Question: When I search for my website manually, the position I find it ranking differently than what Rank Reporter is reporting. Why?
Answer: There are a few possible causes for this:
1) If your website is ranked lower than 30 (for example: 55), then your website ranking can be very volatile. Your position may change very frequently, even between search queries, as the search engine decides where to place your website. These are sometimes called Supplementary Results.
2) Google (and other search engines) tailor search results based on your search history (this is sometimes called “personalized search”). Rank Reporter reports the ranking information as if you were a new searcher looking for your keywords. When manually checking search engine results, use your browser’s “Private Browsing” mode to ensure that you are getting non-biased results.
3) Google uses many data centers around the world, and these data centers are often sightly out of sync with one another. To minimize your search footprint, Rank Reporter automatically distributes your queries to different data centers. If you want Rank Reporter to ONLY show the results using your local data center, disable the “DNS Pooling” feature in Advanced Project Settings.
4) If you are comparing Rank Reporter’s results to those collected by another utility, there may be variation due to the collection method used. Some tools use the Google API to provide ranking information. The Google API is generally out of date and the ranking information provided there doesn’t match the actual search results. Rank Reporter scrapes the actual result pages so that you can accurately find out where your website ranks. You can verify Rank Report’s accuracy yourself by using the “Template Test Tool” located in the Search Engine Editor.