7 Common Enterprise SEO Reporting Mistakes You Should Avoid

Accurate and well-designed reporting is fundamental to any effective SEO software.

Well-designed reports provide management and other stakeholders with a clear picture of the value of your SEO efforts.

What’s more, accurate reporting is essential to inform future actions.

Note that there are two components involved: Flour And well designed.

Accurate reports not only contain the correct data, but also accurately display it. They tell the true story without distortion.

Well-designed reports are clear and instantly understandable. Anyone looking at them should be able to quickly identify junk food.

How can you ensure accurate and well-designed reports are generated?

Start by avoiding the 7 common SEO reporting errors.

1. Belief that there is only one true measure of “X”

In its early days, Google served the same simple search results (the legendary “ten blue links”) to all users entering the same query.

Of course, that wasn’t the case for long now.

For many queries, the results page is cluttered with advertisements and various SERP features in and around organic web results.

Additionally, with the use of personalization across factors such as search history and geographic location, no users are likely to get the exact same results.

All of this means that a metric like the current ranking of a particular keyword is a lot less certain than it used to be.

But search rankings aren’t the only metric that might not be as straightforward as we want to believe.

Another example relevant to SEO is the search volume from the Google Keyword Planner tool.

While Google should have the most accurate volume numbers, a particular keyword’s scale may be inaccurate because Keyword Planner aggregates volume for similar keywords.

For example, Keyword Planner currently shows a search volume of 1.22 million for [shoes] This displays the size of both [shoes] And [shoe’s].

However, click data shows that a file [shoe’s] The variant actually gets less than 100 searches per month.

There can also be differences in the way any metric is measured and reported by different tools or sources.

Which metric depends on the source’s (possibly finite) view of the universe’s possible outcomes, as well as the special formula the source uses to calculate the metric.

TreatmentBe aware of potential ambiguities or inaccuracies for many metrics and adjust accordingly.

Where possible, find a more accurate source of a metric, such as a tool that reports search volume based on clickstream data relying solely on Google Keyword Planner numbers.

In many cases, it is better to look at numbers trends over time rather than focusing on the exact accuracy of a single event of the scale.

And in most cases, the shape of the trend is fairly accurate, even if there is some variance at the individual points.

2. Pay attention to the wrong scale

SEO experts tend to focus on rankings, believing that the ultimate measure of SEO success is more keywords in higher positions.

This is based on data from several studies that show a simple inverse hockey stick curve for CTR as a function of rank position.

In these studies, the first position takes a large percentage of clicks, and the amount degrades rapidly as you move down the SERP page.

And while some recent studies using larger and more diverse data sources show that the curve may not be as steep as we assumed (and lower positions may actually get a little “bump”), the important counter to this thinking is that higher ratings and more clicks It doesn’t always mean actual business goals.

The most important metrics may be the traffic from organic search and the keywords that drive that traffic.

Not all of this is rare, when a customer experiences a sudden drop in overall ranking – perhaps after updating the algorithm – we find upon digging deeper that none of the traffic has been affected much at all, or it has sometimes gone up.

What happened in those cases is that the dropped keywords weren’t really responsible for driving most of the traffic to the site.

A step beyond traffic as a more important metric takes us to the numbers that actually affect our bottom line, things like conversions and leads generated.

TreatmentAlign the KPIs in your report to emphasize those that really have the most impact on the bottom line of your business.

3. Ignore metrics that could be important

While it’s important to identify accurate metrics and report on metrics that really matter, it’s still possible that you’ve overlooked some data that can make a difference.

An example of SEO is reporting your visibility with some SERP features, funky results that can still send you traffic.

Do you know how often and what keywords appear in the “Featured snippet” or “Ask people too” box?

Do you know how many times your competitors did?

If you don’t, you may miss out on an SEO tactic that’s worth pursuing (or at least being able to tell if it’s not worth your time).

Treatment: First, check if there are any metrics that could be important to you but don’t appear in your current reports.

If you find any, find a tool or data source that might be able to show you these metrics.

4. Not assigning reports to recipients

If you wanted to teach a child a moral lesson, would you hand him a copy of The Foundations of the Metaphysics of Morals?

of course not. Perhaps you have read them a fairy tale or a fairy tale.

Similarly, you need to customize your SEO reports for each target audience.

Speaking of superstition, here is instructive the old story of several blindfolded people examining an elephant from different sides.

In the original text, the point was their impression of what elephant the part they had at hand would deflect.

But for our purposes, the moral of the story is that every stakeholder only cares about their part of the elephant.

The CMO may want to know how much visibility organic search gives your brand, or where the competition is winning.

The CEO or CFO wants to know how much he or she contributes to revenue goals.

Product managers want to know which of their products gets the most search interest, and what else people searching for their products are looking for.

TreatmentFirst, decide who each report is and what they care about.

Then use filtering and segmentation to create customized reports that narrow down the specific interests of the report’s target audience.

See “11 Amazing SEO Data Visualizations to Inspire Your Reporting” for more information.

5. Not linking results to goals

Any good storyteller knows you don’t jump to conclusions.

The end of the story is meaningful and satisfying only if it is the result of a logical sequence of events that can be traced back to the beginning.

For your reports intended for eyes other than your own, you need to trace a similar story.

The goal of these external reports is to demonstrate the value created by your SEO efforts.

If you only report results, even if the results are good, the recipient will have no reason to necessarily associate them with your efforts.

Treatment: Make sure that every KPI you report is linked to something you intentionally did to achieve that outcome, whether it’s technical fixes, new content, a change in strategy, or something else.

At my company, we teach our customers to use header dashboards not with an outcome measure (such as “fourth quartile traffic”) but instead with the target they’re associated with (so perhaps “Visits from a Women’s Sweater Content Center project”).

6. Fail to include extenuating circumstances

This is really just the face of bug #5.

By “extenuating circumstances,” I mean flimsy excuses.

not seriously; This means excluding annotations and relevant explanations of external conditions that may have affected the results presented.

This can include announced algorithm updates, seasonality, server downtime, and more.

These are not meant to be excuses (if the scale is low) or to reduce your efforts (if the scale is high), but rather to give a clear picture of why the data is trending the way it appears.

TreatmentAnnotate relevant events along trend lines and/or include narrative explanations so that report recipients have a clear picture of everything that may have affected the outcome.

7. Forgot to include insights, not just data

Raw data means little.

The interpreted data continues.

Always keep in mind that in many cases the intended recipients of your reports are not SEO specialists.

They do not live in our world.

For us, the raw SEO data creates an image like the mouse seeing the lady in red while looking at the flowing Matrix code.

But for others, it’s just numbers.

Treatment: Be sure to add an explanation to your data presentations. Explain why the data is important, what it really shows, how it affects goals, or the future actions it requires.

The main task here is to change your reporting from just another duty that you are required to do into a valuable anchor of the value that your SEO efforts bring to your organization.

To do this, think like a good storyteller, craft the plot and your characters (your data) for the target audience in each report.

More resources:

Featured Image: fizkes / Shutterstock

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