A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about a client of ours and the vast difference in Adwords search query report numbers for the same 2 keywords in the US vs. in Germany. It was the most-commented post on this blog in recent memory – not only did people commiserate, but they asked great questions to try to get to the bottom of the mystery.
I was able to answer several of the questions right away (although, of course, there are no bad questions, and I thank everyone who commented for helping me think everything through). But 3 questions came up to which I didn’t have the answers:
• Is the client brand a German word?
• How does traffic break down by device?
• How does traffic break down by Google vs. search partners?
The first question I had to look up, but quickly realized that the answer was no, it’s not a German word. Of course I had to run some reports to answer the second and third questions, and the results were interesting indeed.
Searches By Device:
I re-ran the SQRs for each country, and segmented impressions by device. I suspected there might be a big difference, but alas, the two countries were nearly identical:
Germany did have a slightly higher percentage of mobile searches than the US: 11% vs. 9%, but the difference isn’t statistically significant. Clearly, devices are not the reason why US search queries were so much higher.
Searches By Network:
I noted in my previous post that session-based queries were high in Germany compared with the US, and that prompted someone to ask about distribution by network. We’ve all seen questionable websites, sites that aren’t really search sites, lumped into the search network. Let’s take a look at the segmented report data:
I have to admit, I was stunned to see the difference. I knew that the search network was probably more robust in the US than in other countries, but this is downright horrifying. Only 2% of the impressions in Germany on the brand terms came from search partners, but fully 30% in the US were from partners. And just to refresh your memory, the majority of matches in the US were broad match, as compared with Germany where the match types were more evenly distributed.
I smell a rat. I’m still not convinced that we’re getting fair treatment here in the US.
And for heaven’s sake, if you haven’t already done so, please go sign the petition to allow separate bids for search partners. This is something I’ve wanted for a long time, and clearly it’s long overdue.
Or perhaps Google is deliberately holding out on giving us separate bids for this very reason? What do you think?