Over the last couple of years, we've seen lots of discussion around the value of rank tracking in the modern era of SEO. Some say search results have become too personalized for SEOs to be able to accurately track rankings; others are convinced keywords no longer matter for SEO in the age of semantic search. I have to admit, these ideas aren't coming from nowhere. It really has gotten harder to track rankings accurately (the concept of accuracy itself has become somewhat vague, with rankings being increasingly influenced by location), and Google is indeed getting better at deciphering the meaning behind queries instead of looking for exact keyword matches in pages' content. That said, none of that undermines the value of rank tracking in any way — rather, it implies that our rank tracking goals and the way we track rankings have to change substantially. In this guide, I'll look at the most important modern uses for rank tracking, along with the problems we are facing with rank tracking these days — and how to solve them.
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