Joanne asks, “What are the top data analytics you should be looking at to help with SEO performance?”
In this video, Joanne wants to know what data analytics are important to measure for SEO performance. I believe there are five essential sets of numbers that tell the story of your SEO performance and can help you diagnose and improve your SEO program. The first is organic impressions, which measures how often your website appears in searches. The second is organic clicks, which tracks how many times a user clicks on your website from a search result. The third is organic search traffic, which measures how much traffic you are getting from organic search. The fourth is organic session duration, which shows how long users spend on your site from an organic search. And finally, conversions, which tells you how many conversions you have from organic search. These five metrics can help you identify what’s working and what’s not, and fix any issues quickly. If you want to get more advanced, you can conduct sophisticated statistical tests to see which metrics correlate most strongly with conversions. Thanks for watching, and don’t forget to hit that subscribe button for more videos like this.
Can’t see anything? Watch it on YouTube here.
Listen to the audio here:
- Got a question for You Ask, I'll Answer? Submit it here!
- Subscribe to my weekly newsletter for more useful marketing tips.
- Subscribe to Inbox Insights, the Trust Insights newsletter for weekly fresh takes and data.
- Find older episodes of You Ask, I Answer on my YouTube channel.
- Need help with your company's data and analytics? Let me know!
- Join my free Slack group for marketers interested in analytics!
What follows is an AI-generated transcript. The transcript may contain errors and is not a substitute for watching the video.
In today’s episode, Joanne asks, what are the top data analytics you should be looking at to help with SEO performance? So what do we measure? How do we measure SEO? intelligently? What are the things that we should be looking at? There’s five sets of numbers that I think, tell a story tell a good story about SEO in a way that we can use to diagnose not only what’s happening with our SEO program, but maybe what what’s going wrong, and some of them can even provide advanced warning, but things are not going our way.
No surprise, it follows the basic customer journey.
Right? So your first measure of SEO, organic impressions, this is something you measure in like Bing Webmaster Tools, Google Search Console, how often are you showing up in searches? Right? If on a per turn basis? How often is your your website being shown by Google to users say, hey, Google thinks that for whatever term that the user typed in, you’re a good fit for this term.
So we’re going to show your website somewhere, you know, on the top 500 results.
And obviously, you know, things like ranking positions and stuffs do matter to some degree, but just that number alone, how much you showing up in search, that’s number one, that’s sort of your very top of your SEO funnel.
Because if you’re not showing up at all in search, guess what, you’re not going to get any business out of search.
Right? That’s, that’s number one.
Number two, are the number of organic search clicks.
And again, this comes from tools like Bing Webmaster Tools, and Google Search Console.
When your site shows up, in a search result, it’s kind of like a pay per click ad, almost right? Just paying for it.
How many times a person clicks on your listing and a search listing? is an effective measure of saying, How many times does the human agree with Google, that this result is relevant? If you type in Chris Penn, but you’re really looking for the the late Chris Penn, the actor, and you see my site and listing, you’re not going to click on it, because you’ll, it’ll say, marketing, keynote speaker, Christopher Penn, and that’s not who I was looking for, I was looking for the guy in Reservoir Dogs.
So for that search, that result would not be relevant, and you wouldn’t get the click.
If on the other hand, you search for marketing expert, Chris Penn, and you see my website, you’re gonna click on it, because that aligns with what you were looking for.
So your second measure in SEO is organic clicks.
How many times? Does the human agree with the search engine? that your site is the right choice? The answer to their question? And again, that’s one of those things where if the number is zero, you’re in trouble.
Number three, and this should be pretty obvious.
organic search traffic on your website.
How much? Or traffic? Are you getting from organic search on your website? Simple, simple measure? Again, if the answer is zero, SEO is not doing anything for you.
So you want to keep an eye on that number.
How much actual traffic are you getting? This is more complex than it looks sometimes.
Because there are plenty of searches for which Google in particular will show an exact answer in let you know there are answer box results that doesn’t require a click right? If someone types in Trust Insights, hours of operation, right, it will spit the answer out on the on the website and on right and Google and no, you don’t have to click, there’s no reason to click because the answer is right there.
But you still want to keep an eye on your organic traffic and should still generally not be going down into the right.
And this one is probably the one that I think I see least used organic session duration.
How long does a user from organic search spend with you how much time they spend with you during that visit? This is important because again, if somebody clicks through, maybe they see that that snippet that preview and they click on the listing.
If they spent two seconds, like they read the first half, you know, two sentences on the page.
And then boom, they’re out.
They didn’t they didn’t see value in what you had to offer.
If they come in and they spend like 22 minutes on your site in that session from organic search.
Not only did they find what they were looking for, but they found a bunch of other stuff they were looking for too.
And that’s a good thing.
That’s a great thing you want that you want.
People will come into your site and go wow, it’s like a buffet.
I get this so much here that I want.
So organic search session duration is I think an important number and the fifth and final one.
conversions, right? How many conversions have organic search somewhere in the conversion journey? Maybe it wasn’t the last thing somebody but was in there, it helped it was part of the journey.
If the answer to this number is zero, then organic search isn’t doing anything for you.
Right so Whatever attribution model you’re using, make sure that organic search is in there that SEO is that’s how you know SEO is working, because it’s helping convert, because it means that you found the right person to the right place at the right time that they wanted to do the thing.
So those are the five measures that I like.
And the reason I like them is because they tell a story from does Google or the search engine think you’re you’re relevant? Does the user agree? When the does the user click through? Does the user spend time with you? After clicking through? Does the user do something of value to you, that tells it nice story.
That’s very linear from a data perspective.
And if you see one of those areas go off the rails, the number just goes to zero.
You know what to fix.
That’s the important part, right? If organic impressions go to zero, it means Google doesn’t think you’re relevant anymore.
So you need to spend some time optimizing on site and off site.
If you’re not getting clicks, but you’re getting impressions.
That means that things like your, your pages appearance and organic search, it’s not answering people’s questions, right, they look at the list and go that doesn’t seem relevant to me, and they don’t click on it.
You can tune that to some degree, organic traffic, if if people are clicking, are seeing on the results.
That organic traffic number is one that tells you Yeah, they were getting traffic from this search engine to this search engine.
There are some customers, some clients I’ve seen, they get more of their traffic from like Bing, or Yahoo, and Google, as long as that traffic is converting, that’s good to know.
Number four, if people are not spending time with you, your content sucks.
There’s no There’s no way to sugarcoat that, right? If they if people don’t spend time with you, it’s because they don’t value you.
They don’t see what’s in it for them in your content.
And finally, if there’s no conversions, then you’re not offering the right things.
Assuming you did a good job with the first four stages, your offer is broken, right? Your offer is not appealing.
What whatever the offer is download eBooks, subscribe to the newsletter, buy a shirt, whatever.
It’s not aligned with what people are there for.
So those would be the measures that I recommend for SEO, if you’re going to be measuring SEO.
I like those measures.
I like them, because they tell you what’s wrong.
They tell you how to fix it.
And they’re easy.
They’re easy to look at one dashboard go, Okay, this is up, this is down, this is up, this is down.
And you can get started fixing things really quickly.
There are tons of other measures and metrics that you can look at and search.
And there’s two ways to address those.
I like this for people just to get them started, you know, impressions, clicks, traffic, session duration and conversions.
If you want to get fancy, you take your conversions, and you take all the SEO metrics you have and you do a very sophisticated statistical test or regression analysis to see which SEO metrics have the highest correlation to the outcome conversions that you care about.
Maybe some of these measures don’t matter for your site, maybe other ones do.
I would encourage you to do that.
If you’re if you find that you’re not able to get the needle to move after looking at these these numbers.
That’s but that’s a more advanced technique.
It’s a tougher technique to use for a lot of companies.
Start with these.
Really good question.
Really good question.
Thanks for asking.
If you’d like this video, go ahead and hit that subscribe button.
You might also enjoy:
- How to Set Your Public Speaking Fee
- You Ask, I Answer: Google Tag Manager and Google Analytics Integration?
- What Content Marketing Analytics Really Measures
- B2B Email Marketers: Stop Blocking Personal Emails
- How I Think About NFTs
Want to read more like this from Christopher Penn? Get updates here:
Get your copy of AI For Marketers