A Beginner's Guide to SEO Tracking for Improved Ranking

Have you ever wondered how well your website performs in search engine results? Are you struggling for a better website ranking? One of the most fundamental aspects of optimizing your website for search engines is tracking your progress through SEO tracking.

If your answers to these questions were “no,” keep reading not to lag behind the competition. Keep on exploring the basis of SEO ranking and optimal optimization. 

SEO tracking allows you to measure the effectiveness of your SEO strategy and make data-driven decisions to improve your website’s Google ranking

Through analysis, you are powered by the information on what works and what doesn’t in your SEO strategy and adjust your SEO tactics.

In this beginner’s guide to SEO tracking, we’ll explore the basic metrics you should be tracking, how-tos, and the use of the data to improve your website’s ranking. Whether you’re new to SEO or looking to improve your optimization efforts, this article will provide you with the knowledge to succeed.  

What are the most important metrics in SEO tracking?

When it comes to measuring your website’s SEO performance, several metrics should be in focus. These include:

Visitor Engagement

You put so much effort into optimization. Have you ever thought to check how engaged visitors are with your website?

Engagement refers to how well your website’s content resonates with your audience and keeps them interested. The effects of high engagement are all your SEO strategy goes after – increased time spent on a page, more pages per visit, and increased conversions.

Engagement is measured through social shares, comments, and time spent on the page (which we will get to later). Engagement analysis will help identify the content types that get the hype of your audience. 

The tools you will need to measure each engagement metric are the following:

  • Social shares: You can track the times your content is shared on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn using tools like BuzzSumo, Ahrefs, or SEMrush. 
  • Comments: You can track the number of comments on your blog posts or articles using comment plugins like Disqus or WordPress Comment System.
  • Time spent on page: You can track how much visitors spend on each page of your website using web analytics tools like Google Analytics. 

A person measuring and analyzing website metrics.

Time Spent on Page

How long visitors spend on each page of your website is known as the time spent on the page. This metric is connected to the previous one, engagement. It indicates your content’s engagement and whether it provides value to your visitors.

Different pages get different amounts of attention. One is more engaging than the other. One resonated with your audience more than the other. Your duty is to find which one is what. 

Statistics show that websites with the best performance have recorded an 11% conversion rate.

For that, here are the traditional methods to measure the time spent on page:

  • Google Analytics: This metric can be found under the Behavior > Site Content > All Pages section of Google Analytics.
  • Scroll depth tracking: By tracking how far visitors scroll down each page of your website, you can estimate how much time they spend on each page. Tools like Scroll Depth and Crazy Egg offer scroll-tracking features that can help you measure time spent on a page.
  • Video tracking: If your website includes videos, you can track the time visitors spend watching each video to estimate their total time spent on page. Platforms like YouTube and Vimeo provide video analytics that can help you measure video engagement metrics.
  • Heatmaps: By analyzing your website heatmaps, you can estimate how much time visitors spend on each page section. Tools like Hotjar and Crazy Egg offer heat mapping features that help you visualize time spent on page metrics.

Conversion Rate

All your optimization activities aim to push the visitor towards a desired action. That is to say, conversion. You should track SEO  metrics, conversion rate measures the percentage who take a desired action – purchase, fill out a form, or subscribe to a newsletter. Whatever your goal is as a desired action. 

Conversion rates show the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns. The higher the percentage, the better. The website design quality, the content relevancy to your audience, and the ease of use of your website affect the conversion rate. You must aim to implement conversion-boosting techniques and keep track of their effectiveness.

You can count the conversion rate yourself by dividing the conversion number by the total number of visitors to your website and multiplying by 100 to get a percentage.

Other methods to measure this metric include:

  • Google Analytics: This metric can be found under the Conversions > Goals section of Google Analytics.
  • Ecommerce tracking: If your website includes an e-commerce platform, you can track the number of purchases made and calculate the conversion rate by dividing the number of purchases by the total number of visitors to your website.
  • Form tracking: If your website includes forms, you can track the number of form submissions and calculate the conversion rate by dividing the form submissions number by the total number of visitors to your website.
  • Call tracking: If your website includes phone numbers, you can track the number of calls made and calculate the conversion rate by dividing the number of calls by the total number of visitors.Conversion illustration showing visitors that come into the sales funnel.

With these measures at hand, you will know what and where should be changed to push your website visitors to higher conversion rates, that is, your CTA’s getting more clicks.

Bounce Rate 

Bouncing is one of the worst issues a website can bump into. Bounce rate is the percentage of visitors leaving your website once they view only one page. So, it measures how many leave your website shortly after the visit. 

The traditional bounce rate calculation is by dividing the single-page session number by the total number of sessions on your website and multiplying by 100 to get a percentage. For this metric, aim for a lower number. According to HubSpot, the average bounce rate is between 26% and 70%. The normal range varies between 26% and 40%.

Here is how and what means can help you find out the bounce rate:

  • Google Analytics: It will show the bounce rate of each website page. This metric can be found under the Behavior > Site Content > All Pages section of Google Analytics.
  • Pageviews per session: Visitors viewing multiple pages on your website can indicate that they are engaged and finding value in your content. You can calculate pageviews per session by dividing the total pageviews number by the total number of sessions on your website.
  • Exit rate: While bounce rate only measures the percentage of visitors who leave after viewing one page, exit rate measures the number of leaving visitor’s number. You can calculate the exit rate by dividing the number of exits from a page by the total number of page views.
  • User feedback: You can also gather feedback from visitors to understand why they are leaving your website and what improvements you can make to increase engagement and reduce bounce rate.

Now you are ready to minimize the bounce rate with the information gathered through these tools and techniques.

Search Traffic

Search traffic measures the number of visitors to your website who arrive through search engine results pages. It is important in SEO tracking since it indicates your SEO strategy’s effectiveness and your website’s visibility in search results. 

Here are some tools and methods to measure search traffic:

  • Google Analytics: This metric can be found under the Acquisition > Overview section of Google Analytics.
  • Google Search Console: Google Search Console provides more detailed information about the search queries and pages driving traffic to your website from Google search results.
  • Keyword ranking tools: A variety of tools are available that allow you to track your website’s ranking for specific keywords in search results.
  • Referral tracking: By tracking your website’s traffic source, you can identify which search engines drive the most traffic to you and which keywords perform well.

This SEO tracking metric gives you an idea of how to change your SEO strategy to gain traffic from organic searches. 

Final Thoughts

Do you still need to improve your SEO strategy? Are you still baffled if your current optimization practices and techniques are effective? With its crucial components, SEO tracking is the place to start your measurements.

When you track SEO metrics, you identify the content that resonates with your target audience, measure engagement, estimate how much time visitors spend on your website, and calculate the conversion rate. By using the right tools and measuring these metrics, you can make informed decisions about your SEO strategies and adjust them accordingly to achieve improved ranking and better performance on search engine results pages.

Ready to take your website’s SEO performance to the next level? Start to track SEO metrics, your website’s engagement, time spent on page, conversion rate, bounce rate, and other key metrics to gain insights and make data-driven decisions to improve your website’s ranking. 

Don’t let your competition get ahead – start optimizing your website today!

SEO Content Writer

Hripsime Manukyan

Hripsime is an avid SEO Content Writer at SayNine. She is self-driven and self-motivated to create content on topics in branding, marketing, and advertising. She has set off writing for SaaS websites and enjoys the process of creating authentic content. You can find her composing a piece, teaching English, practicing yoga, exploring nature, or delved in a book reading.