How To Easily Analyse Your Mobile SEO Performance

This week we are showing you the 10 most popular posts of 2014 on State of Digital. The top 10 is based on a combination of reading numbers, shares and comments.

This is number 5, by Aleyda Solis, about Mobile SEO.
Originally posted: October 7, 2014, 11:30


No SEO analysis is complete nowadays without taking into consideration its Mobile (or multi-device) organic search behaviour: Which pages are receiving more mobile search visibility? How optimized for mobile and popular are these pages? Which keywords are providing visibility from the mobile search results to these pages?…. and what about its competitors?

The good news is that many tools have not only started to support and add mobile filters and functionality, but new tools that facilitate this analysis have recently been launched. Let’s see which steps to take, what these tools are, and how to easily combine their data to analyze a site mobile SEO performance.

Start by downloading the top mobile pages from Google Webmaster Tools “Search Queries” area, “Top Pages” tab, by selecting the “Mobile” filter in the “Search” section, which will give you a list of the pages that have received the highest amount of impressions, clicks and best average position in mobile search results:

Mobile Pages Webmaster Tools

With this information you can create a new Excel document only with the list of these top mobile URLs, and crawl them by selecting Screaming Frog list mode and set the crawler’s user-agent to ‘GoogleBot for smartphones’, in order to see the most important on page information – from HTTP status, title, meta description, canonical tags, meta robots, headings, word count, page size, etc.- about them, just as Google’s mobile crawler sees them.

Screaming Frog Mobile Crawling

Once you have the Screaming Frog on-page data, you can import it to URL Profiler and combine it with the additional data sources the tool supports: From Majestic link metrics (the basic ones are free and you don’t need a Majestic account or configuration), Mozscape authority & link related data (basic data is also free), social share data and the option to connect with Google Analytics to import traffic data for a specific period of a specified site.

This allows you to select a segment, such as the mobile traffic one that I select in this case, to specifically see the mobile traffic behavior in these pages (especially important if the site is using responsive of dynamic serving for its mobile presence).

URL Profiler Mobile Analysis

After you’ve ran this analysis with URL profiler you will get the a combined file (2) for the URLs, including their Screaming Frog mobile crawled data, their Google Analytics Mobile traffic data, Majestic & Mozscape link related metrics and their social shares; which you will then need to combine (manually in this case, sorry) with the Google Webmaster Tools mobile search visibility data that you initially obtained for these same URLs, as it can be seen here:

Mobile Web Data Sources

Once you integrate these two files’ information (and prune the data, so you leave only the meaningful one in your case) by analysing it you will be able to easily and quickly answer the most important questions asked at the beginning about the mobile search performance of your site:

Mobile SEO Analysis

I did tell you that now we had tools that made this analysis much more easy, right? Additionally, you might have seen that we still haven’t included the keyword related information for the analysed pages. We still need to answer questions such as: For which keywords are these pages ranking in mobile search results? How can you also identify your competitors mobile related performance?

You can gather the query information for your top pages manually through Google Webmaster Tools, but this can be a crazily time-consuming task if you’re looking to analyze the performance of a large amount of keywords for a large amount of pages. And even if they’re not so many!

There are workarounds though: You can download directly the mobile query related data by selecting the “Mobile” filter again but this time from the “Top Queries” tab in the Google Webmaster Tools “Search Queries” area and use the SEMrush mobile position tracking feature, which allows you to track your mobile or tablet rankings (besides the desktop one).

As you can see in the next screenshots, you can import the queries from Google Webmaster Tools to SEMrush position tracking  (whether with a file or directly connecting the service) and also add the domains of your competitors – besides yours, of course – to track their mobile search rankings for the desired keywords (you might also want to identify new potential keyword opportunities for which you might not have any type of visibility, by using the Google Keyword Planner which nows provides a Mobile breakdown for search volume information).

Mobile Keywords Rankings Google Webmaster Tools

Mobile Keywords & Pages Rankings

SEMrush will provide you the mobile rankings for your domain and your competitors pages for the specified keywords, which you will be able to export as a CSV or Excel file, that you can then use again to start with the mobile SEO performance analysis in order to better understand the reason behind those rankings… and this time, also have the mobile keyword data included.

I hope this is as useful for you as it is for me. 🙂 Do you have any question? Drop them in the comments area!

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About Aleyda Solis

Experienced International SEO Consultant -service that she provides through her company Orainti. She’s a frequent SEO speaker at international conferences & blogger.

12 thoughts on “How To Easily Analyse Your Mobile SEO Performance

  1. Great easy to follow guide, Aleyda. I think the way you used of screen grabs made this very easy to follow without necessarily needing to read anything more than the headings.

    1. Thanks @Red_Mud_Rookie:disqus 🙂 Mission accomplished! I’m a visual person, is something that I always find super valuable and the reason why I do it (with the hope others will find it useful too).

  2. You are not doing anyone any favors by encouraging people to make unauthorized crawls of other people’s websites. These crawls not only raise bandwidth, they tie up server connections and contribute to the degradation of Web server health. The search marketing community seriously needs to stop behaving badly and give thought to how they mindlessly trample on other people’s Websites.

    1. This comment is completely uncalled for. The whole basis of the post is about analysing your own content (or the content of a client you have permission from) – it is nothing to do with ‘unauthorized crawls’.

      1. The whole basis of the comment is to call out people in the Web marketing community who just plunder other Websites’ resources without any consideration for what that potentially costs them. So, yes, my comment is completely called for. It just may not sit well with people who don’t believe in acting ethically.

        1. As I said before, the post has nothing to do with crawling other people’s websites without authorisation. Whilst your argument might be valid, it seems to be completely out of context with what this article discusses.

          1. As I said above, use of these tools and services (which do crawl people’s Websites without authorization), makes the comment relevant. People in the industry keep turning a blind eye to the abuses that they are supporting. It’s way past time to broaden the discussion to raise awareness of what is going on. Your reaction is a perfect example of why that is so important. It’s all connected.

  3. Interesting post Aleyda – I like the way you have used urlprofiler. I hadn’t actually thought about using it for own site audits, but it makes complete sense.

    Also ref MM stuff about crawling etc the process relies on WMT and to some extent GA access, so by implication you are authorised to do ‘stuff’ to give that site owner answers. Maybe MM doesn’t read blog posts properly and or maybe he’s just had a bad day

  4. Great points, love the way you tied it all together. I also liked the way you broke it down into the different points.

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