13 Feb 2012

Google Analytics has updated the default Search Engines List

WebMasters using Google Analytics know that the Organic Traffic Data (Traffic-Sources -> Sources -> Search -> Organic) is automatically populated on the basis of default search engines list maintained by Google.

Daniel Waisberg at Search Engine Land, says he has confirmed with Google that a few more search engines have been added to the list - rakuten.co.jp, biglobe.ne.jp, goo.ne.jp, and startisden.no/sok, search.conduit.com, search. babylon.com, search-results.com, isearch.avg.com, search.comcast.net, and search.incredimail.com. 

Google has also fixed a long-pending issue of how they they recognized search engines. Before this change, if a URL contained the word “search” and a query parameter “q”, Google would attribute it to the search engine search.com, which led to inaccurate reports, especially as a consequence of big customized search engines, such as Conduit, Babylon and others.

Earlier, whenever I looked at the Organic Search Traffic Sources data, the data attributed to "search" (search.com) always mystified me. The search.com source always looked to be heavily over counted.

It seems that from 1s
t-Feb-2012, GA has changed the logic, such that customized search engines (as the ones shown in the list below) will not be shown as search.com.




The GA has also explicitly added known large customized search engines with “search” in their domain referrer to the list of known search engines:

    http://search.conduit.com
    http://search.babylon.com
    http://search-results.com
    http://isearch.avg.com
    http://search.comcast.net
    http://search.incredimail.com

Basically, if you receive a large amount of organic traffic, you will probably see your search.com organic traffic going down, and other search engines will start to appear as a source (such as the customized search engines shown in the list above). But your Google or Bing organic will not change.


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