Google Begins Encrypting Search – The End Of Analytics As We Know It?

Yesterday, Google announced it will begin making search more secure by encrypting the outgoing referral traffic when people are logged in their Google’s account. It means that webmasters will no longer could see from which search term the users came from, in their analytic programs.

In the blog post, Google are saying that in order to protect the personalized search experience, they are adding an encryption protocol (SSL) which you can identify as “https://” in the URL (extra “s”). This will take in effect in the next upcoming weeks.

How Does It Affects The Analytics?

When users will be visit your website after being referred from Google search, you would still see they came from Google, however, you wouldn’t see from which exact search query. I’m already seeing in my Analytics account referrals from Google under “(not provided)”.

In fact, the only information from the encrypted search we could identify, will come from Google Webmaster Tools or under the new Webmaster Tools section in Google Analytics, Which is more of a general outlook for the site’s top search queries.

Noticed that the encryption will only apply on the organic search results and not on the paid ones at this point. Apparently, it is for the advertisers favor that would still be able to monitor their paid marketing campaigns.


This move by Google will certainly make it harder to work from home… Although that the encrypted search will only apply on logged in users, we would lose a big portion of our site analysis as we will see it as “(not provided)”.

Our Google’s traffic stats will offer a more general picture than the specific details we used to today and it will be more difficult to understand which are our strong keywords and which ones we should reinforce.