If you're working in SEO, then you know that reporting is a big part of your job. And if you're new to the field, you might wonder what makes excellent SEO reports. After all, there are a lot of data points to consider, and it can be tough to know which ones to include (and how to present them in a digestible and actionable way).
About 1 in 5 small businesses are using SEO software and tools. Most small businesses (about 79%) are confident with their understanding of SEO best practices, even though many aren't even using SEO.
This blog post will share some insider tips for creating data-driven, actionable SEO reports. We'll cover everything from what data points to include to how to format your report for easy consumption.
By the end of this post, you'll have all the tools you need to create stellar SEO reports that drive results.
What is SEO Reporting?
SEO reporting is the process of tracking, analyzing, and reporting the performance of your website in search engine results.
SEO reporting aims to provide insights that can help you improve your website's ranking and visibility in search engines.
There are many different types of SEO reports that you can create, but they all generally fall into two categories: data-driven reports and actionable reports.
Data-Driven SEO Reports
Data-driven SEO reports are typically created using data from Google Analytics or other web analytics tools.
They offer a detailed look at your website's traffic and performance and can be used to identify trends and areas for improvement.
Actionable SEO Reports
Actionable SEO reports, on the other hand, focus on specific actions that you can take to improve your website's ranking and visibility.
These reports often include recommendations for keyword targeting, link building, and other search optimization strategies.
Creating an effective SEO report requires careful planning and execution. Here are some tips to help you get started:
1. Define Your Goals & Key Performance Indicators (KPIs).
Before creating your report, defining what you want to achieve with it is essential.
- What are your goals?
- What KPIs do you want to track?
Answering these questions will help you determine the data type you need to collect and what metrics you should include in your report.
2. Collect Data from Multiple Sources.
Don't rely on a single data source for your report.
Collect data from multiple sources, including Google Analytics, your web server logs, and other tools.
This will help you get a complete picture of your website's traffic and performance.
3. Use Data Visualizations to Tell a Story.
Data visualizations are a powerful way to tell a story with your data.
They can help you communicate complex information in an easy-to-understand format.
When creating your report, be sure to use data visualizations that are clear and concise.
4. Make Recommendations for Action.
Your report should do more than just present data; it should also offer recommendations for action.
What can be done to improve your website's ranking and visibility?
Be specific in your recommendations, and justify why you believe they will be effective.
5. Test & Iterate Your SEO Reports.
SEO is an ever-changing field, so don't expect your first report to be perfect.
Test different approaches and make changes based on the results.
Over time, you'll develop a process that works well for you and your team.
Why Do You Need SEO Reports?
As a business owner or marketing manager, you need to clearly understand your website's SEO performance to make informed decisions about where to allocate your resources.
An effective SEO reporting process can give you the insights to track progress, identify opportunities, and measure success.
Here are some key reasons why you need SEO reports:
To track progress and identify areas of improvement.
By tracking key metrics over time, you can see how your website performs and identify areas needing attention.
This could be anything from improving your click-through rate to increasing your organic traffic.
To benchmark against competitors.
It's essential to know how you stack up against your competition.
- Are they outranking you for critical keywords?
- Do they have more backlinks?
SEO reporting can help you understand where you stand compared to your competitors.
To inform decision-making.
Insights from SEO reports can help guide strategic decisions about where to focus your efforts.
If specific tactics aren't working or there are better opportunities elsewhere, you can adjust your strategy accordingly.
To measure success.
Finally, SEO reporting is essential for measuring the success of your overall SEO efforts.
- Are the changes you've made having the desired effect?
- Are specific strategies more successful than others?
By regularly monitoring your performance, you can fine-tune your approach for maximum results.
Types of Data to Include in an SEO Report
1. User Data
Include data on user engagement, such as time on site, pages per session, and bounce rate.
This data can help you understand how well your website is performing in terms of keeping users engaged.
2. Search Engine Data
Include data on your website's visibility in search engines, such as organic search traffic and keyword rankings.
This data can help you understand how well your website is performing in terms of attracting visitors from search engines.
3. Social Media Data
Include data on social media engagement, such as likes, shares, and comments.
This data can help you understand how well your content is performing on social media and whether it is helping drive traffic to your website.
4. Conversion Data
Include data on conversions, such as leads generated or sales made.
This data can help you understand how well your website is performing in terms of generating leads or making sales.
How to Present Data in SEO Reports
When it comes to presenting data in an SEO report, there are a few things you should keep in mind.
First and foremost, your data should be actionable.
This means it should be easy for your clients or boss to understand and use to decide their SEO strategy.
To make sure your data is actionable, present it clearly and concisely.
Use graphs, charts, and tables to visualize the data, making it easy to interpret.
When possible, include recommendations based on the data so your clients or boss can see what changes need to be made to their SEO strategy.
Finally, don't forget to include a section for the next steps.
This should outline what needs to be done based on the report's findings.
By including this information, you can help your clients or boss stay on track with their SEO goals.
Actionable Insights from SEO Reports
As an SEO professional, one of your primary goals is to help your clients or employers make data-driven decisions that will improve their website's visibility and ranking in search engines.
To do this effectively, you need to be able to deliver actionable insights from your SEO reports.
Here are some tips for creating data-driven, actionable SEO reports:
1. Define what success looks like for your client or employer.
Before you start putting together an SEO report, you must clearly understand what success looks like for your client or employer.
- What are their goals and objectives?
- What does a successful outcome look like?
Once you understand this, you can tailor your report to provide the most relevant and helpful information.
2. Identify which SEO metrics matter most.
Not all metrics are created equal.
When it comes to SEO reporting, you need to focus on the metrics that will give you insights into whether or not your efforts are paying off.
This will vary depending on the goals and objectives of your client or employer. Still, some standard metrics include website traffic, organic search traffic, keyword rankings, conversion rates, and leads/sales generated.
3. Use data visualizations to tell a story.
A picture is worth a thousand words - or in this case, a thousand data points.
Data visualizations can be your best friend when delivering actionable insights from an SEO report.
Use charts, graphs, and other visuals to help tell the story of your data and make it easier for your clients or employers to understand what's going on.
4. Make recommendations for action.
Your SEO report should do more than provide data - it should also offer recommendations for action.
Based on the insights you've gleaned from the data, what do you recommend your client or employer do to improve their website's visibility and ranking?
Be specific and provide a clear plan of action that they can follow.
5. Monitor SEO progress over time.
SEO is a long-term game, so monitoring progress over time is essential.
In your report, include information on how the website's performance has changed.
This will help your clients or employers see the impact of their SEO efforts and make adjustments as needed.
The Best SEO Reporting Tools
SEO reporting tools are essential for any business that wants to track its progress and performance in search engine optimization.
There are many types of SEO reports, but some standard features include ranking tracking, keyword analysis, backlink analysis, and competitor analysis.
There are a lot of excellent SEO reporting tools out there, but here are our top five picks:
1. Google Analytics
Google Analytics is a free tool that provides a wealth of data about your website's traffic and performance.
It can track your SEO progress and benchmark your results against your competitors.
2. Moz Pro
Moz Pro is a paid tool that offers comprehensive tracking and analysis features.
It includes a keyword research tool, rank tracker, link analyzer, site audit tool, and more.
SEMrush is another paid tool offering powerful features for tracking your SEO progress and performance.
It includes a rank tracker, keyword research tool, competitor analysis tool, site audit tool, and more.
4. Search Console
Search Console is a free Google platform that provides data and insights about your website's presence in Google Search results. It can be used to track your SEO progress and identify potential issues with your website.
Ahrefs is a paid tool that offers comprehensive tracking and analysis features similar to Moz Pro and SEMrush.
It includes a rank tracker, keyword research tool, competitor analysis tool, site audit tool, and more.
Automate Site Audits and SEO Reports
As SEOs, we are constantly tasked with creating reports that show the progress of our efforts.
But manually creating these reports can be time-consuming and error-prone.
Fortunately, there are many tools available that can help automate the process of creating SEO reports.
Here are some tips for choosing the right tool for your needs:
1. Identify your goals.
What do you want your report to achieve?
Do you want to track progress or compare different site versions?
Knowing your goal will help you choose the right tool.
2. Consider your audience.
Who will be reading your report?
Do they need detailed technical information or just a high-level overview?
Choose a tool to generate a report tailored to your audience's needs.
3. Decide on the format.
Will a PDF suffice, or do you need an interactive report?
Again, consider your audience and what would be most beneficial for them.
4. Compare features and pricing.
Once you know what you need, take some time to compare different tools' features and pricing structures.
Ensure you're getting a good deal on a tool with everything you need.
5. Test it out!
Once you've chosen a tool, take some time to test it out before using it for a critical report.
This will help ensure that everything runs smoothly when it comes time to generate your final product.
6. Hire an SEO Agency.
Creating SEO reports can be time-consuming and complex.
If you don't have the time or expertise to do it yourself, consider hiring an SEO agency specializing in generating these SEO reports.
Get Started Creating SEO Reports!
If you want to create data-driven, actionable SEO reports, you've come to the right place.
Binary Glyph Media is a digital marketing agency focusing on content strategy and SEO reporting.
We specialize in helping companies create and implement an effective SEO reporting strategy.
We start by comprehensively auditing your website and digital marketing efforts.
From there, we develop custom SEO reports that track your progress and help you identify areas of opportunity.
If you're ready to take your SEO reporting to the next level, contact us today to schedule a consultation.