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November 23, 2015

4 Data Metrics to Help Your SEO Skyrocket

SEO Targeting
Photo Credit: Augur Marketing via flickr

Data measurement is crucial for SEO success. Without the proper metrics, a business owner will never truly understand how a site is performing, let alone how to improve it. As technology continues to become more advanced, so does the data that people have access to. The issue then becomes sifting through the information to determine which points are useful, and which are essentially worthless. Since every business is different, this is a personal decision for all business owners.

SEO experts track a myriad of different data points such as rankings, links, referrals, and more to gain a clear awareness of how well a site is operating. This, of course, in tandem, helps to map out the next phase of a client’s ranking strategy. If you don’t use a SEO firm, you still have access to the same data and can do it yourself; it just takes a bit of education and analysis.

While each business is unique and has various metrics that matter most to them, there are certain data metrics that are universal and should be analyzed by all. Here is the most critical data to be studied for obtaining increased SEO rankings:

Data Point 1: Shares of Referring Visits

Referring visits show how visitors ultimately found your site. It is vital to keep track of where these leads come from to gain leverage over traffic acquisition efforts. Each month, record contributions of each source for your site, including:

  • Direct Traffic: This refers to traffic received from bookmarks, typing in the URL directly, e-mail links without tracking codes, etc.
  • Search Traffic: This comes from search queries conducted in any major or minor search engine that ultimately led a person to your site.
  • Referral Traffic: This is derived from branding campaign links, promotional materials, trackable e-mails, or links across the Web.

Possessing this information is vital because the percentages and exact numbers will assist in identifying weaknesses and provide a basis for comparison over time. Use this data to track your marketing efforts and refine your acquisition plan for increased SEO benefits.

Data Point 2: Search Engine Referrals

In the United States, three major search engines (Google, Bing, and Yahoo) make up 95 percent of all search traffic. For most other countries, more than 80% of search traffic comes strictly from Google. Measuring how much of your traffic each of these engines sends your way is useful for several reasons:

  • It allows you to compare the volume contributed from each engine in correlation with its market share
  • It will provide key insights if your site experiences a drop; this is fundamental information for diagnosing the issue. If all engines drop equally, you can likely attribute the issue to accessibility. If it is only Google that sinks, you have likely been penalized and will need to dig deeper into updates like Panda and Penguin to see where the infraction occurred.
  • Certain SEO efforts will have a greater impact than others. On Google, gaining specific anchor text links from various domains have more effect than on other engines. Identifying certain tactics that work best on certain engines will help you to focus your efforts.

Data Point 3: Referrals by Terms and Phrases

Keywords always have been a critical factor to SEO. These are highly important to keep track of to gauge performance, identify terms that reign in significant volumes of traffic, and analyze new trends in keyword appeal.

Over the past 15 years, search traffic across the globe has risen consistently so to see a drop in referral quantity can be concerning. Check your keywords to determine if there has been a recent decline or if there is an issue with seasonal keywords – those that are most heavily used during certain times of the year. Your keyword strategy will most likely need to be dynamic; knowing exactly how your customers are searching for you is integral, and this often changes over time. Many businesses make the mistake of sticking with antiquated keywords, so don’t let this happen to you.

Data Point 4: Conversion Rates by Search Query

Conversions are the ultimate goal of any business; that is the entire point of the SEO game. Few metrics matter as much as conversions do. Your analytics tool will tell you what page a visitor lands on after conducting a search query; this will allow you to focus your efforts on optimizing those pages for a prime user experience and guide visitors through the conversion funnel to maximize potential.

The most valuable element to this, however, is establishing the keywords that consistently send visitors to your site that convert. This will allow you to focus your energy on ranking for these words to magnify your conversion capabilities. But this should only be the beginning of your keyword phrase referral study; dig deeper to uncover applicable data on how the conversation process matures throughout a consumer’s visit to your site.

Data and metrics are the key to understanding your SEO efforts and optimizations. If you are not tracking this vital informational, you have no way of knowing what is and is not working. By establishing a tracking schedule and making mindful decisions to elevate each metric over time, you have an astronomically better chance at SEO success.

What is the most valuable data point you track for your website?


Conscious online marketer, web executive, and multi-faceted writer Tina Courtney has been creating and fostering online innovations since 1996. Tina has assisted many clients in maximizing online production and marketing efforts, and is a staff writer for SiteProNews, one of the Web’s foremost webmaster and tech news blogs. She’s produced and marketed innovative content for major players like Disney and JDate, as well as boutique startups galore, with fortes including social media, SEO, influencer marketing, community management, lead generation, and project management. Tina is also a certified Reiki practitioner, herbalist, and accomplished life coach.  Learn more on LinkedIn, Facebook and Google+.

37 Responses to “4 Data Metrics to Help Your SEO Skyrocket

    avatar Pankaj says:

    How many keywords can I add?

    Is it better to write main keywords or to expand the variety of the keywords?

    avatar Jim Angel says:

    Google says to use keywords synonyms.

    avatar Maggy says:

    Helpful article to track the traffic coming to website. Thanks.

    Thanks so much, for sharing

    For me data metrics are entirely new thing to understand, thanks for such a valuable information

    avatar Kirby Inwood says:

    Would you please translate all that gibberish into English?
    Stringing together a bunch of buzz words like this is not a substitute for thinking.

    avatar John Smith says:

    You could make EXACTLY the same request without the insults. Or are you just a petulant jerk?

    Nice post regarding traffic to your site.

    avatar Brainpulse says:

    Awesome! Thanks a lot for sharing this information.

    avatar Tony says:

    These Are Four Important Data Metrics Which Will Skyrocket Seo Campaigns In 2015 And Beyond ! Thanks For Sharing Useful Information !

    avatar Jim Angel says:

    As important as these metrics are to understand, more actual conversions occur when the user experience is highly successful. People relate well to examples and stories.

    More emphasis to crafting excellent examples of solutions will ultimately convert more customers who share similar needs and are apt to spread the word about your information.

    avatar M.J. Plebon says:

    What tools would you recommend that can help track the data you outlined in your post? Great info BTW.

    Very important metrics to follow!

    avatar @ComputechTS says:

    Thank you for the comprehensive article. there is a myriad of different data types to consider, and an equally impressive amount of tools to use to track the data.

    I think the best method of reaching goals is to focus on creating quality backlinks and quality content that generates steady (albeit static) visitor traffic. This traffic doesn’t necessarily have to convert (and usually won’t), however, it drives the overall traffic metric up, which in turn drives up search engine rankings through assumed relevance. Those relevance rankings give the pages better position for key terms, which in turn pushes the traffic that does convert.

    It’s a bit of a dance and requires effort, but it works. Know your niche, know your audience. If the content is good (and niche relevant), then the visitors will come, and so will the rankings needed to generate actual conversion traffic. At the very least, even if you don’t convert immediate traffic, you have published quality content, which does better in the long run than SPAM backlinks or keyword stuffing will ever do.

    avatar John Chablo says:

    Always worth reading Tinas articles.
    Analytics is such a fantastic tool and free!
    So use it!

    Really nice post. I loved it! All my problems solved!

    avatar SEO Greece says:

    IMO Referrals by Terms and Phrases is the most important metric because you can optimize then your website for keywords that you didn’t know.

    seems very difficult for the above data. but I will try to make a decision

    avatar Aventura12 says:

    Thanks for sharing a great article. Your all points are very important and best for all. Use all given points along-with the fresh and unique content.

    Great inputs Tina, you’ve summarized all the most important traffic metrics, keep it up!

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    Nice post. I was checking continuously this blog and I am impressed!

    Its really great information, Thank you sir……….

    Great info! I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don’t know what to say except that I have.

    Your way of describing the whole thing in this paragraph is actually pleasant, every one be able to effortlessly know it, Thanks a lot……….

    avatar Kinindia says:

    I am ranking #1 because of referral and direct traffic..

    avatar Androfern says:

    Thanks so much, for sharing

    I value the article really looking forward to read more, Keep writing……………

    avatar ts epass says:

    Thank you so much for sharing this great blog.Very inspiring and helpful too.Hope you continue to share more of your ideas. on rajuginne

    avatar EPASS status says:

    Great info! I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don’t know what to say except that I have.

    I am ranking #1 because of referral and direct traffic..

    Great info! I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment

    avatar Sweety says:

    Thank you so much for sharing this great blog

    This is really an best post man.

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