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I've got a working theory that I'd like to run by you guys for comments. I think a lot of searchers click on the first result almost as a reflex, without even paying attention to the description below the link. If they get to that site and it isn't quite what they wanted, they then click an Adsense ad (or the back button). It probably isn't a coincidence that my CTR on that site shot up about 30% relative to its prior CTR. Not that I'm complaining, as it is a site that has one affiliate product in addition to Adsense. I don't sell anything directly on that site - it's more of an information and tips site. So, any other theories to explain the much higher CTR from the move to #1?
so if your site is in the top 3, it'll drive more traffic, but the question is, how does that increase up the ctr on your site? could it be a function of relevance to the term being searched? is it specific to your niche? etc.
So, the "big" keyword makes more traffic, but (more important) you also get more traffic for "small" keywords.
1: Being promoted from #5 to #1 of "widgets" gets you A LOT more traffic (it's a strong keyword) but an ordinary CTR
2: But also, being promoted from #5 to #1 of "hand-operated widget rentals" gets you A LITTLE more traffic (it's a very small keyword) but a LOT more clicks (those visitors are very targetted and motivated)
Repeat 2 above for N times and you can have a very good CTR.
Just a theory!
1. more likely that the user has just begun their search for the term
2. they believe that the very, very smart search engine said that your site is the best for their search.
3. your site is the first one the user clicked on the SERP.
Given all of the above, a user is more likely to give your site more of their time and thus click more of your ads.
if your site were the 5th clicked in the SERP, the user is now a bit more educated and frustrated because they haven't found what they are looking for. The user is likely to spend less time browsing your site looking for what they want. this leads to lower CTR.