We’re blessed in the world of SEO at the moment, never have there been more tools available to make our lives easier but at the same time there are still a few missing that would complete my professional life.
Everyone has their own suite of tools that they use to carry out day to day SEO tasks but there are a few particular situations where I either have to do something by hand or not do it at all.
These are the tools that could solve my problem so I hope a few friendly tool developers are listening!
Velocity of Links
I’m a strong believer that in many SERPs, the velocity of link acquisition is playing a part and often may be the cause for some shifts and volitility. There’s a large number of link analysis tools out there but none of them really seem to think about velocity and are much more focuses on volume and quality. Majestic does include some temporal data but that’s when it was last crawled rather than first crawled.
I’d be happy if I could know when they first found the link so I could then sort and see what proportion of links have come in the last month, quarter or year. But if someone really wanted to impress me, they’d try and tell me when that link was first created either by looking for date stamps in the content or when the page was first cached, etc.
Tools that Measure Relatively (vs Absolutely)
Page Rank was a flawed, distracting metric and I’ve welcomed some of the other more transparent and specific link metrics which more recent tools have included, but what would really interest me is if they scored links and websites relative to my industry. An ACrank link of four is very different beast where most are two, but in a marketplace of sixes it’s different again.
This could be merely by suggesting competitors, or better yet, automatically determined by who you’re competing with in the SERPs
One of the most interesting bits of marketing to the search marketing industry were the reports from SearchMetrics following Google Panda updates. This was an awesome idea and does a pretty good job of illustrating the value of their tool. But they’re not the only people with access to aggregate ranking data, I’d really love it if someone introduced a ticker which gave an indication of the volume of flux in the SERPs. Wouldn’t it be great to have a regularly updating graph that indicated the amount of change. I know any big shifts will be noticed by individuals but I’d love to get a clearer idea of the scale of change and potentially identify some of the changes a bit earlier.
Link Hit List Generator
One of my favourite tools I used to use a lot in the past was created by RustyBrick, I can’t quite remember the name; but the functionality worked a little like this: you inputted up to ten domains and it looked for sites that linked to more than one of those domains. The logic was that someone who links to one of your competitors might link to you, and someone who links to several is even more likely to link.
With the APIs that are available I would love a tool that takes this concept and expands it exponentially. For example, take ten keywords, find the top fifty sites for each of these phrases, de-dup them, explore all their links, and see which link to multiple sites. Then at the same time, cross reference these with sites that link to several but that also link to sites with high rankings suggesting that they are conferring some good value.
I know you can do this using spreadsheets, but a tool would make this so much easier.
Rich Snippet Alerts
Like most people, I’ve struggled and fiddled to get microdata of various types implemented to trigger rich snippets. Once they’re set up right, you end up twiddling your thumbs waiting and hoping for them to appear. A great tool would tell you when they start being triggered.
An even better tool would allow you to insert your keywords and inform you if and when any SERP rivals start triggering rich snippets, which might give you the nudge to convince a skeptical boss or client to sign off the resource to get it implemented.
I think these tools would make life so much easier. I can’t see that all of things can be done with existing tools, but if you think they can please do let me know in the comments!