Irish firms fail to clear search hurdle

22 Feb 2007

More than half of all Irish companies aren’t highly ranked in search engine results, reducing the chance of potential customers finding out about their products or services.

A new survey by Captivate Digital has found that 53pc of leading Irish companies don’t appear in the top five results in search engines based on a simple keyword search in their category.

According to some estimates, 75pc of internet users rely on search engines like Google to navigate around the web and close to 60pc of all websites receive more than half of their traffic through search engines. Consequently, a poor showing in search results can seriously hinder a company’s chances of raising its profile.

John Dunne, director of Captivate Digital, commented: “Our survey shows that the importance of having a strong search strategy is critical; otherwise, it’s a case of ‘out of sight, out of mind’.”

Captivate Digital is the new digital media division launched by Starcom Mediavest Ireland in conjunction with the Publicis Group. It provides a range of services such as search engine marketing, email, mobile and affiliate marketing, media planning and buying, as well as measurement and analytics.

According to Dunne, Google dominates the Irish search market and is the most popular search engine for driving traffic to Irish websites each month. Captivate believes spending on the online advertising market in Ireland will grow by 54pc this year to €33m – 3pc of the total estimated ad spend in the country and some way short of the UK figure which represents just over 10pc of the total market.

By Gordon Smith