Update May 2012: Competition data is back, I am happy again and re-joined KST, you can read the full story here: Why I re-joined Keyword Strategy.
Coming back from a nice dinner in town with my husband, I noticed the following email from Fraser, from Keyword Strategy, in my inbox (filler words removed and ‘bolding‘ by me):
“… we’ve decided to retire our Auto-Update browser extension. This is the extension that gathers ranking and competition data from your browser and uploads them into your Keyword Strategy account. This method has been a technical support nightmare for us, trying to maintain it on multiple browser platforms; furthermore, it’s not a sustainable method for determining competition because it’s not compliant with Google’s Terms of Service.“
That I completely understand, in fact I have questioning this practice previously on the KST forums. This will affect how I can track rankings on content that I have on third party websites like Wizzley – but I do understand this decision and, to a certain degree, applaud it, as it could get newbies, that are not aware of the risks involved, out of trouble. What I don’t understand is the following:
“However, this change means we’ll be retiring the Competition and KEI columns of the tool. You’ll still be able to access your data for the next 30 days, and then we’ll be removing those columns from the database because they’ll be out of date. If you need them for your marketing purposes, you should export them from your project.”
Which renders KST basically useless! If that becomes true, the tool will be nothing else than a highly overpriced internal linking plugin!
“If you no longer wish to be a Keyword Strategy customer, we totally understand. Please click the refund button within your Account tab and we’ll be happy close your account and refund your past month.”
Yes, I will! Plan for tomorrow is to download all my keywords and cancel my subscription. Plan for next day is to write a blog post how to make a, bit time consuming, work around for this with the help of Market Samurai and a free internal linking plugin.
“We apologize for any inconvenience.”
Seriously Fraser, if this tool has become too expensive for you to maintain, you should have increased the price! Stripping its functionality down to a point that can be reached with free plugins and basically any keyword tool is just committing suicide in the internet marketing world. I was always a big supporter of the tool and of the concept behind it. Whilst it is your tool and you can do whatever you want with it you just have betrayed a lot of trust people put into you.
- If the real reason for this was that the tool was too expensive to run – you should say so!
- If you are tired of internet marketers and want to concentrate on your own sites – you should say so!
- If you want to spend more time with your family, instead of helping unknown-to-you people to make a living online – you should say so!
Stripping down the tool to a functionality that can be achieved by any paid keyword research tool plus a free internal linking tool and hoping that some of us stay subscribed to it is just – online suicide!
I never thought I would say that, I always thought of you as one of the good guys out there – not anymore. If you don’t want to do this anymore, your choice, but don’t pretend it is of benefit to anybody of us.
Now, is there a programmer out there that will take on that task? I have a few great ideas on how to make this tool even better and more user friendly 😉 I am not a programmer myself, but any takers and I do my utmost to help you to get this of the ground …
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