Search engine espionage

Spy out competitors' winning ways with this SEO tool.

Search engine optimization tools help Web site administrators attract visitors through a high ranking on major search engines like Google and Bing. Link-Assistant's SEO SpyGlass Enterprise is a powerful backlink checker that analyzes top-ranked sites to learn what makes them successful; in effect, the program legitimately "spies" on sites to copy their methods and uncover the high-quality links that drive keyword searches to their sites. The program uses that and other data to create a highly focused Web site optimization strategy in 30 minutes or less, claiming to save time over doing it all manually, step-by-step, as well as the expense of professional consultants.

When you install SEO SpyGlass, you have the option to choose to install the full SEO PowerSuite that includes Rank Tracker, Web Site Auditor, and LinkAssistant. We chose to install just SEO SpyGlass, however, since we were most interested in its unique capabilities. These are quite easy to use, thanks to wizards, though there's plenty of help available for those new to SEO, including video tutorials. While most Web admins will be most interested in the big search engines such as Google and Yahoo, SEO SpyGlass Enterprise supports more than 420 search engines, with more added regularly. We entered a keyword phrase (a bicycle brand) and a search engine (Bing) and got exactly 800 results in 29 seconds. The detailed report included an option to automatically update our project based on its analysis of various backlink factors. You can select or exclude any factors to save time, but we opted to analyze them all; this was a 10-minute process with a broadband connection, as displayed by counters and progress bars.

SEO SpyGlass Enterprise has an almost unique capability to analyze what makes top Web sites tick and translate that information into a winning strategy for your site.

Editor's note: This is a review of the full version of SEO SpyGlass Enterprise 3.15.1. The trial version has some features disabled.

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