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The Joys of Yahoo Site Explorer: Getting the Low-Down on your Website’s Progress
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My Terminal Binoculars
Originally uploaded by Jim Frazier

Chances are the reason why you started article marketing go something like this:

* You want to drive traffic to your website

* You want to leap-frog up the search engine rankings 

* You want to establish yourself as an expert in your niche

Those are a few of the most popular reasons, but at the heart of pretty much every reason why folks do article marketing is the need to build links

I always recommend that folks keep some sort of "stats tracking journal" so that they can get a clear view of their progress.

Now keep in mind–when you're doing article marketing you will likely not see a huge difference in your stats for about 4 months, but it's nice to get that stats tracking process in place from the get go (for more info on how to set up a stats tracking system so you can see how your article marketing is impacting your website's progress, see this post: 5 Things To Do Before You Start Article Marketing)

I've told you before about how you can use Google to see how many sites are linking to your website, but I've found that the Yahoo Site Explorer actually provides more information.

Let me walk you through how to use Yahoo Site Explorer…

1) Go to Yahoo Site Explorer

I think you might need to be logged into a Yahoo account. If you don't have a free Yahoo account, they should give you a link to sign up. If you have a Yahoo email address you have a Yahoo account login that will allow you to use Site Explorer. 

2) When you get into Site Explorer, you'll see that there are 2 areas where you can type in your URL (these are the areas that have "http://" already inserted for you):

Yahoo Site Explorer

3) If you're exploring one of your own sites, go ahead and type your URL under the "My Sites" area, and click Add My Site. 

You will then see the URL for your site pop up under the "My Sites" section. If you have more than one site, go ahead and add all your sites to the "My Sites section.  This is a great way to store your site URLs so that you don't have to type in your URL each time you want to do a stats check. 

4) Next to each site listed, you'll see a button that says "Explore". Click that.

5) Yahoo Site Explorer will give you the following information (and this is from Site Explorer's own Help section):

  • All pages that are indexed by Yahoo!, within your domain, including any subpages. Note: You can explore any individual result page by clicking the Explore URL link next to it.
  • All indexed inlinks to the site.
  • Inlinks to subpages that are indexed by Yahoo!.

When you click "Explore" you'll get a list of all the pages that are under the domain your exploring. Notice that beside each result is a button you can click to explore each page.

You will also see a tab that lists your inlinks (backlinks), and if you click on that tab you can see the list of all the sites that link to your domain. 

You can get even more detailed if you like, by specifying if you'd like to see the results for "all sub-domains" or "only this domain".

For our intents and purposes, the info that is most interesting is the backlinks (or inlinks). 

I keep a stats tracking journal that is updated monthly, and that's where I record the backlinks for each site (as well as PR, and search engine ranking for my keywords).

Please note that backlinks do not show up immediately, but will likely take a few months to register with Google or Yahoo (or any other search engine).

So don't submit an article today, and then check Site Explorer tomorrow (or next week, or next month) expecting to see a jump in backlinks. This is just the way it is with search engines–they don't evaluate incoming links on a daily (or weekly or monthly) basis, so whether you're building your links through article marketing or some other strategy you will need to exercise some patience in seeing the results in your stats tracking. 

Checking out the Competition: Another Great Use for Yahoo! Site Explorer

Another bit of info that I track is the progress of my main competitors for my keyword phrases (I check their PR, search engine ranking, and inlinks also).

If you're doing stats tracking, I would encourage you to do this also as it's very helpful to see your site in relation to other sites.

By analyzing your competitors and their backlinks, you can become aware of additional ways that you could improve your own site.

What are they doing that is successful for them?

Could you incorporate that idea into your own site and marketing plan?

I also find that tracking competitors helps with peace of mind, given that the search engine game can be capricious sometimes. It helps to know that there are others in the same boat with you!

For example, imagine that one month you check your stats and notice a startling downward turn in backlinks. You wonder, "Is it just me? What did I do? Is this a mistake?"

Well, if you've been also tracking your competitors, you may get some relief to see that they too suffered a sudden downturn in backlinks–that lets you know that it's not likely something that you personally have done, but is rather the temporary side effect of something from the search engine itself. 

You can think, "Ahhh, looks like it's affected all of us–let me not jump to any conclusions but just wait and see what happens over the coming months."

And then the following month when you check your stats you see that you've re-gained many of your backlinks, along with your competitors. 

I enjoy playing around with Site Explorer, but you can still get some basic link info from Google by just typing "link://" and of course substituting your website URL for the "" part.

Question for you: Do you have a favorite link checking tool? Please share!

NOTE: Please be aware this content may now be outdated. For the latest quality content on how to build massive publicity for your website, please go to The vWriter Blog - Helping Businesses Grow Traffic, Build Engagement, and "Be Everywhere"

8 Responses to “The Joys of Yahoo Site Explorer: Getting the Low-Down on your Website’s Progress”

  1. Carole says:

    Hey, that’s pretty cool. I’ve been trying to use hte firefox plug-in that never seems to work right for me. This will give me enough information most of the time, and a lot quicker – Love it! Thanks :)

  2. Source Check says:

    I tried this out with some of my sites, it work really well. great tool. Thanks for the super info you keep coming up with.

  3. Brandi says:

    I like the SEO Quake plug in for firefox.It’s free and gives you both Google,Yahoo, and MSN links.Great post btw…

  4. mike says:

    Its very good article, and i am very happy for the information that you provided.

  5. Robert Lopez says:

    This article was very helpful. Thanks, Robert

  6. Chris says:

    To Brandi, just one quickie on the SEO Quake plugin for Firefox – the latest version seems to insert it’s page code into text input forms in WordPress and Joomla without you seeing it! I’m sure it’s an error but I’ve switched mine off until they get it sorted.

  7. Rajesh Kumar says:

    It is pretty cool to see the analytics of competitor site and refine own site accordingly. Thanks for so beautiful piece of information.

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