Now that Google seems to be artificially adjusting the PageRank of certain sites, we have one more reason to ignore it as a useful SEO key performance indicator. So what should we use to measure the success of our SEO projects? Below, I’ve listed the 7 SEO KPI’s that I track for my sites.
- Unique keywords: By tracking the number of unique keywords your site is found for, you’ll see a global, birds eye view of how well your site is doing with the long tails. Sure, you want to be found for the important, high volume terms as well, but a healthy site will rank organically for a great diversity of keywords.
- Organic Visits Per Page: Every page on your site should target a few keywords and draw in traffic for those terms. In other words, what percent of your total unique pages are doing a good job of bringing traffic? If you have 1000 pages, and only 200 unique keyword visits, you’ve got some issues that need to be addressed.
- Conversion Rate Per Keyword: It’s extremely important to know which keywords outperform others. As a search marketer, your time is very limited. Therefore, you must focus on the terms which return decent ROI.
- Pages Indexed: The number of pages your site indexed has indexed by Google and Yahoo can give you a rough metric of your site’s crawl-ability. If you find that the number of actual pages you have is much greater than the number of indexed pages, you may have issues with navigation or duplicate content. To view your indexed pages, simply use the “site:” command on Google or Yahoo (e.g. site:www.yoursite.com).
- Yahoo Backlinks: Unlike Google, Yahoo actually shows you the approximate number of back links pointing to your site by using the link: command.
- Google Backlinks: Unfortunately, the Google link: command is worthless. In order to see an approximate, although likely outdated count of your external links, login to your Google Webmaster Central account.
- SERP Rankings for High Volume Keywords: Because web users are becoming more sophisticated and less predictable in their searching habits, I would caution about worrying too much about high volume keywords. However, it’s still important to monitor these keyword positions. SEO software such as WebCEO or WebPositionGold are great timesaver tools.
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