Keyword rankings are, in many ways, the lifeblood of an SEO campaign. While these rankings are not the end-all-be-all of success in this industry (clients can't pay their bills with rankings alone!) they are an important metric to monitor to determine whether your ongoing strategies are successful.
There are a ton of great tools you can use to monitor keyword rankings; I'm partial to Raven Tools and Authority Labs myself as well as the tried-and-true method of manually checking on a daily basis. However, I'm also a huge fan of idiot-proofing my reporting whenever possible to ensure that my own human error doesn't cause me to miss out on important rankings movement. The best way I've found to do this is through Email Alerts!
I started investigating TrackEngine a few months back as a tool for competitive intelligence. In a nutshell, TrackEngine allows you to receive alerts regarding changes on any given webpage. At first it reminded me of the Update Scanner plugin for Firefox or the Page Monitor extension for Chrome. However, what set TrackEngine apart is that it allows you set specific events to monitor on that webpage.
Monitoring Changes to SERPs for your Keyword
Let's say I decided to start a business selling frisbees. I go out and buy http://www.brettsultimatefrisbees.com/, create content, build links, the whole nine yards. My big keyword I'm targeting is "buy frisbees online" and I want to know right away when I've cracked Page 1 for that term.
Simply put, with the ability to monitor specific events within a webpage TrackEngine allows me to quickly and easily set up an email alert for whenever Page 1 of the SERPs for "buy frisbees online" includes "brettsultimatefrisbees.com." First thing I need to do is create a new bookmark:
Next, I set it up so that the page being tracked is the SERPs for "buy frisbees online" and I only want to be notified when this page updates to include "brettsultimatefrisbees.com." For organizational purposes, I'll name this bookmark "Buy Frisbees Online to Pg1"
From here, TrackEngine will monitor this page at whatever interval you select (I typically select "Daily" so that there's as little delay in receiving these alerts as possible). When your selected keyword (in our example, "brettsultimatefrisbees.com") appears on the SERPs page you indicated, you will receive an email from TrackEngine that screenshots the SERPs at the time your keyword appeared (saves you that extra step if you choose to alert the client of the movement) and highlights wherever your keyword appears in those SERPs.
Have another tool to alert you of short term keyword movement or another application of TrackEngine? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter, I'd love your feedback!