Google Search Volume Experiment


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Google Search Volume Experiment

  1. 1. Can Queries (and Clicks) Influence Rankings?<br />Visual results from a Google experiment<br />Rand Fishkin, CEO + Co-founder, SEOmoz<br />August 2011<br />
  2. 2. I Ran an Experiment<br />http:/<br />Original post here:<br />
  3. 3. Trying to Change These SERPs:<br />Note ranks #4 in the original (taken August 3rd at 1:40pm Pacific)<br />http:/<br />Original screenshot here:<br />
  4. 4. Also Promoted on Twitter<br />http:/<br />Tweet post:!/randfish/status/98857476040040450<br />
  5. 5. Results After 2 Hours<br />At 3:40pm (2 hours later), the site is now ranking #3 and #4.<br />http:/<br />Screenshot with that timestamp:<br />
  6. 6. Total Clicks on the URLs<br />Twitter URL<br />Google Plus URL<br /> stats for each can be seen here: and here:<br />http:/<br />
  7. 7. Google Analytics Data<br />Note the higher bounce rate and shorter time on site due to the nature of the traffic<br /> stats for each can be seen here: and here:<br />http:/<br />
  8. 8. This Change Only Lasted ~18 Hours<br />Back down to ranking #4 by 9:28am on August 4th.<br />http:/<br />Screenshot of 1 day later here:<br />
  9. 9. But then… It Changed Again?!<br />Whoa! Suddenly ranking #1 and #2 (~48 hours after falling back to position #4)<br />http:/<br />Screenshot of this result (from Monday) here:<br />
  10. 10. Maybe it was just on-page changes?<br />Note use of words “travel” and “blog” in this post’s intro.<br />And their conspicuous lack of existence in this post (which was at the top when the experiment began)<br />http:/<br />Screenshot of this result (from Monday) here:<br />
  11. 11. Others Have Shown Sustained Volume Creates Sustained Rankings<br />Martin MacDonald of OMD explains here:<br />http:/<br />
  12. 12. At no time before, during or after the experiment has the site ranked in the top 1,000 results (first 100 pages) for “travel blog”<br />If search volume can influence queries the way Martin suggested, it clearly takes a higher quantity, more diversity or perhaps other factors than what I could trigger in my experiment.<br />http:/<br />
  13. 13. Conclusions?<br /><ul><li> Still mostly TBD, in my opinion
  14. 14. Google doesn’t seem to be easily manipulated by a few hundred queries
  15. 15. CTR may have impacted rankings here, but it could just have been the new blog post containing the keywords in a prominent position.
  16. 16. Google+ Wow! Drove more than 50% of the volume that Twitter did. That’s remarkable in and of itself, given that I have <1/3rd the “followers” on GG+ as Twitter.</li>
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