Examining My Google Search Traffic

Lisa Irby talked about checking your Analytics for top searches for what visitors are finding on your website. It’s been a while since I looked for advice (and followed that advice), so now is as good a time as any. I’ve never seen someone reveal their top 10 search analytics like this do this on their website, so here’s my top 10. Let’s look at the results and make an assessment…

Top Google Searches From 2/1/2010 – 8/26/2011

Rank	Term                             Visits	Pages/Visit Avg. Time % New Visits Bounce Rate
							
1	mark zuckerberg		         1,657	1.26	    0:00:13   87.51%	   77.37%
2	how to make green tea taste good 632	1.17	    0:00:30   95.57%	   94.78%
3	jeremy johnson		         541	3.42	    0:06:10   43.07%	   45.66%
4	the ant philosophy		 289	2.16	    0:03:50   66.09%	   66.78%
5	fear of competition		 269	1.29	    0:01:24   93.31%	   85.13%
6	ant philosophy		         265	1.37	    0:01:41   60.38%	   87.55%
7	approach motivation		 202	1.34	    0:00:31   89.60%	   88.12%
8	hedgehog concept		 150	1.83	    0:01:55   85.33%	   64.67%
9	self talk discs		         130	7.98	    0:24:45   3.08%	   18.46%
10	blank multiplication table	 111	1.23        0:00:13   72.07%	   80.18%

Assessment

My first thought is…. What the? I need to find a picture that represents these terms. Ah, I think I’ve found one. Here it is:

Paint Splatter

So far, I’ve been fairly adept at flinging paint on the wall. I certainly can come up with good ideas and even thought provoking articles. These top 10 analytics terms tell me that I’m all over the place. I still do not have a true and common theme for my website. But more on that in a minute. Here’s some conclusions about my search traffic I wish to share:

Old Age is King for Google Search Traffic

The newest page in this list is the seeing Mark Zuckerberg speak page. This was on March 25, 2011. That was about 5 months ago. All of the other pages are close to or more than a year old. This tells me Google places heavy weight on age of content and possibly the age of the website. I don’t think this is the only way to get website visitors, but if you’re just looking to write content and have Google send you traffic, then patience and time are two necessary ingredients it appears…

But an Image Search Might Get You Traffic

I found an image of Mark Zuckerberg that I put in the article about hearing him speak. In 5 months, Mark Zuckerberg has vaulted to the top of my search terms at almost TRIPLE the rate of any other term.

On Yahoo, the image I have is 5th from the left, top row.
On Bing, I’m also 5th from the left on the top row for a Mark Zuckerberg search.

This leads me to conclude that the two share image search services.

Roughly 90% of the searches for Mark Zuckerberg are coming from Google. However, I cannot find in Google image search where my image is. But I’m certainly getting at least 25% of my traffic each day from an image search of Mark Zuckerberg from Google. This is simply information though – none of the traffic is very sticky, leaving comments, or asking me to coach them, so it’s really just bad traffic.

A successful page

The Ant Philosophy has two search terms, “the ant philosophy” and “ant philosophy”. It also has 22 comments (11 of which are my replies), and didn’t take very long for me to write. I simply used what I learned from Jim Rohn and expounded on what he said. In my mind, it’s one of my best articles here on my website. This page is over a year old, has a lot of comments, and at least has a small demand for people typing it in to Google for a search. It’s a small victory :)

Finding My Voice

I’m not exactly sure what to focus on here on my website yet. For a year and a half, it’s been a journey to see what that really is. But I’ve got to make a firm decision soon. I can’t just go on forever exploring as not many people will find what I have to say useful – there’s just too much variation in what I talk about to invoke interest – people want to know about something specific (at least I do). A random collage of information is nice to look at and read, but it won’t actually create a community of people that I can offer my books and services to. A change is indeed in order I think…

What to change it to? Perhaps a focus on my writing as an author. I’m close to having a finished book and that is significant. But I’m not convinced yet that is the right direction to go. So in the mean time, I’ll just keep writing about what I think is interesting.

Conclusion

A hard look at my search analytics leads me to conclude that I’m all over the place right now. There is some bizarre traffic for Mark Zuckerberg to my site from Google searches right now and that just tells me Google has some “funkiness” in their search algorithm that could be further studied to see what the hole is there. Either way, I must find my real voice here on this website and find a common set of topics to talk about. Is it writing? Is it technology? What is IT?

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