Hi guys, found a load of threads on this forum about people experiencing "throttling" in their SEO traffic from Google, and there seems to be some discussion as to whether it exists, so I'd thought I'd share my experience.
I firmly believe G does throttle my SEO traffic.
I own a pet supplies website with about 600 products, and about 700 pages in total. It's been in the G index since August 2010. The site is pretty SEO friendly and has a small about of back links (about 10 or so).
I dont monitor my position in search rankings, but I do pay very close attention to the traffic I receive from G, and these are my observations:
- I only get traffic from obscure or long tail search terms
- Traffic from search terms seems to "cycle" round, for instance, on one day, I will get 1 visitor from "rotastak space command" (a popular hamster home), then I will not get another visit from that keyword for between 2 and 4 weeks.
- The "quality" of traffic being sent does seem to vary. This is a theory that has been posted by other users on this forum - suggesting that G profiles it's users and knows which users are most likely to spend a lot of time on a site, and those that wont. For example, one day, my Pages-Per-Visitor metric will be up around 7-10 for visits from G, whereas another day, they can be below 2!
- Since I had a server issue in November, I NEVER, NEVER, EVER get more than 1 visit per keyword. In November, I was starting to pick up multiple visits from keywords, but my server crashed (nothing to do with me) and ever since, G seems to be punishing me.
- I believe the "throttling" works on a weekly basis, in my case at least. Let me show you why:
Between December 1st 2010 and Feb 23rd 2011 - my weekly traffic from Google has been no higher than 93, yet no lower than 86 - that is remarkably steady, and not really showing any signs of climbing (Yet, Webmaster Tools say during the same period my impressions in SERPS have risen 5 fold).
If we take the same period 1/12/10-23/2/11 BUT this time looking at the daily return from G, it fluctuates from lows of 6 visits per day, to highs of 21 - never ever going higher than 21. Also, every "high" point is followed by a subsequent dramatic drop off in traffic which further adds weight to the "throttling" theory.
- I also agree with those of you in this forum who have identified a "push pull" or "yoyo" theory - whereby when one page gets traffic, another doesn't. I see this, but not with pages, I see it with HOURS of the day.
For example on a Monday I will get traffic spikes at 1pm, 3pm, 5pm and 7pm - with lulls inbetween. Then, on the following day I will get spikes at 2pm, 4pm, 6pm and 8pm, with lulls at 1pm, 3pm, 5pm and 7pm. If you overlay the hour by hour traffic for two days, the yoyo effect is staggering.
Anyway, sorry for the ramble, thought I'd just share my observations with you guys - Im really frustrated because the traffic simply never seems to improve. Any ideas?
I think I've covered all my observations, but if you guys have any questions, feel free to ask!