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  1. #1
    Love *********'s Forum ep2012's Avatar
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    How to tell how far you've dropped

    Hi,

    So while I know some about SEO, I've never had to determine how far my sites have dropped before since I used to be #1 for years. Now I need to know what kws have me in which position, where I was in relation to my competition before the bloody Pengiun fiasco & where I am now in relation to them, etc.

    Can someone tell me what this task is called, are there any free tools online that will help me or do I have to hire someone to give me this info & if yes, again, what's this called? I know it's a report, but there's many different reports?

    I really wanted something easy I can use myself so I can check if I'm going up in the rankings & if yes, for which kws.

    Thanks


    Michelle

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    Hi Michelle,

    The best tool I know for this is Google Webmaster Tools (GWM). It will tell you exactly how far your site has dropped or risen, both in absolute and percentage terms. By default, it gives aggregated figures for all searches for all geographic areas over the last 30 days. But you can filter it by search type (e.g. mobile), location and time period.

    The only caveat is that it only reflects Google searches, but that's presumably not a problem.

    Mike

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    Community Advisor ULTiMATE's Avatar
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    It's also worth noting that Google search results are tailored for certain types of sites and on the previous history of what people have searched for, so while you may have been #1 on your machine you may be #5 elsewhere.

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    Love *********'s Forum ep2012's Avatar
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    Right & I learned recently even the browser pulls up diffrerent results which is nuts IMO.

    Where in Google Webmaster Tools does it show this?

    It doesn't show the best kws though right?

    Thanks


    Michelle

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    SitePoint Zealot coloradojaguar's Avatar
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    I recommend that you use several or at least two tools in order to get a better avg. and more information. Google web tools is a wonderful way to assess some things but other tools allow you to make a cross comparison of some factors and see where it all adds up in the end.
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    Quote Originally Posted by exoticpublishing View Post
    Where in Google Webmaster Tools does it show this?

    It doesn't show the best kws though right?
    In GWM, go to Traffic (in the left-hand panel), then Serach Queries. You'll see that there are two tabs: one for the queries and one for the pages. The first of these tells you the keywords that people use to find your site. The other one tells you which pages they actually found. In this second tab, you can drill down to see which queries found which pages.

    This is very useful, because as well as telling you the successful queries that people used, it can tell you the near misses, that is, the queries that resulted in your page appearing in the search results but too low down to attract many clicks. You might take the view that these are the keywords you need to put more effort into optimising.

    The other useful thing you can do in this part of GWM is to filter the results by location and search type. Filtering by location will tell your relative performance by country or region.

    It's worth exploring GWM in detail, because it can give you a great deal of useful information about your site.

    Mike

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    Community Advisor ULTiMATE's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by exoticpublishing View Post
    Right & I learned recently even the browser pulls up diffrerent results which is nuts IMO.
    Why? For a search engine this is exactly what everyone wants. For websites ranking is subjective and as such sites should be ranked differently depending on the person running that search. For example, if I regularly search for jewellery online then I would want "ruby tips" to display web pages about Ruby's, whereas if I am a developer I'd want to read about the programming language. Context means everything and it's something that most people involved in SEO fail to ever get across to their clients.

  8. #8
    Love *********'s Forum ep2012's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikl View Post


    In GWM, go to Traffic (in the left-hand panel), then Serach Queries. You'll see that there are two tabs: one for the queries and one for the pages. The first of these tells you the keywords that people use to find your site. The other one tells you which pages they actually found. In this second tab, you can drill down to see which queries found which pages.

    This is very useful, because as well as telling you the successful queries that people used, it can tell you the near misses, that is, the queries that resulted in your page appearing in the search results but too low down to attract many clicks. You might take the view that these are the keywords you need to put more effort into optimising.

    The other useful thing you can do in this part of GWM is to filter the results by location and search type. Filtering by location will tell your relative performance by country or region.

    It's worth exploring GWM in detail, because it can give you a great deal of useful information about your site.

    Mike
    Hi Mike,

    Sorry I never got an e-mail that people responded to this thread.

    Ok, I tried to see what you are seeing, but I'm just not getting there.

    I don't see a column that says pages, only query.

    What does "avg position" mean? I mean I understand what it means, but if it says 6.0, does that mean I'm 6 down from the #1 spot?

    Why do only 2 of my long tails have a CTR number under that column?

    I don't see anything that is telling me if I'm going up or down.

    What's the name of the 2nd tab that allows me to drill down?

    Thanks


    Michelle

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    Love *********'s Forum ep2012's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ULTiMATE View Post
    Why? For a search engine this is exactly what everyone wants. For websites ranking is subjective and as such sites should be ranked differently depending on the person running that search. For example, if I regularly search for jewellery online then I would want "ruby tips" to display web pages about Ruby's, whereas if I am a developer I'd want to read about the programming language. Context means everything and it's something that most people involved in SEO fail to ever get across to their clients.
    I sort of agree, but I was talking about the browser, nothing to do with your search habits.

    What I don't like is a SE thinking it's smarter than me when it's not.

    Nothing irked me more than when I was living in Canada & needed US search results as I don't do biz with Canadians, only with Americans.

    Even when trying to use Google.com which is what I was using all the time anyway, I NEVER got proper results. I'd get bloody results from AUS before I'd get them from the US. I hated it. I wasted tons of my time & I'm sure many companies lost biz from me b/c of that.

    But again, I was just talking about browsers.

  10. #10
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    Michelle,

    I'll try to answer your questions:

    don't see a column that says pages, only query.

    These are tabs, not columns. First, click Search Queries (in the left-hand panel). Just below the heading Search Queries, you'll see two tabs: Top Queries and Top Pages.

    What does "avg position" mean? I mean I understand what it means, but if it says 6.0, does that mean I'm 6 down from the #1 spot?

    Yes. 1.0 would mean the very top. 2.0 is one position down from that, and so on. The "average" means the average over all Google properties and countries (subject to any filters you have specified), and over the time period being reported.

    Why do only 2 of my long tails have a CTR number under that column?

    Don't know.

    I don't see anything that is telling me if I'm going up or down.

    You need to click the "With change" button (between the graph and the table of figures). As well as actual numbers, you'll see the positive changes in green and negative changes in red, so a quick glance will tell you if your pages are mainly moving up or down.

    What's the name of the 2nd tab that allows me to drill down?

    Not sure what you mean by that. In general, you can drill down by clicking a specific query (on the Top Queries) page. That will show you the number of time the query has been in the top five, the second five, on the second page, and so on. Clicking on the page URL in the Top Pages section will show you an analysis of the queries for that page. This is particularly valuable, as it will show the queries that caused the page to rank well in the search results, but not well enough to generate many clicks - in other words, the near misses.

    There's a lot more to GWM tools than the features mentioned here. I'd encourage you to explore, and to use the Help link (top-right corner) to learn more.

    Mike

  11. #11
    Love *********'s Forum ep2012's Avatar
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    Thanks Mike, that helped some.

    Just one last question, how do I find what the top kws are that people are searching for?

    Oh & when I flip to the pages tab that doesn't tell me which kws were used to find that page, correct?


    Michelle

  12. #12
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    Michelle,

    GWM doesn't show you the top keywords that people are seaching for. What is shows is the keywords that people used to find your pages. Or, to be more exact, the keywords that caused your pages to appear in Google search results (but not necessarily resulted in a click-through).

    That's what you see in the top level of the "Top queries" tab. You also see them in the "Top pages" tab when you drill down into a particular page.

    Remember, in both cases, the keywords appear if they result in an "impression", not necessarily a click. For this purpose, "impression" means that the user actually sees the results page on which your page appears. So, if your page is on the second page of the results, but the user doesn't click through to the second page, that doesn't count as an impression. (At least, that's my understanding.)

    Does that answer your questions, or have I misunderstood them?

    (By the way, I agree with the point you made to Ulitmate about Canadians not seeing US site, etc. I have the same issue where I live in. It's one of several reasons that I find myself using Google less and less these days.)

    Mike

  13. #13
    Love *********'s Forum ep2012's Avatar
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    Thanks Mike. I hope you are correct on that but I'm not sure, b/c if that is correct, how could they see me if I'm in position 26. While it does say < 10, it's still an entry in the results, so I must be showing up as an impression. Right?

    So what tool do you use to find the best kws?

    After what G did to me via Penguin, I hate them & I never use the word "hate" lightly. It's bad enough that people in the US are homeless b/c of the economy, G now put tons of small bizes out of biz. And the search results now when I use them to search are terrible. Poor quality sites, abandoned sites, sites that give me misinformation, etc.

    It wasn't just this, around 2 years ago I started hearing rumors about them & I started to feel they weren't as good as they used to be AND I used to be a die hard fan.

    I hope your businesses are doing well


    Michelle

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    Quote Originally Posted by exoticpublishing View Post
    ...how could they see me if I'm in position 26. While it does say < 10, it's still an entry in the results, so I must be showing up as an impression. Right?
    Michelle,

    Yes, you'll show up as an impression each time someone actually views the results page where your page appears.

    You must remember that, when it says position 26, that's an average. It's an average over time, and an average over Google properties. It could be that you were at or near position 1 at some time during the period. You might also have been at 100. But you can't know that just by looking at the front page. You'd have to set filters to view each individual property for each day within the relevant period.

    (It might be nice if they could tell us the highest and lowest rank, along with the averages, but I guess that's too much to ask.)

    Keep in mind that everything I've said in this thread is based only on my own observations. I have no inside information about GWT, and of a knowledgeable person comes along and says I'm wrong, I probably am.

    By the way, your remarks about Google are interesting. I don't go as far as to say I hate them - not in the slightest. But, for me, their search results are much less relevant than they used to be (at least for the types of searches I do). I've often wondered if I should use the Feedback feature to tell Google why their results are not relevant. But when you consider the billions of searches that they run every day, it's hardly likely they will take a scrap of notice of my views.

    Mike


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