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What Google keyword insights?

Sorry, but I'm the bearer of some bad news for us all.  

In its wisdom, Google has decided to encrypt all search activity.  

This means that you and I will no longer be able to know what keywords have been used in Google to arrive at our websites.  

The only exception to this new rule is Google Adwords - if someone clicks on a paid advert, we can still measure this.  

So, what does this change actually mean for us? Well, firstly how will we know how searchers are finding our websites? We will lose all of our Google keyword insights, unless we use Google Adwords. This will then in turn affect our content strategies.  

Google confirmed the switch and said:
"We added SSL encryption for our signed-in search users in 2011, as well as searches from the Chrome omnibox earlier this year.  We're now working to bring this extra protection to more users who are not signed in."  

Sorry, but I'm not buying this rationale.  

The cynic in me thinks that this is a cunning plan (thanks Baldrick!) to encourage more people to use Google Adwords.  

Let's just hope that other search engines don't follow Google's lead...  

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