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Web hosting service providers failing to pick up potential leads from search traffic

by david.nunes

London, 26 August, 2010 – According the latest quarterly report by independent search marketing agency Greenlight, ‘Web Hosting Sector Report – June 2010’, UK-based consumers made over 926,000 searches in Google in June for web hosting services. However, of the 60 most commonly appearing and prominent web hosting service provider sites in natural search, three-quarters were not visible for 90% of the most popular web hosting-related search terms identified.

“In natural search, just a mere 15 websites were visible for more than 10% of web searches for web hosting-related services in June. This indicates there are massive gains to be made for many players within this market”, says Simon Hollingsworth, lead researcher at Greenlight. “A recent survey by VMware found 73% of small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are using web hosting to increase their business performance, indicative that the potential for the web hosting market is substantial.”

Greenlight used industry data and proprietary technology to identify and classify 1,500 of the most popular search terms used by UK consumers when they went online in June to search for web hosting services. It included dedicated hosting, domain name registration, email hosting, and web hosting terms. Greenlight also used the data to compile its quarterly league tables. These chart the best performing websites and brands, in both natural* and paid search**, based on their online visibility and share of voice in relation to the most popular search terms identified.

Some key findings reveal:

· Domain name registration terms were the most searched for, accounting for over 447,000 searches made in June

· The term ‘Web hosting’ totalled 110,000 searches, which accounted for 12% of all web hosting-related searches. This was a decrease on March when it was searched for 135,000 times

· The term ‘Dedicated servers’ was searched for 18,100 times, which accounted for 25% of dedicated hosting searches. This was a massive increase since March, when the term was searched for 8,100 times. However, many of the other terms significantly decreased, such as ‘Business web hosting’ which was searched for 8,100 times in March as opposed to 5,400 times in June

· In natural search, 123-Reg achieved 62% share of voice, and held the top spot through ranking at position one on page one of Google for 148 of the 1,500 keywords analysed, including the most searched for term ‘Web hosting’. Wikipedia came second with 42% share of voice. It ranked on page one of Google for 494 of the keywords analysed and also achieved strong visibility due to relevant website content and credible links on web hosting. In third position was FastHosts with 35% share of voice although it attained lower visibility for high volume driving terms, compared to 123-Reg

· 1and1 was the most visible advertiser in paid search in June, attaining 65% visibility, a 4% increase since March. GoDaddy followed with a visibility of 54%. This was an increase of 13% since March which saw it move from position three to two in Greenlight’s league table

· Of the top 10 web hosting advertisers, eight were multi-channel service providers and two were domain name and website suppliers: GBBO and Names.co.uk.



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