SEO campaigns are a minefield of metrics that you have to navigate and track to see if your work is a resounding success or an abject failure.
It gets more complicated because apparently not all metrics are good metrics.
Some are called “vanity” metrics.
There is an abundance of tools you can use to assess data and the effectiveness of your work.
These include Google Analytics and Google Search Console that allow you to easily track the SEO metrics you should be focusing on.
But which metrics exactly should you be measuring?
The top 10 SEO metrics can be found below.
Organic Traffic by Page
Organic traffic is the primary measurement of the strength of an SEO content strategy.
If your organic traffic is going up month-on-month, you’re on the right track.
As your rankings improve for keywords with significant average monthly search volume, your organic traffic will naturally improve with it.
To view organic traffic in Google Analytics, navigate to:
Audience – Overview – Add Segment – select Organic Traffic
Organic conversions are what you’ll use to judge the quality of the organic traffic you’re (hopefully) pulling in.
If your organic traffic goes up, but your organic conversions stay the same, or fall, you need to revisit your SEO content strategy.
To track conversions in Google Analytics you will need to set up Goals.
Goals are anything you class a valuable interaction with the site.
They can include phone calls and email clicks via the site, or contact form submissions and newsletter subscriptions.
Once you add goals relevant to your site, add the Organic Traffic segment to the Google Analytics dashboard but this time on the Conversions – Overview page.
Revenue is the ultimate SEO metric.
As your traffic numbers grow, you would expect revenue to increase too.
If it doesn’t, you know your site is targeting irrelevant keywords and you need to revisit them.
Impressions, found in Google Search Console – Performance, are how many times users have seen a link to your site in search results.
As rankings improve, how often your site is seen, and the amount of impressions it has does too.
It is the ideal indicator, and SEO metric, for measuring that your rankings, and with it the general visibility of your site in search listings, have improved.
Ranking well nationally for keywords with significant search volume will see your traffic increase considerably.
Generally, national terms will have a higher search volume than more specific, location-targeting terms.
As a result, ranking highly for these can be more difficult, however that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t remain a part of your long-term SEO content strategy.
There’s a lot of software available that can track your keyword performance.
Google Search Console is a free tool, which filters impressions and clicks by ‘queries’, or keywords so you can monitor this particular SEO metric.
Local rankings are usually lower volume keywords focused on a service or product in an area of the country.
Targeting these terms, and ranking highly for them, can help you increase your organic traffic.
While the volume is lower, someone looking for local services is more likely to buy from you.
Domain authority, and page authority, are SEO metrics that gauge a site’s ability to rank on SERPs. The scale is one to 100.
Factors which impact domain authority include domain age, quantity and quality of backlinks and how much traffic backlinks drive to your site.
As mentioned above, tracking the backlinks your site has allows you to assess its authority.
Occasionally backlinks become broken because they’re linked to a page that no longer exists, or hasn’t been redirected correctly.
Redirecting the old page within the link can help preserve the backlink.
Adding new backlinks should be done from high authority, relevant sites over time and avoid spammy links and bulk buying link packages.
Backlink audits let you see the strength and number of your referring domains.
From this, create a disavow file to submit to Google to notify them of any unwanted links you don’t wish to count towards your site.
How fast your web pages load isn’t just an important SEO metric (although it is important).
Pages that take too long to load provide a bad user experience so, naturally, Google and other search engines favour fast sites when it comes to deciding their rankings.
Ways to improve site and page speed include, adding a caching plugin, compressing image file sizes and serving your images in the correct format and dimensions.
As well as monitoring each metric above for your own website, an additional SEO strategy is to keep an eye on your competition.
Competitor analysis helps you find new keyword opportunities to target that you won’t come across otherwise.
You can also check your competitor’s backlink profile.
Replicating it and then bettering it with your own unique links can see you push ahead of them.
For any further information about SEO metrics and SEO strategies contact the Paramount Digital team via our online form, on 01744 747474 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.