I want you to establish, sit down with your team, with your CEO, with your executive team, your board, whoever you’ve got, and figure out the goals you’re trying to achieve with SEO. Why do you want to do SEO? Why do you want to rank organically for keywords? Then, figure out how you’re going to judge success versus failure. In this process, there are good goals and bad goals.
Good goals are smart goals
- We’re trying to boost revenue, and we’re trying to boost it through new sales and SEO is a sale driving channel. Fine, great.
- We’re trying to boost downloads or free sign-ups or free trials. Also a fine goal.
- We’re trying to boost sentiment for our brand. Maybe if you Googled some of our branded terms today, there are some poor reviews, there are lots of good reviews that rank below them, and we want to push the good reviews up and the bad reviews down. Fine. The sentiment, that could be something you’re driving as well. You know a lot of people are researching your brand or branded terms. Those are all good goals.
- We just want traffic, more traffic. Why? Well, because we want it. Terrible, terrible goal. Traffic is not a goal in and of itself. If you say, “Well, we want more traffic because we know search traffic converts well for us and here are the statistics on it,” fine, terrific. Now it’s a revenue driving thing.
- Rankings alone, unfortunately, this is a vanity thing that many people have where they want to rank for something simply because they want to rank for it. Usually a bad sign for SEO companies considering clients. You shouldn’t have that on your goals list. That’s not a positive goal.
- Beating a particular competitor out for specific keywords or phrases. Again, not a great goal. Doesn’t drive directly to revenue. Doesn’t drive directly to organizational goals.
- Vanity metrics. I still see people who are saying, “Hey, does anyone know a great SEO company that can help bring our domain authority up or our Majestic trust flow up or, worst of all, our Google PageRank up?” Google dropped PageRank years ago. It’s terrible. Vanity metrics, bad ideas too.