Posted by TheMozTeam
This blog post was originally published on the STAT blog.
The first step to getting the most out of your SERP data is
smart keyword segmentation — it surfaces targeted insights that
will help you make data-driven decisions.
But knowing what to segment can feel daunting, especially when
you’re working with thousands of keywords. That’s why we’re
arming you with a handful of must-have tags.
Follow along as we walk through the different kinds of segments
in STAT, how to create them, and which tags you’ll want to get
started with. You’ll be a fanciful segment connoisseur by the
time we’re through!
Segmentation in STAT
In STAT, keyword segments are called “tags” and come as two
different types: standard or dynamic.
Standard tags are best used when you want to keep specific
keywords grouped together because of shared characteristics —
like term (brand, product type, etc), location, or device. Standard
tags are static, so the keywords that populate those segments
won’t change unless you manually add or remove them.
Dynamic tags, on the other hand, are a fancier kind of tag based
on filter criteria. Just like a smart playlist, dynamic tags
automatically populate with all of the keywords that meet said
criteria, such as keywords with a search volume over 500 that rank
on page one. This means that the keywords in a dynamic tag aren’t
forever — they’ll filter in and out depending on the criteria
How to create a keyword segment
Tags are created in a few easy steps. At the
Site level, pop over to the
Keywords tab, click the down arrow on any table
column header, and then select Filter keywords.
From there, you can select the pre-populated options or enter your
own metrics for a choose-your-own-filter adventure.
Once your filters are in place, simply click Tag All
Filtered Keywords, enter a new tag name, and then pick the
tag type best suited to your needs — standard or dynamic — and
voila! You’ve created your very own segment.
Segments to get you started
Now that you know how to set up a tag, it’s time to explore
some of the different segments you can implement and the filter
criteria you’ll need to apply.
Rank and rank movement
Tracking your rank and ranking movements with dynamic tags will
give you eyeballs on your keyword performance, making it easy to
monitor and report on current and historical trends.
There’s a boatload of rank segments you can set up, but
here’s just a sampling to get you started:
- Keywords ranking in position 1–3; this will identify your top
- Keywords ranking in position 11–15; this will suss out the
low-hanging, top of page two fruit in need of a little nudge.
- Keywords with a rank change of 10 or more (in either
direction); this will show you keywords that are slipping off or
shooting up the SERP.
Appearance and ownership of SERP features
Whether they’re images, carousels, or news results, SERP
features have significantly altered the search landscape. Sometimes
they push you down the page and other times, like when you manage
to snag one, they can give you a serious leg up on the competition
and drive loads more traffic to your site.
Whatever industry-related SERP features that you want to keep
apprised of, you can create dynamic tags that show you the
prevalence and movement of them within your keyword set. Segment
even further for tags that show which keywords own those features
and which have fallen short.
Below are a few segments you can set up for featured snippets
and local packs.
Everyone’s favourite SERP feature isn’t going anywhere
anytime soon, so it wouldn’t be a bad idea to outfit yourself
with a snippet tracking strategy. You can create as many tags as
there are snippet options to choose from:
- Keywords with a featured snippet.
- Keywords with a paragraph, list, table, and/or carousel
- Keywords with an owned paragraph, list, table, and/or carousel
- Keywords with an unowned paragraph, list, table, and/or
The first two will allow you to see over-arching snippet trends,
while the last two will chart your ownership progress.
If you want to know the URL that’s won you a snippet, just
take a peek at the URL column.
If you’re a brick and mortar business, we highly advise
creating tags for local packs since
they provide a huge opportunity for exposure. These two tags
will show you which local packs you have a presence in and which
you need to work on
- Keywords with an owned local pack.
- Keywords with an unowned local pack.
Want all the juicy data squeezed into a local pack, like who’s
showing up and with what URL? We created the Local
pack report just for that.
Landing pages, subdomains, and other important URLs
Whether you’re adding new content or implementing
link-building strategies around subdomains and landing pages,
dynamic tags allow you to track and measure page performance, see
whether your searchers are ending up on the pages you want, and
match increases in page traffic with specific keywords.
For example, are your informational intent keywords driving
traffic to your product pages instead of your blog? To check, a tag
that includes your blog URL will pull in each post that ranks for
one of your keywords.
Try these three dynamic tags for starters:
- Keywords ranking for a landing page URL.
- Keywords ranking for a subdomain URL.
- Keywords ranking for a blog URL.
Is a page not indexed yet? That’s okay. You can still create a
dynamic tag for its URL and keywords will start appearing in that
segment when Google finally gets to it.
Location, location, location
Google cares a lot about location and so should you, which is
why keyword segments centred around location are essential. You can
tag in two ways: by geo-modifier and by geo-location.
For these, it’s better to go with the standard tag as the
search term and location are fixed to the keyword.
A geo-modifier is the geographical qualifier that searchers
manually include in their query — like in [sushi near me]. We
advocate for adding various geo-modifiers to your keywords and then
incorporating them into your tagging strategy. For instance, you
can segment by:
- Keywords with “in [city]” in them.
- Keywords with “near me” in them.
The former will show you how you fare for city-wide searches,
while the latter will let you see if you’re meeting the needs of
searchers looking for nearby options.
Geo-location is where the keyword is being tracked. More tracked
locations mean more searchers’ SERPs to sample. And the closer
you can get to searchers standing on a street corner, the more
accurate those SERPs will be. This is why we
strongly recommend you track in multiple pin-point locations in
every market you serve.
Once you’ve got your tracking strategy in place, get your
segmentation on. You can filter and tag by:
- Keywords tracked in specific locations; this will let you keep
tabs on geographical trends.
- Keywords tracked in each market; this will allow for
Search volume & cost-per-click
Search volume might be a contentious metric thanks to Google’s
close variants, but having a decent idea of what it’s up to is
better than a complete shot in the dark. We suggest at least two
dynamic segments around search volume:
- Keywords with high search volume; this will show which queries
are popular in your industry and have the potential to drive the
- Keywords with low search volume; this can actually help reveal
conversion opportunities — remember, long-tail keywords typically
have lower search volumes but higher conversion rates.
Tracking the cost-per-click of your keywords will also bring you
and your PPC team tonnes of valuable insights — you’ll know if
you’re holding the top organic spot for an outrageously high CPC
As with search volume, tags for high and low CPC should do you
just fine. High CPC keywords will show you where the competition is
the fiercest, while low CPC keywords will surface your easiest
point of entry into the paid game — queries you can optimize for
with less of a fight.
From screen size to indexing, desktop and smartphones produce
substantially different SERPs from one another, making it essential
to track them separately. So, filter and tag for:
- Keywords tracked on a desktop.
- Keywords tracked on a smartphone.
Similar to your location segments, it’s best to use the
standard tag here.
Go crazy with multiple filters
We’ve shown you some really high-level segments, but you can
actually filter down your keywords even further. In other words,
you can get extra fancy and add multiple filters to a single tag.
Go as far as high search volume, branded keywords triggering
paragraph featured snippets that you own for smartphone searchers
in the downtown core. Phew!
Want to make talk shop about segmentation or see dynamic tags in
action? Say hello (don’t be shy) and request a demo.
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