Analysis of internet prices for a range of consumer goods has found that products are often cheaper the later users delve into Google’s search engine results pages (SERPs).

An AccuraCast study revealed that four of the 12 items (33%) used in the report were cheaper beyond the first page of Google search, whereas just three items (24%) on page one were less pricey than later pages.

Google algorithms showing the most relevant products to consumers could be in for more criticism thanks to AccuraCast discovering that five items (42%) were the same price on page one as they were on the three subsequent pages.

Paid search offers cheapest price

In what will be seen as a win for Google’s PPC product, five of the 12 items researched were cheaper in the search engine’s ads than its organic results, compared to just two being cheaper in the non-paid SERPs.

Commenting on the study, consumer Will Groves’ opinion was that paid search perhaps did not offer the same value as Google’s listings, but he has since changed his mind.

“I never ever click on ads on Google, because those links are being paid for, and I never think they offer the best prices,” Groves said.

“I bought a Sandqvist Stig backpack online for £110. It turns out that exact same backpack would have cost me just £85.58 via a Google ad. I couldn’t believe the saving.”

PPC shopper savings

By analysing 401 UK retailers, price comparison sites and portals along with 880 search results, AccuraCast noted that shoppers could save more than 10% on many items by clicking an ad on page one of Google rather than on its organic results.

Farhad Divecha, managing director of AccuraCast, which researched a range of electronics, clothing and consumer products queries, hinted the onus was on the consumer and not Google to venture into the search engine’s lower rankings.

“When you consider that 95% of web traffic only goes as far as websites listed on the first page of Google, consumers could be spending much more than they need to,” he said.