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Which Search Engines Deliver the Most Engaged Visitors?

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Ask.com, Bing, and Yahoo drive far fewer consumers to publishers' websites than Google, but visitors who arrive via those three search engines tend to stay longer during visits and view more pages, and they are less likely to exit after reading only one page, according to a recent analysis by Shareaholic.

Below, key findings from the report, which was based on organic search traffic data collected over six months (December 2013 to May 2014) from the sites of 300,000+ publishers reaching an audience of more than 400 million monthly unique visitors.

Engagement

The report looked at three key metrics—average visit duration, pages per visit, and bounce rate—to determine which search engines deliver the most engaged audience:

  • Overall, Bing and Yahoo deliver the most engaged visitors, whereas Google and AOL deliver the least engaged.
  • Google searchers are quick to abandon sites they deem unfit to answer their immediate questions: On average, 61.26% bounce. Also, Google fans, on average, view the fewest number of pages per visit (2.34).
  • Google still ranks above AOL, which not only drives the fewest organic visits to sites but also delivers the least engaged audience: On average, visitors arriving from AOL spend barely more than two minutes during each session post-click (129.07 seconds).


Share of Visits

Google dominates organic search, sending 17 times more visits to publishers' websites than Yahoo, Bing, Ask.com, and AOL combined.

Of the rest of the search engines (excluding Google), Bing and Yahoo drive the most traffic to the websites examined.

Interestingly, over time the major search engines have been contributing a smaller share of overall traffic (combined direct visits, social referrals, organic search, paid search, etc.) to the websites examined.

About the research: The report was based on organic search traffic data collected over six months (December 2013 to May 2014) from the sites of 300,000+ publishers reaching an audience of more than 400 million monthly unique visitors.


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Ayaz Nanji is an independent digital strategist and a co-founder of ICW Content, a marketing agency specializing in content creation for brands and businesses. He is also a research writer for MarketingProfs. He has worked for Google/YouTube, the Travel Channel, AOL, and the New York Times.

LinkedIn: Ayaz Nanji

Twitter: @ayaznanji

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  • by Dario Mon Jun 30, 2014 via web

    This is very interesting!
    I arrived at the same conclusions looking at my company's website analytics. Here at docebo.com we saw that conversion rate for Bing was 5.86%, while Google Organic Conversion rate was 3.3% for June. Nonetheless Google produced 11.295 visits (37% of total traffic), while Bing only 222 (0.73% of total traffic). Looking at this number I must say that the day Bing becomes more important than Google for my website traffic is far far away.

    Best,

    Dario

  • by Ayaz Nanji Mon Jun 30, 2014 via web

    Dario, thanks so much for sharing that data. Interesting to see that it mirrors the @shareaholic conclusions.

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