If you believe that you are getting inaccurate results, kindly follow the troubleshooting steps at the end of this article. But first, let’s understand how rank tracking works and where the data is stored. You may also find this explanatory video helpful.
Data are stored in multiple Google Data Centers around the world. When you do a manual search, you get randomly assigned to one data center and you are going to get the results from that data center.
One data center results can be slightly different from others because the syncing process often takes time and some data centers can have more updated data. So there’s a good chance that people are going to see different results based on which data center they are connected to and some other factors.
Factors that influence keyword ranking results:
- Personalized results - Google tracks the type of results you tend to click and open. This is why we advise that you are logged out of your Google account or use private browsing or incognito mode when performing a manual search to check.
- Location/IP address - Google tailors search results according to the location from which the search is being performed. For example, keywords like “dentist” often have a local intent so doing a search on this keyword would give you different results depending on where it is searched from.
- The device used - You will see different results depending on what device you use. For example, the results of a keyword searched on a desktop will differ when that same keyword is searched on mobile.
- Google data centers synchronization - as mentioned earlier, this can take time to balance out leading to a bouncing around of the keywords from rank to rank.
- Time - This is one obvious reason, one day a certain keyword/domain may be ranking the following day it may not.
- Other factors
1. Refresh the keyword to bring in the most up-to-date ranking
2. Verify the rankings using the Spyglass tool and go through the debugger by clicking "Having issues with this Keyword?" to verify that all your keyword settings are correct.
Our Spyglass tool gives you a copy of the search results we found when performing the query. This can be used to verify the rankings you are getting on Keyword.com. If the ranking you are seeing from the Spyglass tool is different from the rankings you have obtained through a manual search, please move on to step 3.
3. If you have performed a manual search, please make sure that the URL on your manual search results matches the URL being tracked in Keyword.com.
4. Check if you are located at the same location as your keyword settings.
If you have set Keyword.com to find the rankings on Google.co.uk, for example, your manual search should be performed from the UK because not doing so may lead to variance in the rankings.
We perform a regional broad search, if you are tracking Google.co.uk but you are performing a manual search from a specific city like "Brighton, United Kingdom", you might not see the same results as us. Please have the manual search location be the same as the city you are tracking.
If it is not possible for you to perform the search from the same location, you can use a web proxy that matches the correct IP location to make the manual search. For example for the UK: http://teleportyou.com/United%20Kingdom/
If after taking these steps your manual search results are different from ours, then it is likely due to the fact that Google has different data centers that often take time to all balance out their rankings, leading to a bouncing around of the keywords from rank to rank on each search.
We hope you find this helpful! If you need any further assistance, please contact us and we'll be more than happy to help you out!