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How to check your website rankings without Google’s personalization

Written on September 25, 2011 by Posted in SEO Tips

Google does a great job at many things. Sometimes too good and their products can even become cumbersome to users looking for simple solutions to what should be simple issues. There are many times where I want to view search results without personalization. While logging out of your Google account is STEP #1, it isn’t enough to block your history and prevent personalization. Luckily there are quite a few solutions that will help solve this problem:

Three recommendations (in order) to prevent Google Personalization:

1)Simple URL parameter: Make sure you are logged out of your personal profile and the add this parameter at the end of the search URL {&pws=0}. Go to Google.com, type in your search and click “search” as you normally would. For the use of an example I am going to use the term “Digital Marketing Chicago”. The URL after searched will be as follows:

URL after search result
http://www.google.com/#hl=en&sugexp=pfwc&cp=22&gs_id=2d&xhr=t&q=digital+marketing+chicago&pf=p&sclient=psy-ab&source=hp&pbx=1&oq=digital+marketing+chic&aq=0&aqi=g2g-v1g-b1&aql=f&gs_sm=&gs_upl=&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.&fp=578471ced1af2162&biw=1920&bih=1003
Now add this to the end of the URL so it looks like this:
http://www.google.com/#hl=en&sugexp=pfwc&cp=22&gs_id=2d&xhr=t&q=digital+marketing+chicago&pf=p&sclient=psy-ab&source=hp&pbx=1&oq=digital+marketing+chic&aq=0&aqi=g2g-v1g-b1&aql=f&gs_sm=&gs_upl=&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.&fp=578471ced1af2162&biw=1920&bih=1003&pws=0

Assuming you have visited Launchdigitalmarketing.com in the past your results would have been biased toward your previous search.  After adding that URL parameter the result will no longer be personalized.

2)Go Incognito. No, dont change your name or sign in as someone else. If you are a Chrome user you can simply go incognito.   You can click here more more information but essentially it’s a unique feature of Chrome that can be turned on by either clicking the wrench icon in the browser window and then selecting new incognito window OR just holding the Control Key + Shift +”N” (Windows) Command + Shift +”N” (Mac).
Chrome Incognito

 

3)Use a tool. There are some awesome tools out there that do a lot more than just block Google Personalization.  My favorite is on the SEOMOZ tool bar which you can get for FREE by clicking here. SEOMOZ has great videos that detail everything the bar can do but to disable personalized results you just have to log out of your Google Account (I have found issues using this while logged in) and search Google as you normally would. However, after searching you would click inside the following box to the selection “Google US non-personalized” It’s really that simple.

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