What you see in Google may be different to what others see in Google. Did you know that there is a good chance that your results are personalised to your browsing history. If you continually check out one of your competitors websites then that site will most likely show up higher in your results? Fear not as this won’t be the case for others as they probably haven’t spent the last month checking out the same site 100 times. Yesterday I had one of my clients ringing me up in a panic declaring his competitor has jumped 20 spots to take the number 1 spot in Google. Clearing your cache and logging out of your Google account doesn’t always stop those biased rankings.
What is the solution? Check your Google rankings through an anonymous proxy server as you can be rest assured that the rankings that it displays are 100% unbiased and will show you the same results as everyone else is seeing. Funnily enough it can also work the other way round in that if you keep checking your own websites out it will look like they are ranking higher than what they really are (on your computer only). Do yourself a favour, always check your rankings in an anonymous proxy server before you ring your SEO consultant up and start complaining.