SEO KPI’s: Top 9 Critical SEO Metrics to Track in 2020


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A brand without SEO is like a sinking ship. While you might have lifeboats in a sinking ship to save yourself, the online space is rather a vast ocean that might put a bigger hole in your brand if you don’t optimize it properly. SEO is the lifeblood, and one needs to adhere to its concepts to keep all checkpoints right. 

If you already have SEO incorporated, then how do you know if it’s effective or not? How can you ensure the efforts you are taking is giving you results? 

Tracking performance is just as important as curating a strategy to perform well. It is only when you track that you will be able to analyze and explain if things go south. KPIs are checkpoints or flag points that help you identify what works best for you and what doesn’t. By incorporating them, you will not only channelize your efforts and energy in the right direction but will also be able to save a lot of money.

Today in this blog, we will see the top and critical KPIs that you should keep a track on to grow better in the online market.

Organic Visibility

There are always two sides of a coin. In SEO also there are two aspects of optimizing. While one focuses on organically attracting customers, the other believes in using a detour to find the quickest way to reach the target audience. What one must remember is that, though the former takes considerable time to attain success, it lasts longer and builds trust. On the other hand, the latter is quick, but the brand will soon see itself losing its customers.

Organic traffic denotes how many times or how many visitors reached your website from organic search results. This is a very important metric as one has to know how many visitors they’ve got from the search engine. When this reaches the target, then it can be said that the mission is accomplished.

Google Analytics is one such tool that helps you to quickly track daily visitors. The various ways through which you can push your website to get organic traffic is by doing the following:

  • Create quality and interesting content
  • Always keep your content original
  • Make sure you check and improve your page load time
  • Use right header tags and write compelling metadata
  • Blogging is a great way to attract customers
  • Make sure there’s a good, responsive design for your website

Concentrating on creating a quality brand awareness is also a way to attract new customers. This will improve the number of searches for your brand name as well. Various on-page and off-page SEO techniques should be implemented to improve search results for the brand.

Keyword Ranking

One major way to check if your website is being successful is to be gauging the position and the ranking of the keywords. Higher the visibility better the ranking of your keywords and search terms. Keyword ranking appears when the relative search terms in your website are identified by major search engines like Google. The closer you rank to No1, the better your website is performing. There are various tools online like SEMRush, Ahrefs, Google Keyword Planner and so on.

Keyword ranking is directly related to SEO success. Google’s algorithms are every-dynamic, and one has to keep an eye on this to change their keyword planning accordingly to suit the changes and be on top.

Search Visibility

Search visibility depicts the number of times a user searches for your website or the related search terms. Search visibility is directly proportional to keyword ranking. The more your keyword is searched for, the better the visibility of your website. Search Engine visibility score is one major KPI to keep a track on when it comes to gauging your website performance. One tool that you can effectively use for this is the Google Search Console. Here are some effective tips to improve your search visibility:

  • Create a timely SEO audit
  • Improve the density of long-tail keywords
  • Have more engaging and relevant images 
  • Sitemap creation and submitting it to search engines

It is a mandatory requirement that you check your visibility score once in a while. Visibility score is nothing but a score based on how well your keywords are ranking and how it’s creating a search volume: higher the score, better the visibility.

CPC or Cost Per Click

On the contrary to paid campaigns, one has to pay a sum to Google for every click from an organic search result. Organic CPC is the number of clicks you get from organic search results. How CPC works is amusing. It works when a website or an advertiser has a daily set budget. When the number of clicks attains for the amount paid, the ad gets removed for further rotation. Google AdSense is a tool that can be effectively used to gauge and measure CPC.

CPC determines your financial success of a paid search. It will help you carefully curate a budget for campaigns and advertising thus saving you from unnecessarily spending more on publicity or brand awareness that gives ambiguous results.

Bounce Rate

In simple terms, the number of visitors that visit your website but did not take any CTA is called bounce rate. Bounce rate is a very important KPI metric as that will help you understand how engaging your content is to your visitors. A higher bounce rate means poor content and that your product or service is not so helpful to the visitors.

An ideal bounce rate should be between 40-60%. If it is higher than this, then it means that the information or the keywords or the search terms is not relative and is not ranking properly.

Google Analytics is an effective tool to calculate and keep track of the bounce rate. Based on the algorithms, an ideal bounce rate does keep fluctuating. As of 2020, an ideal bounce rate should be between 41%-55%. Here are some tips to lower your bounce rate or keep it an ideal state:

  • Improve the readability of your content
  • Avoid irrelevant pop-ups
  • Curate a proper UI
  • Have a better responsive design
  • Have engaging and creative storytelling for your brand
  • Keep updating your blog content to keep it fresh
  • Target the right keywords

Session duration

Average session duration is the average time that a visitor spends on your website. Why is it an important metric to keep a track on? Well, you need to know if your content is engaging to your readers. An outdated set of content is sure to drive away your customers. To keep them engaging, it is important to show relevant content that interests them.

Measuring this KPI will help you understand if you are engaging your visitors to stay longer. Keeping a track on this will help you generate content that will build a rapport with your customers. As per Databox, average session duration is 2-3 minutes. Anything above this is considered good and better. Google Analytics can help you understand your audience better in terms of this metric. 

There is a very thin line between average time on page and average session duration. While the former depicts how long a visitor had spent on a particular page, the latter says the overall time a visitor spends on the website.

Here are a few tips to increase your average session duration:

  • Make your content engaging by adding videos
  • Play around with typography than putting monotonous content
  • Understand what the customer wants
  • Track the metrics on a regular basis to see how your tactics are performing
  • Linking to other sites and pages is one interesting way to improve your average session duration


Probably the most important and the foremost metric to calculate your website success is understanding and calculating ROI. ROI or Return On Investment is the difference between the amount you spend and the amount you earn back from that spending. For example, if you have spent Rs 1000 on a campaign and that lead to a couple of sales worth Rs 2000, then Rs 1000 is your ROI.

So how do you go about this? How do you calculate ROI? ROI on SEO is determining if the amount you spent on optimizing your website is worth. What has to be tracked is decided based on your brand goals. Here are a few things to keep in mind while setting KPIs to calculate your ROI from SEO

  • Draw your goals. What is it that you want your website to do?
  • Who do you want to be your target customers?
  • Curate a budget and make campaigns that fit in it.
  • Research intensively on the right tools that will help you track the performance and calculate your ROI. Automated tracking tools are to spend on but will help you save a lot of time and energy.

Leads Or Conversions

Bounce rate, CPC or session duration and various other pointers channel towards one final target namely, conversions. Conversions depict the number of visitors that clicked any action button on your website. Now when there’s a customer that is visiting your website, what do you want her/him to do?

Leads depict the actions that you set for them to take. It can be anything that will make a visitor a potential customer. It could be any of the following:

  • A newsletter signup
  • Registration for a fair
  • A webinar invite
  • Purchase
  • A phone call

When you set up these goals on Google Analytics, you will be able to track leads across various dimensions. It can relate to aspects like if the percentage that checked up for your site through mobile or desktop, the weightage of women vs men, and what page has generated more leads.

One major aspect that drives this KPI is the UX of the website. Any web page design should be user-friendly for them to easily navigate and acquire rough information about your brand, product or service.

The user responsive is also another major aspect that channels this as most customers these days use their mobile and other hand devices to browse than use a desktop. Paying attention to clear and prominent CTA is also very important.

Load Time

The attention span of customers is very low, and to keep them involved; it is extremely important to generate not just good content but also faster content. If you put yourself in the shoes of a customer, you will understand how frustrating it is for them to wait until page loads.

If your site takes longer to load, then there are very high chances of an increase in your bounce rate. Poor load time can also be the reason for lesser leads and conversions. When a site takes longer to load, there are very few chances that the visitors might take extra time to explore and dive deep in the website.

This can also tamper the impression that the first time users might have. Tools like GTMetrix give better insights on this KPI.


There are a number of aspects that determine the success of a website. A website is the front face of a brand, and it depicts the mood and the feel of the brand. And so it is extremely important to keep checkpoints to understand and work accordingly. These above-mentioned KPIs are some of the best that you can track to make sure your efforts are paying off.

What is that one major metric that you keep track of? Let us know in the comments section below!

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Digital Scholar

Digital Scholar is a premier agency-styled digital marketing institute in India. Which offers an online digital marketing course and a free digital marketing course worldwide to elevate their digital skills and become industry experts. Digital Scholar is headed by Sorav Jain and co-founder Rishi Jain, who are pioneers in the field of digital marketing. Digital Scholar’s blogs touch upon numerous aspects of digital marketing and help you get intensive ideas of different domains of digital marketing.

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