increased to 49.76% for the second quarter of this year.

Rand Fishkin, founder of SparkToro, does not expect this figure to plateau in the near future. This has been backed up by the data, which shows that in June, a milestone was hit and zero-click searches moved passed the 50% marker, meaning more than half of all Google searches (50.33%) ended on the search results page without the user clicking through to other sites and content.

What does this mean for businesses?

In essence, it may mean that a site may pick up less traffic, but it doesn’t mean that there is any less opportunity for a company to appear on the first page and get themselves noticed. Being noticed is still one of the main objectives of advertising and marketing and this won’t change.

Companies will now have to rethink their content strategies and aim to get position zero results. These results include Featured Snippets that uses relevant content from a website and places it in a box that appears at the top of the results page, ahead of the top ranking site.

By achieving position zero results, the company’s website and brand are still being shown, and furthermore, they are being shown as an authority. These snippets can be viewed as being the most relevant information on that particular search.

Whilst a company may not get the click or traffic it craves, it is still getting the exposure. Therefore, ensuring that you are giving the customer the information they are after, even if it leads to a zero-click search, remains highly important. This means that a company will have to keep its content relevant and up-to-date and target what people are actually searching for.

Operations Manager at Engage Web
Drawing from a broad pool of experience that ranges from university studies in English Language to his work as a medical receptionist in a busy GP practice, Alan fits right at home as Engage Web’s Operations Manager.
Alan Littler
  • […] controversy, however, could be that it’s another example of a ‘zero-click search’ on Google. This means companies will no doubt miss out on some of the website traffic they would […]

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