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Ad hoc, monthly and weekly: search analysis reports with sense


SEO can be fun – but it’s still a serious matter. For this reason, the use of a professional analysis suite is not simply a diversion – it should be as effective as possible and undertaken with results in mind. But sometimes you hear that it simply isn’t happening this way…

search-analyseSo I have here a few suggestions that you can (and should) implement using the Searchmetrics Suite. There are, of course, still other possible ways to use the Suite but let’s start simply with these reports and analyses. And whoever groans after reading this article that this all takes time – yeah, SEO is work! And no analysis tool can change that. But a professional tool can lend support with the kinds of facts and figures that make my work effective and efficient.

So, from my view point there are four basic applications:

1. ad hoc analysis

2. monthly reporting and performance analysis

3. weekly check analysis

4. weekly improvement analysis

1. ad hoc analysis

I’ve given a few suggestions concerning this on the blog in the last weeks. For example, whoever starts work now can have a long tail analysis of their (hopefully large) site compiled by tomorrow. Either that or they will have discovered existing link potential in the Backlink module or searched the competition according to the most attainable desired link sources. Anyway, here is a list of ad hoc analyses that you can/should perform to get to know a new domain or for special events (relaunches, penalties etc.):

  • Audit Score: Please do not forget that many figures in the Audit Score module concern themselves primarily with the start page.
  • KPO (Keyword Page Optimizer): The KPO on the other hand allows an unbelievably precise view of a selected subpage and its corresponding keyword. I will concern myself with a more detailed explanation of this soon.
  • Directory structure analysis: Using backlink data, performance data and other gadgets in the site query from Google, we can quite precisely examine each subdirectory’s chances.
  • Market Analysis: How do I hold my ground against the competition in the context of selected keywords and how dynamic and difficult are my keywords actually?
  • Universal Search: Of course it’s worth keeping an eye on the image, video, advertisement, map and shopping results in which a site is indexed.
It all seems neatly tied-up with the 'Audit Score'. But there is always something else to do...
It all seems neatly tied-up with the ‘Audit Score’. But there is always something else to do…

2. Monthly reporting and performance analysis

In the first week of each month you should reserve enough time (about a day) to look back a bit and throw an independent look over the site in particular and any changes from Google in general. After all, there are always ‘decision makers’ who will will look forward to a summary of the current work and progress made toward improved visibility. And besides, in half a year you may want to know what actually happened in the previous November.

The Searchmetrics Suites can contribute a few things here:

  • Link Analysis Which pages are the strongest? Have anchor texts improved? What has come out of link strength overall?
  • Performance Analysis: How has the absolute number of keywords changed? How has traffic performance changed? How are my advertisements? How is the Universal Search?
  • Audit Score: Are there improvements? (make sure here, that you are using the current Audit Score…)
  • Market Analysis: How has competition changed? Am I generally making progress with my keywords? Are there growing, potentially dangerous competitors?
  • And naturally, everything to do with keywords positions.
  • Anyone recording KPOs should track them monthly.
Market analysis gets to the heart of the matter - the goal is to land the green dot (that's us) in the top-right corner.
Market analysis gets to the heart of the matter – the goal is to land the green dot (that’s us) in the top-right corner.

3. A weekly check analysis

We’re always worrying about possible penalties or beating ourselves up over other unpleasant topics. So here we have a few weekly checks, to help us sleep a little easier:

  • Quick Analysis data for all websites is available every Friday morning. We should never miss this index before the weekend!
  • Number of pages in the index
  • Backlinks (from Yahoo)
  • Category keyword check (average position) as well as the most important keywords
  • Indices from Searchmetrics like SSV, SDRV, SVR.
  • SERP Spreading also deserves a weekly look.

There are of course other checks that you should perform regularly – but I understand that the Searchmetrics Suite is often operated by colleagues who are short on time. I would be happy if at least this were planned for one or two hours per week.

One more important plea – without question, even these quick checks must be documented. A small test log is appropriate for this task.

Oooops! Let's hope that this was planned (due to a domain move for example)...
Oooops! Let’s hope that this was planned (due to a domain move for example)…


4. Weekly improvement analysis

But we should go further too. We want to exploit potential – that means building  content and backlinks. A weekly Backlink Analysis would be overkill – but content allows for weekly improvement:

  • Threshold keywords, cliffhangers – however you want to call them. There are keywords (perhaps lying somewhere just off the radar) that promise high traffic yields and positions. We can find these in the Quick Analysis under ‘Interesting Rankings’. This list could do with some editing…
  • Movers & Shakers: the table of the same name in the Quick Analysis displays precisely these and should be fairly self-explanatory.
  • Consolidation: In my monitored keywords an increased figure sometimes appears from multiple places. Different pages might be identified for positions 13, 46 and 72 with the keyword ‘suntan lotion’. Now, with a bit of editing work and some links you can try to bring the first page up to a top ten position with the help of the other pages.
These keywords are - at first - lost. Now the goal is to get them back...
These keywords are – at first – lost. Now the goal is to get them back…

Bonus tip – keywords to be worked on should be included in monitoring and optimally in their own category (‘cliffhanger’ or ‘work’). This way we can see in the following week if it has yielded any results.

One more thing – it should be made absolutely clear to all involved that this analysis (at the very least the last one) is NOT to be done and then simply dropped into some digital draw. The result of an analysis should always lead to operative measures wherever possible. Or to say it another way – with SEO you should always thinks (and therefore analyze) and then work. But without the work, the thinking is simply thrown away.

P.S.: Who’s actually writing this stuff? My name is Eric Kubitz and I am one of the co-founders of CONTENTmanufaktur GmbH Anyone trying to reach me can do so via e-mail ( or on Twitter. ‘Til next time!