Title: Navigational behaviour and sponsored search advertising

Authors: Nico Brooks, Harrison Magun

Addresses: Director, Search Strategy, Atlas, 5950 South Willow Drive, Suite 306, Greenwood Village, CO 80111, USA. ' Director, Search Media Operations, North America, Microsoft Digital Advertising Solutions, One Microsoft Way, Redmond, WA 98052, USA

Abstract: Navigational use of search engines has been identified as behaviour distinct from information seeking and is apparently on the rise. Navigational behaviour is of particular interest to search engine marketers, since navigational activity indicates prior intent to visit a website, possibly influenced by other advertising investments. In this paper, we describe research investigating navigational characteristics found in sponsored search click log data. In particular, we look at sponsored search clicks resulting from brand name searches, URL searches and repeat visit activity. We further discuss the implications of navigational behaviour for sponsored search advertisers and outline the need for improved methods of tracking the performance of online advertising investments.

Keywords: sponsored search; user intent; navigation; transaction log analysis; electronic business; e-business; navigational behaviour; search engines; online advertising; click log data; brand name searches; URL searches; repeat visits; web advertising; internet advertising.

DOI: 10.1504/IJEB.2008.018069

International Journal of Electronic Business, 2008 Vol.6 No.2, pp.132 - 148

Published online: 28 Apr 2008 *

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