Posted • November 25, 2009 • 6 Comments
Using Google Analytics to Examine Search Traffic from Google, Yahoo, Bing, and other Search Engines
When you install Google analytics on your web site you will have access to a wealth of knowledge about all the search engines sending you traffic. Just how you use these Google analytics is dependent upon what you are looking to accomplish.
Today we are going to examine what search engines are sending traffic, how much traffic, and what search terms visitors are using to find you.
(Post from Search Engine Optimizician.)
I have created the following tables using my web site’s Google analytics.
|Top 20 of 1233 Total Search Strings|
|2||52||2.78%||seo tips and tricks|
|3||34||1.82%||google live search|
|4||19||1.02%||craigslist secret code scam|
|5||19||1.02%||motorola droid radiation|
|7||16||0.86%||networking games ideas|
|8||13||0.69%||dutch bros stickers|
|9||9||0.48%||ardan michael blum|
|11||8||0.43%||google pictures search|
|13||7||0.37%||how to change theme on droid|
|14||7||0.37%||microsoft email scam|
|15||7||0.37%||verizon droid radiation|
|16||6||0.32%||craigslist code scam|
|17||6||0.32%||motorola droid themes|
|18||6||0.32%||rebecca claire kensington|
|19||6||0.32%||themes for droid|
|Search Engine Sent Traffic|
|#||Search Engine||Visits||Pages/Visit||% New Visits|
|#||Source||Visits||Pages/Visit||% New Visits|
Can We Leverage all these Numbers from Google Analytics?
Where is our traffic coming from?
Checking the traffic sources we see that Google has sent us 2,070 unique visitors so far this month, followed by 384 direct visits (these are from visitors entering the URL directly into the browser or using a book mark). Google Images has sent us 129 visits followed by Bing with 109 visits and Yahoo with 82 visits. As you can see from the Traffic Sources table we are also getting traffic from twitter and LinkedIn.
What search engines are sending us traffic and how much traffic are they sending us?
From above we learned that the search engine sending us the majority of our traffic is Google followed by Bing, Yahoo, AOL, Ask, Alltheweb, and Lycos. The search engine labeled “search” in the table is the rest of the search engines combined. Alltheweb, and Lycos together are only responsible for 6 unique visitors.
What search terms are our visitors using to find us with the search engines?
While “SEO blog” is at the top of the list this doesn’t necessarily mean that it is actually the most popular topic bringing visitors to our site. There have been 1,233 search terms and/or phrases that searchers have been using to visit our site. Just by examining the top 20 search strings we can see that “droid” has been responsible for 61 visits. To use your Google Analytics properly you will need to examine them wide and deep to extract the answers to the questions you have.
Analyzing the Analytics
We have just been looking on the surface of the information available. If you add the “% New Visits” into the mix we will really start getting to the value of this information. Google brought us 2,070 visitors but only 94.59% of them are new visitors. This tells us Google has brought us 1,958 new visitors this month. While Bing is only responsible for 109 visitors 107 of them were first timers. Yahoo has brought us 82 visitors, 77 of them new. AOL has brought 26 visitors and only 22 of them have been new.
Now lets throw in the “Pages/Visit” column into the mix. Google’s 2,070 visitors have viewed 2,504 pages, that boils down to 2,369 pages being seen by first time visitors. While Bing has sent only 109 visitors they have viewed 157 pages and 154 of them were viewed by new visitors. Yahoo’s 82 visitors have viewed 106 pages and 99 of them by new visitors. AOL while only bringing 26 visitors they are responsible for over 53 page views.
As you can see from the above examples each search engine brings it’s own brand of visitor. While Google is bringing the lion’s share of the search traffic the visitors don’t spend as much time or visit as many pages as Bing, Yahoo, or AOL. AOL is bringing the most return visitors per visit as well as the most page views.
How much information do you want to glean from your Google Analytics?
How much time are you willing to spend finding that information?
Is the information you are looking for worth it?
These are the questions I ask myself when I delve into the analytics world. You can spend hours, days, weeks, and even months working with analytics and still not have anything more valuable than you had when you looked at them and decided to dive in.
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