There are many key SEO metrics in internet marketing that are used to help business owners understand the progress of their SEO efforts (it is also a great way to keep your SEO professional and accountable). I am going to touch on a few critical metrics that need to be reviewed on a regular basis by all business owners.
Wash your mouth out with soap, ‘link building’ is a dirty word! No, actually it is not. If done properly in accordance with Google guidelines and in a conservative manner, this is considered as being a major ranking factor and therefore a key SEO metric! Different websites that contain a link to your website (backlinks) are considered a ‘vote of confidence’. Therefore having backlinks will improve your rankings in the SERPs.
Keep in mind the more links you have is not always a good thing. Choose quality over quantity. Look for websites that have a high Domain Authority (DA) and strong Social Signals, to be your voters, rather than poor quality websites with awful content and zero interaction. Do you know if you are connected to these types of websites with spammy links?
The more traffic coming to your site is usually a good thing, people are coming there for a reason, but are they coming there for the right reason? This metric is very similar to link building because quantity is not necessarily the end-all. You want quality traffic. And, you want visitors to find your site first on the SERPs because your site is relevant to their needs.
You don’t want to be found for the wrong reasons, as this increases the bounce rate of your site when visitors don’t stick around for long and exit away from your site. This is something that Google measures because they want to make sure you are providing relevant information, products, or services, that users are actually searching for.
Traffic is pointless unless it converts into a business goal or objective. What was the point of you paying to have a website created? Sell products, connect with customers, find leads? Depending on your type of business, conversions will vary from website to website, just like they do from business to business. However, goals need to be manageable, attainable, realistic, timely, and have a call-to-action to measure conversions accurately. Conversions on your website can easily be kept track of by using free software such as Google Analytics. It is imperative to know what on your site is converting and what is not. This will require testing and experimenting and ultimately refining what your website does best.
I left this topic last because keyword rankings have changed since the Hummingbird algorithm update to Google’s search engine and there has been a lot of chatter around whether or not keywords still count. The answer is yes. Keywords are still very valuable and researching which keywords are searched for more and have less competition is necessary in developing quality content that users are looking for; therefore keywords will help your web pages rank better.
Key SEO Metrics
There are many dodgy SEO companies out there practicing black-hat SEO, unfortunately taking advantage of naïve business owners. The next thing you know is that your website has been stricken with a penalty by Google. This penalty means when users try to search for you on Google, no results will be displayed about your business. You will be wiped off of Google’s search results (SERPs). The best way to avoid this is by knowing these key metrics and making sure your SEO specialist is reporting to you often and accurately.