Google Secure Search is a secure search function whereby the established connection is encrypted using SSL to protect the data. Instead of HTTP, the address line starts with HTTPS.
Google deems the input of search terms something personal and considers it increasingly important to protect the transmission of these terms and the corresponding result lists. Such sensitive data is encrypted with the Internet protocol SSL and thus can no longer be read by unauthorized persons. It is also used on many other websites for the same purpose.
SecureSearch is particularly relevant if you are accessing the Internet from another location or device than your home computer. WIFI hotspots in Internet cafes, for example, have an unsafe Internet connection. It is therefore especially important that the transmission of data from the webpage is secured. Google also has the intention to encourage other operators to provide secure connections. That is why Google provides additional information and support on the topic of SSL.
Users who are logged into their Google account will automatically search through the secure https connection. If you use the Google search while not being logged in, you can look out for the additional “s” in https as part of the URL. Any Internet user can use Secure Search to have their searches encrypted. The search process itself does not change, but the connection is safer.
The introduction of the Secure Search does provide more security for the user. However, the websites that are found through this Secure Search feel different effects. The operators still get the information that a visitor has come to their webpage through the Google search, but the exact wording of the request is withheld. The queries are still provided as a list. The top 1000 search queries with which Traffic was generated are listed for each of the last 30 days.
Relevance to SEO
Since the search term is no longer transmitted, website operators lose one fundamental type of information for page optimization. It is more and more common to get the term “not provided” when inquiring about the keyword which was used. But there are new ways to analyze the traffic. The referral string contains hidden information that allows website operators to filter out specific information. The exact procedure is described in the article Referral String.
Searching with keywords is a basic pillar of search engine optimization. Websites are optimized for keywords that are often entered by visitors. A page that contains relevant content for this term is supposed to rank well for that term. This basic data for SEO is increasingly disappearing through the introduction of Secure Search. The number of requests via a secure connection is currently noticeably growing and webmasters will have less and less information about keywords. The optimization of websites can therefore no longer be based solely on keywords, but will have to focus on other factors such as relevance and good content.
Google puts a lot of importance on the fact that a page provides a certain benefit to the visitor. The added value of the page is increasingly influencing the positioning in the ranking. Methods such as keyword stuffing, where this added value is not guaranteed, have already been stopped by the search engines. With the increased elimination of keyword information, search engine optimization will increasingly focus on the benefit to the visitor. The creation of content is less based on keywords, but rather on the relevance to humans.