|I was of the opinion that click-thru on natural search bore no significance on rank. |
You are correct.
obviously it has no impact, else top SERP will keep on growing their PR and trailers will never makeup to top
CTR on natural search results would however be a valuable indicator of the ranking algorithm's effectiveness.
Of course, a SERP with no clicks can mean at least two different things. One, the user has judged no page to be worth clicking. Two, the SERP itself provides sufficient information to answer the user's query.
If a search engine was silly enough to use click throughs as a factor to rank results, then you would get those blackhats running automated processes to click through to their sites to make them rank better.
I think, the PR of the page depends on the number of good pr pages linking to it and also the number of times the page is viewed, both have an equivalent impact.
> I was of the opinion that click-thru on natural
> search bore no significance on rank
I think we can all assume that the search engines are using every piece of available data they can. Unfortunatly, we can not determine how they are using that data.
High click through rates may signal just the opposite of what we are thinking here...
High CTR could mean the natural results are too good and taking clicks away from Adwords paid spots. ;)
Yes, they could use the data if they wanted to.
Yes, a higher click through rate on a #5 listing within a specific SERP may indicate that the site is an authority.
But, AFAIK, there has been no data to support such a theory.
I always though it has no affect. But how come Google has data in his SiteMaps tool which says which keywords are bringing most of the traffic. I agree they could tell which keywords including our url are most often searched for, but they also say which keywords lead traffic.
I have been seeing also redirected url's by Google periodically, that means that there are times when they can see clicktrough rates.