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Bing Results More Successful than Google? Hitwise Study Says Yes
tedster




msg:4266448
 3:40 pm on Feb 13, 2011 (gmt 0)

The Experian Hitwise data for January [hitwise.com] shows some interesting gains for Bing and losses for Google: Bing gained 6%, but Google lost 2% - and Yahoo lost 4%.

More interesting to me is their data on "success rate". Here there is no month-over-month change for any of them. However, the baseline shows a major difference. Success rates on Bing are measured at 81.5% and at Google, 65.6%

On reason for this is probably the definition of success. The detail isn't made very clear, but it does involve visiting another website. As we've been observing for quite a while, Google SERPs contain a lot of information on their own, and the user often doesn't need to visit another website to have found what they were looking for.

 

tedster




msg:4266449
 3:43 pm on Feb 13, 2011 (gmt 0)

Matt Cutts publicly responded to this study on Buzz [google.com] rather than making a full blog post:

I think the phrase "successful search" is considerably less accurate than "left the site after searching," because someone can leave a site for lots of different reasons."

Hitwise later confirmed to me that they don't know whether the user actually clicked on a search result or just went to a completely unrelated site. Given all that, I'm surprised to see Hitwise is still pushing this metric and still calling it "search success rate."

BeeDeeDubbleU




msg:4266470
 4:14 pm on Feb 13, 2011 (gmt 0)

Cutts: "It sounds like Hitwise's definition is "A successful search is defined as one where the consumer leaves the search engine after performing a search." In another words, the user does a query and then goes somewhere else. That doesn't sound the same as success to me; it just sounds like leaving the site.

One has to speculate on whether or not he would have been happy with the definition had the results found in Google's favour?

jersey_guy




msg:4267957
 2:57 pm on Feb 16, 2011 (gmt 0)

I'd venture to say that at least 5% of the "success rate" differential is due to more people concerned about their Google rankings than their Bing rankings. Meaning, more people follow their Google rankings than their Bing rankings, which artificially deflates google's "success rate."

tedster




msg:4268224
 11:56 pm on Feb 16, 2011 (gmt 0)

Welcome to the forums, jersey_guy. That's a VERY good observation - thanks.

CainIV




msg:4268299
 5:55 am on Feb 17, 2011 (gmt 0)

They should do a study on conversion rates for verticals in the two engines. The differences I have seen are very one-sided, and this information is more of something that is usable for site owners.

Rockyou




msg:4268389
 1:18 pm on Feb 17, 2011 (gmt 0)

The problem with Google is that Instant feature, If you pause for a while typing, it causes a count & Many people keep searching Google just to see where their site ranks today.

jersey_guy




msg:4268411
 2:07 pm on Feb 17, 2011 (gmt 0)

thanks Tedster, good to be here, have been reading threads on this forum for years, thought I'd join in all the fun!

Rockyou makes another good point about Google Instant, that probably accounts for at least 10% of the "success rate" differential.

All I have to do is compare my Analytics traffic/revenue for numerous keywords that have the same position in Google and Bing serps to know that it's not worth my time monitoring my Bing serp positions - the payoff just isn't there.

If anything, Google is taking market share. My Analytics certainly attests to this reality, Google's share of my organic traffic has gained about 10% points over the past year.

weeks




msg:4268415
 2:21 pm on Feb 17, 2011 (gmt 0)

Cutts makes a good point, but,...

I'm going to try Bing more often. Google is not getting the job done on search for me. What the heck happened to Google?

indyank




msg:4268440
 3:40 pm on Feb 17, 2011 (gmt 0)

Google Instant (GI) is again a good reference!

What Matt says is right.It does look like Hitwise had knowingly pushed this metric as "search success rate" keeping Google instant in mind.

While GI helps google in one way, this new metric by hitwise seem to have been devised to counter it.

J_RaD




msg:4268448
 3:57 pm on Feb 17, 2011 (gmt 0)


I'm going to try Bing more often. Google is not getting the job done on search for me. What the heck happened to Google?


i've been a bing user for 2 years now and find no reason to even go back to google.

what happend to google? they got full of themselves and lost their vision.

Sgt_Kickaxe




msg:4268464
 4:21 pm on Feb 17, 2011 (gmt 0)

Google essentially hotlinks images too. Look up an image you own and see that Google has simply framed it on their site if someone clicks on it. Get the frame buster out :-)

mhansen




msg:4268467
 4:24 pm on Feb 17, 2011 (gmt 0)

For me, this is just another signal Google is starting to experience signs of failure in their core competency. (aka what made them popular, search results)

The past two years have seen new competitors enter the space (Bing and Blekko to name 2 major players) and Joe-Public is starting to recognize that there actually are alternatives to Google for search.

Whether we agree with the results or look for reasons behind them... 2-3 years ago, it was rare that anybody questioned Googles' dominating and highly relevant search results, well... because they were!

tedster




msg:4268468
 4:25 pm on Feb 17, 2011 (gmt 0)

What happened to Google? Because they were successful at driving the most traffic - by far - they're now the obvious point for spammers to attack.

Now Google needs to serve the regular user base and fight a war at the same time. The two goals can conflict badly at times, as the SERPs show that. Heck, sometimes even the Suggestions show that.

JohnRoy




msg:4268605
 7:34 pm on Feb 17, 2011 (gmt 0)

Another definition for "success rate":

Amount of Visitors/Users.

As of now, Google is the leader. How much did Bing take away [at launch and over the 2 years]?

scotland




msg:4268712
 10:21 pm on Feb 17, 2011 (gmt 0)

Bing is far fairer than Google search at the present moment, I checked a site of mine in Google and the top three links were Adsense, the next 7-8 were to Places and my organic link (position 1) was at the bottom of the page! Go figure - Google is going down the drain in relation to search and their income is increasing.
Richard

Tallon




msg:4268751
 12:00 am on Feb 18, 2011 (gmt 0)

I'd venture to say that at least 5% of the "success rate" differential is due to more people concerned about their Google rankings than their Bing rankings. Meaning, more people follow their Google rankings than their Bing rankings, which artificially deflates google's "success rate."


And it also inflates their traffic share numbers (real searchers vs. ranking checks).

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