- This is a great program for reporting to clients. There is easy integration for Adwords, Analytics, and Search Console.
- The keyword tracker feature allows us to monitor keyword rankings.
- The website audit tool helps us identify site issues in order to resolve them. We typically run this feature once a month for all of our clients.
- The analytics in the tool and the Google Analytics dashboard have been known to be out of sync, but this doesn't happen very often.
- The reports occasionally have glitches, such as overlap of different modules.
- The keyword tracking tool does not provide easy tracking of rankings over time.
Previous to using RavenTools, our company did not have the ability to track digital media statistics. There was also no reporting system to share progress with various team members. The marketing department was struggling to get detailed insights. RavenTools has solved all of these problems.
- Customer Service: Anytime I have had an issue or question regarding a RavenTools feature, their customer service team has been very responsive. You [may] expect a response within 24 hours. I do not recall a time I have had to wait more that 2 hours for assistance.
- Data Organization: One thing I truly appreciate about RavenTools is they present their data in a similar fashion to the original data platform. For example, RavenTools Google Analytics Data is organized in the same way you would find it on the Google Analytics website. The makes it extremely easy to find what you are looking for and allows easy use across multiple platforms.
- Easy Setup: Getting started in RavenTools is very simple. All you have to do is link up the accounts for your various brands. No extra coding is needed. The data will auto populate for you.
- Automation: Another great feature is the ability to set up automated reporting. Not only is it useful for those who need to receive the data, but it also serves as an action item for me. I can create a report template for each brand and set it up so I get an email whenever the scheduled report is ready. This reminds me to go in and check on any updates.
- Downtime: There have been instances when I have needed time-sensitive reports and have discovered parts of the system are down. If you are using this software with multiple clients on a daily basis, you may run into some issues. I have experienced everything from reports failing to be updated in real time to not being able to reach the website.
- Limited Platform Integration: While RavenTools does offer a decent amount of data, they seem to be slow to add some platforms. For example, you can't connect your Instagram account and on their website they explicitly say "No plans to develop an integration anytime soon." - which is very unfortunate.
- Dashboard Organization: I guess this could be considered Personal Perfernce, but I think some tools could be better organized on the dashboard. After using RavenTools for 3 years, I still have to search around for certain tools. Let's say I want to do some keyword tracking. I can go to the "Campaign" tab and insert multiple keywords. A week later I want to research those same keywords. If I go under the "Research" tab, none of my keywords are there. I have to go back to the "Campaign" tab, click research, and then I am redirected to the "Research" tab where the information populates. You would think that the information would automatically remain under the "Research" tab, but nope. I would have to go through the "Campaign" tab and repeat the process again just to revisit the keyword information.
- Communication: I feel the communication to users has decreased over time. I appreciate a platform that makes changes to improve the user experience, but I don't feel I am informed of updates. I will go into the dashboard and notice that something has changed or moved unexpectedly. Now I have to go to Google and dig around to find what changed and how to use the new setup. I wish they would go back to creating updated video tutorials.
- Organizes contact details, outreach, and log in information for websites.
- Reports: Audits, analytics, performance.
- Easy Integration via browser extensions and API key.
- The chrome extension is very glitchy, please fix.
- I would like to be able to compare one client's links to another's and be given a list of sites that ones has a link from but not the other.
- The reporting module allows us to easily customize reports. We can add or remove modules depending on whether the reports are going to be internal or external.
- Raven allows us to aggregate all of our Analytics, AdWords and social accounts so that we can present a complete Integrated Marketing Report.
- Raven makes it easy to edit the variables in the reports such as comparisons between time periods, number of items presented in a table, and sort order.
- Raven is not a 1-1 match to the modules in Google Analytics. There are still reports that we get from GA and combine with our RavenTools report.
- Raven does not retroactively pick up some social data. If you forget to set social tracking up on day one, you're in trouble.
These reports are most useful to presenting data to non-analysts. A hard-cord analytics person might want to dig deeper into the data. RavenTools is best at providing a high-level overview of the information. With that said, I think Raven is an excellent reporting solution.
- Cross-competitor research
- Rank tracking
- Keyword research
- Overall learning curve could be improved
- I wouldn't mind seeing webinars or videos on tricks to get to most of the product
- Managing keywords was a little goofy with a long list
- SEO keyword rank tracking
- White label reporting capabilities
- Aggregating report data from multiple platforms (AdWords, Bing, SEO, etc.)
- More detailed reporting from AdWords
- Additional customization options for reports
- Smarter SEO site auditing - it can review things using rigid criteria, but doesn't offer the kind of nuanced analysis that a trained SEO analyst can deliver.
- Site audit
- Keyword research
- Social media monitoring
- There is no initial workflow. In order words, in setting up a new site, there is no checklist, really, of what all configurations and settings are needed. We would greatly appreciate having a set-up wizard to take us through the entire set-up process. We're continually finding new, cool areas that we have missed configuring.
- The online help is, in some places, dated and needs to be updated.
- RavenTools has teamed up with SEO services like Moz and Magestic SEO to provide detailed data about the SEO health of your own websites as well as how they compare to your competitors' websites. I can directly compare number of backlinks, page speed, domain authority, integration of Google Analytics, presence of robots.txt files, on-site social media engagement, and home page load time. This a great way to get an idea of how your site stacks up against others and what can be done to improve it.
- RavenTools' automated reports are mostly great (I'll cover the negatives later). You can create reports with as much data as you would like and schedule them to arrive as often as you would like. I have SEO, social media, and site performance reports delivered to my team and me every Monday covering the last 10 days, and a broader quarterly report arrives in the inboxes of a few executives once a quarter.
- RavenTools' graphs are often easier to read and decipher than graphs found in Google Analytics. Part of the reason is the graph height. Google Analytics graphs are fairly short, so it's difficult to see smaller variations in the data. Those variations are more pronounced within RavenTools using the data.
- I've stopped using the automated reports. They still arrive in my inbox every Monday morning, but they're not providing the data I need. One, the great looking graphs that you see online are replaced with really bland graphics that often have scale issues (e.g., the vertical axis on the bounce rate graph goes up to 400% making it impossible to see any kind of variation). Two, you can't drill down the data you want reported. It won't report specific data like conversion rates for mobile and tablet users vs. desktop users. It only reports generic metrics which are rarely actionable and usually don't mean a thing. Three, there are often formatting issues within the report (not a huge issue, but it does look bad when I'm sending it to executives). Four, it's really difficult to make sweeping changes to different reports. If you decide there's a specific stat you want to include in the reports you've already created (not too specific, mind you, because that's not possible), it takes a long time and a lot of effort to make the changes.
- The analytics portion of RavenTools leaves much to be desired. It's basically a reformatting of what you can find in Google Analytics, but without all of the flexibility. I would much rather see my web stats in GA where I can drill down the data and make better comparisons across acquisition, behavior, and conversions. RavenTools recently redesigned the analytics portion of its website to present the numerical data found underneath the line graph on top in a different way, but it mostly just turned it into a sea of red and green boxes that is difficult to read.
- The SEO portion of RavenTools isn't very user friendly and doesn't adequately explain what certain metrics are and how they're calculated. For instance, under Campaign->Site Performance, it shows SEO metrics for your site compared to competitors' sites. Two of the metrics provided by Magestic SEO (Trust Flow and Citation Flow) have the exact same definition and are apparently calculated "by the number citations (sic) to a given URL, (sic) or domain." That tells me nothing. Also, there's no explanation for why Majestic SEO and Moz calculate backlinks so differently. When there's a difference of nearly 100% in those statistics, it make you wonder how accurate they are and what they're actually measuring.
- There are content errors found throughout the RavenTools website. This doesn't necessarily affect the functionality (except when those errors prevent you from understanding what a certain metric is and how it's calculated), but it does reflect on the quality of the service in general. I tend to distrust websites that are full of textual errors, and it tells me that they don't put a lot of effort into the user experience (especially since some of the most glaringly obvious errors haven't been fixed in more than a year).
- Bing and Google Webmaster Tools data
- Performance data on social media posts
- Keyword rankings on Bing and Google
- AdWords campaign performance
- Google Anayltics data
- Quick analysis of on-site optimization for potential and current clients
- Easily combining the previously mentioned data into white-labeled reports for our clients that we can kick out manually or schedule to be automatically produced.
- You can very easily take data from your social media campaigns, SEO and SEM campaigns, page optimization, website traffic, etc and combine it all into very neat custom reports.
- Quick analysis of a website's on-site optimization that can not only help you prepare an SEO campaign or offer insights into why a current campaign isn't working, but also help your sales force close the deal with clients when they see the errors on their current website.
- You can provide a great deal of transparency with your clients without much overhead on your end by setting them up with access or automatically kicking out PDF reports to them.
- The data it gets from Webmaster Tools and Analytics is great and reporting on it is easy - however, when you're looking at the charts for keyword placement on screen the graphic can be hard to read and often I find myself just checking GWT and BWT separately for easier information if no report needs to be generated.
- RavenTools comes with an iPhone app so you can check on your campaigns and clients when you're not at your desk, however, the app crashes quite a bit when you get to the Google Analytics portion of the screen.
When researching for keywords, you want to make sure that the process in researching that you have created for yourself is time management friendly, effective, and a solid base to branch off of as you grow your SEO campaign. Creating content for numerous clients can be hectic, but with Raven Tools, it's a built in module that saves you from finding another software solution that will provide you quality content to use across your SEO and Social Media campaigns. As you can see, there are multiple departments within our company that use Raven Tools on a daily basis. The major thing I see Raven Tools addressing is cutting down on micro-tasking, which, if you're unfamiliar with the term, it's the small day to day tasks that can take up a large portion of your day, and add-up over the course of time to a lot of lost hours and days.
- I believe RavenTools has a solid grasp on reporting to clients. With a wizard, templates and step by step help instructions for those who are new, this feature is a must use.
- You can search a keyword to find out how competitive it is, as well as how easy or difficult it would be to rank for based on data you provide.
- Social Media keyword monitoring is a great tool to use. Since social media websites are one of the most popular places to find your targeted audience, it's crucial you use a tool like this to do it correctly.
- Though I'm not a big fan on the direction to paid advertisement participation, I cannot discredit RavenTools for my personal preferences. Their PPC module allows you to connect to your Adwords account and utilize the data with the insights and metrics which is great data to have if you find yourself going this route.
- The one thing I think RavenTools can improve on is implementing Reputation Management functionality into it's application. Since Reputation Management is a crucial aspect companies are looking to have focused on and taken care of effectively, I believe that they can utilize their existing tools to get a great head start with this functionality. In my humble opinion they've had a great product over the course of seven years, and still do, however, keeping up with the marketing trends such as Reputation Management is a key factor in the longevity of their users.
- Keyword research - all SEO's know how important this is. RavenTools provides a solid platform for in depth keyword research.
- Backlink profile monitoring - The fact that it even has tools for this in addition to everything else is fantastic. Not only does it find up to I think 50,000 backlinks in the basic package, it does it relatively quickly and has options to export the data etc.
- Plugins - It has plugins for analytics and social media which is huge. And they WORK! Other services I've tried had these options but they didn't work well at all, to the point they were useless *conductor searchlight* *cough*
- Customer Service - At one point I knew names of customer service folks. They're friendly and very helpful. They also hold live webinars for new users that are actually very insightful and the ladies who ran them didn't put me to sleep. Good on them.
- From what I saw, the reporting could be more customizable. It was pretty darn good, but if we're talking improvements, that's one area I noticed things could be better.
- The UI was great, but it could use some tightening up. This is just if I'm being picky. It's fine as is but moving forward it'd be cool to see it evolve.
- Improve the search buy
- Was able to integrate data from other sources seamlessly
- Great visuals to provide quick and accurate insights
- Easy to build dashboards
- Being able to click a button to print out report. Sometimes the data didn't match exactly what we saw in other reports, so we couldn't rely so much on the day parting optimizations. This may be fixed now.
- Reporting - it was nice to be able to aggregate information from the various SEO and online marketing opportunities into one report. Not only that, but having the flexibility to add in information, minimal HTML, etc allowed us to expand on the reports with suggestions, additional information and ideas.
- Link building opportunities - being able to research competitors in the market and find a variety of opportunities to build solid, advantageous links was invaluable.
- Social monitoring allowed us to keep an eye on reputations and manage accordingly, without having to go out and chase down posts on the numerous social channels making it quick, easy and efficient.
- Regarding pulling in information from PPC - being limited to Google created an issue when it came to reporting as we also ran campaigns through Adcenter. Being exclusive to Google information is a little shortsighted.
- Not being able to pull more detailed and specific reports from Google Analytics was limiting as well. Only getting the dashboard and being able to segment by Paid vs non-paid was limiting when trying to drill down.
- The HTML functionality was a little clunky and could be very frustrating for those who aren't really skilled with it but need the functionality. Making a more user-friendly WYSIWYG would go a long way as not all online marketers are programmers.
RavenTools was instrumental in setting up reporting that allowed us to focus our time and attention on other aspects such as strategy and implementation.
- Rank Tracking
- Automated Reporting
- Competitive Analysis
- Plan limitations - number of keywords and domains that you can track on the basic plan isn't the best.
- Cost - slightly high for what you get.
- Speed - always felt it was painfully slow running reports and jumping around within my RavenTools dashboard.
RavenTools works great if you are solely interested in your search presence. As mentioned, I loved the reporting, and would say that RavenTools reporting is definitely ahead of Moz right now. I've had a few issues with Moz custom reports over the past few weeks and have had to contact support a couple times.
- RavenTools was a very effective tool in determining the performance of our tracked sites and their target keywords. I particularly liked the feature that allowed us to see the historical SERP performance of our sites and the custom reports they provided.
- We utilized RavenTools to track the status of our link building efforts. The interface allowed many customizable fields to best help us track each of our separate links and allowed us to add additional information such as dates, status, link types, and important contact information.
- Customizable reports generated from RavenTools were very useful for the small agency where I utilized the tools. Given our small staff, having an automatically generated report saved us countless hours in time that were better used in optimizing our SEO efforts.
- While RavenTools was a very effective tool, some features were not fully recognizable and many first time users will miss many important tools or will find that the learning curve can be steep.
- I've found that some other SEO campaign tracking tools have their data refreshed more often than RavenTools does.
- The interface is simple and user-friendly.
- The reports are intuitive and easy to create.
- Summary screens make quick-views each morning a breeze.
- The reports are very amateurish. The graphs are too big and the size can't be changed. Even with the customization they offer (adding your logo) the reports are too basic looking to present to clients. They are also all in black and white, which is a huge issue for us. They're just not impressive enough to show clients.
- The keyword ranking system is difficult to understand because they use a different method than some other search ranking monitoring services that are on the market. They aren't very good at explaining the discrepancies between their software and their competitors'.
- Customizing the reports is too time consuming.
For big businesses with active social presence on several platforms or those who need to provide impressive reporting, this software would not be the best fit.
- Reporting of keyword activity on our various sites
- Helping plan new SEO strategies based on existing trends
- Evaluating competitors' sites when planning SEO for new pages
- It was difficult when the tool stopped providing keywords used for organic Google searches a few years ago.
- When the product we repositioned as a digital marketing platform vs. an SEO platform, use of it as a standalone SEO package became more difficult
- Many elements of the program overlap with other reporting and tools we already have from other vendors, and need to be supplemented with additional details before our reports are ready to share internally.
- Actionable Reporting - the data that was generated such that clients could pick up and understand the information presented to them.
- SERP Tracking - compared to MOZtools, Raven's SERP tracking is a bit more difficult to handle. Having easy to use actionable dashboard charts are something that was sorely needed.
- SEO Management - it may not be the bread and butter of the suite, but I feel like Moz does this better. It was why I switched over to Moz.
- Helps organize the keywords that you want to keep track of
- The research tool helps save time and helps with decision making
- The Social Media section is easy to use and the reporting is great
- Generally, I love this tool, however I would add a section for Google Plus.
- RavenTools helps us organize links that we are building and pursuing for our clients.
- Not only can we easily organize and segment links, but we can use RavenTools to communicate effectively with team members.
- The site auditors are easy, simple to understand and explain, and provide valuable data from multiple sources.
- The Raven Toolbar needs serious improvement. Ever since they launched the new RavenTools in the fall of 2013, the Google Chrome extension toolbar has been glitchy, difficult to use, and frustrating.
- The tracking software can be glitchy and will sometimes record links as active/inactive incorrectly. This isn't always true, but it has happened a few times.
- Key word rank tracking
- Competitive web site analysis
- Site performance data
- Google analytics integration
- While the key word ranking tools are second to none, I'd still like to see a platform lead the market, providing business performance data from organic search rank, and not just position
- Key word rank by location is missing and search results, today, being personalized. makes location very relevant to every business
- Reporting—this was by far the thing that RavenTools did best, in my estimation. The reports the tool created looked sharp and authoritative, and were very modular and customizable. This is no small thing when you work in an agency and need to provide reporting to clients.
- Link tracking—this was sort of like a proto-Buzzstream, a CRM-esque tool that enabled users to identify link prospects, links acquired, and the like. A nice feature (pretty ubiquitous now, but still valuable) was tracking those links, so if they went away you could act on that.
- Keyword research—RavenTools mashed up a few different sources of data—Keyword Planner (then the Keyword Tool), Wordtracker, and SEMRush—which provided a nice multifaceted range of data on keyword targets. This is valuable because none of these tools are individually entirely trustworthy, so it's good to get several options.
- Social media monitoring—for our clients that needed this, this was a great tool. It was basically link tracking for Facebook, Twitter, and Google Alerts, but it pulled in the contextual post around the mention and you could assign sentiment to it.
- Depth of toolset—This might have changed in the interim but the level of analysis the tools provided was very input/output—you input data in the tool, you get a report of the data you input. Monitoring was a nice layer, but you can't go wild with filters and entering a data wormhole like you can with seoClarity or BrightEdge.
- "Useful" integrations—Raven was very much a tool built around reporting. When I say "useful," I don't mean to imply that the integrations were worthless—they just weren't things you could USE very well. They were more there to easily input into a report. The exception to this was the keyword research toolset.
- Use as an enterprise tool—Agency life and in-house life are two very different things. This tool definitely satisfies the needs of the former more than the latter, especially for smaller agencies who are less integrated with their clients.
RavenTools Scorecard Summary
Feature Scorecard Summary
Raven Tools from the Tennessee company of the same name is Internet or search engine marketing optimization software consisting of popular tools targeted at SEO specialists who need research automation. To that end it contains the familiar set of website research and auditing, competitor monitoring, rank tracking, and also content investigation to see that material on the site is keyword-rich yet topically relevant. Social media and backlink checking tools facilitate outreach and drive traffic by way of getting cited by others. Like other more comprehensive solutions, Raven Tools also helps marketers manage PPC campaigns with analytics and reporting.
The Raven Pro edition allows 4 users access to Ravel Tools for $99 per month, while Raven Agency provides a group of unlimited size shared access for $249 per month. Both editions support unlimited campaigning and access to Raven Tools' foundational data sources, as well as white label reporting, but Agency triples Link Manager storage from 50k to 150k links.
RavenTools Technical Details