SEO can mean different things to different organizations.
For some, it means finding the most searched keywords, finding keywords related to those keywords, and creating content for those keywords. You then monitor how you’re ranking for those keywords and optimize over time.
At the same time, you keep creating content to help “snowball” the growth of your SEO program. Depending on the size or type of your site, you may spend a lot of time optimizing product pages to new keywords or even creating landing pages to attract new customers.
This strategy works well for many websites; however, this strategy isn’t sustainable when you’re an enterprise organization. No matter how large your headcount might be, it can still be challenging to keep up with new keywords and optimize individual product pages versus page templates.
Rank tracking, specifically, can be difficult as there are so many keywords and URLs to keep track of.
While smaller organizations have no trouble keeping up with the rank of their most valuable keywords, enterprises are often challenged with staying at the top of Google for hundreds of thousands of keywords.
Let’s address some of the common problems enterprise organizations face when it comes to rank tracking and how to solve them.
The bigger your website, the more complicated rank tracking is for four key reasons:
Many enterprise websites are enormous. For example, think about an e-commerce site with 8 million indexed URLs or a news/media site that publishes 100 new articles every day. When you consider that a single URL can rank for multiple keywords (sometimes hundreds!), this can quickly get out of hand.
So how can you routinely monitor that many keywords, especially when rank can change day-to-day for a wide variety of reasons? Even worse, how can you optimize individual pages for keywords with that many pages on your site?
Rank tracking typically comes from keyword research, a process in which you determine what phrases your audience is using to search for the information or products you offer. Unfortunately, this process can be long and cumbersome, especially for enterprises that want visibility for millions of different keywords.
Because of this, keyword research is usually treated as a “set it and forget it” project, or at best, something that’s done quarterly or annually.
If you only perform keyword research once, or very infrequently, you’ll miss out on tracking new keywords that your site is gaining impressions and clicks for. Especially in an increasingly digital world, there is a lot of risk in not seeing recent trends more frequently.
Enterprise organizations often want more granularity than most rank tracking solutions can provide them.
Many rank tracking solutions will tell you what position you’re ranking in for your selected keywords but can’t give you any additional details like how many clicks you’re getting for those rankings. This is because most rank tracking solutions scrape Google search result pages to calculate rank position rather than use real searcher or actual website data.
Similar to the problem of lacking details is the issue of missing context. Enterprise organizations need to know not only what positions they’re ranking in but why they’re ranking there. Are they performing well, or is there a technical issue that’s preventing them from ranking better?
Without that context, you’ll have little to go off of when it comes to taking action.
So how can you solve the challenges of rank tracking for large enterprise websites? You go beyond rank tracking alone and incorporate more technical SEO elements into your strategy.
Enterprise websites need to focus on tactics and changes that allow them the most significant success across a larger body of pages than a smaller website. A full-funnel approach to SEO often yields the most important result as it impacts the website’s overall performance instead of individual keywords.
For large websites, this is invaluable. Starting with technical SEO ensures your site can be crawled, rendered, and indexed. The most crucial element of this SEO funnel is discoverability.