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Important SEO Metrics in 2012

Discussion in 'Black Hat SEO' started by zee007, Aug 6, 2012.

  1. zee007

    zee007 Senior Member

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    Hello Blackhatters!

    I need some advice on how to measure the success of an SEO campaign.

    I'm having a debate with a colleague (we work in an SEO Agency) and he claims that the new SEO of 2012 is not about rankings anymore and more about traffic. Its hard to sell SEO services without the promise of ranking improvement. I'm of the belief that rankings are important along with traffic.

    Would anyone like to shed light of similar experiences in their SEO agencies/campaigns? What metric do you use to show results to your clients?

    Cheers
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2012
  2. ActionTaker

    ActionTaker Power Member

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    I'm not quite sure I understand you... Ranking -> traffic -> $$$...

    Metrics for what?
     
  3. zee007

    zee007 Senior Member

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    Yeah, I completely hear you. My colleague thinks rankings are not a deciding factor these days. The goal of this discussion is to make him understand that rankings are as important as ever.
     
  4. golface72

    golface72 Regular Member

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    I would argue that keyword research is now more important than ever. Proper keyword research + rankings = traffic.

    Rankings w/o keyword research probably means your targeting the wrong keywords and getting less traffic.
     
  5. jimbo87

    jimbo87 Regular Member

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    The most important KPI for any form of marketing, including SEO, has been and will always be the amount of conversions.

    The only thing a client needs to see, is that hiring you to manage their SEO provides a positive ROI.

    Obviously there is always the question they will ask themselves "would hiring another SEO provide a better ROI/more conversions". This is the one question you need to be able to answer to keep your client being "your" client.

    James
     
  6. aldis

    aldis Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    The main purpose of ranking a website for an specific keyword is to get traffic from search engines.

    SEO is just a technique of obtaining targeted Traffic, it's quite absurd to compare them since they're 2 totally different things.

    If your friend means that nowadays there are other methods to get decent traffic rather than just traffic from search engines, then I agree with him. Social Media Marketing (SMM) it's growing a lot and it's delivering massive amount of traffic these days. Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook and many others are the most relevant SMM's sources of traffic
     
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    Last edited: Aug 6, 2012
  7. zee007

    zee007 Senior Member

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    I completely understand that conversion (aka making money) is the key factor to any marketing effort. But conversions is more a part of CRO (conversion rate optimization) than SEO. So we are now drifting into a whole different topic. All the traffic in the world will not make a difference if the underlying business model of a website is flawed. SEO's main goal is to send a website traffic and help increase it on-line visibility (hence the name search engine optimization). Now whether the traffic converts or not is outside the realm of classic SEO.
     
  8. ija61

    ija61 Senior Member

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    For me ranking is still the most important factor.

    To convince your colleague about that make a test.

    Find a keyword and build 2 separate website that look the same and with the same content, or almost the same content.
    After this you start a seo campaign for website 1 that have as target to rank in searches and on the second website use robotxt to block all the search engine. And after this compare the result. And for this take an affiliate and at the end let's see how have more ROI.

    Is true that now more then ever social media/email marketing..etc start to have a important role but the benefit are much lower that the good old ranking.

    You can earn money without ranking but not as much as a #1 position can bring.

    In my opinion things look like this

    Ranking = traffic.
    A good website + traffic = ROI
    A good website + traffic +social media+email marketing= A better ROI
     
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  9. jimbo87

    jimbo87 Regular Member

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    I disagree that "whether the traffic converts or not is outside the realm of classic SEO" and feel that this attitude could lead to incorrect keyword research and potentially useless traffic.

    If you have been hired to just increase a particular ranking in a search engine and not have any input into keyword selection, then I would say that ranking would be the only metric you could possibly be measured by. If this was the case this conversation would never have been started.

    James

     
  10. Marcink99

    Marcink99 Power Member

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    Sorry op but this post makes no Sence. NOBODY CARES ABOUT THE RANK WE JUST WANT THE TRAFFIC THAT COMES WITH IT.

     
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  11. wannabie

    wannabie Elite Member

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    Bang on with this comment -

    This is what separates link builders to proper SEO's

    SEO's (proper ones) make business choices for a websites and for clients, they tell the client if something will work or not, they tend to be targeted on traffic while keeping an eye on rankings and sometimes targeted on conversions - This is something I do for the day job as a consultant and rank positions is rarely spoken about as a performance, although if some of the terms I rank sites on fall then it would be a case for a chat about it

    Link builders are link builders and you tend to target them on link and rank positions and they sit under the "do as you're told" side of seo
     
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    Last edited: Aug 7, 2012
  12. jimbo87

    jimbo87 Regular Member

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    Thanks for chiming in mate, I also do SEO full time on a consultancy basis. Rarely is the clients focus on a ranking being achieved rather than revenue created.

    I think that the differentiation between proper SEO's and link builders is an important one, good point.

    James

     
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  13. akazzz

    akazzz Regular Member

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    Revenue / Profit
    â–²
    Conversions
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    Traffic Methods <- This is where the topic is at
    (i.e: PPC, Forum advertising, SEO (Keyword Rankings, Links, etc), solo ads)


    So when your colleague relates traffic at the same level as SEO, its best to keep the conversation at something more general if not you might suck up too much misinformation.
     
  14. puneetas3

    puneetas3 Senior Member

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    The 2 important metrics are Bounce rate and CTR. These are based on on-site SEO and most users don't even try to optimize their site for this. They just go on for link building which can, no doubt, give them ranking. But would you really be happy being on number three and making less sales than the site at number 5.

    I have personally experience this with one of my eCommerce site. I checked the SEO reports in Google analytics and always analyze the CTR and landing page. What you want to check is see which pages are getting more CTR for a given search keyword (you have to analyze each of your keyword manually). And if it is not the main page/product page, but an inner page that you don't want to rank for that keyword, its natural that a visitor to that page will just exit (considering that it is not the page that you want the visitor to land for the given keyword, this results in high bounce rate).

    So now you know which inner page is ranking for a keyword that it shouldn't be. Just write up a content and description similar to it for your main page (that you want to rank for this keyword). Within some days Google will crawl and update the changes and you are more likely to see the new changes you did as search snippet. Now with the same search engine position and no external backlinks build, you just increased your CTR and reduce your bounce rate by landing the visitor to a useful page.

    Note: This is not a one off process. Google does not show search snippets according to you, so you have to monitor those thing and make regular small changes until your search snippet gets as closer as possible to the highest CTR page. Don't just copy the content and description from that page, unless you want penalty for duplicate content. Just create similar content with the keywords.

    Result: Even without creating backlinks, I improved my site CTR and bounce rate considerably from around 70% to below 58%. And Google liked high CTR and low bounce rate, so my site got pushed up considerably in SERPs without much baclinks (considering the top has around 10K backlinks, and mine still under 500).

    Conclusion: I fear your colleague is right. At the end of the day your client wants to get more sales and not just ranking (quality traffic).

    OR your colleague may be talking of PPC, paid campaigns. OR he has completely gone mad.
     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2012
  15. stevederek

    stevederek Newbie

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    Great thread right here.







    ebizsubmit for SEO & Internet Marketing.
     
  16. ija61

    ija61 Senior Member

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    So you say that a proper SEO look for traffic and clients but how you get those without ranking?

    You are right that a proper SEO should target a specific type of clients and some times you must target a kw that have less number of search but this can not be achieve without ranking.

    I agree that ranking an website just for the fun of doing is nothing and just rank an website to #1 just for 2 days and be proud of this also mean nothing.

    From my point of view when you write the first line of code on a website you must think if you like that as a visitor and if that website inspire trust or is what are you looking for this in term of the content and features, then you must build it as better as you can so your website can tell by it self what it is about but this must not be above of the visitor.

    But I already start to enter in another area.

    My point is that if tomorrow G/BING/YAHOO..etc will disappear the internet (from finding good information to making money online) will suffer a great loss. A loss that can not be fill in with social media/ emails (spam)... etc. So ranking is , in my opinion still the most important, now remain the question how you do that and why.