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A new study on consumer search behavior this past year reveals consumers are getting more active with business listings in search results.

Consumer actions on business listings grew 17% over the past year. That includes actions such as requesting directions, clicks to call the business, and so on.

This data was reported by Yext in a study on 2020 search trends. The data is drawn from a sample of more than 400,000 US business listings.

One consumer action in particular that’s on the rise is business reviews:

“Consumers are leaving more reviews about businesses. Review count per business location grew 27% over the year. In fact, financial services review volume grew 91% per location, the fastest growth of any industry.”

Businesses are getting better at responding to reviews, with review responses growing 47% year-over-year. This could also contribute to the rise in consumer actions, as it may encourage more people to leave reviews knowing that the business is likely to read and respond.

Search impressions for business listings are up as well, growing 10% over last year, which could account for the rise in consumer actions. Though it’s interesting to see engagement is growing at a faster pace than impressions.

2020 Business Search Trends

Yext analyzed which types of business listings consumers click on throughout the year. Here are some trends they discovered:

January: Healthcare organizations see a 17% jump in clicks to their online listings relative to the previous month.
February: Consumers engage with listings for financial services institutions up to 11% more than the annual average.
March: Real estate listings see a 22% average increase in clicks from February to May.
April: Clicks to phone carrier and telecommunications provider listings in search drop 14% compared to the previous month.
May: Clicks to listings for automotive service providers are up 18% compared to the annual average.
June: Recreation and entertainment listings see an average of 35% increase in clicks. Clicks to hotel listings go up 20%.
August: Store listings go up 18% higher than the annual average. Clicks to listings for educational services go up 18%.
September: Clicks to recreation and entertainment listings drop to 18% below the annual average.
October: Clicks to listings in the education category see a nearly 10% increase compared to September.
November: Clicks to restaurant listings drop 13% below the annual average.
December: Clicks to retail listings 11% more than the annual average. Clicks to hotel listings in search fall to 26% below the annual average.