The Bright Side Of Not Provided

runningshoesminimalist-600x356 It’s been a few weeks since Google rocked our worlds and stripped keyword-level data from the referrer, so it’s time to examine the fallout and see what’s changed in the world of search marketing. Surprisingly, not much. Keywords were beacons of insight – fantastic beacons – but keywords were a double-edged sword leading us to create content that unnecessarily repeated specific terms for an ideal keyword density. Writing for a bot rather than for the user is not optimizing for user experience, so Google did something about it. Google head spam-fighter Matt Cutts said it himself [...]


Gathering New Keyword Insights In A (Not Provided) World

ML-10-2013-2 Not Provided is all anyone is talking about these days -- with good reason. Holding data hostage and forcing users to buy ads to see it is pretty dirty pool, in my opinion. Most of my clients cannot lay out the money just to grab data, so we've had to come up with some creative ways to see information at a keyword level. I've shared previously how using a "Not Provided Filter" can give you insights into landing pages that are triggered by a keyword search. If you know the landing page, you can extrapolate and "guess" what the keywords might be. This is great if you have time to really loo [...]


Google’s [Not Provided] At 87% Of Google Search Traffic To Major News Sites [Report]

no-keywords-not-provided-featured If you've been hoping that the hypocrisy of Google hiding keyword referral data from natural search traffic but still sharing it with advertisers would get some attention from the mainstream press, this might help: New data from Parse.ly shows that 87 percent of all Google organic traffic to some of the biggest news sites on the web is now [not provided]. Parse.ly -- which we've written about before -- is a content optimization platform that's used by the likes of Reuters, The Atlantic, U.S. News & World Report, the Dallas Morning News, Mashable, The Next Web and others. The company put [...]


How To Use The New AdWords Estimated Cross-Device Conversions

column-set-600x497 A couple of months after the paid search world had to transition to AdWords Enhanced Campaigns in the name of simplified and more relevant cross-device ad management, we are finally getting some initial food for thought with regard to cross-device performance. I called it the "next frontier for online marketers" in a previous post, and we are now officially getting there! In AdWords, a new column called "Est. total conv." (aka Estimated Total Conversions) was made available for some beta accounts recently.  How should marketers be looking at this newly-available data? Find out w [...]


“100% Not Provided Is Not The End Of SEO” Insider Opinions On Google’s Move To Withhold Data

Not Provided Earlier this week, Google revealed it would be encrypting all search data, rendering website owners unable to see search term information previously offered through the "referrer" system. While Google had encrypted the data two years ago for searches performed by users signed in to their Google account, and then earlier this year for any searches from the Chrome omnibox, the decision to withhold all data - regardless if a user is signed in or not - left many SEO insiders surprised it happened so suddenly. To take a pulse of the industry, we've published reactions to the "100% not provide [...]


Post-PRISM, Google Confirms Quietly Moving To Make All Searches Secure, Except For Ad Clicks

keywords-not-provided-featured In the past month, Google quietly made a change aimed at encrypting all search activity -- except for clicks on ads. Google says this has been done to provide "extra protection" for searchers, and the company may be aiming to block NSA spying activity. Possibly, it's a move to increase ad sales. Or both. Welcome to the confusing world of Google secure search. Two Years Ago: Secure Searching For Logged-In Users In October 2011, Google began encrypting searches for anyone who was logged into Google. The reason given was privacy. Google said it wanted to block anyone who might potentially be ea [...]


Key Metrics For Success With A Local Business Website

SEL LSA 3 There’s a lot of literature out there discussing what local businesses can do to improve their websites, ranging from boosting search visibility through targeted keywords to leveraging content like video to keep visitors engaged. But what's often missing from these conversations are broader discussions about the importance of analytics in providing local businesses with ongoing and targeted insights into which content, functions and flow are working on their websites (and which are not). No business owner, marketing guru or website developer can build and maintain a great website in an [...]


Google’s Plan To Withhold Search Data & Create New Advertisers

Not Provided How do you convince a bunch of publishers to buy ads on your service? If you're Google, how about withholding data from those publishers about how people are finding their sites, as a way to drive them into your ad system? I don't think Google planned for this to happen. But that's the end result, in what could be called the "Not Provided" scheme. "Dark Google" Nearly Two Years Old In October 2011 -- nearly two years ago now -- "Dark Google" was born. Google began holding back information it previously gave to publishers for free, "referrer data" that let publishers understand the exact term [...]


6 SEO Challenges Every Business Owner & Marketer Must Contend With In 2014

seo-featured There isn't much left of this year. Companies that haven't started planning their marketing strategy and budgeting for 2014 must begin soon. When it comes to online marketing, most businesses rely excessively upon Web analytics to decide what was (or wasn't) effective. What they find affects future decisions about where to invest time and money. Even radical decisions like firing internal staff, replacing an SEO consultant/agency, or doing away with SEO altogether are made on the basis of data thrown up by their stats package. SEO consultants like ourselves need to report results and pro [...]


Report: Google’s Not Provided Reached 49% & Much Higher In Technology Industry

Not Provided BrightEdge has released a report showing that for the 8,400 brands they tracked over the last quarter, 49% of the queries collected did not provide (i.e. not provided) search query data due to Google's secure search. 49% was the average, in fact, it is higher for the technology industry. BrightEdge said that "56% of traffic to computer, electronics, software and technology sites is coming from Google secure search." On the low end, such as in the entertainment and consumer services sites, the percentage of secure searches is 46%. Guess what, it is even worse for search sites. For my sear [...]


Rejoice! Safari Is Once Again Providing Google Referral Information In iOS

apple-safari-featured Since last September, people using Safari on iOS devices and searching on Google have appeared to publishers as if they came directly to their sites, not via Google. Now, the problem has ended, with iOS now apparently having been upgraded to support the "meta referrer" tag. No, this doesn't solve the "not provided" issue, where Google itself may strip search terms used to find a site from the referrer passed to publishers. However, at least people should now appear as if they came from Google Search generally, rather than as if they were "direct" visitors. With iOS 7, Apple's new iOS upd [...]


Google Adds Enhanced Campaigns Bid Adjustment Reporting To Google Analytics

google-analytics-square-logo Google announced today that Bid Adjustments reports for AdWords enhanced campaigns are now included in Google Analytics. The reporting, found in the Advertising section under Traffic Sources in Analytics, are designed to help advertisers analyze the performance of each bid adjustment within a campaign -- by device, location and time of day. You'll notice in the Google-provided screenshot example above, there are columns for Revenue and Ecommerce Conversion Rate in the Summary view. These metrics are available when Ecommerce tracking is enabled in Google Analtyics, allowing you to analyze [...]


Finally, Auto-Tag Bing Ads URLs For Google Analytics: Bizible Debuts Free Tool

checkbox The ability to auto-tag destination URLs in Bing Ads has been one of top product requests for the platform for years now. Manual URL tagging is ire-inducing, error-prone and a real impediment to many advertisers even running campaigns on Bing Ads. If you use Google Analytics and don't tag your Bing Ads URLs, that traffic shows up as organic, and you lose insights into how your campaigns are performing post-click. Why Bing Ads hasn't addressed this problem, I honestly don't know -- especially considering the great effort they've put into the "Import from Google AdWords" functionality. Ent [...]


New AdWords Integration For Analytics Changes Campaign Name Reporting

Google has announced a new AdWords integration for Google Analytics that starts rolling out today. The biggest immediate change is that campaign names in Analytics will reflect the lastest naming in AdWords. Currently, if you rename a campaign, the data shows up in Google Analytics separately under each name. Now, campaign data will be reported in aggregate under the latest name in AdWords. This is handy if all you're doing is changing naming conventions -- you'll no longer have to keep tabs on campaign name changes and add up stats from each iteration. However, if your new campaign [...]


Measuring The Effect Of Semantic Markup On Your Search Traffic

There’s a lot of buzz these days around the wonderful world of Schema, semantic markup, and rich snippets -- much of it centered around the increased click-through rates from SERPs and other amazing SEO benefits such markup provides. But, once you've added the markup to your website, how do you measure the results? The ability to do this has been rather limited to date, though annotations make it much easier than it ever was. (If you’re not using annotations on a regular basis, get yourself in the habit -- you'll thank me later.) Before you build any report, think about what informatio [...]


Linking AdWords And Google Analytics Accounts Finally Gets Easier

Linking your AdWords and Google Analytics accounts opens up a whole new world of opportunity for campaign execution, management and analysis. Yet, the linking process has been cumbersome and not particularly intuitive. That is finally changing. In the coming weeks, Google will be rolling out a simpler linking process--down to just three clicks--to all Analytics accounts. The New Process From the Admin section of your Analytics account, you'll click on "AdWords Linking" in the Accounts column and then on "New Link" to follow the linking wizard. You can also access this in AdWords by select [...]


Google Claims Searches & Paid Clicks Can Predict Box Office Success With 92% Accuracy

Google admit A newly released white paper from Google claims the search engine can predict a movie's opening weekend performance within 92 percent accuracy based on search query and paid click volume. After evaluating search and paid click data for 99 top box office films in 2012, Google correlated the data with each film's success by analyzing search and paid click volume during the seven day window prior to the film's release date. According to Google, if 250,000 more search queries happen for one film over a similar film, the film with the most search queries is likely to generate up to $4.3 milli [...]


Mystery Solved: Why Mobile Safari Searchers Appear To Come “Direct” To Sites Rather Than Via Google

Mobil Safari Icon Since September, people using Safari in iOS 6 and searching on Google have appeared to publishers as if they've come directly to their sites, as opposed to having been driving by search. At last, the reason behind the Dark Google cut-off of data has been found: mobile Safari doesn't support the "meta referrer" tag. I know. Publishers who have been closely watching this situation are probably thinking that the reason was already known. It was Google Secure Search, and how Google's change to that back in October 2011 to withhold search terms means anything using that system will have sea [...]


Tips for Analyzing The Impact Of Your Marketing Activities In Google Analytics

I work with a wide variety of clients across a wide variety of industries, and one of the most common issues I come across is what I call analytics forgetfulness. What typically happens is that a company will devise a plan to improve their online marketing and will implement various changes as a result -- but then, nobody remembers to measure the impact of these changes or otherwise conduct any sort of followup down the road. Email marketing pieces, AdWords changes, even new landing pages are added to a marketing campaign; yet the "when," "how" and "who" are lost in the ether. Below are [...]


Five Reports For Measuring B2B Marketing Effectiveness

Like many online marketing professionals, B2B marketers are obsessed with data. Technological innovation creates phenomenal opportunities for marketers to "slice and dice" information in an effort to create more meaningful lead acquisition strategies. But, innovation might also act as a deterrent and be considerably overwhelming. A recent article on MarketingSherpa discussed their latest survey report on marketing analytics, which indicates that 42% of marketers surveyed believe the ability to act on data to be the most significant challenge they face. Combining data from multiple sources a [...]


Get Our News, Everywhere!

Daily Email:

Follow Search Engine Land on Twitter @sengineland Like Search Engine Land on Facebook Follow Search Engine Land on Google+ Get the Search Engine Land Feed Connect with Search Engine Land on LinkedIn Check out our Tumblr! See us on Pinterest

 
 

Click to watch SMX conference video

Join us at one of our SMX or MarTech events:

United States

Europe

Australia & China

Learn more about: SMX | MarTech


Free Daily Search News Recap!

SearchCap is a once-per-day newsletter update - sign up below and get the news delivered to you!

 


 

Search Engine Land Periodic Table of SEO Success Factors

Get Your Copy
Read The Full SEO Guide