Study: Top spot in search results still reigns supreme, but second and third close gap

A recent study conducted by an Indianapolis-based SEO consulting group aimed to better understand user clickthrough behavior and how it's evolved with search engine results pages, the study's website reports.

The six-month analysis looked at data from more than 170,000 actual user visits using 324 total keywords. In order to yield usable results, the keywords had to be embedded in a site that was in a stable search result position for 30 days and resided in a top 10 position for organic search.

Search Engine Watch notes that the clickthrough rate for the No. 1 spot atop a search engine's results page was 18.2 percent. Second position yielded 10.05 percent, while third saw 7.22 percent.

The gap between first, second and third positions was less wide than similar studies conducted in 2010 and 2007. Thus, while it's still clear the the top position is ideal, second and third positions are garnering more attention from users today than ever before.