It appears that, at this moment in time, the majority of keyword data has been stripped out as Google are now redirecting most users to the HTTPS version of Google.com, Google.co.uk and just about every other Google search URL that I’ve tested.
I have checked 10 sites that I work on, and Google Analytics is showing that 100% of organic keywords are ‘not provided’ for new visitors.
It is unclear at this point whether or not this a temporary glitch and I have asked Matt Cutts on Twitter to confirm, hopefully he responds with an announcement soon to shed some light on the situation.
If this is not a glitch and Google are actually making 100% of keywords show as ‘not provided’ this is totally unfair to the SEO community and appears to be a blatant attack on our industry.
Privacy My Ass
Google say that stripping keyword data is all about privacy, but we know that if you pay for Adwords they are willing to ignore the privacy ‘mantra’ and give you access to all the paid keyword data that you want.
How can we provide a proper service to our clients if we are unable to provide them with concrete evidence that the keywords that we optimise their site for are responsible for visits or revenue? How can we determine which keywords lead to conversions if Google don’t give us that information?
Tin Foil Hat Brigade
For years there have always been Google conspiracy theorists that think Google have an evil plan to destroy SEO and Affiliate Marketers in a bid to earn more revenue generated via Adwords. A lot of people, including myself at times, dismissed this sort of thing but the way Google are acting it certainly lends some credibility to the ‘tin foil hate’ brigade.
Recently Google allowed us to import andview Webmaster Tool Data Keyword Data into Google Adwords, removed Google Keyword Tool and replaced it with Keyword Planner, something you need an Adwords account to use. Perhaps this has been part of a plan to get more SEOs to sign up for Adwords account for when 100% not provided kicks in….
Looks like the Google conspiracy theorists may have been right again.. What’s next from Google?