Author Archives: wp

New Dashboard

We’ve just added a new dashboard to the domain accounts.

Here is how it looks like:seo dashboard

You can find it in the menu, just above the rankings.

The dashboard has 3 main sections:

  • Rankings – average rank, rank trending and keyword changes since last collection.
  • Web Presence – data from Majestic and Alexa regarding the popularity of the website.
  • Organic visits (advanced and pro accounts only) – Estimated visits and actual visits. Actual visits will only be available after you integrate SheerSEO with G. Analytics or Google Search Console.
  • Rankings Discrepancies

    Many times I get customers saying that our rankings are not correct. While our system may have errors, that is rare.

    A more probable cause you see different results in Google than what are system is giving is:

    1. Localization – Google gives a different results based on your location. The country is the most critical in this respect, even if you use google.com, your results are not US if you’re outside US. For some keywords, also the city or even the zip code within the city influence the results. Those would usually be keywords that make sense to localize per city, like “plumber”, “lawyer”, etc.

    2. Personalization – Google is  trying to fit the results to your previous browsing history. Thus, usually your site, which you visit often, will appear high in the results. The way to avoid this is to sign out of any Google account you use (Gmail, G. Analytics, etc.).

    3. Low search volume keywords – Google is pretty consistent when it comes to keywords that are valuable, which are keywords that have high search volume. But when it comes to low search volume keywords, you might get different results depending on which Google server you hit.

    Analytics Information is not Reliable – “not provided”

    We know for some time that Google started hiding much of their organic search data from monitoring applications. When we come to see the keywords that originated the searches we see “not provided” most of the time. There is nothing new here, but lately it has become so extreme that Google Analytics information regarding organic search is completely useless.

    Here is a quick example:

    analyticsSucks

     

    As you can see, 99% of our searches are not provided.

    Thus, I strongly suggest on not using Google Analytics integration in sheerseo. If you can, choose the Google search console (formerly Google Webmaster Tools) instead.

    Responsive UI

    We’ve worked hard to keep adjusting our interface to be mobile friendly, or in other words “responsive”.

    You’ll notice that we changed our application side menu, so it is hidden when seen on small screens by default. You can use the hamburger menu next to our logo to show/hide the menu.
    See here (menu hidden):

    hamburger

    Notice also that the logo was reduced to 160px width and 80px height. This is now the ideal logo size. If you use an agency package, I suggest that you find a logo that is around this size. Otherwise, the application will do the best to fit the logo into these sizes, but it might look a little squeezed.

    Optimization Targets – New SEO Feature

    I am happy to announce on a new feature, called Optimization Targets, we just added to sheerseo. I believe this is a very important feature which combines the main features we have in sheerseo. It reflects the entire SEO process, of picking up the right keywords, then optimizing both on page and off page SEO, and finally iteration of tracking and adjusting the SEO for those selected keywords. Even better, you’ll be able to correlate the efforts done for this keyword to results that were achieved.

    Choosing the Keywords

    Some people use sheerseo to track hundreds of keywords, which is great, but eventually, you can only focus your main work on a limited number of keywords. This is what this step is all about.

    So, first thing is to go to the new screen, called “Optimization Targets”. Which is right under the rankings screen, and look at the suggestions at the bottom right part of the screen. Here is how it looks like for our website:

    Optimization targets - keyword suggestions

    Optimization targets – keyword suggestions

    As you can see, the suggestions in this case show you information that helps you decide on what keywords you should focus on. Here, the information includes keywords and your site’s rank for them in Google results. Also, you can see the number of times this Google page was viewed. So, for example, if you rank 15, this is page 2 in google results, and the impressions number in this case mean the number of times the second page was viewed by users for this keyword. The “localization” is here, because it is an integral part of the keyword. Each keyword ranks differently in different countries.
    This information will show up for Advanced and Professional users that integrated Google Search Console (formarly Google Webmaster Tools) into sheerseo. Users who integrated Google Analytics will see less information, and more basic users will see just the keywords they picked up in the rankings screen and their rankings.
    Each keyword you choose here is called Optimization Target, and this is limited, depending on your account level (limits are 2 per standard and light, 10 per advanced account and 20 per pro account ), so choose wisely which keywords you want to focus on.
    Few ideas on what should be focused:
    1. Keywords that are most vital to the business in terms of value.
    2. Keywords that have been neglected so far. If you see a suggestion that you never targeted so far and it has potential, than this might be an easy win.
    3. Keywords that are on the top of the Google page. For example a keyword that you rank 11th, might have a great benefit if it advances to first page.

    On Page SEO

    OK, now you have chosen your optimization targets, and you see some information for them, like here:

    Optimization targets - on page SEO

    Optimization targets – on page SEO

    As you can see, each optimization target shows a score for On Page Optimization. This score reflects how well this page is optimized for that keyword. If you’ll press the link on the score, you’ll be able to see details of how the score was calculated. You can then work to optimize this page, and check again by pressing the refresh button next to the score. In the above image, it looks like “seo software tool” has a low on page optimization score of 50, so it is a good candidate for optimization.

    Off Page SEO

    As you all know, off page SEO, is mostly about getting good backlinks. Here we measure and track the citation flow and trust flow of your page. Those are numbers between 0 and 100 of how well your page is perceived by Google, according to the backlinks  to it. Are they coming from strong sources (citation flow), and are they coming from reliable sources (trust flow). See example here:

    Optimization targets - off page optimization

    Optimization targets – off page optimization

    Another measure you can see here is the number of backlinks. This shows the amount of backlinks per this speciffic URL, not your entire site. Those figures will update weekly, so you can see the progress.

    If you want to use sheerseo to do something useful in order to add more backlinks, you can try the “blog reviews” feature. If you look at the right most column of the optimization targets table, you’ll see an icon with a “B” on it. Pressing it will lead you to the a blog review, with the details of the optimization target already populated. It is a good way of getting good backlinks . Just recently I used it for our website and easily got 2 great bloggers to talk about our product, so don’t miss this one.

    Optimization targets - blog reviews

    Optimization targets – blog reviews

    Let’s Examine the Results

    So we did all we could, and we want to see progress. This takes time. Google scans pages depending on their value, so some pages might be scanned daily, and some are scanned every 4 months. So, it might take months for the changes you did to be noticed by Google. SEO needs patience.
    The Optimization Targets let you track your progress per each of the optimization targets. Let’s see how.

    Optimization targets - seo tracking

    Optimization targets – seo tracking

    As you can see above, we got the rank, the impressions, and finally, the ultimate goal of the visits to our website here. Those of you with basic packages will only see the rankings. Would be great to correlate that to the process you done with the on page and off page optimization, wouldn’t it. In the future, I plan to allow adding some kind of log per optimization target, so you can write the actions you did per each date.

    Hope you enjoy this feature, it took us more than half a year to develop it.

    RIP – Google PageRank

    Sadly, Google decided to stop the support of their Toolbar PageRank. For years, we were able to see Google’s score for each page over the web. On April 2016, two months ago, that stopped. So we can’t tell what is the Google PageRank anymore. Not just us, no one can.

    So, we replaced the Google PageRank with the indications we get from Majestic SEO. They scan all the links in the internet, just like Google does, and provide two scores. One is the Citation Flow, which is somewhat similiar to Google PageRank. It is a number between 0 and 100, where 100 is the best score and 0 is the worst. Another score in the Trust Flow. That is also from 0 to 100. The difference between the numbers is that the Citation Flow shows the strength of the backlinks a page has, and the Trust Flow, indicates how trust worthy the link profile of that page is. So, for example, if a page has strong backlinks from unreliable sources, it might have a high Citation Flow score, but low Trust Flow score.

    What we did to accommodate for the loss of the PageRank is to replace it all over our system with Citation Flow and Trust Flow. That includes the Main Referrers screen, the Backlinks Checker, the blogs score in the Blog Reviews section, and the directories score in the Directory Submission feature.

    Many More Back-Links in Main Referrers

    As probably many of you already noticed, we started showing a lot more backlinks in the Main Referrers screen since last week.
    This is due to an upgrade we did, which now takes many backlinks from Majestic SEO.

    Another nice feature here is that we show more indications regarding the value of the backlink through data available from Majestic SEO. This is shown in the 2 new columns “Citation Flow” and “Trust Flow”. Citation Flow is something like PageRank, and Trust Flow shows another indication regarding the worth of a link from this page – this time it represent if the website has links that are of value or that outgoing links from this website are often spam. Both citation flow and trust flow have values between 0 to 100, where the higher the number the higher the value of the page.

    Here is an example of how the new data looks like:

    majesticBackLinks

     

    For those of you with the professional packages, this new information regarding backlinks can be very useful if you want to see what your competitors are doing.

    Change in Webmaster Tools Integration

    As many of our users well know, G. Analytics (and any other tracking software) is not reliable in providing data regarding visits from Google. Which has caused many users to use G. Webmaster Tools for that purpose. Our software allows grabbing data from G. Webmaster Tools regarding the keywords that brought you traffic for the advanced and pro packages. You can see what it gives you here (see the 2 right columns):
    google search console integration

    Recently, Google has made some changes in G. Webmaster Tools. First, it is now called Google Search Console. Second, we need you to authorize our access to your data. Same way which is already done for G. Analytics.

    So, either new or existing users to this data, will need to first allow our software to view the data from Google Search Console and then activate it on our end (basically letting our software know that your data is accessible for us). Now, let’s explain step by step what needs to be done:

    1. Go to Google Search Console (used to be called Google Webmaster Tools): . If you’re not a user for that yet, you’ll need to identify yourself as the site owner. They have a few methods to do that.
    2. Once you’re in the relevant account in the Search Console. Go to settings>Users and Property Owners screen. As seen here:
      google search console integration - select users and property owners
    3. Now, press the “add a new user” button:
      google search console integration - add new user
    4. In the pop up window that is opened, put the user 1097503045745@developer.gserviceaccount.com
      google search console integration - finish add user, and press the “add” button. Note that we only need restricted access. That means we can only view the data, not change it.
    5. You should now see that the user is added to the property. like here:
      google search console integration - user added
    6. Now, last step is to go to sheerseo.com, and activate the G. Search Console integration in settings>domain settings>account details screen. See here:
      google search console integration - activate search console

    If all went well, you should see a success message and your data in the rankings screen should be updated (visits and impressions columns).
    If there is any problem, contact our support using the contact form.

    RIP Google Supplemental Index

    We used to show Google Supplemental Index Ratio. That used to allow people to see if they have their PageRank wasted on pages that don’t have a chance of showing up in Google’s results anyhow.
    It seems that there is no reliable way these days to pull this information. If I’m wrong, please show me how this can be done.

    As a result, we have to remove this feature for now.

    Added Webmaster Tools Data to Domains Overview Screen

    Well, the title says it all.
    This only applies to agencies and master accounts, who have this screen.
    The accounts that use the advanced or pro features have data coming also from G. Analytics and G. Webmaster Tools.
    We already had data from Google Analytics in the domains overview, and now added also the data from G. Webmaster Tools.
    Here is a snapshot of the 2 new columns taken from Webmaster Tools: impressions and visits:
    Webmaster Tools Data in Domains Overview Screen