An empirical study of paid listings in product search and purchase

Marc L. Resnick, Bernard J. Jansen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

Pay-for-placement search has been described contradictorily as either the future business model of information retrieval on the Internet or as a deceptive nuisance for unsuspecting Web surfers. This study investigated user interaction with paid search listings during a set of naturalistic product search and purchase tasks. The study compared objective measures of how often these listings are used and subjective user opinions both during and after the task. Participants were more likely to view and select organic listings than paid listings. They also rated the organic results as more relevant for the shopping tasks and expressed suspicion of the paid listings. However, some users did use the paid listings and when the content was relevant there was no difference in the relevance ratings of the content pages themselves. A lack of neutral ratings for paid listings suggests that users will respond either negatively or positively to the paid listings, creating a difficult decision for online retailers and product search companies when considering whether to support paid search listings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society 49th Annual Meeting, HFES 2005
Pages1429-1433
Number of pages5
StatePublished - Dec 1 2005
Event49th Annual Meeting of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society, HFES 2005 - Orlando, FL, United States
Duration: Sep 26 2005Sep 30 2005

Publication series

NameProceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society
ISSN (Print)1071-1813

Other

Other49th Annual Meeting of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society, HFES 2005
CountryUnited States
CityOrlando, FL
Period9/26/059/30/05

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Human Factors and Ergonomics

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  • Cite this

    Resnick, M. L., & Jansen, B. J. (2005). An empirical study of paid listings in product search and purchase. In Proceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society 49th Annual Meeting, HFES 2005 (pp. 1429-1433). (Proceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society).