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Referrers -- Google, Search Engines

  1. This has been going on for a while, but seems kind of strange to me.

    Under referrers, the first item is Search Engines. When I expand it, I see things like:
    google.com/search
    google.se/search
    google.ca/search
    etc.

    Then, further down my referrers list, I see things like this:
    Google
    google.ca
    google.co.uk
    google.co.in
    etc.

    I'll also see (though not today)
    Google Reader

    So, I've assumed the last one is when someone has subscribed to my rss feed and clicks through from Google Reader to comment or read comments. But why are the second group not included in search engine referrals? Are these not search engine hits, and if not, what are they?

    The blog I need help with is mindrenewers.com.

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  3. Thank you, TT.

  4. Hi jongleason, the reason you see Google, Google.ca etc as referrers, and NOT listed under Search Engines, has to do with how Google searches work with logged-in users. You can read a bit more about it here:

    http://www.business2community.com/seo/google-changes-referrer-data-again-co-mingles-search-and-referral-traffic-0153166

    caveat: That post is almost a year old, so I can't vouch for it's exactness.

  5. Thanks, that makes sense, I guess. Logged-in meaning logged in to Google, apparently.

    But it's still a search engine referral, simply one in which WP isn't told what the search terms were, is that right? If so, wouldn't it make sense to include it under search engine referrals and count it as "unknown search terms"?

    I appreciate your help.

  6. I understand your reasoning, but from my understanding of that article and other things I read, we can't always be certain that it comes from a search, maybe it comes from Google+, for example. And yes, I meant logged into Google and/or the Chrome browser.

  7. OK, makes sense.

    Seems stupid of Google. If it comes from Google+, you would think they would want people to know. Would be a nice advertisement for them, if they want to try to build participation there. If I were getting lots of traffic from Google+, I might be motivated to join and start a page there -- like I did on Facebook. A nebulous "Google" referral means nothing to me.

    I'm marked this as resolved, thanks.

  8. Thanks John, makes sense but in principle, it's wrong.

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