Aug 7, 2008 114 reads by Navneet Kaushal

It seems that after a long history of threatening to ban automated rank checking softwares, Google has finally closed its doors on one of the most popular search engine ranking software, WebPosition.

According to Webmaster World, WebPosition hasn't been able to gain access to Google nor has it been able to compound search rankings for the last 24 hours.

Google has been on warning mode against automated rank checking softwares for quite some time now. Infact, at the Google Webmaster Guidelines page, Google has even mentioned its dislike towards such programs, stating that, “Don't use unauthorized computer programs to submit pages, check rankings, etc. Such programs consume computing resources and violate our Terms of Service. Google does not recommend the use of products such as WebPosition Gold™ that send automatic or programmatic queries to Google.”

Here are some excerpts from the thread at Webmaster World:

“Has anyone else noticed that after years of threatening it appears that Google has now blocked WP Gold from reporting rankings through their tool? We called the WP support line and they said they are waiting for Google to 'do' something and have NO ETA has to when it will be fixed.”

“Thanks for the news – this has certainly been an onging saga. Google has long been clear that they don't want to see automated rank checking, so it's not a surprise.

Given that they sometimes serve bad data to automated PR checkers, I'm actually surpirsed they didn't just start poisoning the ranking data, too. I guess that would be too much bandwidth, though.”

“can anyone tell why Google doesn't have an official rank checking tool… added to their webmaster tools for example? no, seriously. they're driving a lot of traffic through organic search, and results of their pages are in direct relation to both the income of websites and web search ad campaigns. it's not like Google doesn't have an interest in BigCompany not setting up AdWords campaigns for keywords they already rank top 3 for on organic. It's a legitimate question, and not some 'SEO trick' to see where a website is ranked at. Not only is it necessary in SEM ( although which process any SEO can script / do manually anyway ) but also it's a matter of transparency.”

“but what about the wmt tools, I've found them rather accurate,I just wish they'd go back to the 1 week data thing. ok , you can't determine which phrase you're checking. But bye the way guess who has such a tool,,,,,, :)”

“We are switching ranking tools. I would rather not report on ranking and just report on traffic – but reporting on traffic under specific keywords requires access and trust in a client's traffic analysis package. Some of the information now available on Google insights will help but it isn't something that as easily digestible by client executives.”

“And WMT gives the authenticated site owner access to that ranking data for their own website. That's quite a different proposition than publicly offering ranking data to anyone for any website. Ranking reports for one site are one thing, but offering to help reverse engineer the algorithm (or at least key parts) is another.”

“Just throwing this out there but I wonder if Google's recent transition to a more customized search result experience (dated 7/30) had anything to do with this, unintentional or not.”

“I'm assuming that the API key is being affected by this as well. My API key will give back 100 results per day before it fails.”

Navneet Kaushal

Navneet Kaushal

Navneet Kaushal is the founder and CEO of PageTraffic, an SEO Agency in India with offices in Chicago, Mumbai and London. A leading search strategist, Navneet helps clients maintain an edge in search engines and the online media. Navneet's expertise has established PageTraffic as one of the most awarded and successful search marketing agencies.
Navneet Kaushal
Navneet Kaushal
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