SEO reports: how to check and what to ask a contractor

Website promotion reports can be incomprehensible, difficult to read and even repulsive from a dialogue with a contractor. In addition, SEO as a highly specialized service requires explanations from the agency not only in reporting, but also in the course of work.

Let’s try to clarify this topic. Using our own SEO reports as an example, we will show which indicators are included in the reporting, what they mean, and when it is worth asking the manager additional questions.

SEO results are tracked by different KPIs – this can be traffic or positions. Depending on which indicator is priority for you, the content of the report changes. You can also add other items by separate agreement – for example, unloading tasks for a given period. The SEO promotion report is flexible and can be tailored to suit your business needs.

At the same time, the progress in any of the parameters includes a number of general indicators that demonstrate the success of the agency’s work on your website. Let’s start with them.

Parameters for all types of KPIs

Most of the indicators are the same for all tariffs: SEO works to develop a web resource in relation to search engines (SE), so analytics in the context of key parameters is included in all reports on SEO promotion. Let’s see how this can be useful to you as a client.

General position statistics

What is included in these statistics:

  • Total requests: The number of all requests for which the site is being promoted.
  • Visibility: the number of requests for which the site is included in the top 50 search results.
  • Average position: what is the average position of the website pages.
  • Positions have improved / unchanged / worsened: how has the situation changed for the positions of a web resource in search – how many pages have started to occupy a higher position in the search, how many have it remained the same, how many pages have dropped in the search.
  • Number in TOP-1/3/5/10/20/30: how many pages of the site are in the top.

How is this useful? The ratio and dynamics of queries in the top is one of the most important parameters by which the results of website promotion are tracked. You can compare with the indicators of previous reporting periods and reveal a trend, and if this is the first SEO report, then it should be noted as the origin of the coordinate system for the SEO promotion of your Internet site.

Read on: Metrics I. Metrics that marketers can use to develop a website

Dynamics of transitions from search engines for the reporting period

Dynamics of transitions from search engines for the reporting period

This is a graph of transitions to the site from different websites for the reporting period. It shows how many clicks from each search engine were made during the last month.

How is it useful? This helps to understand how the number of visitors from Google, Yandex and other systems is changing, what impact the promotion work has and how different the graphics are. For example, according to the graph, an average of 100 visitors a day come from Google to your site, and from Yandex – 300. Although we do not have a strict separation and we promote sites for Yandex and Google at the same time, it often happens that one of A PS perceives an optimized web resource better than another. A complete coincidence of schedules, especially at the start of work, is rare. However, as a client and as a team of SEO experts, it will be beneficial for you to ask the manager why there is such a difference in traffic from different search engines. You will help the optimizer focus on this issue: he will formulate a theory, check it, draw up a plan of tasks and recommendations that will be sent to you for approval. In the future, you can control their implementation and the effect on the dynamics of transitions.

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Search engine traffic

Search engine traffic

Diagram and rating of visits to your site from different search engines – Google, Yandex, Mail.ru and others.

How is it useful? This chart reflects the ratio of visits to the site during the reporting period. This is a visually more visual reflection of the dynamics of transitions from search engines. The diagram is not distributed by day, but more demonstratively shows the distribution of traffic from different PSs.

Search traffic for the reporting period (by days) compared to the same period last year

Search traffic for the reporting period (by days) compared to the same period last year

Two graphs for the same period in different years.

How is it useful? This graph helps you compare the current situation with last year. For example, if last year your site was not on promotion, then you can compare how the indicators have changed now that you handed it over to SEO specialists. Such a graph also helps to analyze seasonality: is there a decrease or increase in attendance characteristic of a month or season.

Read on: How To Check An SEO Contractor: 5 Signs An Agency Is Really Working On Your Website

Distribution of traffic by channels

Distribution of traffic by channels

From this diagram, you can see which sources and in what ratio serve as traffic providers for your resource. This diagram is similar to the Search Engines Clicks diagram, but it covers not only PS, but other types of channels as well:

  • “Ad Clicks” are visits from contextual advertising ads.
  • “Direct hits” is traffic from the most loyal audience that has bookmarked your site or simply enters the address of the website at once.
  • “Internal transitions” are transitions from the pages of your site.
  • “Clicks on links on sites” are visits from other resources that have links to your site.
  • “Transitions from social networks” are visits from Facebook, Instagram, VKontakte, and so on.
  • “Referrals from referral systems” is traffic from news feeds, thematic collections such as Yandex.Zen, Google Discover, and others.

How is it useful? Helps to assess how profitable marketing investments are. You can identify traffic channels that pay off well and bring in new customers, and highlight those sources that need more attention. For example, you invest in contextual advertising or SMM, but its share in the total traffic is very small. This means that we need to discuss with contractors what are the ways to improve this situation.

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Popular landing pages from search engines

Popular landing pages from search engines

These are the top 10 pages of your site among those that are opened from search engines.

How is it useful? Using this list, you can determine your most popular products or services. It is especially useful to measure this reporting item along with conversions and total sales. For example, if on the first line of this list is a page with a product that sells poorly, you need to do competitive analysis and study of commercial factors. Maybe the price of your product is higher than that of other sellers? Or is the page not loading order forms correctly?

Read on: The site is in the top, but there are no orders: why and what to do

Geography of visitors

Geography of visitors

Chart and ranking of regions from which your site is most often opened. Also additional information: the number of visits, refusals, viewing depth and time on the site.

How is it useful? If you work in a specific region, then from this graph you can estimate how much targeted traffic your site is getting. After all, if you work only in Khabarovsk, then the main traffic from Moscow is not converted into sales, why is it needed?

If your business works for the whole country or the whole world, you will determine in which regions your products or services are popular, and in which ones you need more marketing attention.

Type of devices from which there were transitions during the reporting period

Type of devices from which there were transitions during the reporting period

Chart and rating of devices from which your site was opened most often. Additionally – visits, refusals, viewing depth and time on the site.

How is it useful? Proves (or, more rarely, refutes) the need to implement mobile adaptation. Also gives directions for testers. For example, if there is a high percentage of refusals for visits from smartphones, you need to check how correctly the elements of the site are displayed and work? This is critical for conversion.

Link graph

Link graph

A graph that shows the dynamics of the appearance of links to your site from other resources.

How is it useful? Building inbound link mass is important for outbound promotion: it helps a site earn credibility with search bots. This is especially important for optimizing the site for the requirements of Google. With the help of this graph, you can analyze how the work on external promotion is progressing (if at all). If the indicators are declining, it is worth asking the manager why this is so: perhaps attention is now being paid to another aspect.

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For traffic tariffs

As part of traffic promotion, the key SEO indicator is targeted traffic from search. Therefore, you need to evaluate the indicators related to traffic – for example, using the dynamics of search traffic.

search traffic dynamics

How is it useful? This graph shows how traffic to your site has changed over the reporting period. You can also ask the manager for the same schedule for other months in order to compare in a wider time frame. If the traffic is gradually growing, then the promotion is successful. If it falls, you can ask the manager what it is connected with and how this problem will be solved.

Conversions from search engines are also added to the SEO report for a client at this rate.

search engine conversions

Conversions are tracked by goals, and the goal can be any action that is prioritized by the user. For example, visiting a page, adding an item to the cart, pressing a phone button, filling out a form, and so on.

How is it useful? Conversions are the top goal that SEO aims to achieve. It is important to remember that you cannot directly influence sales growth and guarantee conversions within the framework of promotion. The growth of conversions and sales depends on many factors, including on the part of the client: the convenience of the site, the time to answer a call or request, competitive prices, reviews, and so on. If there are more conversions, this can serve as one of the indicators that the site is receiving targeted traffic, which is converted into sales.

For tariffs by position

In addition to general statistics, we offer our clients detailed statistics on site positions in search engines. For this we use the Topvisor system. It is a convenient and reliable online service that provides detailed data for all positions. Here you can select one search engine (Yandex or Google) or compare statistics for both, and you can also set any time interval.

Topvisor

How is it useful? When promoting by queries, the dynamics of growth of site positions is important. In this report, you can determine for what queries at what time what positions does your site occupy. Thanks to this, you can match the promotion results with your business goals. For example, you have a priority group of goods for sale – women’s leather bags. If your site is in the top for this request, then the site is being promoted according to business goals. If not, you should agree with the manager to change the course in promotion for the specific requests you need.

Conclusion

SEO reports on the work done can certainly be confusing, especially if this is your first time submitting a website for promotion. We recommend that you delve into the theory of search engine optimization whenever possible (for example, keep this article for yourself to come back if necessary) and always ask your SEO contractor for the necessary information.

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