With search engines constantly updating how they work, it can be challenging to keep up with the developments and ensure your website is well-optimized. However, staying on top of these changes is the only sure way to improve your website performance and rank higher on the search engine page results (SERPs). So, if you’re wondering how to jump on the SEO bandwagon, there are several tools and technologies that can help you work smarter. In this review, we will walk you through Nightwatch- one of the best tools for SEO analytics and performance tracking out there.
What is Nightwatch?
Nightwatch is an advanced SEO tool for rank tracking, backlink monitoring, analytics, and reporting. It has a slick and stylish dashboard with tons of information presented in a visually appealing interface. Its innovative features and advanced filtering options allow marketers and SEO experts to dig deep into their websites’ search visibility metrics and other performance data. As an all-in-one SEO platform, Nightwatch provides a set of impressive features that help uncover new opportunities and grow your business.
Nightwatch describes itself as a “next-generation rank tracking and analysis tool made for complete control and scaling”. It gives webmasters a better understanding of their SEO performance through data-driven insights. With this tool, you can:
- Accurately track your website rankings
- Perform comprehensive site audits
- Monitor backlinks
- Track your website’s organic growth
- Integrate data with Google Search Console, Google Analytics, Google Ads, and Data Studio.
- Generate custom reports, and so much more!
How to get started with Nightwatch
Getting started with Nightwatch is pretty easy and straightforward, even if you’re new to the platform. You only need to visit their website and sign up for a free 10-day trial. The trial version gives you access to the basic features, but if you’d like to unlock more functionality, consider a paid subscription plan. After signing into your account, Nightwatch prompts you to complete the initial set-up process. Just like most SEO tools, this is where you enter your website URL, add keywords you’d like to track and three competitors to monitor.
The Nightwatch Dashboard
Your Nightwatch experience begins right at the dashboard, where you notice one of the coolest things about this tool- the ability to display information in a simple, organized way.
Nightwatch provides multiple dashboards where you can track different metrics and stay on top of your website’s SEO. Here are the types of dashboards (and the data) you will see upon clicking on the website you added.
- SEO Stats dashboard
Displays domain metrics from Moz, Ahrefs and Majestic on a single dashboard: page authority, domain authority, URL Rating, domain rating, citation flow, and trust flow.
- Keywords visibility dashboard
Shows average position, keyword distribution, keywords up/down, and search visibility. Under search, visibility is indexed pages, visibility index, and click potential.
- Website Traffic dashboard
Displays total sessions, acquisition, new/returning, and audience. Under audience are page views, users, and bounces.
- Backlinks dashboard
Shows active backlinks, backlink diversity, backlink quality, and new/lost backlinks.
- Site audit dashboard
Displays site health, SSL status, page-depth, crawlability, and pages. Under pages, you will find total pages, problematic pages, and warning pages.
The SEO Stats dashboard alone is well worth the money as it provides domain metrics from all the major competing SEO tools
The next section explores how Nightwatch can help you understand your website data, grow your business, and ultimately outsmart the competition.
Features of Nightwatch
Nightwatch has four main features that make it a valuable addition to any marketer’s or SEO’s toolbox. These are the rank tracker, backlink monitoring, reporting, and site audit features. Let’s take a closer look at each of the four tools.
One powerful Nightwatch feature is its ability to track rankings for any location. The localized reports give you a clear picture of where you rank on the local SERPs, making Nightwatch an essential tool for local SEO. Additionally, you can check your main competitors and how they perform for similar keywords. Another feature that helps boost your rankings is keyword discovery. Through this feature, Nightwatch suggests relevant keywords that you should target to improve your ranking. What’s more? You can segment these keywords based on their characteristics and analyze them separately. As you can see, Nightwatch provides a wealth of innovative methods to quickly identify problems on your on-page SEO strategy and opportunities for growth.
High-quality backlinks are important as they not only bring in more traffic to your website but also increase your credibility, thus improving your ranking. However, they can be harmful to your website, especially if they come from low-quality sources. This is where backlink monitoring comes in- a process that can be quite tedious, especially when done manually or without the right tool. Nightwatch’s backlink monitoring feature shows you the total number of backlinks on your website, how diverse they are, and the backlink quality. This helps you identify suspicious and harmful backlinks, so you can focus on improving your link-building strategy. Additionally, it offers regular notifications on newly-discovered backlinks.
Arguably the tool’s most impressive feature, Nightwatch reporting helps keep users informed as they wish. You can create custom reports right from the dashboard and configure which elements you’d like included through easy-to-use drop-down menus. As you set up or modify reports, Nightwatch provides a real-time view of how the final report will look like. It also allows you to export the report in CSV, PDF, or HTML formats. Even better, you can have the reports automatically sent to your email or that of your client.
Another super-awesome functionality you’ll love about Nightwatch reporting is the ability to create graphs and attach them to reports. Using the graphs feature, you can visualize different data about your website as well as your competitors. This makes it easier to identify underlying data patterns and changes. For instance, you can create a graph showing your average position, clicks, session, impressions, and many more metrics. Simply put- Nightwatch allows you to filter through multiple data points to generate a custom graph as you like.
Here is a sample graph that shows SEOMofo’s rank position for the keyword “snippet optimizer” against three competitors.
The site audit feature crawls your website regularly and provides an in-depth analysis of issues that affect your website and SEO performance. This helps you identify your website’s health and make specific improvements to your web pages. For example, you can identify pages with broken links, broken images, missing tags, missing meta-descriptions, and so much more. You can also find slow-loading pages, pages with duplicate content, or any other problems that hinder your SEO progress.
Nightwatch allows you to crawl your website at any time to ensure you are pulling fresh data. To use the site audit feature, click on “Site audit” on the left side of your dashboard, provide the necessary details, and hit “Start Crawling”. Once done, you will be redirected to the Site Audit dashboard. As the norm with this tool, you can filter the site audit conditions to a specific criterion at the bottom of the page. Here is a snapshot showing Nightwatch site audit dashboard for SEOmofo.com
Nightwatch Pricing structure
Nightwatch offers a free 10-day trial, which allows you to try out the tool before signing up for a subscription. For paid versions, there are three pricing models, namely personal, business, and agency plans. Worth a mention is that you can save up to 20 percent on the three subscription plans by choosing the annual billing option, as opposed to monthly plans.
The personal plan is suitable for individual freelance marketers. It’s pricing starts at $19.00 per month, and goes up as the keywords tracked, backlinks monitored, and websites increase.
The business and agency plans, designed for enterprises with bigger needs, come with additional features and custom solutions. These include unlimited reports, unlimited users, API access, white-label, and data integrations. The business plan starts pricing starts at $99 per month for the Pro-1000 option and $199 for the Pro-2500 option.
The most comprehensive Nightwatch plan, perfectly designed for large agencies, requires a monthly subscription fee of $369 for the Pro 5000 plan and $699 for the Pro 10000 option.
Nightwatch is a powerful addition to your marketing arsenal. However, it faces competition from other popular SEO tools such as SEMrush, Ahrefs, Bright Edge, Raven Tools, Bright Local, and Rank Watch.
The Pros and Cons
|A highly efficient tool for keyword optimization and analytics.|
It has a very intriguing interface with loads of relevant information.
Ability to create custom graphs and reports based on the user’s needs.
Has a 10-day trial period for new usersIt comes with multiple pricing plans, suitable for all needs.
It offers various learning materials including informative welcome emails and instructional videos.
Great user support
|The trial version does not allow backlink monitoring|
The interface is very comprehensive, which requires time to learn and understand.
The ability to analyze large chunks of data and draw factual conclusions is imperative for you to succeed in digital marketing. Additionally, every step of your SEO journey requires a tool to gauge the success of your efforts. It is clear that Nightwatch fits the bill- from conducting a website audit and tracking keywords to monitoring backlinks and researching competitors. Adding these to the automated reporting and advanced visualization capabilities, Nightwatch makes the life of every SEO super-easy.
Although it is not immediately clear how to hook up with some features on the Nightwatch dashboard, the customer support team is always responsive to resolve issues upon contact. That being said, Nightwatch is one of the most robust keyword tracking and backlink monitoring tools in the industry.
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Very informative! Covered the main features as well as highlighting what makes it stand out! A+