So Google Instant has been live for a while now and Google said it would change how people search, make it faster, more efficient and help them search differently.
Conductor released a study that is showing otherwise. In short, Conductor is saying searcher behavior has not changed since Google Instant launched. Conductor said:
The data is telling in what it doesn’t show: if Instant was having a significant impact on searcher behavior we would expect to see things like a percentage of longer tail visits (4+ words) leaking back into the head (<=3 word terms ) as searchers click on Instant results before they get to the end of their intended query.
By now, after looking at chart after chart of visitor metrics that appear nearly identical from one period to the next you are probably getting the sense that little has changed after Google rolled out Instant with much fanfare a little more than a month ago. The traffic data suggests searchers are searching the same way they always have and, with a month of getting used to Instant already behind them theres nothing that indicates that will change any time soon.
Not all webmasters agree, but from what I see and here - it seems most webmaster would agree. Search referrers, traffic, conversions and so on have not changed for the most part. Google is saying that searchers are finding search results faster, but ultimately I guess it isn't changing how they search.
Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.