How to monitor SEO Performance with metrics that matter

Deb Mukherjee

by Deb Mukherjee · Updated Oct 20, 2021

What can be measured — can be managed and improved!

If you’re looking to have visitors flock to your website, then monitoring your SEO performance; every step of the way — is a must.

53% of all website traffic comes from organic search alone - the payoff in effectively measuring and improving your SEO performance is nothing short of rewarding!

In this article, we’ll give you the lowdown on how you can monitor your SEO performance like a pro.

Why measure your SEO performance?

To get things going, let’s understand this better with the help of some quick questions:

  • How effective is your SEO strategy?
  • How high does your content rank in search results?
  • How can you improve the organic search traffic to your website?
  • Are your SEO efforts paying off? How can you even tell?

To be able to answer these questions, and to ensure that you’re not spending time and money on something that is not producing the desired ROI — you need to be tracking the right SEO performance metrics.

As per reports, almost 60% of users click only the top 3 search results — the competition is fierce, and getting your webpage to rank high in the search results is paramount to driving organic traffic.

Measuring your SEO metrics can no longer be an afterthought but it must be a priority.

Think about it this way: If you’re going to be investing all that time and money in preparing and executing an extensive SEO plan, then you want to be sure that your efforts are worth the investment.

What you need to do is to monitor and track SEO Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to ensure that you’re on your way to SEO success!

SEO KPIs will help you drill down your SEO campaigns and determine how successful they are.

Where to begin SEO performance tracking?

Tools like Google Analytics offer a treasure trove of data. You can measure any part of your SEO strategy.

The problem? With so much data at hand, what should you be tracking and what insight can you derive from it?

We’ve got this covered for you — we are going to dive into the important metrics that you need to be looking at. Let’s get right to it…

9 metrics that you can use to monitor your SEO performance

When it comes to measuring your SEO performance, along with many SEO monitoring dashboards and tools, you may also have set up one too many goals.

What’s important is to establish one primary end goal. The ultimate goal that you look to achieve is entirely dependent on your business objective or customer needs.

Once you have arrived at the ultimate goal for your SEO strategy, you can then start tracking down the below SEO KPIs and ensure that you’re on the road to topping the search engine rankings:

Crawlability and keyword indexing

While keywords play a crucial role in search engine rankings, ensuring that your web pages get crawled and indexed is essential for you to show up in search results.

First things first, ensure that all your relevant pages are being indexed — by doing this, you will get to know if your webpages are crawlable by search engines like Google or if you’re accidentally blocking them.

In order to ensure that your primary pages are indexed and can be found by search engines, try looking up "site:yourdomain.com" in Google. You will then get to see all the pages that have been indexed for the site that you searched for.

  • Ranking for new pages: Once your site has been indexed, you also need to get any new page that you add, indexed as well. The task at hand? You need Google to recognize any updates or additions that you make to your site and rank new pages and keywords accordingly.

  • Track better on Google Search Console: The Index Coverage report on Google Search Console is a great SEO tool to monitor the number of pages that Google has crawled. You can do a quick check to see if your SEO strategy game is strong by checking the number of new pages that Google has crawled in the last 90 days.

Organic traffic

Organic search traffic is a great indicator of how successful your SEO strategy is. It’s important to keep a tab on the visibility and traffic that you get from search engine results. When users click on a search result and arrive at your webpage, they are coming in search of something specific. This directly boils down to the impact of your SEO efforts.

You can easily track your traffic flow and be alerted about drops in traffic using Google Analytics. In order to account for the spike or drop in rankings, you will have to factor in other elements like market conditions, competition, audience, your content, your site’s domain authority, among other things.

analytics-ss

On Google Analytics, you get to view the traffic from organic search under ‘Channels’ in the Acquisition Tab.

Keyword ranking

Keyword ranking is one of the top SEO metrics that is used to measure SEO performance. A keyword can just be a single word or at times a phrase. You need to optimize your content and your web pages to rank high on search engine results for a set of desired keywords.

While your rankings don’t always equate to traffic, keeping an eye on your keyword rankings will help you understand your position in the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) and plan out ways in which you can climb up the ranks.

SERP Inbox is a Dashword tool that is widely used to track keyword rankings on Google. You can add your domain and keywords on this tool and you will receive a daily report via email with your keyword rankings.

serpinbox

SERP visibility

Search engine visibility is all about how many people see your page on the SERP. Let’s backtrack a bit here to understand this better; every time a user enters a search query, Google pulls up a search engine results page based on the query.

This SERP will include organic results, paid ads, and even a few SERP features like featured snippets, image packs, or knowledge panels. It’s important to monitor your position in SERPs on both a national and local level and across mobile and desktop devices for your domain, subdomain, or any subfolder that you create. You can use SERMrush’s Position Tracking tool for this purpose.

semrush-position-tracking

CTR on Google SERPs

Moving on to the Click-through Rate (CTR) - this indicates the percentage of site visitors that clicked on your page from the SERP. Some of the most top-tanked pages on Google have a CTR of 18.2%.

click-through-rate

Source: FirstSiteGuide

You’ll be able to monitor your site’s CTR on Google Search Console. Now, if you’ve been tracking a low CTR of late — then it’s time to go back and revise your title tags, meta descriptions, and your URLs. You may also want to optimize your content to appear in featured snippets that matter to your business. Improving your keyword ranking will also help in getting a higher CTR.

Website authority

Website authority is an SEO metric where you measure how well your domain ranks in the search engines. A higher DA or Domain Authority score indicates a better ranking and a lower domain authority score could mean that there you’re driving in less traffic and are falling back in the search result rankings. You can use the Ahrefs website authority checker to monitor your domain authority score.

ahrefs-authority-checker

Another trusted indicator of your SEO success is your backlinks profile. Backlinks are considered to be one of the top-ranking factors for your website. SEMRush’s Backlink Analytics is a widely used SEO tool to conduct deep link analysis of your own domain and that of your competitors’.

Tracking your backlinks profile will help you fine-tune your link-building strategies and identify potential backlink opportunities that you can leverage. DR or Domain Rating is another important ranking factor that reveals how strong your domain’s backlinks profile is.

Page speed

Page speed is an important SEO metric to not only keep your website ranking and traffic in check but tracking this metric will also help in boosting conversions and reducing the bounce rates. The loading time of a webpage or the Largest Contentful Paint (LCP), is one of the 3 Core Web Vitals (CWV) that is used to measure a website’s user experience score. It’s important to track how fast your site loads on mobile and if there are any heavy elements like images that can be further compressed to increase the page speed.

You can use Google’s PageSpeed Insights to monitor how fast your website loads.

google-pagespeed-insights

Conversion rate

While traffic and clicks are crucial, getting your customers to convert on your webpage tops the charts.

One of the primary goals of your website is to boost your conversions and eventually increase your sales. The conversion rate directly measures the effect of SEO strategies on your business sales.

If you’re looking to turn your site visitors into customers, then you need to optimize your content to the fullest.

You can set up custom goals on Google Analytics to track your conversions. To get started, you can use one of their existing templates and start tracking users who subscribe to a newsletter, read an article, or watch a video.

Start tracking your SEO performance today!

That was a quick round-up of the most important SEO metrics along with a few smart SEO tools to track them. SEO monitoring is an ongoing process that doesn’t end even when you find your way right on top of the rankings.

If you’re looking to cut through the noise and rank high for your content, then sign up for free on Dashword and experience the ease of writing content that ranks.