In my own experience, I’ve watched page views on my content oriented sites significantly increase when I placed my links on I use a horizontal, 4 column navigation bar at the very top of the page. However, I noticed that people also stayed on each page for less amount of time, which meant they were clicking more and reading less. As a publisher who makes money off ads, this is a good thing, but if the content is being ignored due to not having enough scanable substance above the fold it gives me a shaky feeling that the content is not good enough to be fully considered.
One poster called the linked article “VooDoo Science” and made a comment to the effect of “people who dig deeper into the 2 or 3rd page of the results are more likely to buy”. While I disagree with the writing it off as Voodoo Science, I do subscribe to this same notion on a logical level: Someone is looking for something very specific. If it’s not on the first page, that means they are more desperate to find exactly what they are looking for, and if it’s a product or service, they must really want it, and are therefore more easily sold when it comes time to nail them for a purchase.