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If you are currently using many of the popular search engine ranking and reporting software used by the masses then it is likely that you are receiving errors for your Google rankings.
Now if you are new to SEO or internet marketing, then you may not know that Google asks that you “do not send” automated queries to their search engines to obtain rankings for keywords. They indicate that it absorbs their resources (Google’s comments on automated queries.)
Many SEO companies are now scrambling for a new solution as to how they will deliver their promised ranking reports to their clients.
One way to get around this is to provide your clients with access to Google Webmaster Central data.
The photo shown is a snapshot of a client’s iGoogle home page. It loads each time the client visits Google.com when they are logged into their account; providing them with updated top search queries and positions/rankings.
Below are instructions on how to provide your client with pertinent information such as:
- Top 20 Queried Search Terms
- Internet Links
- External Links
- Crawl Errors
Setting Up A Google Account
- Create a Google Account
- Set the username to your client’s domain
- Set the password to whatever you feel is secure
- Verify the account via email
Setting up Google Webmaster Central
- Log into your Google Account for Google Webmaster Central
- Add your domain (where it says “click here to add a site”)
- Select verify
- Upload file provided to server, or add meta tag provided to index section
- Return to verification page and verify site
Add Webmaster Central data to your IGoogle account
- Once logged into your account, go to your Google home page
- If your home page just has a search bar then you need to select the link at the top right corner marked “IgGoogle”
- Select My accounts from the top right navigation
- Select Webmaster Tools
- Click on the domain name you wish to manage
- From the overview page, select the link marked top search queries
- At the top portion of the page in the right hand corner you will see the Google logo with a plus sign; click this button.
- It will then ask you if you want to add this gadget to your IGoogle account. Select the “Add to Google” button.
Now your IGoogle page will load with the top search queries for this client’s site.
Additionally you can add the “error” and “link” information, allowing the client to keep watch over their site errors and see link popularity information being updated regularly.
Educating Clients Regarding Google Guidelines & Ranking Reports
Your clients may not understand why they are no longer going to receive their rankings reports. It is important to educate them that:
a) It is against Google’s guidelines to run automated queries that are needed to complete the ranking report.
b) Google is no longer allowing these automated queries; therefore the ranking reports return errors and do not indicate actual rankings.
Here is one important thing that I have noticed for one of our clients; their (manually checked) rankings indicate that they do not have a top ten ranking for a very important phrase included in their campaign. However, when we look at our Google Webmaster Central listing of top queried phrases, it indicates that they are usually ranked number 3. It is beneficial then to let Google report actual rankings as they can see all results for all versions of Google (.ca, .com .co.uk etc.) plus personalized search, geo-targeting and more.
What Are the Benefits If You Stop Running Ranking Report?
Below is a list of long term benefits if you stop running ranking reports for your clients:
- You stop using Google’s bandwidth
- You stay within Google’s Guidelines
- You show the client what improvements in new traffic are occurring due to your efforts
- You shift your focus from reporting on keywords that don’t rank
- You & your clients will focus on all the variations which are being queried and sending traffic
- You educate your clients so they are self sufficient at reviewing their rankings
- Your clients can see weekly updated positions for top queries
- Your clients will want to know what they can do to improve specific rankings
- Your clients will be introduced to new search terms that are driving traffic to their site
- You may potentially up-sell clients on additional phrases that were not in the original contract
- You are no longer responsible for sending out monthly ranking reports
- You are no longer using up precious server space or email bandwidth for just reporting
For more information about moving from a Rank orientation to a Results orientation please
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