Search Trumps Social – Here’s the Proof


One day, social media will all but erase the need for search. That is a common belief of marketers utilizing the medium. However, rest assured that is not even close to being the case. Eli Schwartz of Search Engine Land has been a firm believer in the effectiveness of SEO for years and partnered with SurveyMonkey to support his stance.

Of the roughly 4,000 people surveyed, 97% complete a minimum of one search on a daily basis. Millennials, adults ages 18 to 25, average a minimum of five daily searches. In comparison, only 69% of adults log into social media on a daily basis, let alone search for businesses.

Yeah, but that’s in general, you may be thinking. Social media has a wealth of reviews that are useful to people who are conducting review-​based searches. Surely social media has the upper hand on search when it comes to that research. Nope.

Schwartz thought ahead and worked in scenario-​based questions that tested the assumption about social media dominance. Specifically, one such question he asked was, “Where would you most likely turn to find a new dentist?” Even with social media’s more casual look into business workings and its collection of business ratings, it still couldn’t hold a candle to search in this category. Thirty-​six percent of respondents would use a search engine to conduct their research while only 5% would primarily use social media. When divided into age groups, millennials are even more likely than 35- to 64-​year-​olds to choose search over social.

If an organization chooses to believe that no one will search for them online,” says Schwartz, “they are leaving the field wide open for their competitor to dominate the organic search results.” Don’t let your clients be such an organization. Supplement Schwartz’s findings with information from AudienceSCAN from AdMall by SalesFuel. There, you will find profiles on different kinds of searchers, as well as consumer age groups,with information on how to best advertise to them.

Rachel Cagle

Rachel Cagle

Rachel is a Research Analyst, specializing in audience intelligence, at SalesFuel. She also helps to maintain the major accounts and co-​op intelligence databases. As the holder of a Bachelors degree in English from The Ohio State University, Rachel helps the rest of the SalesFuel team with their writing needs.