More and more clients are asking for insight around the reasons for the Google algorithm updates and how they impacted them, but also when they happened and what was the actual intention. I thought I’d examine 4 popular options to make your job easier.
There are likely future updates that may work across other platforms but there is no guidance on what other platforms will be supported and when. Their tool does have the advantage of being able to overlay public holidays, Google algorithm updates and external data you supply.
It does offer the advantage of having an API for managing your data layers which makes it scalable enough to integrate feeds from your other marketing activities and see how they impact on Google Analytics or Quantcast reports. The biggest advantage that this tool offers is the ability to gain insights via Quantcast on how some of their recent marketing activities, website rebuilds or algorithms updates impacted your competitor’s visitor or pageview metrics.
Annie Cushing has created a simple way to track algorithm updates within your Calendar which is a good way to track what is happening internally to understand any major traffic changes. But also it’s simple enough that you can share this with your clients so they can track updates without having to email you on a weekly basis on why traffic shifted on a past date.
This tool has been the most heavily praised for its simplicity with OAuth connectivity to your Google Analytics account. I feel it does offer the best top level view of the algorithm updates so it can be the best for quick analysis if you are dealing with SEO audits and recommendations on a regular basis for a large number of websites.
I think the tool is great to audits and top level reviews but because the data is not broken down it doesn’t make it as actionable.
This is the one tool that I think has the most potential as it is powered by the Google Analytics API that exports that raw data into Google Docs for deeper analysis. Their tool is great because along with graphing the organic traffic and highlighting algorithm updates, it also provides detailed notes on each algorithm along with highlighting weeks that experienced a larger than average uplift or drop linked to that algorithm update.
The big potential feature I found was that using their Google Doc is that you don’t actually have to use your Google Analytics data. You can manually import your own keyword data set from Google Webmaster Tools, Webtrends or Omniture for detailed analysis.
Did I miss any?
So I say play around with the tools and see which ones work for you, and share below if you found any others that you found useful.