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Recent Google data changes in the query reports obtained through the Google Search Console (GSC) has caused a lot of headaches for website owners. Google has taken note of the confusion and recently issued a statement in an effort to clarify these Google data changes.
For website owners (and for SEO companies) it was evident that Google had removed some of the query data within their search console performance reports. Google claims that they are only excluding anonymous queries, queries that used to be included in the chart sums but were never shown in the Search Console; therefore they are no longer included in the sum totals.
In Google’s own words:
“Previously, we included the sum of queries that weren’t tracked in Search Console in the totals for ‘query not containing’. Eg, we might not track some queries that are made a very small number of times or those that contain personal or sensitive info. (anonymous queries).
Going forward, we’re only including the sum of those that we track and can match in Search Console. This change doesn’t affect the queries shown in Search Console, nor how we treat these untracked queries.”
The problem for website owners is that the results tend to look drastic when the query filter is added because they are witnessing very big drops in the query data sums. Even though Google is saying these are not really drops, it is difficult for website owners to view this as a simple change in how Google calculates the reports. To website owners, the reports seem to indicate that their sites are not performing as well as they should be.
Google claims they made the change “…to account for more queries and to support exciting Search Analytics features down the road.” However, this isn’t exciting news for website owners who are trying to gage how well their sites are performing now.
You can read more about these Google data changes on Google’s web page entitled Data Anomalies in Search Console under the Search Analytics Report / Performance Report.
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