Search Marketing News & Views from Our Man on the Street

Don’t Be Evil. Just Be Kind of Smarmy

Wow. We all kind of knew this day was coming, but it still stings a bit. According to Search Engine Watch (SEW), Google has pulled the plug on sending keywords data for natural searches.

“Nearly two years after making one of the biggest changes to secure search that resulted in a steady rise in “(not provided)” data, Google has switched all searches over to encrypted searches using HTTPS. This means no more keyword data will be passed to site owners.”

Of course, you can still get data on paid search terms, and you can certainly draw many correlations from that data, but losing natural search keyword data altogether just leaves a huge gap that paid search can’t entirely fill. You might call it “unfair” or maybe even “mean”, but they can do what they want to do with their data. And make no mistake, it is their data. A move like this simply draws the battle lines and makes a huge statement, something akin to “us versus them”.

You had to be blind to to miss this. We all knew it was coming even if we hoped it wouldn’t. It will be interesting to see how tools like SEMrush and Raven respond with SEMrush still scraping search data while Raven is using the Google API. How this all plays out will be interesting indeed.