IndexWatch SE – A Lens on the Swedish SERPS 🇸🇪

In this new study, we present domain visibility trends from Google Search Sweden based on six years of historical data. The domains are categorised based on industry sectors, categories, and business models. 

By combining multiple data sets, we have obtained unparalleled insights into the organic performance of the main online businesses operating in Sweden, allowing us to analyse the evolution of share of search by industry sectors, categories, business models, or individual actors – over the short and long term.

The biggest websites in Google Search, SE

The chart below shows the most visible domains in Google Search, SE:

The visibility of the largest domain,, accounts for ~9% of the visibility of the top Swedish sites in the study. Following a substantial decrease in 2022 (- 18%) for the first time in 5 years, search footprint decreased again -3% this year.

Key takeaways and trends of 2023

So far this year, the main event that has disrupted the Swedish SERPs has been the March 2023 Core Update (Google’s update history). While the overall visibility of Sweden’s most popular websites remained stable,  certain industry sectors and large websites experienced noticeable impacts.

The remaining podium sites are Social networks platforms (Facebook, Youtube and Instagram) which have been able to leverage Google’s search results pages at scale.

 Before we go into the winners and losers, here are some more takeaways and trends that have emerged.

  1. A rebound of the News Media sector: 

Over the past six years, the News Media sector has experienced a substantial decline in its organic search footprint (-38%). 2023 marks a notable change in the sector’s performance in 2023 as it has shown a significant rebound (+15% growth YTD).

We will delve deeper to discover which actors are benefiting most from that recovery and what implications it has for the sector.

  1. Dynamism of Jobs & Career sector: 

Over the past six years, the share of search visibility in this sector has doubled. In the current year, the sector has consistently grown +9%. We will identify the key actors leading in this space and contributing to this growth.

  1. E-Health: A stable sector with interesting underlying trends: 

The digital health sector is as fascinating as it is complex. Over the past six years, digital health has experienced significant growth (+93%) in its share of Search, first propelled by the development of E-pharma’s and more recently fuelled by the emergence of E-health services, such as E-doctors and E-psychologists.

In 2023, E-health growth trends reversed. The E-doctors experienced a decline in their search footprint for the first time, while E-pharmacies – despite being considered a mature category – showed unexpected but promising developments.

Winners – The top 5 winning sectors in Google SE

Top five sectors with increasing visibility in Google’s Swedish search results (YTD)
SectorsTotal VI May 2023Abs Change YTDPercent YTDAbs Change 6YPercent 6Y
News and Media263135215%-1593-38%
Reference Materials58392184%-565-9%
Science and Education1618765%49043%
Social Networking4506641%113634%
Jobs & Career532469%26599%

The rebound of News & Media (YTD +15%, 362 VI points):

The News Media sector is a dynamic field where news aggregators, local, national, and international news outlets all strive to gain an available visibility of ~2600 Visibility Index points in the search engine results pages. (SERPs).

Over the course of the last six years, the News Media sector has witnessed a significant and widespread decrease in its search footprint, with a decline of -38% of its share of search. However, 2023 marks a noteworthy shift in the sector’s performance. For the first time in years, the News Media industry has experienced a considerable recovery, displaying a growth rate of +15%.

Within the News Media sector, the national news outlets are predominant  in terms of the share of Search Visibility as illustrated by the graph below:

Distribution and variations of Search visibility by type of News Media:
Distribution and variations of Search visibility by type of News Media:
Table - Evolution of Search visibility by type of News Media:
Table – Evolution of Search visibility by type of News Media:

In 2023, both Local and National News outlets witnessed a recovery in their visibility on the SERPs. 

However, in absolute gains, the growth was primarily fuelled by national newspapers. 

News media domains that grew in visibility in 2023 (YTD)

Aftonbladet experienced a significant increase of +160 points (+22%), while achieved the highest relative growth.

As an illustration of this trend, we can look at the evolution of the Search Engine Results (SERPs) across 2017-2023 for a famous business profile: Elon Musk – using the SISTRIX compare SERP tool:

Evolution of the SERP for Elon Musk from 2017-2023 Vs. numbers of News Outlets. [Click to enlarge.]

The national media houses, marked in yellow, are back among the top 10 in 2023 from a low in 2021.

This progression reflects a global trend observed in queries related to individuals, locations, and general informational topics where the top positions are often occupied by platforms like Wikipedia, YouTube, Instagram, and Twitter, while national media outlets regain prominence in the latter half of the SERP. 

Notably, international news sites such as,,, and have become less prevalent in Swedish search results in recent years. Nonetheless, the has been a rare international news outlet to continuously expand its share of search (20% YTD and 60% in 6 years).

The aggregators, news portals like MSN and Yahoo, are continuing to gradually fade away out of the picture.

While this rebound in visibility of News Media does not compensate for the declining visibility it experienced in recent years, it constitutes encouraging indications for the development of evergreen content, thematic pages (famous people, locations, sports…) or niche and specialised magazines (fashion, lifestyle…).

A dynamic sector: Jobs and Career (+9%, +46 pts)

The Jobs & Career sector is a relatively straightforward vertical, operated by a governmental agency and a dozen international and national job platforms. In May 23, It held a total of ~530 visibility points.

During the last 12 months the sector has increased by 9% – 46 VI points.

During the last 6 years, the share of search visibility of the jobs and career doubled, led by the international portal +103 pts and a few national sites such as (+61 pts), (+41 pts) and the governmental portal (+30 pts)

Graphic: Leading domains in the jobs and career sector
Leading domains in the jobs and career sector
Table – Winners & Losers of the sector YTD

This year so far, the growth of the sector was led by 3 sites:

  • (+18 pts / 13%), leader of the category, is coming back from its fall in 2021.

Taking a look at the directory development of this domain , we can see that the career advice section (External link: accounted for 11pts of Indeeds’ recent 18 recent pts increase.

  • (+14 pts / 19%) (Governmental site) slowly grows, emulating Indeed’s strategy and developing its information section. remains an untapped SEO powerhouse with more than 7,000 referring domains and an underdeveloped SEO potential of its Job bank.

  • Bouncing back in 2023, regained +24 pts /+108% after 2 years of important decrease. The domain is still under performing against its long term level (-40%).

A newcomer, an aggregator from Italy,, will be a site to keep an eye on (2,4% visibility share currently)

E-Health – Stable but interesting sector nonetheless

The digital health sector is a fascinating but complex field to observe. It includes a broad spectrum of categories, ranging from operators such as E-doctors and E-commerce sites like pharmacies to publishers and governmental agencies. 

Digital health has experienced significant growth over the past 6 years (93% change of visibility in the last 6 years) and continued to develop through 2022 (+12% year over year). In 2023, however, it experienced a slowdown for the first time, with just one percent growth in absolute VI value.

Although the health sector, on the whole, has remained steady so far in 2023, its individual components have exhibited diverse trends. 

Let’s delve into the major constituents and explore their distinct trajectories.

Health - Distribution and variations of Search visibility by category
Health – Distribution and variations of Search visibility by category

The slowdown and decrease of E-doctors (-8%, -31 pts):

The E-doctor category has seen a surge of growth in recent years (+1000% in the last 6 years). In 2022, the category started losing momentum and entered a more mature phase, still delivering growth numbers YOY 12% or 50 points. In 2023, the growth came to a halt, and the footprint of E-doctors declined for the first time, decreasing by 8% or 31 points.

The graph below shows the decrease Year To Date  of the 2 leaders and which accounts for the most decrease.

The unexpected increase of E-pharmas

Other the other hand, E-pharmas had a unexpected development (8% / 42 pts) led by and Apohem,se. Total absolute VI for the sector rose 42 points to 599 in the previous 12 months. The 6 year gain is 411 VI points.

The Weight of publishers

Publishers, whether privately operated or national agencies like, play a significant role and capture over 50% of the visibility within the health topic. The overall visibility of publishers is stable YTD. Many private publishers have, however, experienced a decline in visibility year-to-date (YTD) during the March core update:,, One notable exception is, which has shown positive growth (+16 pts).

Health publishers list of winners and losing domains.
Health publishers

The top 5 losing sectors in Google SE

Over the last 12 months the following sectors have lost visibility:

Top five sectors with decreasing visibility in Google’s Swedish search results (YTD)
SectorsTotal VI May 2023Abs Change YTDPercent YTDAbs Change 6YPercent 6Y
Sports & Outdoors573-109-16%-48-8%
Food & Drink3116-55-2%79634%
Fashion & Apparel & Beauty1839-50-3%84986%

Energy – A very small niche sector (YTD: -12%, 5 pts)

The energy sector is relatively small market, made of a dozen actors: primarily consisting of electricity providers, affiliates, and a few non-profit governmental organizations.

These entities compete to capture the ~ 36 points of the share of search available, a very small fish tank in which any motion makes a splash…

Graphic: Distribution of Search visibility in the Energy sector by Domain:
Distribution of Search visibility in the Energy sector by Domain
Graphic: Distribution of Search visibility by Business Model
Distribution of Search visibility by Business Model

The Energy sector declined in visibility year-to-date (-12% /-5 pts), primarily driven by a decrease from the leading affiliate, After the Google March 23 core update, witnessed a significant drop of 3.4 points (79% decrease of its visibility).

The market share of affiliates in this vertical has been steadily decreasing over the years, mainly due to operators recognizing the value of organic search and implementing better optimization strategies. The new leader among affiliates is now, capturing a search share of 1.8 points, which accounts for 5% of the total share of the entire sector.

As for the operators themselves, they have maintained visibility levels with some underlying movement, and and have emerged as modest winners.

Sport & Outdoors (YTD: -16% , -109 pts)

Graphic: Sport & Outdoors - Share of Search visibility by category
Sport & Outdoors – Share of Search visibility by category

On May 2023, the Sport & Outdoors category accounted for ~700 pts. It has experienced significant setbacks this year (-109 pts), primarily due to the disappearance of one of its major portals, This website, which served as a content management system for various teams and clubs, used to rank for numerous club-related searches and enjoyed a visibility ~72 pts. Redirected to a single page on the Swedish national federation’s website ( – – the visibility of didn’t get passed on to and vanished, causing a substantial loss in this vertical.

In addition, several online sport shops have also experienced a decline in performance throughout 2023. has seen a decrease of 8.5 points, has decreased by 8 points, by 5 points, and by 4 points, further contributing to the overall decline in the sport & outdoor category.

Visibility trends in the Sport E-commerce sector
Visibility trends in the Sport E-commerce sector

In contrast to the significant losses experienced by other players in the Sport & Outdoors category, (+2.6 pts) and (+2.7 pts) have shown modest gains.

Shopping (YTD: -8%, 236 pts)

The shopping verticals accounts for ~2900 pts of visibility shared among affiliates, classifieds, E-commerce:

Donut graphic- Distribution of Search visibility in the Shopping sector by category:
Distribution of Search visibility in the Shopping sector by category:

The shopping industry encompasses various large generalist platforms using different business models (affiliates, classifieds, and e-commerce).

In Sweden, price comparison sites dominate with a 47% share 0f search, followed by generalist e-commerce platforms such as,, and The classified websites and also hold a significant presence.

Among the generalist affiliates, experienced the largest decline YTD, losing 65 points (10%), while (-50 points, -25%) and the coupons site also saw an important decrease. In percentage, (-52%)

The table below shows the biggest losses of domains in the Shopping sector

On the positive side, there has been some minimal growth in certain areas. Testing platforms that provide product reviews to consumers have gained some visibility, with experiencing a gain of 4 points (171%) and showing promise.

The biggest gains within the category have been achieved by  the e-commerce

The table below shows the biggest gains of domains in the Shopping sector

It’s worth keeping an eye on newcomers such as, a second-hand clothing marketplace entering the Scandinavian market, which is gaining visibility in search engine results pages (SERPs). Another marketplace,, operated by a UK-based company, might also be worth monitoring.

Business Sector (YTD: -7% , -260 pts)

Business and People directory sites tend to be sensitive and prone to volatility during Google updates. The March 23 core update had a negative impact on a large number of People and Business directories websites, specifically, the leading Person directory which experienced a significant decline of -212 points / -30%, along with – 60 pts / -50%. Additionally, the Business directory listings,,, and were also affected.

On the other end, some sites achieved some successes: the public relations platforms like and, as well as review sites such as (59 pts / 40%) and (+17 pts / 19%). 

However, these gains were not enough to offset the losses in the directory sectors, resulting in the business verticals being one of the primary losers year to date.

Winners and Losers, Google Search SE, Year To Date

The list of winners aligns with the trends mentioned earlier, highlighting the strong performance of News & Media websites (,,, and Additionally certain Job boards like and have experienced a notable increase in share of search as did the online pharmacy sector and some PR platforms like

However, there are 2 domains that stand out on their own. and have emerged as the leaders. Both domains have regained the visibility they lost in 2022 and are back to their previous levels.

Top 20 Winning domains by 12-month absolute SISTRIX Visibility Index gain
WebsiteMay 2023Abs YTD% YTDAbs. 6Y% 6Y

Where the are winners there have to be losers. These are the top 20 losing domains in Google Search SE over the last 12 months.

Top 20 Losing domains by 12-month absolute SISTRIX Visibility Index loss
WebsiteMay 2023Abs YTD% YTDAbs. 6Y% 6Y

Report Methodology

This analysis uses data from the 700 most visible domains on The total Visibility Index of the data set is significant. It accounts for ~ 50,000 visibility points, when – to provide some context – SISTRIX allocates a total of around 100,000 points for the entire country. 

The data presented in this report was collected in May 2023 using the mobile Visibility Index.

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