Some Free Christmas Cheer…

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In 2013, Outrank Competitors & Pick Keywords with Confidence:

Two Powerful New “Authority” Metrics

Have you heard this SEO “story” before? :-)

Two African explorers who realise they’re being stalked by a hungry Lion. The first drops everything and runs for his life while the second scoffs and says, “why bother, that Lion’s faster than you!”. The first laughs as he makes good ground and answers back, “I don’t need to outrun the Lion, I just need to outrun YOU!”

The same is true for SEO. Your job is to overtake those sites holding rankings on the keywords that will drive you revenue.

In my last post, I did a quick recap of the four golden rules of keyword research, the most important of which is “pick the battles you can win”.

Pick your battles carefully and then do the work to “outrun” your competitors. You don’t need to be the biggest, baddest site in the jungle… you only need to be a TINY bit better than your competition.

The bad news, however, is that if you pick a keyword that’s too TOUGH… then you can literally spend months of futile hard-work trying to outrank a competitor, never budging your rankings… when instead you could have ranked on the front-page for dozens of low competition keywords!

One of the great features of your Market Samurai SEO Competition Matrix is you can also directly compare YOUR WEB-PAGE with the current top 10, to see what work you still need to do.

Here’s an example for the keyword “resume advice” where we’ve added a comparison to our target page “”.

If you’re doing ANY work to rank for a keyword, it’s critical to review your SEO competition matrix.

Picking a keyword based on just keyword competition alone (such as Title Competition, for example), is NOT enough… There’s plenty of keywords out there with low Title competition which have fierce front-page competition!

So, make sure you double check to make sure you’re not trying to outrank the 800 Pound Gorillas in your market with high authority, squillions of backlinks and targeted on page optimization!

However, there’s a problem! Understanding Competition & Backlink Analysis Can Still Be Really Confusing. Here’s Why…

While your Market Samurai Competition module gives you a concise, “at a glance” view of your key competition indicators, many of these are far from perfect. For example:

  • Google PageRank (PR) - this is Google’s own measure of web-page “importance” and has long been to many the industry benchmark. It’s a scale from 0 to 10, with a score of 9 to 10 representing extreme authority (think sites like, etc) and scores of 0 – 2 being low authority sites. Whilst we like measures from Google (especially as we optimise for Google), the problems with PageRank (or PR) are numerous:
    • Unwieldy Increments – The scale Google use is “logarithmic”, which means the gap between a PR 5 and 6 is huge (and gets bigger every day). To give quality feedback on your progress in building authority, your need far more granular measures (e.g. decimal scores like 5.2 out of 10)
    • Slow Updates - Internally, Google’s measure of PageRank is updated dynamically any time a new link is added, but the number that Google gives YOU is only updated about every three months. That means you can only get feedback 4 times a year! That sucks. To make it worse, when your competitors (or you) launch a new page, that page will INSTANTLY gain authority from any internal site links, but will show up as a PageRank of ZERO until the next update happens (leaving you to think your competitors are weaker than they really are – a fatal rookie error!).
    • Pending death - This one will probably draw a few comments, but I predict Google’s Page Rank will be pulled very soon. PageRank was initially a publicity tool and has now been removed from display in the Google toolbar. While tools exist that can still access the data (including Market Samurai)… Very few real REGULAR people are using it. Practically the only people who look at PageRank now are us SEOs… What’s the benefit to Google in maintaining it something that’s basically only used by those in the SEO industry? That’s why I don’t think it’s long for this world.
  • Backlink counts - Market Samurai provides a range of backlink counts including the number of links to a site, to a page and the number of different domains linking to a target site or page. These are great measures of the QUANTITY of links but give no indication of QUALITY. In a world where one good link can drive more authority than 1000 poor ones, quantity measures are limited.
  • Specialist Indicators – The competition module shows links from speciality sites like educational sites and high profile directories like the Yahoo & DMOZ directories. These give us a hint as to the presence of “quality” backlinks, but it’s very possible to have an incredibly powerful link profile and not be linked from these sources.

Good News – Now the mystery is gone with two brilliant new measures…

We’re really excited to announce the integration of two BRAND NEW, insightful metrics from our data partners at Majestic SEO.

Update Market Samurai today, and you’ll find these two new data points in the SEO Competition Matrix:

1. New Importance Measure – “Citation Flow” or CF
(Like Google’s Page Rank but built the way SEOs need it.)

Majestic SEO recently released a new metric called “Citation Flow” and it’s ready to go.

Citation Flow is very similar to Page Rank. We were privileged to be part of Majestic’s Beta trials (and indeed gave quite a bit of feedback direct to their developers). As part of this, we did a broad comparison between Citation Flow and Google’s PageRank. The correlation between the two is excellent.

Plus, to help SEOs like you and I, you’ll also get these critical (and long awaited) features:

  1. Precision for Sensible Measurement – Citation Flow is a measure from 0 – 100 (rather than 0 -10), meaning you can track your progress far more accurately.
  2. Regular Updates for Fast Feedback – Majestic update their metrics DAILY (rather than Google’s approximate 90+ day update cycle).
  3. Longevity – as a commercial metric from a long established provider, we can reasonably expect this data source to remain stable. (PageRank won’t be with the SEO community too much longer we predict!)

2. New Authority Measure – “Trust Flow” or TF
(The ‘secret sauce’ in modern search algorithms?)

It turns out the web can be broken up into neighbourhoods – trusted sites generally link to trusted sites and nasty, dodgy and spammy sites tend to link to each other too.

It’s why many SEOs talk about “authority” or “hub” sites… What they really are talking about is the concept of “Trust” or “Authority”…

Our second new measure, “Trust Flow” is built around an analysis of the flow of “Trust” through links from trusted, higher authority sources.

Similar to Citation Flow, it’s a score out of 100 and as you’d expect, reputable sites get high scores and new or dodgy sites get low scores.

SEO commentators have long been talking about the influence of links from trusted sources, and with Majestic Trust Flow, we now have a quality measure of this.

For those SEO Nerds out there – Trust Flow is similar to Yahoo’s famous TrustRank

Anything not to love?

Whilst these new metrics are visible the majority of the time, in a couple of markets I was able to find ranked pages with no Citation Flow or Trust Flow values. These were mainly obscure pages from mega sites like Amazon, Pinterest or YouTube. However in each case, by reviewing the Citation and Trust Flow values that were available, I was still able to get a good gauge of competition.

So, where do these new metrics fit in?

To see Citation Flow and Trust Flow in action, simply open up the SEO competition module for a keyword of interest and generate results.

(And don’t forget, with the “Add Custom URL’s” you can add your own websites for comparison)

Here’s the above example again, but with the new metrics showing (note the new “CF” and “TF” columns).

(Click the image above to see a larger screenshot)

Extra Awesomeness #1 – Citation Flow in Detailed Backlink Report

In addition to integrating Citation Flow into the SEO Competition Matrix, our detailed back link analysis report (which lets you spy on your competitors and see where all their high power links are coming from) is now also powered by the Citation Flow metric.

The back link analysis provides a comprehensive summary of both link authority and anchor text. Here’s a sample:

So, you can FINALLY get an SEO Blueprint of the link-network of your competitors, based on DAILY UPDATED authority data!

Extra Awesomeness #2 – Link Authority Visualization Graphs

In addition to providing Citation Flow and Trust Flow as numbers, Majestic SEO also provide a great visualization graph that plots a sites ENTIRE link profile on a graph with Citation Flow vs Trust Flow and color density for link frequency.

Here’s three examples, for popular car manufacturers.




These are great to see, at a glance, how weak or strong a competitor’s link-network is.

You can access these visualization graphs simply by clicking on the Citation Flow or Trust Flow numbers in the SEO Competition module.

Now it’s your turn: Check out how YOUR sites perform…

If you’ve been struggling to gain rankings (because you suspect that you’ve picked a keyword that’s too tough)… and are finding it hard to see WHY…

…or you’d like to know really how far behind or in front you are of your competitors in building authority and trust, then open up the Market Samurai SEO Competition Module and take a look now.

(Remember: You’ll need to update to the latest version first to see this new data.)

From all the Noble Samurai team, we wish you a very Merry Christmas and safe Holiday season!



P.S. – If you like the update, share the love by clicking the “Like” button above!

P.P.S. – Stay tuned in 2013 – two game changers are coming :-)

Noble has written 51 post(s) for Noble Samurai

97 Responses to “Some Free Christmas Cheer…”

  1. Wow! Merry Christmas to you guys too!
    I’ve been thinking lately about the “real” meaning of Page Rank nowadays, and I clearly see why you think it’s going to die sometime soon.

    Additionally, I was really working hard to improve my website but other than SE Traffic PR wasn’t really helping at all. Those 2 new features allow us to check this on a daily basis (even though daily is too much, but at least on a weekly or monthly basis) and check where we’re heading with our effort.

    Love how you keep the software updated constantly. Don’t stop doing it!

    Tom replied:

    Once again Noble Samurai has put their customer first. There are not many products you can buy who offer SO much more for your money then Noble Samurai. I haven`t done much with one of my web sites for some time but over the last few weeks I have, and already using your information I now have two keywords in the top ten on Google. Many thanks Tom, UK

  2. All these bells and whistles sounds good.
    But do we need to subscribe at majesticseo to get that data in market samurai?

    Noble Samurai replied:

    No need for a separate subscription or fee, Sam, these new metrics are part of our arrangement with Majestic SEO! ^BMS

    Don replied:

    THAT is one reason why you guys are so popular! Keep up the good work! I just love the Samurai!

    Anthony Goodley replied:

    With Market Samurai including this valuable and useful data from Majestic SEO makes Market Samurai even more useful than before and an even greater value. Thanks a lot for this update.

  3. It’s great to see these trustworthy metrics built right into Market Samurai! I stopped using MS last year, but the great improvements have made me return to it. MS has become (again) one of favorite tools for competition research, rank tracking and so much more.

  4. Woah! This is huge. Since Citation flow came out a few months ago, I’ve always secretly dreamed it would eventually come to Market Samurai.

    Now you’ve done it. This is incredible.

    Many thanks for your huge efforts on this great software.

    Keep it up, folks.

  5. I agree with your opinion that Google has absolutely no intention to continue displaying the pagerank. It’s just a matter of time when it goes poof!

    Looking forward to use these new features on Market Samurai. Thanks for the updates!


  6. MS is coming back to become one of the best tools out there! However, we’d still love to see Moz’s domain authority factored in!

  7. 7

    Im stoned! Awesome update! Thanks Cyber Santa!

  8. Excellent Gift…. I love this new feature ! Once again, Thank you Market Samurai Team ! I Wish you a Merry Christmas & Prosperous New Year. :-)

  9. Wow – That’s great. I need a day to really sift through this software. You guys are awesome!

  10. Nicely written, informative post. Thanks a bunch.
    I always think that Noble Samurai is a great program for a decent (small) sum of money. Appreciate the research and development that you put into it too.

  11. You guys truly rock!

    CF and TF are truly awseome. Well done guys

  12. Thanks for that useful Christmas gift! :) Do CF and TF factors are checked at URL level or sub/root domain?

    Noble Samurai replied:

    Hi Pawel – the CF/TF metrics apply to the URL of the page in question. Here’s a Knowledge Base article with a few more details. ^BMS

  13. Thank you for these powerfull Christmas gifts !
    You are awesome ;-)
    I wish you a Merry Christmas and a Hapyy New Year.

  14. Nice work, guys. Good to see that you are developing the tool continously.

  15. Oh this is awesome, two new metrics that will put MS again to the forefront of SEO tools available to us today.

  16. It’s great that Majestic and Samurai are coming with their own trust and rank factors.

    Google seems to be taking their data behind closed doors that might be useful to SEOs. The more companies like Noble Samurai and Majestic can turn available data into useful tools the more valuable they become to those of us in the industry.

    Thanks, keep up the great work!

  17. Good work!

    My employer pays for Majestic SEO, but having this data built within MS like this will help me lots :)

  18. Stunning program that delivers and over delivers. Guys have a great Christmas and a prosperous New Year

  19. Wow, Im surprised. thanks for these additional treats.

    Merry christmas


  20. Thank you very much for this gift. How to run Citation Flow Analysis (such as second picture) ?

  21. Thanks for this great new feature guys! PageRank isn’t the greatest competition metric to use and CF and TF provide useful additional data.

    And another Christmas present: untill today, I actually never realized that you could view a detailed back link analysis report in Market Samurai! I never came up with the idea before to click the little arrow next to a site in the SEO competition module (oops). I always used other programs to retrieve back link information, but it’s so nice to find out that this is actually also available in Market Samurai!

    Frank Janssen replied:

    I wasn’t aware of the detailed back link report neither. We have to focus “inch wide, mile deep” (learned it from Jim Cockrum)

    I was trying to figure out how to get the report but you explained it: click on the arrow behind the URL


  22. I’m IMPRESSED to say the least! Thanks and Merry Christmas!!!


  23. Hi Ben!

    Thanks a lot for this great news! I will update MS tonight in a half time break of Fifa 13 on the Xbox (by the way: Who would like to play? Add me “oelpeace”;)).

    Anyways…I wish you a merry Xmas time and and wonderful high ranking new year!!!

    Cheers from foggy Hamburg!

  24. I’ve been using Market Samurai for a few months now and I’ve fallen in love with this software. In fact the SEO competition module is the one I love using the most frequently once I find a group of potential keywords. Thanks for keeping things up to date!

  25. Who doesn’t believe in Santa now? :)

    These are simply awesome new metrics.

    Merry Xmas guys and thank you for the early gift!!


  26. Is MS still using bing for page rank factors ? and search results & not google ?

    Noble Samurai replied:

    Hi Lloyd – Bing is used (out of necessity) for just a few competition factors, not traffic or ranking – that’s always come from Google.
    And if you’ll take a look at our previous blog post, you’ll find we’ve brought in some new competition metrics to Keyword Research as well! ^BMS

  27. Hey guys,

    That’s a great job … I believe that i will really enjoy those new data ! Update in progress … :)

  28. Thanks Guys

    While big G is busy making life harder for SEOs – you are bringing back the balance. G takes away trends for websites – and you bring out CF and TF – which are really useful tools.

    I bet G really loves ya for it – now that they only seem to care about profits.

  29. You’re right. There is nothing not to love. This is a great addition to an already great tool.

  30. I love this and was wondering when it would come to MS. Gonna need new training videos I think, especially for this. I for one, would love to see how to increase those factors for your own site. :)

  31. Wow, i’m very impressed to see al the changes, valuable addons. MS, makes research really a plesure:]

    Thanks and cheers 2012 celebrations to all,

  32. PR hasn’t amounted to anything for a long time now. When a PR 1 site can be number 1 and a PR 6 site is at number 8 everyone should understand that PR means little to nothing so no surprise to think it will be going away.

  33. Looks great, I will try it out! For you a Merry Christmas too, from rainy Holland!

  34. This is great stuff. We are all trying to keep our heads above water and helping our clients understand what needs to be done and why it takes so long to increase or maintain their rankings.

    Dont know what we would do without the help from Market Samurai.

    Thanks again and enjoy a great and joyful holiday season.

  35. Very good features, you are awesome guys! Thank you :)

  36. Thanks you guys. As always you bring extraordianry value to the table and each little incremental improvement to Market Samurai makes my job a little less complicated.

  37. This is a FREAKISHLY awesome update! MS just keeps getting better and better, despite all the Google updates. This is truly the best keyword, competition, and comprehensive analysis tool on the net.

    Thanks and Merry Christmas to You!

  38. Happy holidays indeed, I blog about market samurai on a regular basis. These two new metrics that you guys have installed are definitely going to be valuable.

    As a professional, Calgary Internet marketer. I’m always looking for new ways of maximizing my Backlinks and this will sure tell me what’s going on with my competition. As well, as my own linking structure.

  39. 39

    I am a registered member of Samurai. Must I download the free Xmas offer or will it be automaticaly being added to my package?

    Noble Samurai replied:

    Hi Freddie – it’s part of the software and will (or has already) come through with your usual update process. Nothing to add or click! As always if you have any problems or specific quesitons, contact support and we’ll sort it out… ^BMS

  40. WOW Christmas has come already this is just amazing. Thank you very much. Considering that there is no monthly fee to using this software is truly incredible

    Love Market Samurai and love you guys for your support and dedication to the software.

    Have a great Crimbo


  41. 41

    Clicking on either the CF or TF value takes you to Majestic’s Site Explorer page, where the CF and TF values differ from MS. I’m sure there’s an explanation for this but I still would be interested to know why.

  42. Wow! A Christmas gift and not a day too soon! Thank you for keeping us abreast of all the changes in online marketing. You guys are great!

  43. Excellent features! I can’t wait to try them. The team at noble samurai are fantastic. Looking forward to the 2 game changes next year. Merry Christmas!

  44. This will save me huge amount of hours each month analysing backlinks from my competitors. I don’t have to access majestic seo anymore to look for CF/TF. Thank you Market Samurai, what a great christmas gift!

    Looking forward for the new updates on 2013!


  45. I am impressed with how you continually make a great program even greater. You just keep adding value and more value. Purchasing Market Samurai is one of the best purchases I have ever made.

  46. 46

    At the moment, the click through from the CF and TF columns shows the Majestic page for analysis target’s entire domain, not the specific page. In other words, if I’m looking at the top result for a keyword that’s occupied by Amazon, the citation flow and trust flow in Market Samurai reflect that page, but when you click on the arrow to go to Majestic, you get the citation flow and trust flow for

    Fortunately, you can still access Majestic’s summary page for the actual url by clicking MS’ BLP column. The summary includes CF and TF.

    Noble Samurai replied:

    Hi Andre and Simon1066 – sorry about that, it was a bit of an oversight which should be fixed in the next minor update! ^BMS

  47. Happy Holidays to you, guys and gals at NobleSamurai!

    Thank you for the wonderful gift indeed!

    I just fired up the brand spanking new, just downloaded version of the MS (0.92.37) to see the new metrics at work.

    They do show the numbers but not for all projects/keywords, for some projects/keywords the column are empty.

    Could you please help to explain what could be the issue with the blanks?

    Thank you in advance,

    Noble Samurai replied:

    Hi Alex – as Ben explained in the blog above (the section entitled “Anything not to love?”) there may be a few blanks here and there. Majestic SEO’s index is enormous but even they cannot quite reach every last corner of the web (yet).

    This is something which will only improve – as in, become less and less frequent – over time, however. ^BMS

  48. 48

    More bells and whistles than Santa’s sleigh… Thanks..

  49. Great update and a safe Christmas to all of you guys.

  50. 50

    Great work :)

  51. 51

    Any thoughts on adding a customizable Local filter to the SEO Competition Matrix?

    It would be great to set a search location (similar to what is currently available on Google Search) when generating first page results in the Competition matrix.

    This location filter could even be set at the Project level. For me, a feature like this would be absolutely incredible.


    Noble Samurai replied:

    Interesting idea, Chris – can I suggest you also post this to our Feature Requests forum too? We often have more ideas than we have time to implement anyway, but if enough people see and vote up your suggestion we’ll certainly look into it! ^BMS

  52. Wow!

    Merry Christmas to all of you, too!

    It’s little things like this that keep us loyal to Market Samurai and coming back for more!

    No one out there beats Market Samurai for quality and customer service! NO ONE!!!

    Thanks for these two new little prezzies!


  53. Happy Holidays and THANKS guys!! Christmas arrived early thanks to you guys. Thanks for the extra goodies in my SEO Stocking!!!

  54. Hi,

    Thank you for the new features. I was clicking around to check them out and I can’t find the back link analysis report that you show in the image. If I click on “backlinks” tab in Majestic, I get a different looking report. Where do I go to find the one show?

    Thank you very much,

    Noble Samurai replied:

    Hi Julia – just click the little triangle to open up the toolkit – here’s a screenshot which may help: ^BMS

  55. Merry Christmas to everyone at Noble Samurai.
    Excellent new addition to MS and AS.

  56. man this is awesome news! Thank you! Saves me clicking into Majestic manually now. This is a really good present. Makes me very happy to have invested in MSam :)


  57. Thanks for the early Christmas Pressies guys.

    I hope all of you at Market Samurai have a fantastic festive season. Here’s to a year of abundance in 2013 (if we get through today [21/12/12], that is :) )

    Warmest Regards

  58. Merry Christmas and thank you for this fantastic tool.
    It saves me a lot of time and effort. Thank you. Grazyna

  59. Hi! This is a great update! Combined with the PDF reports that I’m getting now that I upgraded I’m a happy camper. Thanks so much.

  60. I think Google is tired to make PR more accurated.

  61. 61
    On December 21st, 2012 at 9:08 am
    Terence Blackburn said:

    Wicked. I’m downloading the upgrade as we speak (or as I type, whatever…).

  62. WOW Merry Christmas Guys and thank you for keeping us ‘ahead of the game’Market Samurai is a fantastic tool and it just keeps getting better – Have a great Christmas break and a fantastic 2013

  63. Sheesh, I thought we had seen it all and you go and spring this on us. Great Xmas present. Thanks a lot and have a great one.


  64. 64

    Just an observation – in your example for ‘resume advice’, Forbes at no.1 has much lower scores on CF and TF than the others.
    I know one can’t rely on just these 2 scores, but still…
    Any comments?

  65. 65

    Can’t wait to try this out. Samurai’s been slow today for some reason.

  66. Thanks guys,

    A very Noble Chistmas gift from the Samurai indeed.

    Have a great Christmas and New Year


  67. I’m looking to try this out as well.

  68. Just the Christmas gift I was waiting for!
    . ____
    . .-” +’ “-. __, ,___,
    . /.’.’A_’*.\ (--|__| _,,_ ,_
    . |:.*'/\-\. ':| _| |(_||_)|_)\/
    . |:.'.||"|.'*:| ( | | _/
    . \:~^~^~^~^:/ __, ,___,
    . /
    -….-’\ (–|__| _ |’ _| _, ,
    . / \ _| |(_)||(_|(_|\//_)
    . `-.,____,.-’ /

    To the whole hard working Samurai team!

  69. 69

    this is just to great to be true:)!! cheers

  70. 70

    I just ran this on a few kws and wikipedia and came in with some low #s.

  71. 71

    At the top of the competition where M S belongs, great addition to what is already a awesome asset in SEO.

    Well done.

    Happy Christmas and a Happy New Year.

  72. you guys rock, thanks for this special gift :)

  73. So I’m just wondering, with all the information that noble samurai is pulling off Majestic Seo would you recommend that we purchase a Majestic Seo package of some kind or is the data that we are provided through our free account enough, as well as can you maybe do a post or a video on what kind of Backlinks are the most powerful ones and how to find them.

    From the information that I have,.gov, are the best kind links to have but like to hear from the authority.

  74. Thanks guys! This is a great write up and a great addition to the software.

    Happy holidays!

  75. Thanks Santa!!! This is a great gift!!

  76. Wow, this takes understanding your keywords to a whole new level. Thanks for the great Christmas present.

  77. well done! great work guys

  78. Incredible gift! Thanks too much.

    Can’t wait to get this into action. You’ve outdone yourself as usual.

    Best to you and yours through this season. I’ve got to get busy and send some people your way…

  79. What an awesome gift!
    Thank you guys!
    Great addition to our tools kit!

  80. Thanks again MS for supplying such useful information. I am sure I speak for every one by saying how much your help and expertise is appreciated.

  81. Good work!
    Thank you guys!

  82. L I K E – I T !

  83. It’s great to see the new metrics; Will put them to good use come 2013.

  84. Just wanted to say a big Christmas thank you to everyone at Market Samurai.

    I’m still getting to grips with everything in terms of SEO and even using Market Samurai to it’s greatest potential but the resouces available and consistent updates mean there are no excuses for me not to learn!

    Very interested to see if PR goes to the dogs as well. Would be a nice change from the way things have been for so long and make things a lot more dynamic when it comes to assessing competition.

  85. Been using Market Samurai in a while and the tool is really awesome!