Keyword List

SearchBox is your source for information about how effective your site’s search engine is at finding your content when searchers enter a particular keyword. By examining the keywords most important to you, you can determine which ones are underperforming and take steps to correct the problem. The Keyword List tab lists the keywords that searchers use, along with metrics for each one, as explained below:

  • Searches. A search is a keyword entered one time. The total number of searches for a keyword is searches. Additional searches for that keyword are not counted when the user drills down into facets or the user pages forward in the search results.
  • Successes. A search is judged to have successes when the search receives a click without a failed search. SearchBox shows both the number of search successes and search successes rate (search successes divided by total searches for that keyword). The successes rate is color-coded GREEN when 40% or higher, YELLOW when 25% to 40%, and RED when under 25%. To learn how to improve your success rate, check out “How Do I Optimize My Page for Successes?”
  • Results. A search is judged to have results when it shows at least one natural match or Suggested Match–otherwise it is deemed to have produced no results. The SearchBox dashboard shows the number of searches that produced results along with the search results rate (the number of searches that produced results divided by the searches). The results rate is color-coded GREEN when 99.7% or higher, YELLOW when 98% to 99.7%, and RED when under 98%. If your keyword isn’t showing any pages in the search results, check out “Why Doesn’t My Page Appear in the Search Results?
  • Clicks. A click on a search result is counted when the searcher clicks on the natural results (of any page of the search results) or on a Suggested Match.  Though the searcher may click on multiple search results for the keyword, the search click is only counted once. SearchBox shows both the total number of search clicks and the search click rate (the number of clicks divided by the search volume). The click rate is color-coded GREEN when 50% or higher, YELLOW when 30% to 50%, and RED when under 30%. To learn how to make pages more attractive to searchers deciding where to click, check out “How Do I Optimize My Page’s Clickthrough?
  • Failed Search. When a searcher clicks on a search result, but returns to the search results page within twenty seconds, it is counted as a failed search. This does not apply in cases of right-clicking to open a new tab or window, or middle-clicking for a new tab. Closing the aforementioned new tab or window will not also result in a failed search. The SearchBox dashboard shows the total search failed search and the search failed search rate–number of failed searches divided by the number of clicks on the page from the search results page. The failed search rate is color coded GREEN when 10% or lower, YELLOW when 10% to 30%, and RED when over 30%. If your pages generate a lot of failed searches, learn what to do by reading “How Do I Improve My Page’s Failed Search Rate?

Keyword URLs

The Keyword URLs tab of SearchBox allows you to examine the URLs that appear for each specific keyword in your Keyword List. While it retains most of the metrics from the Keyword List — successes, clicks, and failed searches — there are new metrics relating to URLs, which are explained below:

  • Impressions. An impression is the number of times the URL was shown to the searcher. Anytime the URL is shown in the Top 10 of the search results list, that’s an impression, even if it was not clicked. To learn how to increase impressions of the URL, please read “How Do I Improve My URL Impressions and Average Rank?
  • Average Rank. The average rank of the URL shows how high it tends to be shown in the results list against other URLs for a specific keyword. This rank can change for different keywords, for the same keyword with different facets selected, and even for the same keyword with the same facets at different times. To learn how to improve your URL’s average rank, please read “How Do I Improve My URL Impressions and Average Rank?

Just looking at the metrics on your SearchBox isn’t all there is to improving search, but it’s a solid start that gives you the biggest benefit with the least amount of work.

Methodology

You may be using another web analytics tool to assess your search numbers — having more data is a good thing! However, bear in mind that what you see in your other web analytics may differ from what you see in SearchBox.

SoloSegment intentionally does not count every search. SoloSegment purposely throws out data for searches that are not indicative of actual human behavior, including, but not limited to:

  • Repeat searches by the same searcher. Duplicate searches for the same keyword by the same searcher within a 10-minute window are ignored, because those tend to be refreshes of pages, network connectivity problems, and other technical re-displays of a page that don’t correspond with an actual new search initiated by a searcher. SoloSegment does not want to count those searches because it makes no sense to try to improve them. They add volume to searches without adding any actual new business opportunities for searchers to find what they are looking for.
  • Searches by robots. No one wants to improve robot search results, so they are correctly ignored.

SoloSegment is intentionally not counting every click. SoloSegment counts clicks only as a way to determine if a search is successful, not to try to identify all clicks, because that number is meaningless by itself. If a searcher clicks three times on the same result page, SoloSegment counts that as one click on the keyword for a click rate of 100%. It doesn’t make sense to count all clicks the same way, so SoloSegment does not do that. In addition, some web analytics systems count all clicks on the search results page rather than just the clicks on the actual URLs in the result list.

Related content

Why is Findability of My Page Important?