An effective search engine optimisation strategy plays a crucial role in the success of any online business. To be able to evaluate, tweak and refine your SEO strategy, you’ve got to keep a close eye on your key performance indicators (KPIs).
KPIs are the metrics that provide valuable insights into the progress of your SEO efforts and help you make data-driven changes. In this post, we’ll explore 10 KPIs you should measure, explaining why they are important and how to track them.
Organic traffic – One of the core purposes of SEO is to move sites higher up SERPs to increase the organic traffic to that site. If you’re not tracking the volume of your organic traffic, you’ll have no idea if your strategy is helping to improve this. The more visitors to your site, the more chance of conversions. Tools like Google Analytics can help track this, breaking it down by which page gets the most visits and allowing you to improve.
Keyword rankings – Monitoring your keyword rankings helps you to understand how effective your optimisation efforts are. This shows you how well your website performs for specific search queries. Tools like SEMrush or Ahrefs will track these for you, as well as allow you to continually refine your keyword research and content strategy for the best-performing keywords.
Click-through rate (CTR) – CTR is the number of clicks to your site from a search result, divided by the number of impressions (or times it’s been viewed on the SERP). A high CTR, which you can track through Google Search Console, suggests that your meta titles and descriptions are performing well, as they’re attracting users to your site based on what they’ve searched for.
Conversion rate – As mentioned earlier, organic traffic to your site is great, but conversions are what every business is looking for. Whether that is a newsletter sign-up, a purchase from an online shop or something else, tracking conversions allows you to see how well your website meets user expectations. Google Analytics can show you which pages are converting customers and which need improvement.
Bounce rate – Bounce rate is all about the percentage of site visitors who leave after looking at only one page. Most often, although not always, you ideally want a low bounce rate because that means users stay on your site longer, meaning your page content and user experience (UX) match their needs.
Backlink profile – Backlinks are critical for the E-E-A-T of your site, and link building should be a large part of a successful SEO strategy, so it’s important to track both the quantity and the quality of these links. Tools like Moz can help with this, showing you metrics like domain authority that can help you focus your link-building efforts on sites that will boost your rankings.
Page load time – All web users know a slow-loading site is an instant turn-off. Keeping visitors on your page means the UX has to be good, which includes the time it takes for pages to load, and load properly. This is why Google uses it as a factor when ranking websites. Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool can help you get an overview of your site’s performance in this area.
Mobile responsiveness – Mobile-friendly websites are also important to Google, meaning your site needs to be optimised for mobile users as well as those on desktop. Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test can help you assess and improve your website’s mobile compatibility.
User engagement – Similar to bounce rate, this helps to monitor other on-page engagement metrics, including average time on page, session duration, and pages per session. These show how users interact with your site and its content, which can help you tweak your pages and content strategy. After all, content is one of the most important factors in gaining top organic rankings.
Return on Investment (ROI) – Finally, the success of your SEO efforts should be measured by the overall return on investment, taking into account the investment in your SEO strategy and what revenue has been generated from these efforts.