Keywords. Optimization. Google rankings. Choose your goal, do the work, hope you win those top SERP positions. That’s why we do SEO in the first place, right? Of course, there’s a lot more to think about than just rankings and optimization. And if you’re getting enough visitors, and those visitors seem happy with your site and its content, do you really need to think about how your pages are ranking? The truth is, it’s not essential to track keyword rankings. But knowing how you measure up can help you make better decisions! Knowledge is power, after all. In this post we’ll explain why we think it’s a good idea to monitor how you perform in the search results, and how Yoast SEO can help you do that.
Keyword tracking: it’s about knowing where you stand
In many ways, SEO is a competition. You don’t have to play the rankings game. It’s still worth optimizing your content for a whole load of other reasons: it helps with user experience, for one, and it can improve other stats like bounce rate and conversion, which apply even if you’re only focused on paid advertising. But if you are putting content online and optimizing it (for whatever reason), it can’t hurt to know how that content is doing in the search results.
Tracking how your keywords are ranking provides you with a snapshot of how Google thinks your content measures up, compared to your competition. And that’s valuable information! It can help you to see if your optimization efforts are actually working. And we’re not just talking about how fast your site is, or how many times you’ve used a keyword on your page. Google pays a lot of attention to the substance of your content. Are you providing the best answer to a particular query? Is it easy to read, and formatted in a user-friendly way? All of that stuff matters. And if you’re not ranking well, it probably means there’s still room for improvement.
Tracking keywords and monitoring your pages’ positions in search isn’t all that easy. Google Analytics and Search Console show some information about search positions and the queries your pages are being found for, but it’s not provided in a way that’s easy-to-use. If you look up a particular page you can see its average search position, for instance, but that number is the search position across all queries that it’s found for. And it takes a bit of work to find out if your page is ranking for a specific query. The information is there, but it takes a lot of effort to monitor those keywords and pages regularly.
That’s where keyword rank trackers come into play. These tools (which you almost always have to pay for) are designed to take the hard work out of the process. You simply add the keyword you want your page to rank for, and they’ll pull all the information together and show you it in a format that’s easy to understand. A keyword rank tracker makes it much easier to monitor keywords over time, so it’s
This article was written by Edwin Toonen and originally published on SEO blog • Yoast.