Review – Web CEO
Web CEO is a software package of ten main tools that help you to promote your site in search engines, analyze your visitors, and easily maintain your Website(s) at optimal quality.
Want to cut to the chase?
If you’re a Website owner or a web developer, stop reading this review of Web CEO right now. Head over to www.webceo.com and buy it. Don’t say I don’t give you good advice!
If you’re still not sure, read on and I’ll give you the lowdown on a piece of software that, if I was smart enough, I’d have purchased years ago — and saved myself thousands of dollars and thousands of hours.
So, you’ve decided to read on? Okay, I’ll start at the start.
Web CEO is packed with features, including:
- Keyword research tool: find the right keywords for your site.
- Search engine optimization tool: compare your Website optimization readiness against the top ranked sites.
- Simple editor: access, view and edit the various parts of your HTML page.
- Search engine submission tool: automatically (or manually) submit your site to the search engines. Contains notes on each individual search engine with space for your own specific comments.
- Check your rankings: a huge timesaver for search engine specialists and Website owners who need relevant data.
- Link checker: quickly and easily check who’s linking to you, who’s linked to your competitors, and much more.
- Website quality assurance: comprehensive review of all site components with detailed analytical reports. Quickly find and repair any damaged files or pages.
- FTP uploader: quickly upload files without leaving the software.
- Always know the status of your site: real time monitoring keeps tabs on your site even when you’re not there (and you can be emailed or telephoned the results).
- Comprehensive site reports: includes hundreds of detailed reports to enable you to make the right decision every time!
Sound good? I thought you’d like it. Here are the software specs:
Web CEO comes in a few flavours, each at a different price point:
- Web CEO Free: FREE
- Web CEO Startup: $19
- Web CEO SmallBiz: $295
- Web CEO Professional: $495
But wait! That’s not all!
Web CEO charges an ongoing fee for optional components of the software. This is and will continue to be the secret (aside from the brilliant software!) to their success.
- For example, HitLens (the traffic analysis component) is priced at 59 cents per 1,000 page views for "Power Reporting" or 79 cents per 1,000 page views for "eCommerce Reporting".
- Site monitoring costs between $0 and 41.80 per day.
- Access to the downloadable Knowledge Base updates costs a little more.
Now, many of us balk at ongoing fees like this. But, be realistic: the provision of the analysis and monitoring services, and keeping the knowledge fresh, takes time, money and significant resources. The guys at Web CEO aren’t about to compromise the success of the sites that use their product by scrimping to save the customer a few cents here and there.
You want the best quality software with ongoing quality service? Of course there needs to be an ongoing fee. To ask for anything less would compromise the quality of the ongoing service, and very quickly diminish the value of the software to customers like you and I.
It’s a great strategy that’s of great benefit to the customer.
…Sound Like Anyone You Know?
Once upon a time there was a handsome man. Let’s call him Brendon. Brendon was handsome and charming… in equal parts! Brendon owned a few ecommerce businesses, and he also ran a busy little Web development firm that did quite a lot of search engine work.
Brendon was going along very nicely and all was good in his world.
"I’m so very clever, I surprise even my handsome self," he would often be heard to say. "Here I am, making quite a bit of money from my Websites," he said gaily one day.
"Sure, it takes a while to manually check everything I need to check, and I’m not 100% sure of my search engine strategies, and I certainly won’t ever know what my competitors are doing — that would be far too difficult to figure out. And, although I’ve spent thousands of hours and dollars on my site management systems, I’m quite, quite sure no-one would have as much information on their site as I do! I’m so very clever… Let’s go find a mirror for me to look into…." And off he skipped.
I confess: I’m "Brendon". I’m not very handsome. And I’m certainly not charming. But most of all, I’m not smart. What I’ve seen Web CEO achieve means I’m pretty much a moron.
If I was smart, I’d have purchased Web CEO as soon as I laid eyes on it. Why? Well, it’s time to get down to the nitty gritty and find out.
Web CEO has 3 main parts. Let’s take each in turn.
Part 1: Promote Your Site
This section of the software contains the following tools.
Keywords are King. Find the right keywords to target and you can move your Website from struggle to success. It’s worth spending a lot of time analyzing keyword data in that search for the golden nugget!
Web CEO searches from 16 meta search engines to obtain the keywords for which users search. I’ve compared these results against the returns from Word Tracker and the Overture Suggestion Tool, and they’re pretty good.
Coming from different data sources, they’ll be different from the totals identified by individual engines, of course, but this tool provides the same sort of range of keywords.
From the same interface, you can view the very cool ‘KEI’. The Keyword Effectiveness Index (KEI) was developed by search engine guru Sumantra Roy. The KEI index "compares the daily searches with the number of competing Web pages to pinpoint exactly which keywords are good enough so you can use them while optimizing your site.
"Keywords with the highest KEI combine attractive popularity and less competition. It means there are all chances you will get a high ranking if you use these keywords for optimizations."
That’s pretty smart — it provides a good starting point for optimizing your pages.
Another nifty little feature is the ‘Analyze competition’ tab, from which you can assess the link numbers, traffic ranks, and pay-per-click bids for that key word, along with a range of other useful information. It’s very easy to use, and great data to have.
Get Optimization Advice
Simply hit a button here and the software reviews your page with an eye on the last known requirements of the search engine for which you’ve optimized the page. Having spent 10 hours a day for the past few years on search engine optimization, I’m happy to report that the information Web CEO provides is very solid indeed.
With knowledge base updates every 2-3 days, the Web CEO team obviously keeps abreast of what’s happening and you, as the user, avoid the late nights trying to keep up with the last search engine strategies.
The software compares your pages with the top ranked pages for the keyword you’re targeting, analyzes off-page factors (very important these days), and provides the results in very easy-to-read formats.
Just hit one button, and you’ll know what you need to do to improve your site for higher search engine rankings.
(Search engine optimizers can place their own logos on the reports in the Pro version â€“ a great way to make you look good to your clients!)
Edit Web Pages
Although I didn’t use this feature extensively, it was handy for making small adjustments as I went along. It’s not built for major work, but is suited more to doing little jobs that crop up as you work through the software.
Again, the time and effort that has gone into creating an incredibly easy user interface pays off — you can do plenty with minimal time and effort.
I’ve never been a big fan of submitting URLs to search engines using automated software (because some of them tell you to avoid automated submissions). So I didn’t use this particular feature extensively with the bigger engines. Despite my reluctance, I did use the software to submit the site automatically to the many smaller search engines that I’d never heard of.
The software provides a list of search engines that require manual submissions, along with a comment on which other sites that search engine is affiliated with, and the best way to approach them.
There’s even a space in which you can add your own search engine-specific comments.
Along with the automatic submission of URLs, search engines haven’t been too thrilled with software queries of their database. The quite legitimate thinking behind this is that if everyone did it, the call on their resources would be massive and the search engines’ results for ‘real’ searchers would be dramatically slowed.
Having said that, it would be a little difficult to penalize those who did use software to query their databases, as the search engine has no way to know who’s making the query, and could very easily penalize a site due to the actions of a competitor.
Used wisely, this tool can save you hours and hours of frustrating search engine review.
At the click of a button, you’ll have extensive search engine ranking reports for key words within the various search engines. The software also provides competitor reviews along with a detailed history, the usual brilliant interface showing clear graphs, the ability to export the data or email it … you get the idea.
For a search engine optimizer, this feature alone would justify the cost of the software. It really is an astoundingly simple and well-presented report.
Analyze Link Popularity
This section of the software includes a detailed link review that shows you — in different formats â€“ the search engines from which your links are coming (alongside a comparison of the data that was returned the last time you ran the analysis). You can also check out your competition, and see which specific sites (and pages) are linking to you.
Easy printing of the results in a clear, concise format makes this tool a delight to use.
Part 2: Maintain your Site
The second section of the software is designed to help you maintain your site.
Control Site Quality
This tool has to be seen to be believed. The software checks out your site comprehensively and provides a series of easy-to-read reports.
If your site is large, the importance of having this type of review is easily understood. What would have been a tedious job takes just minutes with this tool’s help.
Upload Files Using FTP
A nice, simple interface means Web CEO makes it a very easy process to move files around. There’s no big technological advance here — it’s just nice to have this functionality in the package.
Monitor Site Uptime
Imagine you have a site that makes $10,000 a day. Now, if that site goes down for 3 or 4 hours, depending on the time of day, it could cost you $5,000.
That’s a lot of beer money! Imagine what a few hours downtime could cost a big site!
Site monitoring makes sense. You know it does. I know it does. But, I’m not smart like you are. I take the easy way out and use the old fashioned method of crossing my fingers and hoping!
Sending notification via cell phone, email or pager, this site monitor service could save you big dollars. It’s peace of mind for a very small additional cost.
Part 3: Analyze Your Visitors
The third area of the package helps you focus on visitor information — and use it to your advantage!
Get Traffic Reports
I wasn’t sure I should even try to describe the quality of the traffic analysis provided by Web CEO. But I guess I have to give it a shot.
Over the past couple of days, one of my staff has been hard at work setting up a comprehensive statistics analysis system for one of our sites. Bear in mind that the reason we know we need particular pieces of information is the result of years of ecommerce experience. Yet, it’s a very comprehensive system.
Or so I thought.
HitLens, the reporting component of Web CEO, contains everything we thought of… and a lot, lot more. And it’s far more detailed and relevant information than we could ever come up with, in a better format, that’s easier to understand, and requires no effort to produce and collate the data.
The data we’ve analyzed so far has allowed us to increase the sales conversion rate on one of our Websites from 3% to 4%. And it was an easy win, thanks to the information Web CEO provided us.
That 1% increase gives us 12 extra sales a day — some $3,000 a day, or over $1 million a year.
I really can’t articulate the mind-blowing quality of the analysis provided in Web CEO any more clearly than that. From complete traffic analysis, to complete marketing campaign analysis, to full break downs of ecommerce activity, this really is an impressive service.
Being a man, the last thing I ever do is read the instructions. Instructions are for wimps!
What I found was that Web CEO has a decent learning curve. Even though I’ve used a few pieces of software in my time, it took me a while to get my head around this one. But, that’s hardly surprising, given the depth of the functionality available in WebCEO.
While the optimization advice is comprehensive, I thought one feature that would provide significant value and could easily be added might be a "This is how to get people to link to your site" section.
Commentary is provided on the off-the-page aspects, but (to use linking as an example) the report says, "You have x links in; your competitor has y links in." The comments tell you why links are important. But some specific information here on how to gain extra links (maybe even an example email that us site owners could send) would be very useful here.
I had very little call for Support and, being a guy who is doing a review of the product, you can never be sure if the speed and quality of support I receive is what everyone else receives.
So as part of my due diligence of the software I searched the Web for comments provided about Web CEO support.
The overwhelming perception of the support offered with the software is one of a highly professional outfit fully committed to excellence in service. I’d go as far as to say the comments I found (and the people I spoke with) praised Web CEO support more than any other product support service I’ve ever seen.
Who am I to Judge?
Who am I to judge this piece of software? Good question!
I own 3 decent sized e-commerce sites. 1 of those sites once did $200,000+ in business in 2 hours. That was 2 years ago. That site continues to do very, very well.
Another site I started just 12 weeks ago already takes $10,000 per day. That site will be turning over more than $4 million annually within a few more weeks.
With that background, I know a little about Websites that work. And I measure stuff — lots of stuff. Over the years, I’ve developed a very extensive spreadsheet that tells me everything I need to know about a site, and then some.
So, when I received my copy of Web CEO, I thought "What are these guys going to do better than me? Nothing! That’s what!" I’ll just have another bite of my Humble Pie and then continue.
According to the Website, Web CEO is:
"… the world’s best software package of ten tools that helps you promote your site in search engines, intelligently analyze your visitors, and easily maintain your online estate."
I say, "Web CEO is a piece of software that will take you step by step through the process of developing an extremely successful Website. Web CEO makes it simple to effectively manage your Web business with a minimum of time and effort."
Every interaction I’ve had with this software tells me to highly recommend Web CEO.
From the incredibly easy interface — which is very, very impressive and easy to use — to the quality of each module within the software, to the time savings it offers, to the reporting features, this product is really outstanding.
There’s a bit of a learning curve involved in getting to know the software, but with such a comprehensive tool, that’s only to be expected. And, as I said, the product support really is top-notch, so if you’re ever stuck on a problem, you can rest assured that help is close at hand.
Web CEO is not just a search engine optimization product. It’s much more. In fact, this is the most complete and user-friendly Website management tool I’ve used. Check it out for yourself.