In an interesting, albeit limited study of roughly 2,210 young people, 47% say they’re using real-time search from the likes of Twitter and Facebook on a regular basis, while just 4% say they would choose paid search results over natural results.
The study, conducted by Tamar, found that people over 55 were the least likely to trust paid search as a trusted source with just 3% choosing it over natural search results. Younger people, however, are increasing their use of mobile to search- as 14% of both 18-24 year olds and 25-34 year-olds use mobile search every day.
“Consumers have decided that natural search is the route they trust more and this defines the strategic starting point for all brands, which need to focus on being highly visible ‘naturally’ through campaigns that reach effectively across a wide range of media and devices, especially mobile – a huge growth area for the search engines,” said Neil Jackson, search strategy director at Tamar.
While the results of this study don’t necessarily quantify the mainstream, it does give us a slight indication that paid real-time search-results don’t work like they do for traditional search- and even then, consumers are paying much less attention to them then they once did. Mobile search is undoubtedly growing by leaps and bounds, but it presents far different opportunities for marketers over traditional search.