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Try These Tools & Methods For Exporting Google Search Results To Excel

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Try These Tools & Methods For Exporting Google Search Results To Excel

Extracting the search results into a spreadsheet is a seemingly straightforward thing.

However, because of limitations on automated queries placed by Google and other search engines, it can become prohibitive to scrape the SERPs.

Compounding this issue is the fact that there aren’t many tools that can do this in an easy manner that results in a spreadsheet with the sought-after data.

The following is an overview of how to export Google search results to a spreadsheet, including relevant keyword data as well.

Extract SERPs To Spreadsheet With A Chrome Extension

First on the list is (arguably) the best Chrome extension for extracting the search results straight into a spreadsheet.

There are many other extensions that scrape the SERPs, but they don’t actually extract the data into a spreadsheet.

For example, Surfer SEO has an amazing Chrome extension that can extract a significant quantity of useful information about the sites that rank in the top 10, as well as provide keyword data that can help in crafting an article.

But, it doesn’t actually export the SERPs into a spreadsheet.

There is one that does this really well, and it’s from SEOquake.

SEOquake Chrome Extension

Screenshot by author, May 2022Screenshot of SEOquake Chrome Extension Web Page

SEOquake offers a free SEO Chrome extension that provides multiple SEO data points layered right over the search results, including numbers that correspond to the search position of each website listed in the SERPs.

The SEOquake privacy policy states that it will not collect or use your data.

The extension will count each People Also Ask question as a search result, so a SERP with 10 results plus four People Also Ask will thus be listed as having 14 search results.

In order to export just a plain list of the search results, it’s necessary to first remove all of the parameters from the report.

Otherwise, the report will contain a lot more information than what may be needed.

Step 1: The Parameters Button

The first step is to click the Parameters menu button:

SEOquake ParametersScreenshot by author, May 2022SEOquake Parameters

Step 2: Deselect Parameters

What happens next is that a flyout menu pops out over the search results.

The flyout menu contains a multitude of parameters.

Un-tick all of the parameters.

SEOquake Chrome Extension Parameters MenuScreenshot by author, May 2022SEOquake Chrome Extension Parameters Menu

Step 3: Export To CSV

Now, you’re ready to download the search results straight into a spreadsheet.

On the left-hand menu, there’s an item labeled, Export to CSV. Just click it and the spreadsheet will start downloading.

SEOquake is a handy way to download the top 10 of the search results straight into a spreadsheet.

Export Search Features To A Spreadsheet

Another useful tool is the SERP Keyword Scraper by searchanalyzer Chrome extension.

SERP Keyword Scraper by searchanalyzer

Screenshot of SERP Keyword Scraper Chrome Extension PageScreenshot by author, May 2022Screenshot of SERP Keyword Scraper Chrome Extension Page

This tool is focused on extracting the keyword phrases that are in Google’s search features.

SERP Keyword Scraper produces useful information about the keywords that are related to your keyword phrase, as displayed in Google’s search features.

The Chrome extension exports the following search features:

  • Search suggestions.
  • Related searches.
  • Search refinements.
  • FAQ rich results.
  • Image entities.

The Chrome extension extracts keyword data from:

  • Google Search.
  • Google Shopping.
  • Google Image Search.
  • Bing Search.

Using the tool is super easy.

Just install the plugin and pin it to the browser so that it’s easily accessible.

The next step is to conduct a search on Google (or Bing) and click the SERP Keyword Scraper icon, and the keywords are instantly copied to a clipboard.

Lastly, open up a spreadsheet program and paste. It’s as easy as that. Voila, right?

The spreadsheet that the extension produces is clean and orderly so that it’s easy to determine what all the features are.

The tool first lists all the keyword phrases extracted from the visible portion of the search features (like People Also Ask, etc).

There’s a little trick to using this extension to be aware of.

Before clicking the Chrome extension icon to generate the report, be sure to click in the search box to generate the Google Suggest keywords.

For example, for the keyword phrase, What is Structured Data:

  1. The first set of keywords in the spreadsheet is scraped from Google Suggest.
  2. The second set of keywords in the spreadsheet is scraped from the People Also Ask search feature.
  3. The third set of keyword phrases is scraped from the Related Searches search feature.
  4. The fourth group of keywords was extracted from the FAQ Rich Results.
  5. The fifth group of keyword phrases was extracted from the People Also Search For search feature.

That’s pretty useful data, and it’s easy to extract.

Just click the icon button, and the data is saved in the copy clipboard. All you have to do next is paste it into a spreadsheet.

Something that I especially appreciate about the SERP Keyword Scraper Chrome extension is that it respects your privacy.

The tool does not collect any of your surfing data nor does it sell it.

According to the Privacy Practices:

“How does SERP Keyword scraper work?

Everything happens on your machine! We access the source code of the search result and extract the data for you. The plugin isn’t using any third party data.

The publisher has disclosed that it will not collect or use your data

This publisher declares that your data is:

Not being sold to third parties, outside of the approved use cases.

Not being used or transferred for purposes that are unrelated to the item’s core functionality.

Not being used or transferred to determine creditworthiness or for lending purposes.”

Scrape Google’s SERPs With Screaming Frog

It’s possible to use Screaming Frog to scrape the search results and search features.

In fact, there are many other scraping tools that can do this, too. But, it’s possible that Google might ban your IP address.

If that happens, then you will be blocked from using Google.

It should also be noted that Google strictly prohibits automated search queries.

Google’s terms of service have a section that is unambiguously titled “No Automated Querying.”

Google’s prohibition statement says:

“You may not send automated queries of any sort to Google’s system without express permission in advance from Google.

Note that “sending automated queries” includes, among other things:

using any software which sends queries to Google to determine how a website or webpage “ranks” on Google for various queries;”

Scraping Google with automated queries can result in having your IP address banned.

SerpsBot

SerpsBot is an API that allows you to extract Google’s search results, including all search features like People Also Ask and featured snippets.

The search results are exported into a JSON file, which can then be converted into a spreadsheet if that’s what you want.

This is an API, so one would have to be capable of programming languages.

Many Ways To Extract SERPs

If you search online, you’ll find websites, workarounds, and tools for exporting Google’s search results.

I have found that some of the online tools may display the first page of Google’s SERPs and provide a way to export them to a spreadsheet.

One such site is SERPs to Excel. It does a decent job of extracting the 10 search results.

However, the site doesn’t count search results in the featured snippets nor does it count video results. It provides results based on the old 10 blue links paradigm.

For example, a search for [what is google palm?] results in seven search results minus the featured snippets and videos and includes one search result from page two of the SERPs.

Results for anything more than the second page of the SERPs costs $2 for 100+ search results.

One good thing about this website is that it’s not following you around on your browser as a Chrome extension.

But, if you prefer the convenience of downloading the data directly from the search results, then a Chrome extension is more suitable for that kind of workflow.

Keyword Tool Workarounds

There are many tools that offer rank tracking and keyword research. But surprisingly, there aren’t many free tools that provide this functionality without having to do a little workaround to get what you need.

Semrush Keyword Overview Tool

For example, the free version of Semrush offers the Keyword Overview tool which can give you the SERPs in a convenient manner.

Step 1: Select Keyword Overview Tool

On the left-side navigation menu,  select the Keyword Overview link that’s located in the Keyword Research section.

Screenshot of Semrush Left Side Navigation MenuScreenshot by author, May 2022Screenshot of Semrush Left Side Navigation Menu

Step 2: Search For Keywords

Next, look to the top right-hand side of the page, where there’s a search box.

Enter the keyword phrase and click the Search button.

Screenshot of Semrush Keyword Overview Search BoxScreenshot by author, May 2022Screenshot of Semrush Keyword Overview Search Box

Step 3: SERP Analysis

Once the tool has extracted the search results, scroll down to the section labeled SERP Analysis.

Here, it is possible to copy the list of URLs that are ranked in the top 10 for the chosen keyword phrase.

Semrush SERP AnalysisScreenshot by author, May 2022Semrush SERP Analysis

Step 4: Paste Into A Spreadsheet

Lastly, copy the list of search result URLs and paste it into a spreadsheet.

Screenshot of a spreadsheet listing URLs and domain names of top 10 search resultsScreenshot by author, May 2022Screenshot of a spreadsheet listing URLs and domain names of top 10 search results

As you can see, it’s possible to create a spreadsheet of the top 10 for various search results using free keyword research tools, but it’s an imperfect solution.

Extracting Search Results To A Spreadsheet

At first, it may seem that extracting the search results into a spreadsheet is an easy thing, but it is not.

There are multiple solutions available, but they each come with their own pros and cons.

Ultimately, it is up to you to discover which tool works best for your workflow.

More Resources:


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Google Clarifies Organization Merchant Returns Structured Data

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Google updates organization structured data for merchant returns

Google quietly updated their organization structured data documentation in order to clarify two points about merchant returns in response to feedback about an ambiguity in the previous version.

Organization Structured Data and Merchant Returns

Google recently expanded their Organization structured data so that it could now accommodate a merchant return policy. The change added support for adding a sitewide merchant return policy.

The original reason for adding this support:

“Adding support for Organization-level return policies

What: Added documentation on how to specify a general return policy for an Organization as a whole.

Why: This makes it easier to define and maintain general return policies for an entire site.”

However that change left unanswered about what will happen if a site has a sitewide return policy but also has a different policy for individual products.

The clarification applies for the specific scenario of when a site uses both a sitewide return policy in their structured data and another one for specific products.

What Takes Precedence?

What happens if a merchant uses both a sitewide and product return structured data? Google’s new documentation states that Google will ignore the sitewide product return policy in favor of a more granular product-level policy in the structured data.

The clarification states:

“If you choose to provide both organization-level and product-level return policy markup, Google defaults to the product-level return policy markup.”

Change Reflected Elsewhere

Google also updated the documentation to reflect the scenario of the use of two levels of merchant return policies in another section that discusses whether structured data or merchant feed data takes precedence. There is no change to the policy, merchant center data still takes precedence.

This is the old documentation:

“If you choose to use both markup and settings in Merchant Center, Google will only use the information provided in Merchant Center for any products submitted in your Merchant Center product feeds, including automated feeds.”

This is the same section but updated with additional wording:

“If you choose to use both markup (whether at the organization-level or product-level, or both) and settings in Merchant Center, Google will only use the information provided in Merchant Center for any products submitted in your Merchant Center product feeds, including automated feeds.”

Read the newly updated Organization structured data documentation:

Organization (Organization) structured data – MerchantReturnPolicy

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What Is It & How To Write It

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What Is It & How To Write It

In this guide, you will learn about alternative text (known as alt text): what it is, why it is important for on-page SEO, how to use it correctly, and more.

It’s often overlooked, but every image on your website should have alt text. More information is better, and translating visual information into text is important for search engine bots attempting to understand your website and users with screen readers.

Alt text is one more source of information that relates ideas and content together on your website.

This practical and to-the-point guide contains tips and advice you can immediately use to improve your website’s image SEO and accessibility.

What Is Alt Text?

Alternative text (or alt text) – also known as the alt attribute or the alt tag (which is not technically correct because it is not a tag) – is simply a piece of text that describes the image in the HTML code.

What Are The Uses Of Alt Text?

The original function of alt text was simply to describe an image that could not be loaded.

Many years ago, when the internet was much slower, alt text would help you know the content of an image that was too heavy to be loaded in your browser.

Today, images rarely fail to load – but if they do, then it is the alt text you will see in place of an image.

Screenshot from Search Engine Journal, May 2024

Alt text also helps search engine bots understand the image’s content and context.

More importantly, alt text is critical for accessibility and for people using screen readers:

  • Alt text helps people with disabilities (for example, using screen readers) learn about the image’s content.

Of course, like every element of SEO, it is often misused or, in some cases, even abused.

Let’s now take a closer look at why alt text is important.

Why Alt Text Is Important

The web and websites are a very visual experience. It is hard to find a website without images or graphic elements.

That’s why alt text is very important.

Alt text helps translate the image’s content into words, thus making the image accessible to a wider audience, including people with disabilities and search engine bots that are not clever enough yet to fully understand every image, its context, and its meaning.

Why Alt Text Is Important For SEO

Alt text is an important element of on-page SEO optimization.

Proper alt text optimization makes your website stand a better chance of ranking in Google image searches.

Yes, alt text is a ranking factor for Google image search.

Depending on your website’s niche and specificity, Google image search traffic may play a huge role in your website’s overall success.

For example, in the case of ecommerce websites, users very often start their search for products with a Google image search instead of typing the product name into the standard Google search.

Screenshot from search for [Garmin forerunner]Screenshot from search for [Garmin forerunner], May 2024

Google and other search engines may display fewer product images (or not display them at all) if you fail to take care of their alt text optimization.

Without proper image optimization, you may lose a lot of potential traffic and customers.

Why Alt Text Is Important For Accessibility

Visibility in Google image search is very important, but there is an even more important consideration: Accessibility.

Fortunately, in recent years, more focus has been placed on accessibility (i.e., making the web accessible to everyone, including people with disabilities and/or using screen readers).

Suppose the alt text of your images actually describes their content instead of, for example, stuffing keywords. In that case, you are helping people who cannot see this image better understand it and the content of the entire web page.

Let’s say one of your web pages is an SEO audit guide that contains screenshots from various crawling tools.

Would it not be better to describe the content of each screenshot instead of placing the same alt text of “SEO audit” into every image?

Let’s take a look at a few examples.

Alt Text Examples

Finding many good and bad examples of alt text is not difficult. Let me show you a few, sticking to the above example with an SEO audit guide.

Good Alt Text Examples

So, our example SEO guide contains screenshots from tools such as Google Search Console and Screaming Frog.

Some good examples of alt text may include:

”The
”Google
”List
”Screaming

Tip: It is also a good idea to take care of the name of your file. Using descriptive file names is not a ranking factor, but I recommend this as a good SEO practice.

Bad And/Or Spammy Alt Text Examples

I’ve also seen many examples of bad alt text use, including keyword stuffing or spamming.

Here is how you can turn the above good examples into bad examples:

”google search console coverage report
”google
”seo
”seo

As you can see, the above examples do not provide any information on what these images actually show.

You can also find examples and even more image SEO tips on Google Search Central.

Common Alt Text Mistakes

Stuffing keywords in the alt text is not the only mistake you can make.

Here are a few examples of common alt text mistakes:

  • Failure to use the alt text or using empty alt text.
  • Using the same alt text for different images.
  • Using very general alt text that does not actually describe the image. For example, using the alt text of “dog” on the photo of a dog instead of describing the dog in more detail, its color, what it is doing, what breed it is, etc.
  • Automatically using the name of the file as the alt text – which may lead to very unfriendly alt text, such as “googlesearchconsole,” “google-search-console,” or “photo2323,” depending on the name of the file.

Alt Text Writing Tips

And finally, here are the tips on how to write correct alt text so that it actually fulfills its purpose:

  • Do not stuff keywords into the alt text. Doing so will not help your web page rank for these keywords.
  • Describe the image in detail, but still keep it relatively short. Avoid adding multiple sentences to the alt text.
  • Use your target keywords, but in a natural way, as part of the image’s description. If your target keyword does not fit into the image’s description, don’t use it.
  • Don’t use text on images. All text should be added in the form of HTML code.
  • Don’t write, “this is an image of.” Google and users know that this is an image. Just describe its content.
  • Make sure you can visualize the image’s content by just reading its alt text. That is the best exercise to make sure your alt text is OK.

How To Troubleshoot Image Alt Text

Now you know all the best practices and common mistakes of alt text. But how do you check what’s in the alt text of the images of a website?

You can analyze the alt text in the following ways:

Inspecting an element (right-click and select Inspect when hovering over an image) is a good way to check if a given image has alt text.

However, if you want to check that in bulk, I recommend one of the below two methods.

Install Web Developer Chrome extension.

Screenshot of Web Developer Extension in Chrome by authorScreenshot from Web Developer Extension, Chrome by author, May 2024

Next, open the page whose images you want to audit.

Click on Web Developer and navigate to Images > Display Alt Attributes. This way, you can see the content of the alt text of all images on a given web page.

The alt text of images is shown on the page.Screenshot from Web Developer Extension, Chrome by author, May 2024

How To Find And Fix Missing Alt Text

To check the alt text of the images of the entire website, use a crawler like Screaming Frog or Sitebulb.

Crawl the site, navigate to the image report, and review the alt text of all website images, as shown in the video guide below.

You can also export only images that have missing alt text and start fixing those issues.

Alt Text May Not Seem Like A Priority, But It’s Important

Every source of information about your content has value. Whether it’s for vision-impaired users or bots, alt text helps contextualize the images on your website.

While it’s only a ranking factor for image search, everything you do to help search engines understand your website can potentially help deliver more accurate results. Demonstrating a commitment to accessibility is also a critical component of modern digital marketing.

FAQ

What is the purpose of alt text in HTML?

Alternative text, or alt text, serves two main purposes in HTML. Its primary function is to provide a textual description of an image if it cannot be displayed. This text can help users understand the image content when technical issues prevent it from loading or if they use a screen reader due to visual impairments. Additionally, alt text aids search engine bots in understanding the image’s subject matter, which is critical for SEO, as indexing images correctly can enhance a website’s visibility in search results.

Can alt text improve website accessibility?

Yes, alt text is vital for website accessibility. It translates visual information into descriptive text that can be read by screen readers used by users with visual impairments. By accurately describing images, alt text ensures that all users, regardless of disability, can understand the content of a web page, making the web more inclusive and accessible to everyone.

More resources: 


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Google Dials Back AI Overviews In Search Results, Study Finds

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Photo of a mobile device in mans hand with generative google AI Overview on the screen.

According to new research, Google’s AI-generated overviews have undergone significant adjustments since the initial rollout.

The study from SE Ranking analyzed 100,000 keywords and found Google has greatly reduced the frequency of AI overviews.

However, when they appear, they’re more detailed than they were previously.

The study digs into which topics and industries are more likely to get an AI overview. It also looks at how the AI snippets interact with other search features like featured snippets and ads.

Here’s an overview of the findings and what they mean for your SEO efforts.

Declining Frequency Of AI Overviews

In contrast to pre-rollout figures, 8% of the examined searches now trigger an AI Overview.

This represents a 52% drop compared to January levels.

Yevheniia Khromova, the study’s author, believes this means Google is taking a more measured approach, stating:

“The sharp decrease in AI Overview presence likely reflects Google’s efforts to boost the accuracy and trustworthiness of AI-generated answers.”

Longer AI Overviews

Although the frequency of AI overviews has decreased, the ones that do appear provide more detailed information.

The average length of the text has grown by nearly 25% to around 4,342 characters.

In another notable change, AI overviews now link to fewer sources on average – usually just four links after expanding the snippet.

However, 84% still include at least one domain from that query’s top 10 organic search results.

Niche Dynamics & Ranking Factors

The chances of getting an AI overview vary across different industries.

Searches related to relationships, food and beverages, and technology were most likely to trigger AI overviews.

Sensitive areas like healthcare, legal, and news had a low rate of showing AI summaries, less than 1%.

Longer search queries with ten words were more likely to generate an AI overview, with a 19% rate indicating that AI summaries are more useful for complex information needs.

Search terms with lower search volumes and lower cost-per-click were more likely to display AI summaries.

Other Characteristics Of AI Overviews

The research reveals that 45% of AI overviews appear alongside featured snippets, often sourced from the exact domains.

Around 87% of AI overviews now coexist with ads, compared to 73% previously, a statistic that could increase competition for advertising space.

What Does This Mean?

SE Ranking’s research on AI overviews has several implications:

  1. Reduced Risk Of Traffic Losses: Fewer searches trigger AI Overviews that directly answer queries, making organic listings less likely to be demoted or receive less traffic.
  2. Most Impacted Niches: AI overviews appear more in relationships, food, and technology niches. Publishers in these sectors should pay closer attention to Google’s AI overview strategy.
  3. Long-form & In-Depth Content Essential: As AI snippets become longer, companies may need to create more comprehensive content beyond what the overviews cover.

Looking Ahead

While the number of AI overviews has decreased recently, we can’t assume this trend will continue.

AI overviews will undoubtedly continue to transform over time.

It’s crucial to monitor developments closely, try different methods of dealing with them, and adjust game plans as needed.


Featured Image: DIA TV/Shutterstock

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