Which essential SEO Metrics to track while promoting a site?
Success in SEO is always the result of many actions, including investment of time and budget. It can not be accidental and unexpected as in gambling.
It is important to be able to identify the most significant factors, tracking which you can get an overview of what is happening to the site in time to correct weaknesses and to succeed in a competitive environment.
Thus, the investment of time and budget will be the most optimal.
Digital marketing is very coherent because it can be calculated: virtually every part of your promotion strategy can be estimated.
All measured indicators are called metrics. A metric in terms of web marketing is a common term denoting the numerical value of any activity.
SEO tracking involves determining which metrics are the most important for your business and monitoring them to trace your progress.
Let's talk about how to track SEO efficiency and to measure SEO performance.
You can use many tools to collect information about the performance of a site. Google Analytics is a must-have tool among them.
But in fact, for many site owners the problem is not in getting enough information, but in determining which indicators should be focused on.
In this article, we are getting a close look at 5 significant key SEO metrics to promote a site successfully.
1. Organic traffic
The first of the priority indicators for measuring the results of SEO is organic traffic - the number of visitors to a site / blog, from search engines (excluding PPC).
One of the most important goals of any search engine optimization is to increase the visibility in search engines. The more visitors you attract to your site from the search results, the more successful your project will be (the potential boost in the number of sales, users, etc). With successful SEO, the amount of organic traffic should grow steadily.
The information about your traffic, including organic, can be found in Google Analytics. Log into your Google Analytics account and go to: Acquisition> All traffic> Channels> Organic Search.
You can see the total number of visits to your resource in a certain time frame (7 days, 28 days), as well as its fluctuations during the selected period.
2. Organic keywords
Organic traffic is closely related to another essential metric: organic keywords. Why?
The more search queries (keywords) in SERP results lead to your resource, the more organic traffic you have.
Thus, tracking keywords is a classic SEO KPI (Key Performance Indicator). Ranking well for important keywords is critical for any SEO campaign, as high keyword rankings help to drive more traffic to the website.
There are plenty of great tools to conduct keyword research.
The first one is a free platform: Google Search Console. Use it to see the keywords that bring traffic to your website.
To see the keywords in Search Console, go to Search Traffic> Search Analytics.
It is very convenient to use a keyword research tool to determine the keywords for which your site ranks in Google and to test keyword popularity.
Once you collect keywords your site appears in search results with, there are numerous further steps you can take in your SEO strategy.
For example - if your list appears to be insufficient, you may want to extend it.
Select keywords you want to rank for but aren’t yet — this may be what to focus on in your SEO campaigns.
The quick way is to "spy" on successful rivals in the industry and try to rank for keywords your competitors use. To do so you should conduct keyword analysis: collect only those keywords it is easy to rank for (with low competition level. Mostly those are long tail keywords), and is worth ranking (which harvest much traffic).
Keywords with which your competitors appear in SERP can be easily spotted with K-Meta tool.
Insert a domain name in the search field, select the exact URL and press search to get all the keywords for which this site is the Google top 20.
Keep in mind that Google has introduced the semantic search. That means that the exact occurrence of the keyword is not that important, now most determining factor is content itself - the level of its relevance, semantic environment.
Want to explore something else? SEMScoop Keyword Difficulty Tool is a smart out of the box keyword research and SERP analysis tool for digital marketers, bloggers, and small businesses who are interested in improving their site’s overall ranking. It can help find true ranking opportunities & low SEO difficulty terms to create smart and competitive contents.
Another tracking metric which you should keep your eye on is the backlinks profile: sites pointing to your website.
It should be noted that not only the number of backlinks matters, but also their quality. Quality indicators of backlinks are: the relevance, diversity and authority of sites from which they go. Otherwise, search engine may consider them spammy and penalize for them. For example: a flower shop is not desirable to receive links from a furniture factory website. It is also better to get 20 links from 20 different sites than 1000 links from one site.
By the way, there is a separate metric - domain authority, which is directly related to the number of backlinks and referring domains: the more relevant backlinks from a variety of high quality resources the site has, the higher its authority is. Therefore you can use it as a quick analysis of your site's number of incoming links and referring domains.
4. Bounce rate
Bounce rate is a metric that shows how much the quality of content on your site meets the visitor's expectations. If a user who came to your site for a specific search request is satisfied with what you offer him (page speed load, general outlook, visual elements, advertisement), he/she remains and visits some other pages of your resource. If he/she bounces without continuing to another page - this is an indicator that the page has a poor content, structure or page speed.
Thus, the bounce rate is one of the metrics that determines the overall quality of web pages.
You can check the general bounce rate in Google Analytics.
You can also get a close research of the bounce statistics for each case: for entry pages, for sources of traffic, etc.
Bounces of more than 45% indicate that the site definitely needs to change something.
In addition, you can rate your competitors' bounce rate with alexa statistics.
Of course, these data are not that accurate, but with them you will have a general idea of your competitive environment.
5. Pages: speed, index, exit
a. Page speed
Several years ago the modern speed of data transfer seemed out of reach. But nowadays no one will be surprised by the transfer of gigabytes of information in a short time. Slow sites are out of date. So fast loading of your site is no longer a luxury, but a mandatory requirement. A slow site will annoy the user, thereby increasing the bounce rate. The ideal page load speed is 1-2 seconds, optimal is 3-4, more than 5 seconds is considered bad.
You can get general recommendations for optimizing the page speed here: https://developers.google.com/speed/pagespeed/insights/.
b. Indexed pages
A good SEO indicator is an increase in the number of web pages of your website in the Google search results. The more pages are indexed in Google, the more opportunities for users to find you. It is difficult to place all the keywords by which you could rank on one web page. But by adding new blog entries and press releases on a regular basis, your index, that is, your presence in Google SERP, will grow.
c. Exit pages for organic traffic
It is very important to monitor not only the performance of technical elements of the site, but also track the attendance of pages. In the Google Analytics profile you can find statistics about the pages from which visitors leave the site.
These are pages where people lose interest in your site and set to another web resources. Think about how you can improve these pages so that visitors hang on your site for more.
P.S. It will be great if you have a mobile version of the site. Since a large proportion of searches occur from mobile devices, don't miss out your potential users and positions in mobile SERP.
Thus, using the analytical data from the reviewed SEO metrics, you will get a clear idea of your site, so the definition of your further strategy will be times quicker and more efficient - get ready to be surprised by the results you'll uncover.
Also read 10+ Ways to use Google Search Suggestion!
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