If you use Google Analytics to monitor traffic to your website (and I really hope that you do), you know that search keywords are among of the best tools available to understand your audience.
After someone comes to your site from a search engine (Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc.), this statistic tells you what search words they entered to find your website. This stat gives you hard evidence of what people are looking for when they come to your site.
On the DePaul University Newsroom, one of the top keywords every month is “DePaul Rankings.” That tells them that any news about university rankings is important to readers and should be featured. It also give you a good idea of who your readers are. After all, who would be interested in a university’s rankings? Most likely prospective students and their parents.
Lately, I have noticed that Google Analytics turns up “not provided” as the top keyword. I searched for an answer and found that those who are signed into Google and using Google to search have their searches encrypted. That means they don’t show up on analytics.
That’s right! Google, who provides the analytics, is now keeping information from flowing to those same analytics. So, if you see “not provided” in your keywords and you are wondering why, the answer is because Google is stupid.