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  Search Engine Marketing Guide    
What Comes After Submission? - Monitor Your Search Engine Rankings

In This Section
  Do I need to monitor my rankings?
  How do you do it?
  How often is it necessary?

Now that you have submitted your search engine friendly, optimised web site to the major engines and directories how do you find out and keep track of how it's doing?

First of all, don't even consider trying to check your site's ranking for at least three weeks after the initial submission unless you have paid for inclusion. If you have paid for inclusion you can start checking the relevant engines within one or two weeks.

In the first three months after you first optimise and submit your site it is important to monitor its progress to make sure that all of the important pages have been indexed as well as to see whether or not they're holding high positions for your keywords. During these three months you should be equally concerned about building up your link popularity as this can have a great impact on whether or not the pages are indexed, as well as influencing their rankings.

After the first three months you should continue to monitor the site's listings but how often you do this will depend on

  • how important top search engine rankings are to you (are search engines your main referrer?)
  • how competitive an industry you're in (online, not offline)
  • how often you change the important pages of the site (even a slight change can influence the rankings)

If you've built up some good links and have optimised the site properly the rankings should remain steady after the first few months so you shouldn't have to check them more than once a month unless you have BOTH paid for inclusion and change the pages you have paid for regularly. For those in industries that are not extremeley competitive you probably only need to check your rankings every two to three months.

Search engine rankigns can be monitored manually (using good old fashioned searching) or you can use a program that will do it for you such as Agent WebRank, TopDog and WebPosition, all of which require payment. The other option is to outsource the rank monitoring to an SEO company that offers it either as a stand alone service or as part of an optimisation and submission package. Which option you choose will depend on the competitiveness of your industry, how many sites you need to monitor, how important search engine rankings are to you and how much you have to spend.

NEXT Step: Analyse Your Web Logs

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