29 January 2012 Eugene Ware “Head Samurai” officially announced via the corporate blog that Market Samurai software functionality was seriously limited.
Several days ago, Google made some significant technical changes to its services that make it impossible to reliably perform large volumes of free queries.
To tell the truth, the post shades no light on any details and looks more like Raven Tools promo: Eugene Ware recommends it as a Market Samurai alternative (read the full text). More to this, he doesn’t elaborate on the treacherous ‘significant tech changes’ in Google. By the way, no other rank tracking software developers are reporting any issues.
We decided to check what functions became impaired and how it may affect current Market Samurai users. We downloaded and installed a fresh build of Market Samurai. It now welcomes you with a new splash screen:
First thing we surely clicked Rank Tracker tab. It welcomed us with another warning:
Wait, checking only 10 keywords per run?? Are they kidding? Sure, there might be the guys around with up to ten keywords per project but they all are on the endangered-species list. We picked up twenty keywords (the minimal reasonable amount) and ran the rank check… Bing and Yahoo passed well, Google stalled on the seventeenth keyword… It can’t be worse.
What about the second (and the last one) core function of Market Samurai – keyword research? – Another epic fail! Keyword suggestions tool is screwed up and returns this error (thank God and Majestic ,the keyword analysis tool is still working).
How are the users supposed to “find and target profitable niches”?? – Hell knows… wait wait… Eugene Ware blessed his ‘samurais’ to try Raven Tools. That’s another entertaining point.
Up to now Market Samurai was sold on a fixed cost basis. It is one of the cornerstones in their sales pitch. Their ‘samurais’ would cut throats on forums in the Holy Wars with the developers, supporters and users of the software for which you’d need to buy a subscription or sort of a live plan. According to some samurai code of conduct a subscription is a rip-off and unfair business practice.
Now Market Samurai unexpectedly states:
So, we’re left with the difficult decision of having to pass these costs on to our users in some fashion (most likely a monthly paid service).
They are going to fetch ranking data from Raven Tools and sell it on the subscription basis. By the way, Raven Tools in their turn are fetching, at least partially, the ranking data from AuthorityLabs (let’s hope AuthorityLabs are getting the information directly from Google). The supply chain obviously has some redundant elements. This weird business model alone should urge users to switch to other service providers.
Any Market Samurai alternatives over there?
If you are among those few guys with ten keywords per project and have a need to check rankings occasionally – try Rank Ckecker. It’s a free add-on for FireFox from SEOBook. It’s pretty lightweight and fast. You may use it directly from your browser. On the other hand, it can’t bypass captchas, it has no human emulation mode or proxy rotation features. Thus, it stalls after 20-30 consequent queries to the search engines. Also, it can’t store rankings history.
If you are serious about SEO, check out Rank Tracker by Link-Assistan.Com. It’s a fully functional keyword research and rank checking tool with a bunch of options and additional functions. It includes a proxy manager, task scheduler, human emulation features, anti-captcha module. Using this armory a skilled SEO may check rank for hundreds of keywords. Unlike Market Samurai it works smoothly despite any ‘tech changes’ in Google.
Any ideas for Market Samurai alternatives are welcome in comments section.