November 14, 2012: Since the inception of Google’s defaulted SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) search for signed-in users, organic search terms returning “not provided” keyword results have risen to 39 percent; this change represents a 171 percent growth since last year. Data is according to the latest study released by Optify, which analyzed organic traffic to 424 B2B sites.
The study shows 64 percent of B2B sites are seeing 30-50 percent of their total organic search traffic from Google as “not provided.” In addition, 81 percent of companies see more than 30 percent of their traffic as “not provided.” While the “not provided” term continues to rise in analytics, recognized referring keywords from organic search have declined by 49 percent since SSL’s inception.
The prevalence of “not provided” organic search results could present challenges for search marketers. From a MarketWatch press release, Rob Eleveld, CEO of Optify, says, “Referrer data from organic search is quickly disappearing, and we believe that soon the majority of referring keywords will be listed as ‘not provided.’ This is yet another example of how the SEO practice is at the mercy of search engines, and we believe it’s time for B2B marketers to focus on the data they have for creating a personalized experience for their visitors and leads. If you are a digital marketing agency providing only SEO services, it’s time to start diversifying.”
While the SSL search feature has secured the organic search experience for signed-in users, it has also created SEO obstacles in the process.