London: A study conducted by online shopping mall eBay has claimed that paying to boost the firm`s showing on search engines like Google has little effect on sales.
If a visitor to the search engine enters a certain word, the company that has paid for it will be featured at the top of the results in the form of a paid advertisement on sites like Google, Yahoo, Bing.
The eBay study, however, found that most people who clicked through the advertised links were loyal customers who would have come to their website anyway, the Telegraph reports.
The study involved removing paid advertising from certain search engines and analysing the effect this had.
It found that without the advertising, users clicked through using what it calls "natural" or "organic" results, which means results that are not paid for, the report said.
According to the paper, the study highlighted a potential problem for Google, which generated 46 billion dollars in ad revenue last year, up from 38 billion dollars in 2011.
The paper also pointed out that Google said that its own research suggested there was a significant increase in clicks as a result of search advertising.