We get phone calls and emails all the time from clients who Google themselves religiously – you guys know who you are ;). And you know we have three words for you: “don’t do it.”
1. Results will vary
Even with incognito tools, your search results will be different than someone else searching on the computer next to you. Why? Because Google is trying to make search smarter. Between personal, local (geographic), search history, and other differences, your results could be completely different than someone in the same room as you and certainly different than someone across the country.
Instead, use a tool that measure non-bias search results, like Moz.
2. You’ll drive yourself crazy
Google changes its algorithm so often, that it’s bound to drive anyone crazy.. especially those of us who conduct search engine optimization for a living.
Search results change constantly – daily, if not hourly, so it can be tough to get a handle on where your site is exactly in the search results. For this reason, we tend to graph results over time. We like to see a steady incline in results for our clients; unless the result is within the first 5, in which case we like to see a steady line!
Aside from Moz, you can also use the “Search Engine Optimization” section in your Google Analytics to track your search results. This information is directly from Google and a great way to cross reference a tool like Moz.
3. You may not be Googling the right terms
Sure, you’ll be #1 for your business name, but you’re probably not Googling your business name. Instead, you may be Googling terms that describe your business, but not necessarily the terms that your potential customers are using.
For that reason, it’s important to conduct search engine optimization and optimize your website for the right search terms. That way, your website and your Googling are for the correct search terms in your industry.