The wave of browsers using Google SSL Search — and thus blocking publishers from receiving search term data — continues. Google’s own Chrome browser is next up, with the latest Chrome 25 beta using encryption.
Google shared the news on its Chromium blog today. Chrome follows in the footsteps of Firefox and mobile Safari, which added encryption last year. Our stories below have more background on that:
- Firefox 14 Now Encrypts Google Searches, But Search Terms Still Will “Leak” Out
- How An iOS 6 Change Makes It Seem Like Google Traffic From Safari Has Disappeared
The Safari change was particularly problematic for publishers, because not only were search terms blocked, but Google — not expecting Safari to use SSL search — didn’t adjust things. People using Google through mobile Safari appear, and still do today, as if they came to web sites directly.
Google began the move to SSL search in October 2011, and since that time, the amount of “not provided” terms (as Google Analytics reports) has increased, with one study last year finding that up to 39% of Google search traffic now has terms stripped.
The move by Chrome toward encrypted search will likely increase that percentage higher. Will it ever reach 100%, and what to do in relation to the rise? See our sister-site Search Engine Land, where we have an article that looks in more depth at that: Will [Not Provided] Ever Reach 100% In Web Analytics?