I recently met Chase Granberry, the founder of Authority Labs. His company is competing in the SEO space — in a business category known as ‘rank monitoring.’
“What’s that,” I asked.
It’s all about knowing how your web site ranks relevant to how people use keywords, he said.
“Competitive intelligence” in other words?
It’s also about usability, too, he reminded me. Are people finding what they need on your web site?
Competitive intelligence gathering is not something many of us do on a day-to-day basis. What I found interesting is how this kind of monitoring and optimization could be done by the rest of us –and not just the chaps in IT or a back office in Mumbai.
Granberry told me that his users range from bloggers to agencies PR types, to the web team. Why? Because people are getting more conscious about keywords, and are creating content aware of the way Google, Internet Explorer, Yahoo and Bing are indexing it. PR and Interactive agencies are using the service to analyze the data and report back to their clients, he says.
“You mean the average PR person can actually understand this stuff?”
I took a peek at some of these reports, expecting to see a lot of geeky stuff. But they were really clean and well coded (up and down arrows to show a change in ranking against the previous day etc).
How do organizations spend on something like this in a downturn, I asked.
They need to think of search engine optimization as a long-term investment he said. Especially for those who seek ROI in terms of increased traffic and conversions. He mentioned ‘continued insight’ too, and it brought to mind recent cases of how lack of monitoring resulted in PR disasters such as this and this.
We increasingly hear how dangerous it can be when PR and Comms take its eye off the ball. Competitive intelligence monitoring is like putting matchsticks between your eyelids and staying alert
There’s a free account if you want to give it a try.