• http://plus.google.com/+LarryEngel?rel=author LarryEngel

    STOP THE PRESS! Google to stop providing keyword data in AdWords? I highly doubt that. They would essentially have to do away with Exact Match and Phrase Match. Hmmm… maybe that’s the plan?!

  • Mambo Man

    I assume this means the “keyword details” or whatever they call it in the Adwords keywords tab?

    Or are they going to restrict MSQ’s in analytics. MSQ’s are the only way big advertisers can gather data to make money.

    Take away MSQ data and it will be very hard to segment ad groups/campaigns. In other words, hard to turn a decent ROI!

  • Yehoshua Coren

    The “keyword” dimension in Google Analytics, when auto-tagging is enabled, is not based upon the search referrer, but rather GA imports the keyword that was bid upon in GA and matches it with the click. The actual search query is shown in a separate “matched search query” report.

    I’m interested to see if Google will go so far as to disable their API driven Adwords integration with Google Analytics, in addition to removing the search parameter from the HTTP referrer headers. In other words, will they kill more than the “matched searched query” report?

  • http://alphaefficiency.com/ Bojan Djordjevic

    Even if they do, you can still backwards engineer your keywords and impressions through exact match and phrase match. This is just a publicity PR stunt.

    More work for PPC managers, and making us more valuable in the process.

  • http://www.seopros.org Terry Van Horne

    is more like they are basically cutting the API off at the knees… can still get the data in adwords, apps like Raven which I believe uses the API would be SOL

  • http://www.seopros.org Terry Van Horne

    of course don’t be shocked if the next announcement is the Google Adwords API starts charging

  • Guest

    curious about what this means for the “matched search queries” report as well, it’s a pretty valuable tool, especially if you’re doing anything outside of exact match.

  • https://chuckreynolds.us Chuck Reynolds

    uh read -> “Google will cease supplying 3rd parties with paid search query data”..

    keywords there… “3rd party”.

  • http://leve.rs Jonathan Kressaty

    I think there’s confusion here based upon a poorly-worded article. I’d imagine what this means is that you may stop receiving keyword data for Google Analytics accounts that don’t already have the Google AdWords connection setup. This would simultaneously solve the hypocrisy argument, and also bolster adoption of the new AdWords/Analytics connection – theoretically increasing visibility into AdWords performance, and increasing revenue (emphasis on “theoretically”).

  • Gareth Kersey

    If this were to go through, definitely seems like a move by Google to get advertisers to become more dependent on their technology. Right now advertisers can attribute conversions through referrer data, but with this change advertisers would have to rely on AdWords conversion pixel to get conversion data down to the query level. Pain for advertisers, but would make sense for Google.

  • http://www.bryantgarvin.com/ Bryant Garvin

    From everything is seems like this is really only going to affect “search queries”, but that is going to be a HUGE problem for those who do not have their accounts organized well.

    This is also going to be a huge issue with all of the 3rd party tools like Raven, Kenshoo, Marin etc because they are getting the query data out of the referrer data, not the “search query report” in AdWords which appears that is still going to be available. Makes me wonder how and if this will affect DoubleClick (Google’s owned paid management tool)

  • http://www.bryantgarvin.com/ Bryant Garvin

    I am not 100% sure that this has been stated. We could very easily lose the search query data in Analytics to make things on par with Organic, which is what everybody is saying is trying to happen.
    However just like Google Webmaster Tools still provides a small subset of 90 day keyword data, the same may apply to Analytics. Honestly though, we should all quit freaking out because like with Enhanced Campaigns, if they go this way there is really nothing we can do but adjust how we manage campaigns to make sure that we have the most control and visibility within out power.

  • http://www.seo-theory.com/ Michael Martinez

    It sounds to me like you’ll still see aggregate keyword data in the AdWords dashboard. You just won’t see site-specific paid referral data in analytics.

  • Roman M

    Not in Adwords…in Analytics

  • http://andrescholten.net/ André Scholten

    Hi Yehoshua, my guess is that Google will only kill the “matched search query” report. It’s not a coincidence they released an improved analytics-adwords link tool a few days ago.

  • http://www.batchmaster.com/ Shailendra Sial

    It will be a disaster for marketers! How will we know on which “exact match” keyword the ad was clicked? We are paying for it then why take it away from us?

  • Yehoshua Coren

    @AndreScholten:disqus I tend to agree. I think they’ll strip the http referral header and then update their integration with GA so that they don’t look bad by passing search queries to GA via API. Can you imagine the outcry if only GA users had access to matched search queries?

    (not provided) for keywords themselves seems highly unlikely.

  • http://www.inbound.co.uk/ Nick Pateman

    I doubt there is any truth to this. Shareholders and marketers alike will be very pissed off. This does not make good business sense, especially when you look at the actual reality behind the ‘privacy’ concerns.

  • James

    Surely you could just have each landing page for each keyword as http://www.example.com/landing.php?source=keyword or would that screw up your CPC?

  • mnieri

    How could it be possible that Google stops telling me what keywords have higher roi or convert more? For an advertiser it would be like playing blindman’s bluff… this is a system thas IS based on keywords. Then people would stop using it. I hardly think it could happen because Adwords is the major source of income of Google

  • http://www.smartsurvey.co.uk Mo

    April Fools.

  • https://www.sunnyreports.com bastienSR

    It is urgent to wait for the official announcements from google ! :)

    It seems stupid from Google to mask the referrer in Adwords. It’s like place bids blindly. I don’t think they will make this choice.

  • http://www.7eyetechnologies.com/ 7eye Technologies

    It is time to build a strong keyword tool that would fulfill requirement of both free(SEO) and paid advertisers. These days, I am highly missing such tools.

  • Scott Davis

    They would have to get rid of broad match and broad match modified, because there would be no way to maintain a negative keyword list effectively or see the matched search query data and make sure you weren’t paying for clicks you didn’t want to pay for. (informational, DIY, review searches, searches for your targeted phrase on someone elses website — tripadvisor, wikipedia, etc). Without said matched search query data, you could only run phrase match or exact match SAFELY and still pay for the clicks you wanted while quasi-controlling the ones you don’t.

    However… if they take away the data, I’m most likely going to have to stop spending money on Google Adwords completely.

  • Scott Davis

    And even harder to prove it to the client. :p

  • Scott Davis


    Love the positive attitude, but clients still have to see ROI on their marketing spending… if you cost more, that ROI goes down, which makes you less valuable compared to other channels that turn higher ROI. May actually end up costing you business instead of making you more money.

  • Mambo Man

    This issue would affect the entire keyword discovery and management process.

    But as stated earlier, there’s really no sense in trying to decrypt the “reports” this article is based upon.

  • http://www.screenpilot.com/ Tom Dibble

    Where mate? Not seeing 3rd party cited. This SEL article also references in their second bullet GA… “- Advertisers may see [not provided] in their Google Analytics reports” – I can’t see that happening myself personally. But GOOG have been known to do some really stupid things in the past.

  • RyanMJones

    I think a lot of people are over reacting here. My instinct tells me that Google will stop providing the keyword in the referer string, however they won’t take the actual keyword away from adwords. Additionally, through use their cookies, server data, and conversion page tagging – I don’t think advertisers will lose any conversion data at the keyword level either.

    I simply think that Google will stop passing it in the referer, but make all of the data available within the adwords platform.

    This will quell the privacy implications since sites won’t be able to tie the actual keyword back to a real person or mash it up with other data collected about the visitor, but can still see which keywords are being used and how they’re performing.

  • https://chuckreynolds.us Chuck Reynolds

    in the original article referenced

  • http://www.jlh-marketing.com/ Jenny Halasz

    In an interesting coincidence, I discovered today that many matched search queries for a client of mine were recorded as “exact match (close variant)” when we have close variants turned off: http://jlh-marketing.com/close-variants-google-adwords-bug/ It underscores the importance of being able to see keyword specific data about your ad spend.

  • http://plus.google.com/+LarryEngel?rel=author LarryEngel

    Very interesting indeed, Jenny. hmmm…

  • Christopher Shaffer

    “Advertisers will continue to have access to useful data to optimize and improve their campaigns and landing pages. For example, you can access detailed information in the AdWords search terms report and the Google Webmaster Tools Search Queries report.” The Theory that google would stop providing data that makes them money doesn’t pass the smell test.

  • Christopher Shaffer

    @chuckreynolds:disqus stop thinking, it’s bad for your health.

  • https://chuckreynolds.us Chuck Reynolds

    heh. being logical is a problem of mine. i’m aware. ;)

  • Li Ma

    Since the official announcement is out now, the biggest question is whether Google will also cut the cord of sharing paid KW data through API to third party marketing platforms and software.

  • http://alphaefficiency.com/ Bojan Djordjevic

    That data needs to be pulled anyway. If you can access it quickly and efficiently, than you become more valuable, than someone who can’t.