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Yahoo! MSN, Who The Hell Are They?

written by John Chow on October 27, 2006

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I was checking my search engine referral stats tonight and I just can’t help staring at the above pie chart, with its sea of Google blue. Nielsen/NetRatings says Google owns 50% of all searches but judging from my search engine traffic stats, the 50% who don’t use Google obviously don’t visit my blog!

This Google dominance extends to my other sites as well. Every other webmasters I have talked to tells me that their biggest search referrer is Google, and by a wide margin. So I am wondering is there anyone out there who has a website or blog, and Google does not represent at least 50% of search traffic? Nielsen/NetRatings says Google only has 50% of the search market. Either their stats are completely off, or my sites (and those of my friends) just don’t attract other search engines.

As I have previously posted, I am really happy with the rise of search engine traffic. Back in August, I received just 269 visitors from search engines. In September, that number jumped to 2,585 search engine visitors. For the 26 days of this month, search engines (well Google) have sent me 9,028 visitors. The numbers look even more impressive when I do a week-by-week break down.

  • September 1 – 7: 72
  • September 8 – 14: 79
  • September 15 – 21: 321
  • September 22 – 28: 1643
  • October 1 – 7: 1,687
  • October 8 – 14: 2,101
  • October 15 – 21: 2,916

So far this week, search engines have sent 2,324 visitors, with still three days left in the week. From beginning to end, Google accounted for over 95% of search traffic. Everyone tries to get search engine traffic because it is the most valuable traffic. A search engine user is 14 times more likely to click on an ad than a user coming from a website link. Traffic equal income, there is no doubt about that. However, search engine traffic is worth the most income. So how do you get it?

Search traffic is directly affected by the amount of websites and blogs linking to you, and this is the reason for the growth in the blog search traffic. On my week 3 update I said there were 89,700 pages outside of John Chow dot Com linking to the blog. A check now shows that number has increased to 96,600. In other words, the blog received 6,900 new backlinks in the past four days. Just three months ago, this blog only had a few hundred links. Now it gets thousands of new links everyday.

I got all those backlinks by producing unique and compelling content that people want to link to. That is really the key to all this. Your content is what is going to make or break your blog. If your content sucks, no one is going to read it, much less link to it. No links equals no search engine ranking, which equals no search traffic. In addition to great content, there are other ways to get more sites linking to you. I covered those methods in The Art Of Link Baiting and The Art Of Link Development. You may want to give them a read if you haven’t already. I’ll give a few other tips in a future blog post.

In the mean time, if Google accounts for 50% or less of your search traffic, please let me know. I’m still looking for that one site where that is the case.

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