|SEO--do they examine the cookies for add to cart type language?|
Seems, if a SE was trying to optimize their own product (the SE), that they would look information AVAILABLE (in the cookies or elsewhere) including "this website/URL is obviouslyan important link for search term "X" because the customer not only clicked on it, but he actually clicked the "add to cart" link and BOUGHT something! There's nothing better to help our engine's search results/ reputation than to know that" (since nothing speaks more loudly than the customer's actions).
And, since that has to be true, then why WOULDN'T search engines use the data from customer cookies to examine the cookies for "add to cart" type language? That would TELL the SE that "wow, that was a great link for the item they searched for. Let's rank it high!"
Not that we can do anything about that, but fascinated, with how competitive SEs are with one another, isn't this feasible...or does it already happen. Generally, what do you think?
:: thinking hard ::
Which direction would your clever robot look?
site logs >> IP of recent user >> visit user's computer >> study cookies belonging to target site >> retro-convert to plain-english terms
site database >> customer records >> information on recently purchased items >> retro-convert to plain-english terms
plant onsite observer* >> note arrival of each visitor >> check visitor's cookies while they are logged on
Barring a few trifling obstacles involving passwords and encryption, it could be done. Though somehow I'd associate it more with a talented 14-year-old than with an established search engine. The SE has more to lose if it comes out.
* Or encourage site to do it for you, in the form of voluntarily installed Analytics. That approach seems vastly easier. You wouldn't need to mess with cookies; just keep track of the visitor's activities on Checkout page.
First, thanks for your answer.
By the way, I don't necessarily think my idea is clever and I don't fool myself that I'm the first one to think of. It was just a suggestion I'm throwing out for discussion.
Second, honestly, I don't really understand your response perfectly. It was slightly over my head. You suggested some interesting schemes. They seemed a bit complicated to me, but are probably cake-walk for an SE engineer.
Maybe we got a little ahead of ourselves. Let me take a step back and ask THIS NEW QUESTION:
Assuming a webmaster (just a hypothetical) does NOT use Google Analytics conversion code, in what OTHER ways does Google (just using as example only) use to track our website conversions so that they can rank a certain URL higher for a certain keyword in the SERPs since it will have been "proven"..."more relevant"? Do they ALREADY do this? If so, please provide a list 1,2,3 of how they capitalize on this data. Assume user does not have Google Analytics (if that matters).
For example, when someone searches for a term "A" and clicks on URL/website "B" and then makes a purchase, how, if at all, does the SE capitalize on this information?
I know that it's all about information, so I know it would be foolish to think that the SEs do NOT get this data somehow. How do they get it?
Summary: Outside of Google Analytics conversion code we would put on our site, does Google (example only) have any OTHER ways they track our conversions, for themselves? and if so, what are those ways?
the only way any search engine COULD see if any of my customers have bought something on my site is if has some kind of toolbar installed on the client browser and it could work out which my payment pages were - or theoretically they could somehow work out if a customer added an item to their cart if the client looked at the view cart page....
i should think that this would be a SEVERE breach of privacy however and certainly in europe would most likely be illegal, it certainly is unethical.
>>Assuming a webmaster (just a hypothetical) does NOT use Google Analytics conversion code
personally my sales/conversion and various other data is the most valuable thing i have - i find it laughable that loads of webmasters give it away free to a third party.
[aside: i think having adsense on a page is giving away lots of data too, however at least you get paid for that, which i consider is a fair trade]
topr8--hey thanks so much for your answer.
yeah, that's always my underlying feeling too, that it would constitute an obvious breach of privacy.
Speaking of which, and to address your Google Analytics conversion code response:
//"personally my sales/conversion and various other data is the most valuable thing i have - i find it laughable that loads of webmasters give it away free to a third party."//
, that's interesting you you should say that. That's kindof my point too that, barring our putting up (example only) Google Analytic's conversion code, Google wouldn't really have a WAY (am I right?) to "see" your conversion data. Again, my original interest being in learning "how" the SE gets your add to cart data (if you will), so that they can "optimize" their search results to make them more "relevant" for any given kw. But...to me...EVEN IF THEY COULD (and beyond privacy breaches as you mentioned), there would be numerous ADDITIONAL issues to contend with. A big one being 2 competitors:
Competitor A's biz model: sells low price/high volume, whereas
Competitor B's biz model: sells high price/lower volume.
So, any calculations by the SE to consider add to cart / purchases / conversions PREFERENTIALLY, ie favoring company "A" for that kw over company "B" would be improper bias, IMO.
I'm interested in more ideas about this stuff from others and get different points of view. Thanks again topr8.
For others arriving late, etc, here's a summary of the active question:
Assuming a webmaster (just a hypothetical) does NOT use Google Analytics conversion code, in what OTHER ways does Google (just using as example only) use to track our website conversions so that they can rank a certain URL higher for a certain keyword in the SERPs since it will have been "proven"..."more relevant"? Do they ALREADY do this?