Baidu has the data that really matters in China that should be shared back to all Chinese webmasters and advertisers. However, this is not happening.
China's fast growing Internet has created opportunities not only in search engine marketing and search engine optimization for websites, but also in data lifecycle. Every decision for your website can be as data-driven as possible, if you know where and how to collect the data necessary for your online business.
Google's Data Lifecycle
Everyone knows Google is a search engine. But what Google has really established is a data lifecycle between webmasters/advertisers and Google themselves. Consider two processes:
How Does Google Collect Data?
Process 1: Google collects massive website data through two major methods: Google Analytics and Googlebot.
After data collection, Google reorganized the data into more meaningful and useful forms, i.e., reports, before showing them to webmasters and online advertisers.
How Does Google Share Website Data?
Process 2: Google shares website data back to webmasters and advertisers through many tools/systems, but most notably through:
Google? No, It Should Be Baidu in China!
Above is the demonstration of the processes in collecting and sharing website data by Google, but in China, Google's search share is way behind Chinese leading search engine Baidu. So the bulk data that really matters most should be with Baidu and should be shared by Baidu back to all Chinese webmasters and advertisers. However, is this happening and if not, then why not?
Baidu Analytics: Baidu has only released the beta version of Baidu Analytics (which is equivalent to Google Analytics in China) in late 2009 to selected Baidu SEM advertisers. In 2010, Baidu Analytics has been opened to the public.
Baidu's Webmaster Tools: Baidu released a so-called webmaster tools to webmasters in 2010. It should be the equivalent to Google's Webmaster Tools, but in reality, Baidu's Webmaster Tools has never been up to par due to many shortcomings in functionality.
Baidu Phoenix Nest: Though Baidu's SEM platform has made more and more reports available to Baidu SEM advertisers over the years, it is Baidu's keyword bidding algorithm and offline negotiation that hinders most of the advertisers.
Without adequate data being collected in the first place from all the Chinese websites and shared back to all the webmasters and advertisers, this data lifecycle still has a long way to complete in China's Internet world.
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Gordon Choi has paid search experience in Google AdWords and Baidu since 2003; Yahoo/Bing since 2002 and SEO and web analytics experience since 2005 across China, Asia, U.S., U.K. and Australian markets. He gathered China Internet experience through working in-house at Ctrip.com and Alibaba.com and now specializes in setting up SEM/SEO strategies, managing online campaign operations, and implementing web analytics solutions for clients.
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