I thought I would briefly mention a discovery I made today. When do this report and I look back at the movement of rankings throughout a week, I compare where a site was ranked the previous Monday when I wrote the report. I found out that the software I use to track rankings will show me, if I change a setting, exactly how much a search phrase moved up or down from seven days ago. I knew it would show me the movement from day to day, but changing it to a weekly look not only helps me write this report, but gives me a clearer perspective on the trends for that search term as well.
I know this doesn’t really matter to my audience, but I was delighted about it, so I thought I’d mention it.
I also made a few other tweaks in that I have told my software to not just check the main search results, but to check things like Google Places as well. Lastly, I color coded some of the search phrases for all campaigns so I can more quickly find the main target search phrases we’re going after. Primary terms are dark blue, secondary terms are light blue. We’ve also got “for the heck of it” terms in red. These are terms we’re tracking just to see what happens with them because they can yield good traffic if they do rank high, but they’re generally higher competition or are not the main focus of the campaign. The rest of the terms, which I guess you could call tertiary, ones that we’re working on more than the FTHOI ones but not as hard as primary or secondary terms, remain unmarked.
Joe’s SEO Campaign
We had one term drop out of the top 10, leaving us with just 25 search phrases in it this week, however we do have 10 phrases ranked #1 now. There was an overall downward trend outside of that though, more so on this site than others, which tells me it’s not a matter of linking strategy or anything like that. Knowing how much Google likes fresh content, it could be the fact that there hasn’t been a blog post since the first half of February, a time period in which it looks like Joe and his team were making a concerted effort to update the blog regularly. I think it’s just become static in terms of content and needs some freshness.
Eric’s SEO Campaign
We’ve got two #1’s still, but one more search phrase moved into the top 10, bringing the current total to 15, including both secondary search phrases. The primary ones are both still on pages 2 and 3. The overall trend was up this week though, which some phrases moving up as many as 9 spots. Most of the drops were only a spot or two, though one of the “for the heck of it” phrases did drop out of the top 100 this week.
Josh’s SEO Campaign
Josh’s site wins the Best Improvement of the week award this week, with one of the primary phrases jumping all the way up to #1! There are three top 10’s this week, all of which are #1. Two search phrases dropped (one and four spots), but we also had a lot of gains, including phrases that went up 20, 41 and 61 spots from last week. Admittedly, these are terms that seem to do a lot of Google dancing, but it’s still encouraging to see.
A number of terms also entered or re-entered the top#100 this week.
Nilesh’s SEO Campaign
Nilesh has 16 top 10 search phrases, down one from last week. One domain had a number of one or two spot drops, but the one with the keyword-friendly domain posted almost nothing but gains, with all but one search phrase showing up in the top 10. The one that doesn’t is a FTHOI term that I don’t think even appears in the content of the site, so the fact that it’s the lone phrase outside the top 10 isn’t much of a surprise.
Bryce’s SEO Campaign
Bryce’s search engine numbers are almost the same for the top 10 this week as they were last week: eight search phrases in the top 10, four at #1 and two at #2, but the one ranked at #4 moved up to join another one at #3 this week (as of last Tuesday). The one phrase that dropped last week bounced back higher than it was before, going from #19 to #15.
Last week I mentioned that a search phrase we’re working hard on, one I’ve designated as a primary phrase, had jumped from #63, peaked at #36 and was sitting at #38. This week it went up another 15 spots to #23, a record high for that term. That means it’s almost on page 2 and trending in a very positive direction. This phrase is an example of one that has done a lot of Google dancing from the very start, but it’s shown a very clear upward progression over the last few weeks.
Chad’s SEO Campaign
As I stated last week, my plan for Chad’s website was to track rankings without touching the site first, then do some on-site work (such as tweaking meta tags), wait to see how that affects the rankings, then begin the off-site work.
I’m glad I did it this way, because the results underscore the importance of good on-site optimization. Last week I did nothing but update the meta tags of the site. There were two search phrases ranked last week; one at #55 and one at #84. Those hardly changed (#54 and #85 respectively), but now there are a total of five search phrases ranked in the top#100 that were definitely not there before updating the meta tags. One of them is the primary phrase, a highly competitive one, which debuted at #92. Another is our secondary phrase, which debuted at #18 out of 21.1 million search results.
These early results are, honestly, better than I expected, and it just goes to show how important it is to use proper meta tags.