As often as we discuss different search analytics and SEO tools to check rankings, it seems we overlook ways to keep track of exactly what individual components make up the ranking. I’m not referring to the ranking URL, but the actual elements of the page. Things like page titles, meta descriptions and more are associated with a page and its current ranking. Yet, they are often forgotten once changed.
To optimize a site effectively over time, begin the process by establishing a good, old-fashioned SEO log (I use Excel) to give you a historical view of exactly where the site is coming from. To establish the foundation for your log, begin by taking a ‘SEO snapshot’ of the site in its current state.
I suggest including the following:
- Current Ranking
- Page Title
- Meta Description
- External Links
- Internal Links
Once these components are recorded, you can begin making SEO changes. Your historical data will be in place so you will be able to compare effectiveness. While one keyword referral may rise from your change, another may fall. Keeping a historical log will make finding the best combinations that much easier.
Do you have a method in place to track your changes? Do you have tips to keep a well organized SEO log? If so, please add them below. We’d love to put together a comprehensive list of ideas from ‘Daily SEO Tip’ readers in the future (we’ll credit you, of course).
Note: This particular log style is mainly for small to mid-size sites. Be on the lookout for future tips about handling logs for large sites (sectioning).