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Does Your Favorite SEO Tool Have Accurate SEO Rank Tracking?

BLOG POSTS Keywords SEO Tools
By Brittany Bronson
May 15, 2021

When it comes to understanding your website’s keyword rankings, there are multiple tools available that can help you track your SEO progress. You’ve likely heard of SEMRush or Ahrefs, but did you know that those tools only see about 30-40% of the keywords your website ranks for? If you want accurate SEO rank tracking, those platforms won’t give you a complete picture of your site’s performance.

Why is that? Well, tools like Ahrefs and SEMrush use bots to crawl the SERPs and identify the keyword phrases where your web pages are ranking. But their bots only crawl a limited number of keywords, and they don’t crawl them all at the same rate.

The total keywords identified in your current keyword tracking software may be significantly fewer than the actual number of keywords that your pages rank for. Also, your rank position is most likely backdated to the last crawl.

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As Ahrefs’ writes on their website:

“For high-volume keywords, we update (and cache) search engine results pages (SERPs) often enough to keep them fresh. But for less popular keywords, we update SERP data less frequently.”

So for the thousands of keyword phrases that Ahrefs and SEMrush don’t crawl, your web pages might be showing up on the first page! Although services like Conductor SEO allow users to choose the specific keywords they want to track, it still doesn’t solve the problem of accuracy. Plus, Conductor charges an extra cost if site owners want to track more keywords.

If your content strategy is following SEO best practices, then you’ll be earning new keyword rankings with each piece of content you publish. Wouldn’t it be nice to know whether you’re achieving the best rank possible for those queries and not have to pay extra money to do so?

Most SEO tracking tools only see a snapshot of your website’s Google rankings. If you’re in a niche industry with search terms with lower search volume, that is a huge problem, and could keep your brand from truly understanding the return on your SEO investment. 

For site owners who want to track all of their keywords and understand how their website is performing in Google today (not two weeks ago), where can you go?

Go to the source of SEO truth: Google Search Console.

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Why Google Search Console is the Absolute Truth of SEO Performance

With over 40,000 queries entered into Google Search every second, that’s a lot of keyword data to track.

But Google’s massive computing power and machine learning technology empowers them to track rankings for all of those phrases. In comparison to Google’s keyword data, Ahrefs, SEMrush, and Moz could just never compare.

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Thankfully, Google shares all of those valuable metrics with users for free in their platform Google Search Console. Site owners can simply create a Google Search Console account and get a 100% accurate glance of their keyword rankings and SERP visibility.

With full confidence in the accuracy of Google’s analytics, site owners can make more informed decisions about their SEO strategy.

Here’s the scope of the keyword data you can get from your Search Console dashboard.

  • Total Impressions: How often your SERP result was shown to users
  • Total clicks: How often your SERP result was clicked by users
  • Click-through-rate (CTR): Number of clicks divided by number of impressions
  • Average rank position: The average rank position across all of your keywords

Google updates these metrics on a daily basis, meaning no backdated information on SEO performance. When it comes to understanding how your site ranks right now, no other tracking tool can really compare to Search Console.

Why Use Any Keyword Tracking Software other than GSC?

Although Google offers the best data available (and with daily updates), they have not invested much time in making their dashboard engaging or useful for site owners or SEO professionals.

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Google Data studio provides more opportunities for site owners to turn their data points into more engaging visuals, but it isn’t always clear to site owners how to translate those metrics into actionable insights for optimization.

Also, Google doesn’t offer competitor analysis, and the only data you can see is your own. For site owners who want to see where competitors earn their backlinks from or see a list of keywords that their competitors are ranking for, they need to find another platform. 

This is where a SEO software that does SERP scraping can be beneficial, as it’s better to have some data about your competitors rather than none at all. But the need for tools that offer both competitor analysis and accurate SEO rank tracking is still out there. 

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That’s why at LInkGraph, we created the first and only 100% accurate SEO rank tracking software. Instead of scraping the SERPs, our GSC Insights tool is built over Google’s API. It’s the same Google data you love, but delivered through a more advanced, engaging platform that helps you see your data in a new light.

In addition to GSC Insights, our software suite allows you to see competitors’ rankings and backlinks, do keyword research, analyze your own backlink profile, and access other important information that will help you execute a successful SEO campaign.

How Does LinkGraph’s GSC Insights Compare to Ahrefs and SEMrush?

When it comes to understanding keyword performance (and without the additional cost), GSC Insights offers a complete picture of your rankings that Ahrefs and SEMrush can’t. This is because our software relies on Google’s API and not crawlers.

Check out the significant difference between the total keywords that Ahrefs and LinkGraph sees for the same site.

That’s a pretty big gap.

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For digital marketers and SEO professionals working with clients to help grow online visibility, knowing all of your keyword opportunities is essential to proving your value to your clients.  

Ranking for a keyword can lead to an impression, which can lead to a click, that can then end with a conversion. To know your website has that opportunity 51 thousand times instead of 8 thousand is reason enough to reconsider whether SERP scraping is the best avenue for rank tracking.

Here are some other key differences between GSC Insights and other tools.

Total Keyword Position History

Anyone who works in SEO knows that improving keyword rankings can take time. For this reason, the success of SEO campaigns and optimizations are usually measured best in periods of months or even years. 

This means that site owners will likely want to check what their keyword rank was last week, and three months ago, and maybe even a few years when they first started thinking about SEO!

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With SEO software that uses SERP scraping, rank tracking information is limited to the last crawl. Site owners can see how far their rankings have improved or suffered since the last crawl, but not any earlier.

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But with GSC Insights, you can see what your keyword rank positions were on any day going back up to 10 years. See your total number of keywords along with their rank position on each day.

GSC Insights' Keyword Position History feature

If you want to focus in on one specific keyword, our software consolidates all of the historical data for every keyword your site has ever ranked for, and shows you the detailed history of your web pages performance for those relevant keywords.

GSC Insights Keyword HIstorical Data feature

GSC Insights is the best tool for keyword rank tracking because it gives you a more complete picture of how your web pages have performed in search over time. Google Search Console also has that daily rank data, but there is no easily viewable format to see that complete history. 

For an SEO agency that encounters a new client who has worked with multiple providers in the past, being able to understand the complete history of their organic results can equip them with more insights on the SEO efforts that have proved successful, or unsuccessful, in the past.

Traffic By Keyword Position

Ranking on the first page of the SERPs is not the only key to generating organic traffic to your website. Whether you rank in position 1 or position 8 will have a significant impact on your click-through-rate. The overwhelming majority of organic clicks go to the top three spots. 

Although it’s hard to get to the top, the rewards are well worth it.

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With GSC Insights Traffic by Keyword Position feature, you can more closely understand the relationship between rank position and traffic.

GSC Insights' Traffic by Keyword Position feature

In the above graph, this website is earning more organic traffic for the keywords where they rank in the #2 position. If this website were able to move some of those keywords in position #2 to position #1, they would likely see a significant increase in traffic come with it.

By having access to a full complete history of keywords, our rank tracker software is able to offer users far more visualizations and insights. The Traffic by Keyword position feature is also great for thinking about page titles and meta descriptions and how they impact CTR.

No other rank tracking platform, including Search Console, has this Traffic by keyword position feature. 

SEO A/B Testing + Keyword Tracking Software

With so much information available about the individual keywords that your landing pages rank for, GSC Insights also allows site owners to track the optimizations and changes they make to their website. 

The truth is, different digital marketers use rank tracker tools for different purposes. Whether you’re strategy is focused on only a few target keywords, local SEO, content creation, or building your domain authority, that will determine which specific search engine optimization choices you make to improve your organic search results overall.

GSC Insights allows you to track those specific optimizations in the same platform where you track keywords. Here’s how to use the Site Events feature:

GSC Insights' Site Events SEO A/B Testing feature
  1. Pull up the Historical Data for the page where you want to add the event
  2. Select “Add Site Event”
  3. Give the Event a Name
  4. Specify the date of the event
  5. Specify whether that event impacted a specific landing page, a group of pages, or was sitewide
  6. Choose an event icon that is the best fit with the expected outcome
  7. Select “Add Event”

If you see your keyword rankings, average position, or impressions start to improve after you add the site event, that’s confirmation that your optimization was effective. Not even Ahrefs, Moz, or SERPWatcher allow you to track your own search engine strategy within their platform.

By combining a rank tracker with an SEO campaign tracker, GSC Insights offers site owners one of the most helpful and practical keyword ranking tools available.

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How Can I Get Access to Accurate SEO Rank Tracking?

At LinkGraph we offer a 7-day free trial so you can try GSC Insights. 

You need to have a Search Console account and the proper user permissions for the person who wants to use the tool. Once you link and verify your account, your GSC Insights dashboard will populate with the data related to your site’s rankings. You can have full confidence that the data is the most real-time, accurate SEO rank tracking available.

If you prefer, you can also utilize our GSC Navigator chrome extension, which allows you to see your stats directly in your browser as you navigate through your landing page urls.

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The trial also comes with access to different tools as well, which can be used for keyword research, local rank tracking, viewing SERP features, and more.

Sign up for an account, start your free trial, and start improving your search results, all from the convenience of the LinkGraph SEO Insights platform.

Ready to get started with LinkGraph?
Schedule a free call with one of our experts to find out how you can crush your competition.

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