When your business has a marketing budgeting, tracking the performance of your investments can pay off by preventing you from wasting money on efforts that do not work. For this reason, it can be a smart idea to learn about the types of search engine optimization metrics that exist as well as which ones matter the most for SEO campaign success.
To measure the digital marketing success of your company’s SEO campaigns, you need to look at how your audience is (or is not) responding to what you share. Because technology offers a plethora of ways for internet users to view content, there are also a number of measurements to consider.
If you want to know how your recent SEO campaign performed, check out these 12 metrics you should pay attention to.
One of the first SEO metrics to analyze is what your content’s link situation looks like. What kind of information are you providing your readers? Are you linking to relevant and well-researched content, or are you spamming with too many links?
While backing up your information can give you added authority, it is more about quality than quantity. You can bet that Google will notice too, which is why working with SEO link building services is your best option.
Without a doubt, backlinks to your site also matter. These are the links back to your site that other people, referrers, share elsewhere on the internet. Having others share your content is not the only thing that is important with backlinks, however; the authority of the referring source is also a factor that search engines consider.
2. Website Ranking Before and After SEO Campaign
The next question to answer is your website’s ranking. What was your ranking before your recent SEO campaign? What was it afterward?
Keep in mind, however, website ranking will not tell you everything you need to know. (That is another reason why you need to consider multiple metrics.)
While there is no doubt that your SEO campaign can play a significant role in a website’s ranking, it is no longer the only factor. For example, local pack listing and ad space can also have an impact now, among other things.
3. Keyword Ranking
If you are using keywords in your SEO campaigns (which you should be), another ranking to pay attention to is that of the words and phrases you are using.
Because people’s search behavior constantly changes, the keywords that are popular today may not have much value in six months. On the other hand, something you would never think of today could be one of the internet’s top searches tomorrow.
Keeping up with SEO can be a challenge when you are busy, especially if you are trying to run a business alongside implementing a marketing strategy. For this reason, it can be useful to one of the many online SEO keyword tracking resources available. Doing so can save you significant time and effort that you can put back into helping customers and earning a profit.
4. Site Speed
As it turns out, slow websites not only annoy your visitors; they also annoy Google. Because site speed can have such an impact on a user’s experience, the search engine giant has added this factor to its long list of considerations when displaying content.
It is also worth noting that site speed and page speed are not the same metrics. Whereas site speed looks at a sample of your website’s page to calculate a number, page speed only analyzes a single page.
With that said, both of them matter. Visitors do not want a page they are reading to take forever, and they definitely do not want to wait for more than one page.
5. Organic Search Traffic
When it comes down to where you should put the most focus, organic search traffic is definitely one of the spots to do so.
At the end of the day, this is what leads to sales. As such this should be a metrics that you are not only tracking but also striving to improve. Additionally, your tracking should be comparative to previous time periods so you can spot higher and lower traffic at different times.
Luckily, this is another task that online tools can help you with. In particular, Google Analytics and Google Search Console are the primary resources to do this.
6. Organic Clicks
While information about organic search traffic is undoubtedly important, it is limited to considering organic clicks.
With click data, you can learn more about search query origins and potential search traffic. To start, you need to look at data for impressions as well as your click-through rates.
Gathering this information can tell you more about the search queries, which can ultimately help you identify growth opportunities.
For example, high impressions with low clicks might indicate a need to focus on improving your CTR. On the other hand, low impressions with high clicks could mean you need to consider different keywords to increase engagement.
7. Organic Conversion Rate
Most SEO campaigns have an objective to drive a type of conversion from visitors. For some campaigns, the objective might be a hard conversion like a product purchase from your e-commerce store or a soft conversion like signups to your newsletter.
While this involves tracking, the key thing to look at is your organic conversion rate. With this number, you can see how your site performs overall compared to how other content is performing. As a result, it will highlight opportunities for improvement.
8. Mobile Rankings
There are two other things to remember: cell phones and tablets. When trying to determine the success of an SEO campaign, do not forget about the diversity of internet devices.
According to Statista research, there were approximately 4.28 billion mobile internet users worldwide in 2020. Given this number, it makes sense that Google is moving to their mobile-first index. However, this also means that you need to optimize your content for mobile search.
When looking at your mobile ranking, make sure to compare it against desktop rankings to more accurately consider the whole picture. In addition to ranking, another mobile metric to zoom in on is where your organic search traffic comes from, desktops, or mobile devices?
9. Crawl Errors
When a search engine bot cannot crawl to your URL, the technical term for this is a “crawl error.” When this happens, it means that the box experienced a dead end. For you as a website owner, this translates to, “There is something here that you need to fix.”
Crawl errors can occur for two reasons: One, there is a problem with the site; or two, there is an issue with the URL. If the problem lies with the site, there is likely something wrong with your entire website, such as a DNS or 404 (Not Found) error.
Does every page on your site have a unique title tag and meta description? If not, it is time to address that. With SEO, one of the most basic elements is making sure content has standalone value.
With this in mind, you can easily use Google Search Console to help you here, too. By displaying a list of all of your duplicate titles and descriptions, this tool can give you an easy resource for further understanding and resolving this issue.
11. Dwell Time
While online tools are useful, sometimes analyzing metrics requires you to think about everything a little differently.
For example, one metric that could be helpful to understand when gathering information about SEO campaigns is visitor dwell time. The problem with doing this, however, is that this currently is not a metric that is readily available.
With that said, you can conclude that a visitor’s dwell time is longer depending on how much he or she interacts with content. As such, thinking about what your numbers say can also help you understand your users and the success of your campaigns better.
Finally, the last “metric” you should consider is not one that will show up on any of your online dashboards. Instead, it is something you will need to step back and analyze yourself by thinking as objectively as possible about where you currently stand now compared to where you stood before.
For example, ask yourself where your business was six months ago compared to today. How about a year ago? What about two years ago? You get the idea.
Even if numbers can tell you a lot, they do not necessarily explain the whole story. Sometimes, it is important to consider how far you have come, and even if a particular SEO campaign did not perform as well as you had hoped, remember the things you nonetheless obtained from the experience.
Without a doubt, you learned something, right? While this last metric may not be the most budget-friendly, it is good for your mental wellbeing. In the long run, your business will benefit when you are able to learn, grow and continue in the face of failures.
Now that you have a list of the most important metrics to consider when measuring the success of your company’s SEO campaigns, you can use this information to help you decide which marketing efforts are working and which ones are not.
Remember, successful businesses are the ones that are open to growth; do not be afraid to make changes if that is what your metrics are suggesting.
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My name is Leanna Todd, and I have been working in the Digital Marketing industry for more than 15 years. I have always loved sharing the insights that I have discovered throughout my career with other marketing enthusiasts.