Thursday, May 14, 2009

Google's Fail Whale Effects on Website Traffic

As if we needed any more indication on the importance of organic search to our ability to drive local traffic, take a look at what today's Google outage meant for our traffic from around 8am PST to about 9am PST.


Interestingly enough, our Chairman and Co-Founder, Ben T. Smith, IV, was speaking at the Orrick Total Access Conference and mentioned a Google network failure as one of his "two big unreasonable worries."

While you can see the dip in traffic above, fortunately our network of over 750K members bypass Google and other search engines and come directly to our site to update their listings and connect with their customers. Also, while Google dominates search, a fair number of merchants and consumers still use Yahoo! and MSN.

As for membership joins, we experienced a drop of about a third. Traffic seems to have stabilized for now, but for one day, one of our Chairman's worst worries was realized. His other big unreasonable worry? A consumer credit market failure....

Community Relations

P.S. Thanks, Ivan Lanin for the whale!


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  2. Google is currently king, but twitter's emergence will show how organic search really is.

  3. this article was really interesting. I hope you write more like it in the future. I'll definitely show this to my friends.