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Wednesday “Wisdom” – Is My SEO Working?

Most people hope to see first page rankings, preferably in the top 3, as a result of SEO. But, as any good optimizer would tell you, this takes time. Many of the sites that appear on the first page in Google for your desired search terms have domain authority, good traffic flow and, even if they have outdated design, people still like the sites because of the brand’s trustworthiness. So, your SEO will take work and might seem like you have to wait a long time for a pay off. But, is this actually the case?

Using Google Analytics and Webmaster Tools and , you can actually see numbers for site visits for specific search phrases. Sadly, within the past few years, Google has taken certain specifics away in Analytics, but you can still get an idea of terms for which you’ve achieved clicks, especially in Webmaster Tools.

For example, an apartment renter in Buffalo would probably hope to rank for “apartments for rent in Buffalo.” This is a very competitive phrase that includes two important words: apartments and Buffalo. So, my advice: divide and conquer.

What do I mean? Take the two separate word and go to the Search Queries section in Webmaster Tools. Here, you should list the maximum amount of rows (500) so that you can view all of the phrases. Then, go to filters and insert one word at a time. We will start with “apartment” (keep the term singular in order to include both variations of the word).


This website is fairly early in the optimization process. And you’ll look at the number “62” for clicks and wonder how that’s supposed to impress you. However, let’s compare it to the same period of time immediately preceding the above screenshot:

"Apartment" a Month Earlier

So, while the impressions haven’t increased by much, the clicks have increased by just over 50%. Furthermore, queries with an average position of 1 in Google increased from 10 to 15. In other words, while this website might not rank number 1 for “apartments for rent in Buffalo,” the meta optimization and content updates have increased the likelihood of ranking for most specific queries in association with the word “apartment.”

Alright, for “Buffalo” we will go in chronological order:


Buffalo Dec-Jan


"Buffalo" Jan-Feb

So, while it might take time to rank for you desired queries in Google, you will start to rank for other queries that use related phrasing. Furthermore, searches made by different users will return a range of differing results. So, chances are – someone will find this website for the term “apartments for rent in Buffalo NY.” And, chances are, someone will find your site for the query that you hope to rank under (assuming that you follow modern principles of search engine optimization).

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