“I see clients repeatedly having to weigh the value of making this [SEO] change versus that change at the ticket level,” Jessica Bowman, enterprise SEO consultant and author of Executive SEO Playbook, said during her presentation at SMX Advanced.
While all SEO tasks are important for your site’s success, there is a key distinction to be made: those with the potential to increase revenue and those designed to prevent revenue decreases. SEOs who fail to differentiate these types of tasks frequently burn out and are unable to demonstrate how their work affects the bottom line.
In the same presentation, Avinash Conda, director of organic growth at Williams Sonoma Inc., said, “What usually happens is SEO managers fall into this whirlpool of trying to build a positive revenue case for all of the tickets they have.” “However, that should not be applied to all of the tickets.”
Marketers must prioritize those tickets/tasks that will provide the greatest SEO benefit. However, they must also decide which metrics should be reported.
According to Bowman and Conda, providing click-through-rate (CTR) stats for your brand’s target keywords is a simple yet powerful technique to demonstrate the value of your SEO work.
Data needed to measure SEO’s effect on CTR
Conda recommended that marketers first acquire a list of specific URLs to build up the template SEO influence on CTR.
“This may be a portion of the site, a subdirectory on the site, or just a list of URLs that are causing problems,” he explained. “The second [stage] is to obtain a list of keywords associated with these URLs.”
This fundamental data will act as the foundation for the spreadsheet’s formulae (see the template below).
SEOs could additionally consider adding the following data from Google Search Console (past 12 months) for the URL/keyword combinations to guarantee their teams obtain the CTR numbers they require:
- Total impressions.
- Average rank.
- Total clicks.
- Current CTR.
Once this information is included in the template, the algorithms will assist you in calculating CTR gains and forecasting fiscal-year growth from search. However, there are a few manual inputs marketers will need to include to guarantee it works properly:
- The list of URLs the SEO task will impact.
- The list of the keyword(s) each URL is targeting.
- Assumed CTR increases based on high- and low-ranking keywords.
- The average revenue per visit.
Using the CTR template
Marketers may use this template to estimate CTR, clicks, and revenue improvements. This is an excellent approach to linking URLs/keywords to the bottom line of your firm, allowing teams to better forecast the impact of their activities.
Source: Jessica Bowman and Avinash Conda
However, as most search marketers are aware, not every facet of SEO value can be quantified in this manner.
“A few jobs cannot be measured on a traffic level,” Conda explained. “An excellent example is site speed [tasks]… We know they’ll increase traffic since site speed is a major ranking element, but I don’t think we’re there yet in terms of developing [quantifiable] methodology.”
In such a case, attempting to estimate traffic using CTR may not be the most effective strategy. Conda advises measuring SEO profits using conversion rates in certain circumstances.
Portent research, for example, discovered that sites with 1-second load times had a conversion rate that was three times greater than ones that loaded in five seconds. Tying less quantitative SEO efforts to major indicators like these might help to demonstrate their worth.
Still, CTR is a strong statistic that SEOs may use to demonstrate the worth of their effort, especially if the data is made available through templates like Conda and Bowmen.
“This approach is a simple way to visualize the adjustments we’re making, which we know will have a direct influence on rankings,” Conda explained.
Watch Jessica Bowman and Avinash Conda’s full SMX Advanced presentation
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