I love it when Rand Fishkin from Moz undertakes live experiments to test the impact of user interaction and behaviour on the Google search results. I’ve seen him do it at conferences in London, and he’s back at it again.
He’s ran the user interaction experiment yesterday (21 June 2015), asking users to:
1. Click on one specific Google search result, and then immediately leave the page and bounce back to the Google search results page, indicating dissatisfaction with the result.
2. And then click on a different specific search result, but don’t leave the page, don’t bounce, and give a positive signal you’re engaging with the page.
Here is the image from tweet he sent out asking folk to help with the experiment:
And so, did user behaviour influence the search results?
Rand was able to demonstrate that the site previously ranking in 4th position increased to the top position within 70 minutes of his user interaction experiment, with approximately 500 user interactions
Check out this response from the parody Matt Cutts twitter account:
Little experiment – search “SEO for beginners” click the first result & bounce back to Google. Then hit the 2nd pic.twitter.com/ObfDJAMWv0
— Matt Cutts (@rnattcutts) June 21, 2015