Retailers rely on paid search less

Search engine success is crucial for many a business, but should they be focusing on maximising their paid or organic search results?

According to research conducted into search results achieved by the retail and travel sectors by online research firm Hitwise, the result could very much depend on the industry the business is in.

Hitwise found that while retail sites receives more clicks overall than the travel websites, travel businesses receive 50% more traffic on average from paid search as a proportion of their total results.

And that trend looks set to continue, with the proportion of hits the travel industry receives from paid search increasing from 40% to 50% over the past year, while the proportion of paid searches achieved by retailers declined from 31% to 29%.

But there are some common characteristics between the pattern of paid and organic searches received across the retail and travel sectors – in both cases, people were more likely to use paid search during pre-holiday or pre-purchase investigation phase but shifted to organic search once they were ready to make a purchase.


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