Visualizing Search Engine Data

Sam Michelson, May 27, 2013

One of the most interesting things we do at Five Blocks is search engine data collection and analysis.

With a rich background in SEO, we have learned that it would be unwise to build a business whose purpose is to outsmart Google.

We know that at any given time, Google will have many more smart people working to keep the search results relevant and useful than we could ever have trying to outsmart them. Rather than chase the algorithm, we have decided to track and learn from it.

For example, a mid-market hedge fund will contact us, wanting to understand their Google Search results. They may come to us with a number of questions, such as:

1) Why is InsiderMonkey.com one of their top results?

2) They noticed that some hedge fund managers have a Google Knowledge Graph on the right side of the Google page (-the box with one or more images and a descriptive sentence or two all about the individual). Why don’t they have one?

3) Why does a  specific search result (like a blog post with several comments) seem to be ‘sticky’ (appearing to stay in the search results, and in roughly the same position, over time)?

We find the answers to these questions using a vast amount of rich search results data which we collect in various locations on a daily basis.

  • Our data analysis shows, for example, that InsiderMonkey.com is currently the most popular Google #1 position website for hedge funds without a corporate homepage.
  • Google Knowledge Graphs, we found, never seem to appear for an individual unless they have a profile on Wikipedia.
  • We have a very good idea of several key factors that make results ‘sticky’ and how clients can reach their goals in the context of sticky results.

Today, we took an additional step forward in our quest to better understand search engine data. For the first time, we had an in-depth training session in which many of us got our first hands-on workshop in Tableau.

See picture below…

tableau-training

Stay tuned…

 

 


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