One perk of search engine optimization (SEO) - you can measure everything related to your efforts.
But with over 200 Google ranking factors out there, how do you determine which metrics to track?
Having a precise method to track your SEO performance shows the value of your SEO efforts towards marketing performance and business bottom line.
We’ll go into the critical SEO metrics to track to assess performance, evaluate tools you can use to collect the data and format the data into a beautiful yet accessible report to present to your client or internal stakeholders.
At its core, SEO metrics tracking is a three-step process.
SEO tracking is the process of analyzing quantifiable SEO metrics to measure, reporting on the effectiveness of your SEO efforts and adjusting your strategy or execution process based on what the data tells you.
If you’re unsure, begin with tracking these essential metrics for your campaign.
Conversion rate shows the quality of your organic traffic.
It’s a business metric assessing the value of marketing to the business and is usually one of the first metrics your clients and stakeholders will pay attention to.
Conversion rate affects how many leads, goal completions (form submissions on a contact form, for example) and prospective customers your SEO efforts attract.
Monitoring conversion rate also shows whether your campaign brings in the right organic traffic for your business.
For example, if you’re seeing high organic search traffic but low conversion rates, review if you’re attracting people who find your landing page offer attractive or whether your offer aligns with the searcher’s intent. Look at the organic search keywords bringing most of the traffic to your site that don’t result in conversions and evaluate if they match the search intent of your prospective customers.
Bringing in organic traffic is the first measure of effectiveness for any SEO or inbound marketing initiative. It forms the first part of your marketing funnel, bringing in new website visitors. These visitors subsequently turn into leads and paying customers as they engage with your content and opt-in to your offers.
Organic traffic is website visitors that come to your website through unpaid sources, usually through a search engine like Google and Bing.
With this goal in mind, reviewing your organic traffic numbers should be your first point of the review to assess the effectiveness of your current SEO initiatives. Once you know your organic session metrics, analyze your traffic sources report to see which channel brings more visitors.
Keyword ranking positions refer to your page’s spot in search ranking results for a specific search query. This directly affects how likely a searcher will find your website listing and click.
Note: The first result in Google’s organic search ranking has an average CTR of 31.7%, ten times higher than a page in 10th position.
Therefore, regularly monitoring your keyword rankings in a keyword ranking report helps you keep an eye on how you’re performing and enables you to act quickly if you see a sharp drop in any keyword ranking.
Other actionable uses of tracking keyword ranking performance:
Click-through rate measures how relevant your content is for a search query. Naturally, it’s another measure of effectiveness for your SEO initiatives.
Domain Authority (DA) is a search engine ranking score (from 1-100) developed by Moz that predicts how likely a website is to rank in a search engine.
A good DA score is relative to your competition and industry, but as a starting point:
DA assesses your website’s overall SEO health and is helpful as an overview metric to review your website’s standing with your competitors and others in the industry. Its best used as a metric to compare against other websites.
How to use DA in your SEO efforts:
Also known as dwell time, time on page measures a searcher’s time on your page before returning to search engine results (SERPS). It indicates:
You'll want people to spend longer on your long-form blog content and product pages. A low dwell time here may indicate issues with the content’s presentation or the accessibility of the page and warrant further investigation.
The first of two free to use Google products to analyze website performance, Google Analytics gives you the quantitative insights you need to analyze visitor data break down user traffic metrics by page, channel or campaign.
Another free offering from Google, Google Search Console evaluates the search performance and optimizing content for your website. You can see which search queries bring users to your website, the keywords you’re ranking for and the devices people use to find your website.
These are some of the top paid all-in-one SEO software solutions that cover everything you need to evaluate your SEO performance.
With your metrics in place, it’s time to think about giving your data in a crystal-clear manner that your boss or client will understand.
DashThis allows you to plug all your SEO keyword research tools and digital marketing efforts - including your keyword ranking report and SEO performance - into the platform to generate monthly rank tracking reports. We bring all the data from your SEO tools into one report, allowing you to see how your SEO efforts are performing and flawlessly explain what’s going on in your presentation.
Step 1: Connect your favorite marketing tools
Step 2: Select your metrics from DashThis’ preset widgets
There are many ranking factors out there. But now you know the ones to focus on and the tools you need to automate the entire data gathering and reporting process.
Sign up for your free 15-day trial to automate your SEO reporting in a visually-pleasing format. Track all critical SEO performance metrics in a single report and instill confidence in your SEO efforts.
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