Checking your keyword rankings can be a tricky business if you don’t know how. But, knowing where your business ranks in Google SERPS is perhaps the single most important metric to monitor and improve in your business? 

Why? 70% of marketers agree that SEO is more effective at driving traffic than outbound methods. Effective SEO can reduce your customer acquisition costs by 87.4%. SEO leads have a 14.6% close rate compared to 1.7% for outbound leads. The more keywords you rank for, and the higher you rank, the more traffic your website receives, the more signups you get, the more sales you make, and the more money you’re able to generate from passive income streams. PLUS, you’re not paying per click.

You’re paying to create a well-optimised website and regular content, but the amount of traffic that is capable of attracting is exponential.

So, while PPC relies on you paying for every single visit to your website, content is a fixed cost with unlimited potential.

One of the big issues business owners face when it comes to SEO is the complexity of the subject. Search algorithms use two hundred plus factors to rank content. What those specific factors are, which are prioritised, and how they’re used changes regularly. 

If you check your keyword rankings, you can – despite the complexity of how they’re worked out – very quickly and easily see how visible your business is on Google and other search engines. Once you’re aware of this, you can work at improving it, and those rankings give you a very clear view of how well your efforts are working.

But how exactly do you check your keyword rankings if you’re not an SEO expert?

Get Your Free SEO Rank Checking Report


Google Rank Checker tools are simple to use and allow you easily see which keywords you’re currently ranking for. They also allow you to do keyword research to discover which keywords you want to be ranking for, which terms will drive the most traffic, and which aren’t worth bothering with.

If you just want a nice handy report telling you exactly what you rank for and where, as well as a full assessment of your website’s SEO performance and clear advice on what will improve your rankings, sign up for a free, no-obligation audit performed by yours truly. 

If you want to know how to keep track of your rankings on an ongoing basis, keep reading.

How Can I Check My SEO Ranking For Free?

If you’re looking for a completely free rank checker, I’m afraid you’re out of luck. While there are some great free keyword research tools, like Google Keyword Planner, these will only let you find keywords and ascertain their search volume and level of competition – it won’t actually tell you where you rank for them.

While there are some free tools out there that purport to be rank checkers, in reality, the functionality they offer is nowhere near enough to make them useful enough to actually grow a business and drive traffic to your site.

You will, however, find that most of the premium options give you the chance to test their systems with a free trial. So, you can signup for a free trial and use all the function of the software for free. While the time you’ll be able to access them is limited, it is certainly long enough for you to gain a clear picture of where you’re currently ranking.

If you want to continue monitoring your rankings week-to-week, you’ll need to signup once your trial expires. Here are a few of my top recommendations for keyword ranking checkers that offer decent free trials:

SE Ranking

SE Ranking offers a 14-day free trial and is ideal for business owners who understand how SEO works, SEO specialists, and digital agencies. Once your trial has expired you can expect to pay between $30 and $151 per month depending on the package you choose. They offer three plans, Essential, PRO, and Business.


SEMrush has far better functionality, but you will, unfortunately, pay for it. It’s ideal for small to medium-sized businesses who have their in-house SEO specialist and is also very useful if you’re doing a lot of guest blogging. You will only get a 7-day trial on this one, and their monthly fee starts at $100 and goes up to $400 per month.


Another cracking system that’s great for any and all businesses is MOZ. They know they’re awesome, too, as they give you a full 30-day trial for free. After that, you can expect to pay between $99 and $599 per month for the software. If your business is at a level where this kind of expense is justified, it’s well worth it.

How To Easily Check Your Keyword Rankings (And Improve Them!) - Start by signing up for a completely free, no-obligation SEO Audit!

How To Check Keyword Rankings

While each keyword rank checker is a little different, they are all essentially the same. You add your website, and it will either pull up a list of everything the site currently ranks for, or ask you to add the keywords you want to check and tell you where you rank for them. 

Most of these tools have both functions, although it can be a little tricky to figure out how to do them on some of them. If you’re looking to monitor your rankings on an ongoing basis, you’ll need to subscribe to one of them in order to access their tools regularly. Once you’re set up with one, the rankings will automatically update, and you should be able to access analytics that tell you which have improved, which have dropped, what new keywords you’re ranking for, and any you’re no longer ranking for.

The cut-off point where you’re counted as ‘ranking’ for a keyword is usually 100 results – if you appear beyond the 100 mark, it will either show you as not ranking for that keyword or say 100+. Once you’re at 99 or lower, you will have moved high enough up the SERPs to be told the specific number.

Check how many keywords you can track before you signup – most of these tools limit the number of keywords they will track for you on an ongoing basis. If you want to track more than that number, you need to pay extra, which can increase the price substantially!

When looking at options, do not assume that cheaper is better. You will often find the cheapest options only gives you a few of the functions that the tracker is capable of and a limited number of keywords to track. While more comprehensive plans will cost you more, the value and functionality you get out of going one level up are usually far greater than the price increase.

In other words, the cheap version isn’t worth spending the money on because it won’t give you enough functionality and value.

The more expensive opinions cost more but deliver great functionality and value.

An Easy Website Rank Check Hack

If you don’t have access to a keyword rank checker and want a rapid way to check where you rank for a single keyword, there’s an easy hack you can use. Open a new window of your browser in incognito mode, and search the keyword.

Yep, super high-tech, right?

You need to be in incognito mode to do this, or your browser will use your search history to guide the results it shows you. Given you’ve almost certainly been on your own website, it will prioritise your site in the results – SERPs will show you relevant results from sites you’ve already visited when they’re available. They will also prioritise local results for your area. By using incognito mode, you can get an unbiased look at where you appear on the SERPs.

Of course, this isn’t without its limitations – if you’re not on page 1 you’re in for some scrolling until you find yourself! Still, it will do in a pinch.

Just remember, monitoring your keyword rankings doesn’t actually do anything to improve them. You need to be actively optimising your website and content and creating fresh content to see those rankings improve.

How To Boost Keyword Rankings

If you aren’t currently ranking for vital keywords that will drive traffic, you need to look at either optimising an existing page or piece of content for that keyword or creating a new piece of content that is specifically designed to rank for it. 

If you already have a piece of content that’s ranking and you’re looking to boost its performance, there are several ways to achieve this. 

  1. Further optimise the existing content on the page that is already ranking for LSI terms relating to your main keyword.
  2. Assess the competition that ranks highest for that keyword, and improve your own content, so it provides as-rich or richer information. 
  3. Record a video and/or audio version of your content, upload it to YouTube, optimise it on upload for the same keyword and then embed it directly into your piece of content.
  4. Create an infographic to accompany your content.
  5. Update your content regularly – fact-checking information to update anything that’s outdated, updating links that may have gone dead, and adding extra sections or info regularly.
  6. Build backlinks to your content that use the keyword as anchor text.
  7. Hire an SEO specialist to do it all for you.

That last point is well worth considering. Unless you already know how to do all of this effectively, someone (you or someone on your team) will have to complete these tasks. While you can learn or teach them so they know what they’re doing, that requires a substantial training investment, not only now but also long-term, to ensure they remain current in their knowledge. 

Outsourcing the work is usually cheaper, easier, far more efficient, and massively more effective than trying to do it in-house. 

Need Someone To Get You Ranking On Those SERPs?

If you’re looking for some help getting your business flying up those SERPs I offer a range of SEO packages to suit your needs. Prices start from just £292 per month and give you the options of on-site work, off-site work, or both. And don’t forget you can claim your completely free SEO audit by signing up below…