Tuesday, July 23

How to Measure Success and ROI for SEO?

The digital boom seen in the last few years is boundless.

For every information, we rely on our trusty google to give the right answers. From products to services, the number of customers looking up information on search engines is skyrocketing.

It is natural for any business to position themselves right to grab their ideal customer’s eyeballs.

How does one achieve it?

One solution is through Search engine optimization [SEO]. There is a cut-throat competition to be ranked high in the first engine and reaching the top position is complicated.

A recent study revealed that SEO-related expenditure was worth $80 million in 2020.

SEO is a gradual process and the results cannot be seen instantaneously. It takes months to plan, execute and see the outcome. It is a laborious task and one of the difficulties with SEO is to measure its success.

How do we measure the success of SEO? What is the ROI on it? We will help you find answers to these questions.

Key factors that play in the success of SEO strategy. 

Ranking high

One of the basic outcomes of a successful SEO strategy is ranking on Google’s first page. It is a dream of every business and a successful SEO will help you achieve this. Find the right keywords and search volumes. 

Tracking keyword-based rankings month-on-month and their average position will give you a clear picture of the direction your SEO is heading. 

Increasing Leads

The primary goal for a business is to get qualified leads. Noting the number of leads generated defines the quality of the SEO. One can track the monthly leads generated in a Google Analytics account. Any type of business will be able to benefit from SEO and the increased exposure it brings. Whether it is for an e-commerce business or a local brick-and-mortar store. As for the latter, you will want to consult local SEO services to make sure you reach the individuals searching and living in your area.

Traffic quality

Traffic to your website reflects the audience’s reach. Unless you have positioned in the first search page result, driving the desired traffic is hard. Measure the quality of traffic by keeping an eye out for the following metrics:

How many new users are visiting the website?

An increase in new users signifies the new set of people visiting your website through various mediums who could be your potential leads.

What is the organic session duration?

The amount spent by a user on the website directly translates to the traffic to the website. If the period is less, then you need to improve on your strategy to retain their attention and increase the traffic.

What is the average page depth?

The average number of pages viewed per session gives a clear indication of the content consumed. More page clicks indicate your content is well structured and your strategy is successful.

What is the average session duration?

The amount of time spent on the website should be higher as Google considers this as one of the major ranking factors. If the user likes your content, relevancy and the overall user experience is satisfactory, then the user will browse through your website in more depth.

What is the Bounce rate?

If the interaction with your website pages is low, then maybe your website content is not resonating with your ideal customer. The bounce rate should be lowered by providing in-depth enriching user-relevant content. 

Investing in SEO is crucial if the goal is to stay in business for years to come. But we also need to be mindful of how and where we are investing in SEO. And are we getting results from them? Measuring SEO’s return on investment [ROI] helps put this into perspective.

ROI is a fundamental metric and the thumb rule for any investment is to always have a routine check on the yields of investment done. Here’s the ROI solution for your investment.

How to calculate SEO ROI?

Before we understand how to calculate ROI, we need to know what SEO ROI is. It is a calculation that measures and analyses the investment returns done for Search Engine optimization. 

The ROI can be calculated by finding the difference in gain from investment and the cost of an investment divided by the cost of investment.

By following these simple steps, know your ROI of SEO:

-Conversion tracking system

The first one needs to set up conversion tracking in Google Analytics. By tracking conversions, you will get a fair idea of the total revenue derived from the website. But the underlying factor for this would be if the sales are happening directly on the site. 

One can track their revenue by setting up an e-commerce tracking system as per Google’s instructions.

Lead-based conversion tracking

Some businesses may not make sales directly on websites and estimating total revenue can be a little tricky but not impossible. The ROI solution for this is to track past sales data. 

Navigate to Admin-View-Goals in Analytics and create specific goals for each on-site conversion. 

For specific goals, assign an estimated value. Though the value may not be exact, one can get a brief idea about the total revenue generated.

-Calculate SEO ROI

After you have the revenue derived from SEO Strategy for a particular frame of time, you can compare the total amount invested and ROI obtained in that period. 

The common formula used is : (Gain from Investment – Cost of Investment) / Cost of Investment).

Few measure their ROI solution based on net profit in place of total revenue generated. 

Based on individual preference, ROI can be estimated. If you want your numbers to be reflected in terms of percentage, multiply the value obtained into 100.

For example:

Gain from Investment: $504,087

Cost of Investment: $8,000

(Gain from Investment – Cost of Investment) / Cost of Investment

(504,087 – 8,000) / 8,000

496,087 / 8,000

62.01 *100


The company’s ROI is more than 6000%

One can also calculate anticipated ROI which is done when one is pitching to a new client. But before calculating, one should know the monthly visits, the conversion rate of the website, and order value for the website.

Wrapping Up

A note to keep in mind is an SEO campaign must anticipate negative ROI initially. Hence the best time to report ROI to the client is when the ROI turns positive even if the value is as small as 10%. 

Start with a small percentage and then over time gradually work towards larger goals.

Guest blogger
Robb Fahrion is a Co-Founder and Partner of Flying V Group. He is passionate about helping businesses grow using the power of the internet. Robb graduated from Chapman University in Orange, CA and currently resides in Costa Mesa, CA. Robb enjoys writing about digital marketing, helping his clients turn their dreams into reality, and he is a HUGE Mike Trout fan.

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