Sunday, September 25, 2022

The biggest mystery of Google's algorithm: Everything ever said about clicks, CTR and bounce rate - Search Engine Land

Last updated Friday, September 23, 2022 06:00 ET , Source: NewsService

There's good reason to suspect that Google uses CTR as a ranking factor. Here's how Google addressed the topic over the years.

It’s the biggest mystery and controversy of Google’s search ranking algorithm. For a long time, the SEO community has debated: is the click-through rate (“CTR”) of search results listings a ranking factor? Or the closely related “bounce rate” and “dwell time”?

I present to you everything Google has ever said about this, along with some observations and opinions.

Clicks, CTR, bounce rate and dwell time

If you are newer to SEO, the concept of clicks or click-through rate (“CTR”) being ranking factors is simple to explain. Once a user performs a keyword search, they can then click on a listing on Google’s search results page. Google could count those clicks as a type of vote for the content in the results and lend more ranking ability to those listings that draw more clicks for the keyword in question.

Similarly, “dwell time” would be counting how long one stays on a webpage after clicking through to a page from the search results.

A “bounce” happens when one clicks through to a webpage and leaves without navigating to another page. The assumption is that if a bounce happens too rapidly, the user may have found the page’s content unsatisfactory for their query.

“Dwell time” is also how long the user may linger on the webpage before clicking elsewhere or back to the search results. All of these signals center upon the click to listings in the search...

Read Full Story: https://searchengineland.com/google-clicks-ctr-bounce-rate-ranking-388049

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