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Google Analytics - What's in it for them?

Discussion in 'Google Analytics' started by stephenmunday, Nov 15, 2005.

  1. #1
    There is no such thing as a free lunch, so why is Google offering this free service? I will throw in my idea, then let the conspiracy theorizing begin.

    Up to now, Google has been focusing all of its number-crunching on figuring out which websites are best for certain topics (keywords). The problem is that they have only been able to see this side of the equation, but have had no idea of what happens once a visitor enters the site itself. However now, with the data from Google Analytics, they will have the other half of the picture too.

    For example, say my site ranks well for the keywords "Japanese name translation". People visit my site from these SERPs and, since it does actually have a fair amount of content concerned with this topic, these visitors (a) stay for a reasonable period of time and (b) visit a number of pages. This latter data is now available for them through my Google Analytics stats. Now, say my site (for some reason) also ranked well for the term "banana podcasts". However, the Analytics data would show that visitors' time on site and number of page views are low for this keyphrase. Google could then use this time on site and number of page views per visit to determine whether a site should be given an additional boost up or push down the rankings.

    Now, the problem with this is that not everyone will install the Google Analytics code. Blatant Spammers in particular may be wary. But even in this case, Google would be able to use users' reactions to the site (as shown by the Analytics data) in comparison with how their algorithm analyzed the site. So if the algorithm thought the site should rank particularly high for keyword A, but users did not seem to stay long when they entered through those SERPs, Google would at least be able to understand from this that there was some discrepancy between the algorithm's and users' perspectives.
    SEMrush
    That's my thoughts for now. What do you think Google has to gain from offering us a powerful stats package for free?
     
    stephenmunday, Nov 15, 2005 IP
    Merkersarl and Foggy like this.
    SEMrush
  2. Interlogic

    Interlogic Peon

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    #2
    Google are very clear about what's in it for them:

    They want your PPC Budget and this is the perfect lure. I for example have setup the analytics tracking on a site that I currently have no PPC budget for but as soon as I start spending any money on advertising I will be using adwords because of the power it's integration with the analytics has.
     
    Interlogic, Nov 15, 2005 IP
  3. Merkersarl

    Merkersarl Peon

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    #3
    So you believe that getting people to use Adwords is the sole (or biggest) return Google is hoping for?
     
    Merkersarl, Nov 15, 2005 IP
  4. my3cents

    my3cents Peon

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    #4
    Personally I think they have already been tracking how users get to our site(s) and navigate them (at least partially) since most of us run their Adsense code. The only difference here is that we may now give them access to every page view, where before it may not have been.

    So I agree with both of the above. Their motivation is both redirecting analytics money into adwords AND improving their ranking algorithm.
     
    my3cents, Nov 15, 2005 IP
  5. Interlogic

    Interlogic Peon

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    #5
    Not necessarily but what I am saying is that analytics isn't 100% free. Everyone is looking for the catch and I am pointing out the big one that everyone seems to be missing.
     
    Interlogic, Nov 15, 2005 IP
  6. dzcap

    dzcap Well-Known Member

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    #6
    What's Yahoo doing about this?
     
    dzcap, Nov 15, 2005 IP
  7. stephenmunday

    stephenmunday Peon

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    #7
    Well, Adwords already has facilities for tracking conversions. Yes, this is the icing on the cake for Adwords users, but it is a heck of a lot of icing to be offering for free.

    I have been using Statcounter up to now, but with G Analytics, I get up to 5,000,000 free page views per month. With Statcounter I get 100 enties in my log file for free, or 10,000 for $19.99. I have been getting the latter, but now my site is covered with G Analytics - plus it promises to be better. And if I ever need more than 5 million per month, I can always spend $20 on Adwords to generate an "active" Adwords account and get unlimited page views for what I used to pay Statcounter for much less.

    The other thing is that if you have over 5 million page views per month, you are probably already advertising extensively to get all these visitors, and it would be surprising if part of that advertising mix was Adwords anyway.

    So, overall, I don't buy it that Google is doing this simply to lure us all into Adwords. The incentive is not big enough.
     
    stephenmunday, Nov 15, 2005 IP
  8. Merkersarl

    Merkersarl Peon

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    #8
    >> So, overall, I don't buy it that Google is doing this simply to lure us all into Adwords. The incentive is not big enough.

    I agree. But I'm stunned that people just don't seem interested in asking the questions. I'll steer clear of it for the moment as I've been around long enough to know that nothing is really ever completely free. And, I'm not convinced that the market is fully aware of what Google expects to get from this.
     
    Merkersarl, Nov 17, 2005 IP
  9. DaVe™

    DaVe™ Peon

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    #9
    google just wants to know EVERYTHING, quite simply. Well done to them :)
     
    DaVe™, Aug 15, 2006 IP
  10. san77

    san77 Peon

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    #10
    i dont think soo........ google offering free package with out any benifit , think for a while and decide whether google is offering are admiring.
     
    san77, Oct 9, 2006 IP