Spiekerooger - 6:07 pm on Oct 19, 2011 (gmt 0)
I just ran a test to see if referrer data still includes the q param value if the target is ssl secure.
The answer is: no. The search term data is not included in the referrer even if the target is ssl secure and also listed as ssl secure in googles serps.
This was tested against https://www.google.com
It problably was (or still is) different on https://encrypted.google.com. In 2010, you would receive the q param value if your site was ssl secure but not if your site was not ssl secure if the blog posts about this back from 2010 and the posts here at webmasterworld are to be believed (I did not test it myself back in 2010).
But using ssl yourself won't help you anymore in extracting the keywords searched for at google with the implementation of ssl at google now. They deliberately strip the search term in the referrer. The referrer still includes google, the cd param value (serp position), the url param value etc. Only the q param value is stripped (e.g. "&q=&").
For anyone thinking that this is forcing webmasters into using GA: No, GA also has no information about the q param value as well, so using GA because of this is useless. (I also never recommend using GA at all...)
They just told in their blog posts that the top search terms over the last 30 days as stated in the webmaster tools will be included in GA. Not the real data that could be obtained by a referrer incl. the q param value.
(q param value is used in this post as a placeholder for q param, og param etc., any params that normally had the search term as a value)