My Google+ vs. Twitter Click-Through Experiment

I was fortunate enough to luck into a few Spotify invitations earlier today, so I decided to try a little experiment in checking out click-through rates on Google+ vs. Twitter. I put similar offers up on Twitter and Google+ at the same time (7:38am PDT on a Thursday), and checked to see what drove traffic over to the blog. (I turned off comments on the Google+ offer, so folks could only go to the blog and to not split the sample.)

Twitter Offer

Screen shot 2011-07-28 at 7.12.33 PM

 Google+ Offer

Screen shot 2011-07-28 at 7.14.41 PM
To give a little more context, here are the relative sizes of those two groups. Not exacty the same size, but close:

  • Twitter: 5,352 followers
  • Google+: 4,010 people have me in Circles

I then grabbed my referrer data to that post on the blog over the period of a few hours after these both went up.

Over that time, I had about 60 clicks recorded in the logs. I was surprised to find the raw number of click-throughs from Google+ was about 4x what it was from Twitter, even though the followship was a little smaller. (There's also a big group with "no referrer," that could have come from clients or other sources.)

Number of click throughs, by source

So, it's a small sample size, but it's still notable, I think. I'll be interested to see what kinds of experiences others have as they try similar experiments. Thoughts?

Update: Tac Anderson notes in the comments that "you can pretty much count 90% of those no referrer directly to Twitter clients." So, if that's the case, we're at about parity on the click-through rate between Twitter and Google+, with Twitter being slightly higher in aggregate between the traffic explictly attributed to Twitter and adding in the 'no referrer' traffic that likely came from Twitter clients.

8 Replies to “My Google+ vs. Twitter Click-Through Experiment”

  1. From SEO studies I’ve seen (pre G+) you can pretty much count 90% of those no referrer directly to Twitter clients. Unless people chopped and pasted your URL into their browser. You could also try the experiment with 2 unique URL’S (which is the way those previous studies did it).

  2. G+ folk are more likely to be early adopters so would you agree it should come as no surprise that they would jump on the Spotify bandwagon more quickly? My guess is that if you added FB to the “experiment”, that FB would come in last.

  3. Very cool, Chris. How would you describe your affinity with people on G+ vs. Twitter? Besides Susan’s comment about early adopters, which I think is true, do you think your G+ group (which is newer) may be more actively engaged with you than your Twitter followers? Also, on the G+ side, any relevant trends WRT which Circles replies came from>?

  4. If you tag your links before you shorten them for use you’ll be able to get a more accurate idea of where “no referrer” data comes from.

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