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Does running Google analytics HURT your site?

Heard a comment from a long time SEO guy that he doesn't run GA on any sites for the only purpose that he believes Google gleans data such as conversion rate, bounce rate from your site and uses it in tandem with adwords. So adwords gets/"learns" keywords, what's selling/what's not from GA and drives advertising rates accordingly.

Hadn't heard that before, saw a few older posts here from a few years back, there's this article I found on line:

any thoughts??

Granted we're all users of Clicky but I'm curious what folks have to say. Thanks!

Posted Mon Mar 10 2014 4:11p by charlie12

Highly speculative.

Google makes more money when more people click on relevant ads and convert, not when fewer people click on poorly written ads with higher CPC; this is how the Ad Quality Score is designed to work. See this article for an excellent summary:

While I cannot comment on site performance with or without GA, I can confirm from experience that when I improve my ads' CTR and conversion rate, I see decrease in CPC and CPA. By depriving Google of the conversion information gathered by GA seems like a double-edged sword to me: it might keep Google from knowing your income but at the same time even if your ads are the best in the industry and conversion rates are through the roof, Google would not know and reward you with lower cost per click. For me the benefits of improving ad copy and targeting and sharing the outcome with Google are obvious; I wouldn't think of not using GA on my websites.

Ivan / BVI Photo Video

Posted Tue Mar 11 2014 4:20a by drkskwlkr

Running G.A. CAN hurt your site, yes. Will it? Well, that depends on whether or not you're giving G.A. what it is programmed to see as valuable to its end purpose.

Nothing is "free". From this general heuristic principle, everything one wants to know about "free" Internet things can be gleaned.

Google does in fact take your G.A. data and use it 'anonymously'. However, understanding this proposition implies an understanding of how algorithms fundamentally function; and, further, how they are applied to your specific property when running G.A.

To put it simply: a human being has programmed the tool. This human being has his or her inherent, inextricable biases. These biases either are or are not logically concomitant with what your website is presenting relative to that bias.

"Bias" is not necessarily a 'dirty word' but is, rather, what it is: and in the end, this comes down to coding -- to mathematics.

Ergo, what does and does not constitute "relevance" will -- by matter of course -- be relative to the tool's programming.

To further simplify: of course G.A. is a means by which to make Google money. It is, after all, "free". Of course, when one 'elects' to tie one's G.A. into an AdWords campaign, Google uses this data to refine the programming's end goal: Money.

The REALLY short version: You either are or are not playing the game as designed by Google.

Posted Tue Mar 11 2014 9:18a by ajm1976

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