How to measure organic website growth accurately?
There are multiple ways to increase and grow digital awareness and sales. The one that requires you not to spend an ounce of media spend however is organic growth. But how can you organically grow via traditional SEO practices without accurate measurement? It’s exceptionally hard to manage SEO when you are flying blind and measuring the wrong metrics.
The most common platform people look at and consider when measuring any type of digital growth, and specifically organic growth is Google Analytics. If you go to the ‘audience’ section and see the trend line moving up, generally that is a positive sign. And then to measure organic performance you would most likely go to the ‘acquisition’ tab and look at ‘organic’ performance to see whether that is on the upwards trend. As good as that feels when that section of the G.A graph is going up, it is not the most accurate way to measure organic growth.
The reason for this, is that the ‘organic’ section doesn’t take into account attribution. If you run a brand campaign via display, social or offline channels. There is a high likelihood that your organic traffic will rise as people will search directly for you in Google off the back of the campaign, therefore your organic SEO traffic may look like it is rising, but in fact it is brand traffic. If your brand is growing or you are running additional paid campaigns, in Google Analytics, it will likely look like your organic traffic is also rising.
Organic Landing Page
The more accurate way to measure organic growth in Google Analytics is to measure ‘organic landing page traffic’ to a specific article or product page. This is more accurate because if a user is landing on a specific page that is not the homepage in Google, it is more likely they searched a non-brand term and your article/product page showed in the SERP. If someone searches your brand, 99% of the time it will be your homepage or Google My Business that shows in the search result and therefore will confuse and inflate your SEO numbers.
Search Console Impressions
Search Console should form the bedrock of your organic measurement. You can link this with your google analytics so you can see which clicks to your website are coming from brand and non-brand terms. Also tracking impressions and average position metrics should help you begin to correlate and attribute the SEO work you have been doing into sales.
Statistical Measurement Tools
In addition to the above measurement techniques you should be across and use statistical measurement tools that scrape organic search and tell you what your share of voice is compared to your competitors. This is a great way to continuously benchmark your key themes and terms against your competition and eventually correlate it towards your traffic and sales.
There is no point endeavouring to grow your organic revenue and performance without accurate measurement. You can’t manage what you can’t measure, so from the outset aim to set-up accurate benchmarks and systems which you can monitor easily in a dashboard. This will give you the best chance to succeed in growing your business organically.
Published by Alex Jordan