[Keep in mind, as always, these posts are my personal expression and are in no way endorsed by my wonderful employer.]
I have recently become a big fan of web analytics services, and, being a data junkie, I have been semi-obsessively tracking how folks get to my blog. According to data from MeasureMap, over the last three months, 8.6% of you who landed somewhere upon the pages of blog came to me by way of a search engine (versus by following a link, directly inputting the address, or clicking through on a feed reader). Where it gets interesting though, is when we behold the actual terms for which users were searching when they clicked through to my blog.
For instance, these are the 20 most frequent searches from Google.com that landed on my blog (in order of frequency):
Chris Sacca google
chris sacca blog
christopher sacca google
"chris sacca" google
google chris sacca
christopher sacca blog
chris sacca what is left
"christopher sacca" google
No need to apply any real science here. These all make sense to me. People searching for my name or the name of my blog should be pointed to my blog, right? I have also written about my brother Brian Sacca, so it's fair to send searchers for his name to me. I posted an extended entry a month ago about the band Devotchka, and it's been linked to a bit, so I am fine with a few searches for them landing on my piece.
All told, by my very back-of-the-envelope approach, these would all appear to be quality search results. As in, the users who were searching for each of those terms and ended up on my blog would likely rate their search experience worthwhile. (This is certainly not to imply that they would enjoy the content once they got here.)
Yet, when we consider the 20 most frequent terms that led Yahoo.com searchers to my blog, things become a little less clear:
chris sacca blog
chris sacca google
So, up to this point, their users are having a fabulous search experience. But, going forward it looks like there is a wrench in the works at Yahoo:
compilation of persuasive writing
matisyahu live at stubb's free download
footnotes on Essay barbara Ehrenreich, "nickel and dimed: On (Not) getting by in america"
bulldozer reggae song
King Without a Crown (-Matisyahu Live at Stubb's) lyrics
every bod hate chris
beastie boys lyrics +they call obesity an epidemic
review of george winston concert
just shoot me astralwerks six feet under
beastie boys hits +obesity epidemic
What is The Pogues best album
Whoa, whoa. What gives? Sure, some of these things are mentioned in passing within these pages. Nickel and Dimed gets a nod in a sidebar that tracks books I read, and the same for Matisyahu on the music list. But 'bulldozer reggae song'? The word 'bulldozer' occurs exactly once in the text and it has nothing to do with reggae. Hmm. What is the rest of this stuff? Once again, there is no science being applied here, and my methodology may prove to be bunk, but my simple read leaves me thinking that most of these searchers left my site without finding that which they originally sought.
Searchers coming to my site from Microsoft's MSN have similarly taken some strange paths to get here:
Okay, let's pause here for a second. Yes, you read correctly. MSN sent more people looking for Tawana Brawley to my blog than people looking for me. Huh? Sure, I mentioned Tawana once in a post two years ago about Al Sharpton. A quick check of the MSN index and it looks like I am thankfully no longer in the results of this search for Ms. Brawley. But, I must have been in the last three months. Hopefully for MSFT, this is a permanent improvement. However, it looks like there is a lot of work left to be done:
how to get him to propose
mc hammer videos
ideas for proposing Proposing to a man
Chris Sacca google
can't touch this MC hammer
Shhhh Vol. 21
inspiring speech topics
funny 'busier than' quotes
can't touch this
Fifth HOPE Speeches Woz
police + powerpoints
moto razr v3 payment plan
Inspiring school powerpoints
Oh, man. These are all over the map. A few are almost arbitrary. While some of these individual words are scattered among the thousands I have written on my blog, it's hard to believe I would be in the results for many of these searches. I have very little advice to offer for people looking to buy RAZRs on a payment plan, and I am fresh out of guidance as to how cops use Powerpoint.
I am in no position to vouch for the statistical significance of my search logs versus others, and I clearly would not consider myself an independent observer of this space. I am nowhere near enough of an engineer to affirm the value of these findings. However, on a comparative basis within these data, the Google results leave me feeling comfortable with my favorite search engine.
I am interested to hear what is in your logs. How do searchers get to your blog? Are my results typical? What can I conclude from this? Anything?