SEO SpyGlass Review: What It Is Capable Of
There are all kinds of ways for an SEO guy to find information about a domain name.
Yahoo Site Explorer, a Google site: search, and a bunch of other search engine based tools can be used to gather as large of a list of links as possible, all of which may or may not still be pointing to the domain. Then, the SEO guy could visit each individual link and check to see if it still exists, use Google Toolbar to check the PageRank of each page, count the number of internal and external links on each page, check and log the IP address of each linking domain, and more in order to have enough info to run a decent analysis on; all so that the SEO guy could have a good understanding of the external value of a particular domain.
Alternatively, SEO SpyGlass can be used to do all the grunt work. It gathers link information from a wide array of search engines and tools, with international search engines/tools available as an option. It can then gather a wide array of info for each link. It will then analyze the data and even calculate a proprietary “Link Value” so that a beginner SEO guy can have some understanding of how good a link is. This SEO SpyGlass Review will look at just how well it completes this task.
A large part of how well SEO SpyGlass works is a numbers game. How many tools does it pull from to gather links? How many different pieces of information does it gather for each link? Well, let’s take a look; here is a list of USA search engine based tools that SEO SpyGlass.:
- Google Mobile
- Google Blog
But, SEO SpyGlass has information for search engines from a total of around 110 different countries, meaning that it is highly unlikely that there is a search engine that you are aware of that can be pulled from automatically and isn’t in SEO SpyGlass’s list of usable search engines.
From just the URL where the link supposedly exists, here is a list of all the metrics it will gather for each link, in the order that SEO SpyGlass lists them:
- Title: The title of the page that exists at the specified URL
- Links Back: Whether or not the link exists AND is properly followed
- Anchor Text: Whether or not the link uses anchor text and what that anchor text is
- Anchor URL: What the exact URL of the link is
- Page PR: The PageRank of the specified URL
- External Links: The number of links that point to other domains from the specified URL
- Total Links: The total number of links on the specified URL
- Link Value: A proprietary calculation used to approximate the value of the link; useful for beginners
- Domain: The base domain of the specified URL
- Domain IP: The IP address and country location of the specified URL
- DMOZ Listing: Whether or not the domain exists in the DMOZ directory
- Yahoo! Dir Listing: Whether or not the domain exists in the Yahoo directory
- Alexa Ranking: The Alexa traffic rating of the domain
- Domain Age: How long the ago the domain was first registered
- Last Found Date (optional): The last time that SEO SpyGlass found the link listed in the search engine tools
- Backlink Status (optional): Whether this is the first time (new) or not (remains) that SEO SpyGlass has seen this link listed in the search engine tools, or if SEO SpyGlass no longer (removed) sees the link listed
- Country (optional): The country that the IP address of the specified URL is located in
- Notes (optional): An editable field for custom notes
Additionally, the following metrics can be enabled, and they seem self-explanatory:
Contact info, compete rank in compete.com, traffic according to compete.com, pages indexed in Google, pages indexed in Yahoo, pages indexed in Bing, pages indexed in Yandex, domain Google popularity (inbound links found in Google), domain Yahoo popularity (inbound links found in Yahoo), domain Yandex CY (inbound links found in Yandex, a Russian search engine), Digg articles from the domain, domain bookmarks in Delicious, domain’s views in StumbleUpon, domain Diigo bookmarks, domain social mention popularity (inbound links found in SocialMention.com), domain’s mentions in Twitter, domain’s mentions in Google Buzz, domain’s popularity in Facebook (number of times content from the domain was “Liked”), cache date in Google, cache date in Yahoo, cache date in Bing, cache date in Yandex, page Google popularity, page Yahoo popularity, visits to your site (from the link specified, requires Google Analytics integration), page bookmarks in Delicious, page’s views in StumbleUpon, page Diigo bookmarks, page Social Mention popularity, page’s mentions on Twitter, page’s mentions on Google Buzz, and page’s popularity on Facebook.
Furthermore, you don’t have to use this tool on your own domains, you can also use SEO SpyGlass to see what links your competitors have so that you can try to get links from the same places. All of this makes it a very powerful tool. A lot of competitive information can be gathered very quickly with this tool.
With such an extensive list of metrics that SEO SpyGlass can check for, it’s bound to fit the needs of even the most analytical SEO guy. And since SEO SpyGlass does all the number crunching for you, the information won’t necessarily be overwhelming.
Technical Concerns and Solutions
But a technical person might ask one very important question: “If it’s gathering all of this information through my internet connection, won’t my internet connection get blocked by a lot of these places? Especially Google?” Well, SEO SpyGlass offers the ability to find proxies to run through. A quick 20 minute scan of proxies found a total of 16 proxies with a response time of 600ms or less, of which 3 were located in the USA. And, if any of those proxies fail to respond during the scanning, SEO SpyGlass will just go to the next proxy. Only when all of the selected proxies stop responding does SEO SpyGlass automatically revert to using the normal internet connection.
This proxy rotation feature means that you can have 5 requests going to a variety of search engines, all from different IP addresses, and all at the same time. This alone can significantly cut back on down time as a result of being blocked from search engines.
In addition to the proxy rotation offered, it also offers human emulation options. These options include the ability to wait random amounts of time before visiting a search engine or going to the next page of a search engine. It also gives the option of visiting a search engine’s home page before continuing since a lot of human users do exactly that. These features can and will slow down the process, but these features are crucial if you have more than one computer on one internet connection that all need to access these search engines at any time.
By offering everything to everybody, SEO SpyGlass becomes well worth the one time price of $99, especially since updates to the system continue to be free after purchasing, meaning that the support for the search engines shouldn’t diminish over time.
Now, of course, you could do all of this gathering yourself. Why buy the tool when you can just go to the search engines yourself to build a list of links in a spreadsheet and then go and gather the info around those links that you wanted? Well, yes, you can do that, but it will take exponentially longer than using this tool. If you only need to do it once, then that might be ok with you. But, if you want to track progress over time for yourself or your competitors, you may want to run this tool once per week. Doing it by hand could take a couple days of constant attention each time. This tool will cut that down to less than a day of passive attention, meaning you can do a lot more in the same amount of time.
For the aspiring SEO guru, SEO SpyGlass is nearly a must-have.