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Selasa, 27 Januari 2009

Does Traffic Affect Your Search Rankings?

Writing by Nick Stamoulis

Internet marketing legend Sugarrae wrote a blog post about a new site launch from which she concluded that traffic matters in search engine rankings. Of course, to some of us this isn’t really news. But she does provide some food for thought.

First, the whole idea that is search engine optimization is still important but doesn’t run the show is itself a controversial statement. There will be some who disagree and for good reason, but you have to understand her point. In this age of social bookmarking and social networking, it is highly possible that a website can rank well in the search engines based on its social proof alone. There will be a tendency by some to say that those websites rank based on inbound links, but not necessarily. There are some good reasons to believe that traffic to a website can influence search rankings.

First, the fact that her website was mentioned by TechCrunch is a big clue. The value in being mentioned by TechCrunch, a highly authoritative site, is the traffic that it can deliver. Yes, the link likely gave Sugarrae’s site a real good, quality link, but that only goes so far and one authoritative link isn’t going to be enough to rank 300 pages in record time and get the site ranked well. But a site that can deliver you thousands of visitors in a short period of time will do you some good. What happens after that, however, is a really big deal.

I believe Sugarrae is onto something. Google has said over and over again that its primary task is to deliver value to searchers. If we consider that its backlinks policy started as a measurement of value as measured by the votes of others, isn’t that was traffic is? And bounce rates? And RSS subscriptions? It is wholly feasible that these measurements could be considered important by Google in terms of measuring website authority and value, which could be translated into search rankings.

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