Regardless of the type of website you back, your SEO efforts determine its success and performance. As a website owner, you might already be implementing several digital marketing and SEO strategies to drive performance through your website. However, very few know that an efficient way to do so is by tracking and managing the KPI metrics which would portray the SEO performance of your website. Even today, 15% of the searches on Google are new, giving companies plenty of opportunities to improve their rankings.
With these things in mind, here are some of the most important SEO metrics and KPIs that you should track for your website:
Top 9 SEO Metrics To Track
1. Organic Traffic
Let us ask you a question: What is the most important goal that you want to achieve through SEO? More visibility? More customers? The road that leads to accomplishing all these goals is getting organic traffic on your website. Organic traffic is one of the strongest indicators of your SEO performance, wherein a steady increase shows that your rankings in organic search are improving as well.
This metric will let you know whether all the efforts that you are making are effective in bringing new customers to your website so that you can start working on conversions. If you have a WordPress website, several WooCommerce SEO guides can help you take care of this metric and others mentioned here.
2. Bounce Rate
Bounce rate is an important metric for web traffic analysis and indicates the percentage of people who have visited one of the pages on your website and left without visiting any other page. More aptly, it refers to the percentage of people that leave your website without taking any action such as clicking on links, subscribing, or filling out a form.
However, a high bounce rate is not necessarily a bad sign for your website, if it is built around content and you expect people to visit only for single-page sessions. A conversion-based website such as an online product seller, or ecommerce store on the other hand would need to proactively work on reducing the bounce rates on their website.
3. Keyword Rankings
As the most powerful search engine that exists today, Google’s search algorithm forms the basis for SEO efforts undertaken by companies. Keeping a check on your keyword rankings will ensure that you have a general idea of the direction in which your SEO efforts are headed, and will help you select the right keywords to integrate within your content.
While tracking this metric, you need to assess whether you are targeting the right keywords for your website and if not, then include high-performing new keywords to attract more traffic organically. For best results, you should target keywords that are performing well locally, as well as in the markets that you want to target.
4. Average Page Load Time
Just in case, this metric sounded too technical to bother about at the outset, you should know that it is directly related to the bounce rate of your website. The speed at which your website loads can make or break your SEO performance. In fact, did you know that 1 in every 4 visitors will abandon your website if it takes more than 4 seconds to load?
If your website takes too much time to load, chances are that your bounce rate will be higher, which is an indication that your visitors are not finding what they need on your website. Moreover, with the number of internet users on mobile phones increasing rapidly, it is important to note that your website will take more time to load on a mobile device, compared to a desktop.
5. Organic Conversions
Similar to other metrics that define the SEO performance of your website, organic conversions can be quite crucial in determining the success of your website. Every growing website aims to convert organic traffic into qualified leads which can contribute to its success and performance. The organic conversions on your website determine the quality of your website traffic. A high inflow of traffic without generating any leads or sales is of no use for the overall performance of your website. By ensuring that customers are taking action on your website, you can be assured of better results consistently.
6. New Backlinks
While there are no shortcuts to success, creating backlinks has often been touted as one of the fastest ways to better SEO performance. Backlinks can fetch you new traffic and reach your target audience through multiple sources, increasing the likelihood of higher traffic on your website. The difference that backlinks can make is apparent when you compare two web pages with similar on-page metrics - the one with more backlinks from high-domain authority sources will win.
A higher number of backlinks translates to more traffic as well as better rankings on Google, thus taking care of your complete SEO performance and online visibility. For effective results, you should constantly update your backlinks, maintain their accuracy and follow the trends related to the backlinks regularly.
7. KPIs for Authority
When we discuss the KPIs and metrics that you need to track for your website, it would be wrong to not mention the ones that determine your website authority. Google algorithms are updated now and then, but the goal that every website chases remains the same - consistent increase in domain authority.
In SEO, domain authority directly pinpoints the trustworthiness of a website by measuring it on a scale of 0-100. Higher the score, the more trustworthy the website. New websites usually have lower scores, however, the success of your SEO efforts should be able to improve this score consistently. Domain authority can be increased through backlinks, however, this system is often abused by websites that post poor-quality backlinks on multiple domains. Keeping track of your authority metrics with the help of KPI tools will enable you to constantly monitor if your strategies are bringing the expected results.
8. Mobile Traffic and Rankings
Last but far from being less important, is the constant scrutiny and management of mobile traffic and rankings. As of 2020, 3.6 billion people use smartphones and thus browse the internet on their mobile devices. Understandably, assigning too much importance just to desktop users and ignoring the mobile-friendliness of your website is no longer an option - regardless of which vertical you operate in.
Having an adaptable interface, and including features and elements that are convenient for mobile users to navigate and use, is crucial to the success of your website. To be able to cater to the needs of the mobile users effectively, it is important to constantly track the behavior and performance of your website on mobile devices, so that you can fare well on mobile search results - which now comprise nearly 60% of all searches.
9. Image SEO
You must ensure that your targeted audience can find your website through image search. To ensure your images appear in Google's image search, I’ll share a few ways.
The most ideal way to optimize for Image SEO is to write updated ALT tags of your images on the site.
A descriptive ALT tag will help search engine bots understand what the image is all about as the search engine crawlers are not yet smart enough to comprehend visuals.
Plus, make sure your image is relevant. A good graphical abstract personifying your blog's message will be invaluable. It will be directly relevant and effectively deliver the message of the text.
You need to ensure the images are optimized in size, which will help your landing page load quickly in web browsers.
While there are many ways to drive the traffic and revenue of your website, and managing your SEO performance, the aforementioned metrics can be a great starting point. By monitoring these metrics with help of data analysis tools, you can ensure that your SEO performance is effective and ready for scaling up.
It is important to maintain consistent performance on these metrics so that your website can generate the desired results for your business. Effective SEO performance can help you gain more brand visibility, recognition and in building greater brand value.
Hazel Raoult is a freelance marketing writer and works with PRmention. She has 6+ years of experience in writing about business, entrepreneurship, marketing, and all things SaaS. Hazel loves to split her time between writing, editing, and hanging out with her family.