Search engine optimization (SEO) and SEO reports continue to be a front running issue in digital marketing. Everyone wants a website that's easily found on Google or Bing, so every savvy online marketer invests in SEO. That makes sense: 93% of all internet experiences begin with a search engine, and you want to be sure to reach that audience.
But how do you know that what you're doing is actually working? How do you know whether your efforts in blogging, social media posting, link building or on-page optimization are generating increased visits, conversions and customers? By proving results through SEO reports. Here's how:
1) Evaluate Where You Stand
Before launching a comprehensive SEO plan, evaluate where your website currently ranks. Document your current list of keywords and how your site is ranking for them. This will give you a benchmark for comparison and hopefully a success story to share down the road.
2) Do Your Research
As you evaluate which keywords believed to be best for your company, research competitors and run ranking reports on their sites. This will help you narrow down your new keyword target list.
3) Set a Goal
The most important part of any SEO effort (or any marketing strategy, for that matter) is to set a clear goal before the start. The only way you can measure whether your efforts are successful is to not only know where you stand, but where you want to go. Determine if your primary focus is on ranking numbers, increased visits, conversions or other metrics. Knowing what you're trying to achieve is absolutely crucial.
4) Convert Goal to Benchmarks
Next, convert that goal into specific benchmarks. Just how many visits or conversions do you want to achieve and by what time? Do you want to increase your organic backlinks, or focus more on increasing the rankings of indexed pages? Is there a specific keyword or long tail phrase for which you'd like to rank highly and convert visitors into leads? You can set up many of these benchmarks in Google Analytics via Key Performance Indicators (KPI). From there you can continue to tweak your strategy to improve results. Which brings me to...
5) Track & Adjust
Next, it's time for the real reporting. Using your KPI and other benchmarks, establish a regular time for which you generate an SEO report, understanding just how you're doing and what the areas are in which you can still improve. This is where you hold your efforts accountable, making sure that you're not just shooting in the dark but strategically working toward achieving your goal.
Too many small businesses approach SEO with a "set it and forget it" attitude that will lead to disappointing results. It's important to have a plan that includes ongoing evaluation, adjustments and reporting because everyone is working to get on Google's first page. If you stop, your competitors might not - and back you go to page 2, 3, 4 or more.
But ultimately, SEO reporting is about more than just increasing your rank in Google or Bing. It's about understanding exactly what your goals are, then using and tracking specific methods toward getting to that goal. By using regular SEO reports, whether you're sharing them with your supervisor or simply using them for your own good, you can ensure that what you're doing is actually working.
For more information on how to obtain specific SEO reports and develop goals for your business, don't hesitate to contact Alternative Advertising!