'Why is the UK’s web traffic dropping?' blog discussion

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  • IcyEars
    IcyEars Posts: 686 Forumite
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    Couple of things. If you need the Google Toolbar installed, then it could be that most browsers now allow you to search directly from the address bar. This could mean that less people are using the Google toolbar. Since the update to this new browser feature is normally automatic, it could simply be that people are browsing in a different was and thus the data isn't being recorded anymore.

    Also, I did a quick search (using the great god that is Google, of course) about Google Analytics and the Wikipedia entry for it does say that broswer plugins like AdBlock can stop the data being collected. The system also relies on Cookies so if the cookies are blocked, again the data won't be collected.

    Maybe it is simply a case that as the UK is becoming more IT literate as a whole, and security conscious in particular, such security measures are adversley affecting the data being collected.
  • Joe_Bloggs
    Joe_Bloggs Posts: 4,535 Forumite
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    I browse via Firefox with NoScript which gives the option of blocking google analytics. An ISP could serve up pages from a cache rather than burdon parts of their network with repetitive requests for the same information. It would be nice if they could pass on clicks if they are doing this.
    J_B.
  • MSE_Martin
    MSE_Martin Posts: 8,272 Money Saving Expert
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    Hi folks,

    Remember what started this

    MSE traffic is increasing (measured by analytics which is far more accurate) but Google trends shows it decreasing (and other UK sites).

    So the aggregator type arguments don't fit the problem there.
    Martin Lewis, Money Saving Expert.
    Please note, answers don't constitute financial advice, it is based on generalised journalistic research. Always ensure any decision is made with regards to your own individual circumstance.
    Don't miss out on urgent MoneySaving, get my weekly e-mail at www.moneysavingexpert.com/tips.
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  • pippic
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    We advertise our website on google adwords and on yahoo and we've noticed that often we aren't reaching our maximum daily spending limits which we did as a matter of course every day over the summer. We've been scratching our heads wondering why its been dropping and I think you're on to something here Martin, I don't think its just Google analytics, I think its a trend at the moment.
    No idea why though!!!!
  • anthony_hunt
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    Martin

    Microsoft have shipped Internet Explorer 8 to all XP and Vista machines via Windows update earlier this year. The new version CAN use Google or Yahoo toolbar, but defaults to Bing search.

    This may be what has fudged your figures.

    Anyone using IE8 who just "went with the flow" when installing won't be using Google toolbar any more.
  • smala01
    smala01 Posts: 154 Forumite
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    During the recession we consolidated all the company`s direct web access to a central location (in our case Dublin as we have a larger presence)

    So even though we access sites in the UK our IP address will appear as Irish.

    I know a lot of other companies have done a similar thing (usually to the US).

    Martin - are you tracking just UK IP`s on your website?

    Smala01
  • artumi_richard
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    Google trends measures search volumes, not visitors. so it says that less people are looking for the sites, not less people are visiting them.

    As for the whole UK search volume, no
    Martin says "it seems the whole of the UK webspace is dropping in traffic, that can’t be true." It's not. Less people are searching for facebook, bbc, ebay and amazon. Google trends says nothing about traffic.

    I don't think you can assume that the two should correlate either. Once people have found face book and bbc and the like then many will book mark the sites and use the bookmarks, so they will not appear in google trends. Some may still google facebook everytime they want to get to the site, but as facebook reaches full market saturation you would expect it's search volumes to decrease in google.
    I generally post and run. You probably wont be able to engage me in conversation as I probably wont be around to read replies....
  • geordie_lass_2
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    I reach MSE via a bookmark rather than a Google search, like most regular MSE users, I suspect.

    Does Google measure the traffic only to the homepage? My bookmark goes straight to the forums, specifically to one part of the forum actually.

    Maybe ISP's are increasingly using proxy servers based in countries other than the UK.
  • alxx
    alxx Posts: 5 Forumite
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    My gut reaction is to suggest that it is due to movement from the pc to mobile and other browsing devices which are not tracked.
    Secondly, reduced navigational search will have this effect.
    Thirdly, is this in fact a measure of the reduction in Google Traffic, not website traffic in the UK?!?!?! :eek:
  • Olliebeak
    Olliebeak Posts: 3,167 Forumite
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    Do you think some of this could be linked to the increasing popularity of the DS/DSLites?

    People playing games, using the quizzing facilities etc instead of going for on-line games?

    Even people getting more into the Wii's as well.

    I did notice that in the first comparison graphs, there were distinct dips in mse/moneysupermarket etc in both late Dec 2007 and 2008 in all of them. Obviously nobody bothering with comparisons in the last 2wks of December when most of the internet based shopping is over and done with :).
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