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Why I Prefer Google Spreadsheets Over MS Excel For SEO

Microsoft Excel has been a staple program for SEO’s for a long time. However, the days of Excel acting as the reigning champion in this category are over. Everyone, make room for Google Spreadsheets as your go to spreadsheet program for SEO.

Excel was a great tool because it had arguably the most functional spreadsheet editor known to computer users. There are also some powerful extensions out there that make Excel even more powerful for SEO work. So why then would you want to give all of that up and make the switch to Google Spreadsheets? Keep reading to find out.

Web Scraping

This is arguably the most powerful reason to choose Google Spreadsheets over Microsoft Excel for your go to SEO tool. While there are ways to do this in Excel, it is not exactly built in nor easy to use. With Google Spreadsheets, you can easily scrape all sorts of data from Google and from specific websites. The main way to do this is to use the “importxml” function, which you can learn how to use it here.

This powerful little function lets you scrape all sorts of great info like Google Search results, Trends, and even to find specific HTML tags on a page (list elements, titles, links, etc..). You can get very creative with how you use it, the options are pretty much endless and many of them are quite simple to make. You can check out a few useful SEO tools that others have made here, this will give you a good idea of what kind of power this can have. After that, you can take a stab at building your own agile Google Spreadsheet SEO tools.

Direct Export to Google Spreadsheets

Like many SEO’s out there, I heavily rely on Google Anayltics, Keyword Research Tools, and other Google products to get the job done fast and efficiently. Another nice thing about using Google Spreadsheets over Excel is that you can export data directly into a Google Spreadsheet from most of the other Google products.

This eliminates the hassle of having to download a file and open it in Excel or worse, downloading a file and having to upload it back into Google Drive to use it. You can even bypass this whole exporting process and get live Analytics data directly into your Google Spreadsheets, this can be a huge time saver if you manually generate reports for clients via Spreadsheets.

This doesn’t work for all of Google’s products, yet. But for where it does work, it is a much needed and appreciate function.

Effortless Online Backup, Synchronizing, Sharing, and Collaboration

Needless to say, all of the other joys that come from using Google Drive over Microsoft Office come into play here as well. Knowing that your files are being instantly saved and backed up online is a major relief. Having all of your files ready to be shared with a coworker or client is another great feature that we can’t overlook. And last but not least, the ability to work with someone live on the same document can be such a powerful feature to have, especially when it comes to slicing and analyzing data.

What reasons do you have for choosing Google Spreadsheets over Excel? Or do you think Excel is the better choice? Let us know your reasons in the comments!

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2 thoughts to “Why I Prefer Google Spreadsheets Over MS Excel For SEO”

  1. I’m a huge Google docs fan as well, and I’ve had the Gdoc versus Excel argument many many times. I think the only con for Gdocs is the 400,000 cell limit. Otherwise, I’d have absolutely no complaints! Thanks for the mention

    1. Dave, thanks for the comment, you are the first one to comment on my new site so far, I really appreciate it!

      As far as the 400,000 cell limitation goes, I personally don’t usually find it too inhibiting on my work. I think the greater drawback is the limit for the importxml function, which can sometimes be frustrating depending on what you are doing.

What do you think?