An Internet user survey from search engine positioning firm iProspect shows that top rankings in search results transmit brand value to fully one-third of online consumers. Asked if seeing a company listed within the opening lines of search results would make them believe that the company was a top one in its field, 33% of consumers surveyed said yes, according to iProspect.
“What this indicates is that being found in a top search engine match transmits a halo effect of sorts,” says iProsepct’s director of research Amanda Watlington. “A large number of search engine users will assign brand value or equity to a top ranked web site, disregarding the fact that the engine’s mathematical algorithm is the cause. Based on these results, lesser-known brands or resellers of these branded products can increase their perceived brand equity with search engine users by being found in top search matches.”
Conversely, 56% of users surveyed expected brands that they already consider leading brands to hold top search engine listings. Web marketers who don`t make search engines a primary focus of online marketing initiatives forfeit top-of-mind brand position to other organizations on the medium most often used by consumers to find web sites, according to iProspect.