Note: I have zero evidence that User Behavior is a factor, I just like exploring rabbit holes like this and seeing if there seems to be any similarity to reality.
Intro: User Behavior is used in many algorithms and is now (imo) the biggest factor Google uses for ranking websites. User behavior in Google’s case includes things like:
- Time spent on a website
- What and how many pages the user visits
- Did the user continue to search for a different site or was their query solved by the site (did the user go back to Google)
- Did a user click on a specific result or not (if yes then it’s positive for that site and negative for the others)
- Conversion rates
That’s a basic overview of User Behavior in Google’s Algorithm which I won’t go into any further as it’s not the purpose of the topic. When looking at some website issues for a client recently and then coming to the forum to see an Algo debate, I wondered about the idea of Fiverr using a similar system to Google or even just a very basic version of it. It made me think and so I am going to mention a few things that Fiverr sellers talk about doing and explore what the effect these actions would have if User Behavior is a factor in Fiverr.
When I describe an action as Positive it means I am suggesting it improves ranking position. If I say Negative it would lower ranking position.
If lots of people are checking where their gig ranks in results for certain keywords (eg. “Logo design”), what would the effect of all these people checking where their gig ranks be?
If they look at the results but don’t click on anything there is likely to be little effect on any of the gigs in the search results - possibly an ever so slight negative as no gig enticed the buyer to click.
Now, if they did click on one then it would show Fiverr that out of the whole page of results, that gig was the preferred one. This could be a positive for that gig BUT if the user then goes back to results or searches Logo Design again it would be a Negative.
If the user clicks but doesn’t go ahead and buy the gig then it would be a Negative. This is what Google refers to as a conversion rate (not to be confused with Fiverr’s conversion rate which is slightly different).
If the user clearly read the whole gig description (noticed by the time on site, scrolling actions etc) then that could be a positive as it seems like the gig is at least of interest to the person who searched for Logo Design.
It is likely that there would be a failsafe for if the same person does this type of thing (searching but not ever buying) to try and stop the algorithm being manipulated. Google has this.
Hyper Speculation Time:
IF this is a factor on Fiverr, it COULD account for why gigs seem to rotate so much. Thousands of people searching for keywords and never buying could make a big difference and make gigs fall and rise seemingly for no reason.
It could also be why it happens that we sometimes get a lot of inquiries from one part of the world on a certain day or few days. _If a gig gets a lot of positive engagement from hundreds or thousands in one country then perhaps the gig is shown higher in that country.
If a well-performing gig with a high ranking suddenly drops for no apparent reason it could be a casualty of simply not being clicked by these searchers/phantom buyers. It wouldn’t happen with just a few people doing it but with a couple of hundred in one category I would imagine that would make a difference. I want to explain the rationale on this one in particular.
Let’s say my gig is ranking on top of Page 1.
Out of 100 buyers searching for this service, I get 25 clicks to my gig each day and 5 people buy the gig. That gives a click through rate of 25% and a conversion rate of 20%. Those are quite good metrics and what you would expect of a high performing Page 1 ranked gig.
Now, let’s say that 100 Sellers who are searching the same phrase to see where they rank and how many orders the tops rankers have. All of a sudden there are 200 searches and let’s say 25 of those Sellers click through to see my orders in queue (because they want to rant against capitalism on the forum). This means my click-through rate stays at 25% but my Conversion rate drops to 10%.
Suddenly, through no fault of my own or my buyers, my performance seems to have dropped! Fiverr’s algo thinks “hmmm Eoin is not doing as well as before - let’s drop him down a bit and boost the guy on Page 2 who has only two sales but a 50% conversion rate up for a while.”
Ok, that’s enough random speculation for now I think.