Can I Rank is an online marketing tool based on a simple concept- data driven recommendations from opportunity to execution. This is a unique feature among such tools, and specifically provides insight into whether or not the desired outcomes are feasible (hence the name). This tool can help you, the marketer, set better expectations before kicking off any work with a new client. Once under the hood, Can I Rank provides tools for both measurement and opportunity identification in three key areas: Content, SEO, and Social.
Disclaimer: Although I was given free access to this tool, writing this review was not a condition for access.
Grow Content (aka Keyword Research & Content Ideas)
Based on the keywords tracked, a section of Can I Rank called Keyword Ideas is the heart of the tool. The platform will suggest a list of keywords with all the necessary data to evaluate them, for you to ask Can I Rank? for any keyword with any page. This is the one thing most SEO tools, and even SEO providers skip over; an initial evaluation of ranking possibilities.
Most think that any keyword can be ranked with any website, but with that mentality there will little to show for the bottom line, but plenty of hours billed. Start with this insight so you can focus your efforts on more meaningful outcomes, even if it means a long-tail strategy. New keyword opportunities are included in email alerts as well, giving you insights and ideas without even logging in.
Improve Rankings (aka Content Optimization)
This section is a rank tracking tool, with the added benefit of keywords to manually enter and those which the platform has identified for you. Identification of current rankers is one of the reasons I first fell in love with SEMrush, and it is present here as well. Rank changes are clearly indicated in tables, paired with dates and search volume.
To improve the visibility of a page for a given keyword, just enter them and click Can I Rank. A report is generated in a few minutes which details not only what you can do to optimize the page but also what competitors are up to. Most are centered around best practices, but it also layers in the use of synonyms which I like. Since SEO is no longer about exact keyword targeting, using the similar terms suggested can help achieve natural content optimization in a way that is actually readable by people and relevant to search engines. This section is extremely detailed and provides very granular data.
Promote My Content (aka Link Building)
The link opportunities tool is possibly the best thing about Can I Rank, as it uses machine learning to take the hard work out of domain comparisons and link prospecting. This function takes the competitive domains you entered upon account setup or in the spur of the moment, and looks for sites who link to your competitors similar content. That is just one mode- competitive pages and competitive domains. It can also be more focused to specific types of pages, like Q&A, forums, resource pages, and directories. With each link opportunity, 3 scores are provided: Relevance (how related the page is to yours), Authority (PageRank, mozRank, etc) and actionability (roughly how easy it would be to get a link placement).
Build My Authority (aka Domain Level Optimization)
This section is small and contains a handful of best practices which take the form of a checklist. Simply mark them as complete or track their progress. As items are marked as complete, the platform will reassess new opportunities and add them to the list.
Grow My Followers (aka Social Media Engagement)
Similarly to the previous section, the Social section contains a series of tasks to be done with your social profiles. Likewise, as you complete tasks the platform looks for other opportunities and refreshes these opportunities over time.
One thing that sets this tool apart are the comprehensive and downright useful email alerts. Whereas most rank tracking tools will provide data about keywords you’re already tracking, this platform also includes keyword ideas. These are searches for which you already rank well and should think about tracking, or those within striking distance which are worth improving upon. Although this is possible with a variety of tools, the level of effort to do it here is literally opening an email. These emails not only contain fresh keyword ideas but also recommendations for optimizations on those keyword ideas, as well as overall SEO recommendations.
Best of all, these notices are not the same with every email. I can’t tell you how many enterprise level tools give you the same recommendations over and over again, which isn’t a great experience. Can I Rank does a great job of suggesting new keywords to research, topics to analyze, and resources to check out with each communication.
There is also a really nice knowledge base inside the tool itself to help you learn more about SEO. For example, one topic is “Understand What Makes A Good Link” and contains a nice description of why they’re important but also a few steps to complete. This is really handy for beginners who just don’t know where to start. These resources also come in the form of a learning module, so you can check off topics as you go along.
Can I Rank is a unique new SEO tool with a great UI and plenty of satisfying data. The price packages seem reasonable, but the biggest breath of fresh air comes in the form of actionable insights. From knowing exactly what is possible, to the level of difficulty in getting there, all the way to putting your plan into action, Can I Rank can be a useful tool for marketers, no matter the level of expertise.