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Traffic disappointing compared to Wordtrackers estimates
Top 5 in SERPS but only 10% of expected traffic
marvin




msg:3454370
 11:07 pm on Sep 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

I have recently used wordtracker to estimate the daily amount of traffic for many keywords in my niche. This gave some very encouraging estimates (ie hundreds of searches a day for some good keywords).

Since then I have managed to reach the top 5 results in Google serps for several of these good keywords. However, the amount of traffic these terms is giving me is nowhere near the amount suggested by wordtracker (generally around 10%).

I have several ideas about why this may be happening and would be very interested to hear about other peoples opinions:-

1. Is it possible that there is a large bias towards the number one result in serps (ie no 1 result gets 80% of the clicks, number 2 gets 10%, number 3 gets 5% etc)? In which case getting in to positions 2-5 isn't likely to capture anywhere near 100% of the daily traffic.

2. Can visitors be VERY heavily influenced by the snippets of the site presented to them in the SERPS, with slightly more appealing descriptions being able to lure most of the traffic?

3. It is possible for Wordtracker's estimated results to be inaccurate to the extent that it predicts 10 times the actual traffic?

Marvin

 

Propools




msg:3455977
 2:26 pm on Sep 20, 2007 (gmt 0)

1. Is it possible that there is a large bias towards the number one result in serps (ie no 1 result gets 80% of the clicks, number 2 gets 10%, number 3 gets 5% etc)? In which case getting in to positions 2-5 isn't likely to capture anywhere near 100% of the daily traffic.
Historically, #1 was and still is the best place to be. We do however see a variance between what wordtracker says and what the reality is. We view wordtracker as a general "reference guide". Beyond that it's up to the site designer to achieve the position in the SERP's they would like.

2. Can visitors be VERY heavily influenced by the snippets of the site presented to them in the SERPS, with slightly more appealing descriptions being able to lure most of the traffic?
Absolutely Look up Inverted Pyramid writing. It works well.

3. It is possible for Wordtracker's estimated results to be inaccurate to the extent that it predicts 10 times the actual traffic?
To the best of my knowledge these are actual numbers coming from the participating SE's. We've never experienced a report in which the predicted traffic was "10 times" the actual traffic.

Check your logs and see which words are driving traffic to your site, by referrer. Then check your search position for those key words. You might be pleasantly surprised. We still find that even on some rather obscure keywords (short or long) users will go several pages deep into the results. Most users will scan the results, so make sure you've got something there that POPS.

marvin




msg:3457210
 2:57 pm on Sep 21, 2007 (gmt 0)

Thanks Propools

I've done some research on inverted pyramid writing and this looks like a really effective writing technique, thanks for the tip!

BTW, how does Google select text to include in the snippet and can the use of inverted pyramid writing influence this?
For example, does Google look for the first time a keyword is used when selecting snippet text? In this case then one of the "attention grabbing" first sentences at the top of the page would feature in the snippet.

Also, I've managed to find some studies on click patterns which indicate the following (approximate) rates:-

Number 1 in serps - 40% of search traffic
Number 2 in serps - 12% of search traffic
Number 3 in serps - 8% of search traffic
etc, etc.

This would lead me to believe that the traffic I'm getting for being in positions 2-5 is broadly in line with the predictions.

Marvin

Propools




msg:3457293
 4:10 pm on Sep 21, 2007 (gmt 0)

how does Google select text to include in the snippet and can the use of inverted pyramid writing influence this?
Shoot, if I knew that exact answer exactly, then I would be a gazillionaire instead of trying to make copper wire out of pennies. ;) But it's been our experience that the "snippets" will come from the meta description information. Which is even better if you have the identical or similar copy on the front page.

All of our pages have leading copy either exactly as it appears or in a slight variation in our meta description for said page.

This would lead me to believe that the traffic I'm getting for being in positions 2-5 is broadly in line with the predictions.
I dont' know it's as much predictions as it is an "estimation". As far as the 40% etc. there's been all sorts of studies, but one conclusive piece of information keeps rising to the top and that is that if you're #1 in the organic SERP's you'll get the larger amount of traffic. If you can tie in #1 in organic and id the same paid listing then the # of clicks should greatly increase. We've done them all and covering all of your bases is always a good way to go......provided your return supports both.

Propools




msg:3457295
 4:12 pm on Sep 21, 2007 (gmt 0)

To follow my last reply up, we've noticed that if there's no meta data, then the snippet comes out of ODP.

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