KPIs: What They Are, And How to Select and Review Them

For the search engine optimization (SEO) professional, there are literally hundreds of website performance metrics available. These metrics point to how a given website is doing in terms of audience attention, search engine placement, and many other factors. Not all metrics are the same, however, and it is all too easy to get bogged down in a seemingly endless stream of data. The challenge begins with identifying which metrics to pay close attention to, and which can be set aside for future use. SEO for insurance agents must focus on what are known as Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). It is this set of indicators that measure the actual performance of the website, and by concentrating on KPIs, SEO professionals can streamline their efforts to maintain or even boost site performance where it truly counts.

What are KPIs?

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are not exclusive to the world of search engine optimization, but they are a valuable tool for SEO professionals and digital marketers. These indicators can be used in any industry or business operation to gauge how effectively a company or team is achieving their objectives; for SEO, this can mean how effective a given web property is at attracting new audiences, turning site visitors into paying customers, or even the impact and reach of individual marketing initiatives.

There are both low-level KPIs and high-level KPIs used in SEO. Low-level KPIs provide details on processes, teams, and individual components of the online presence, while high-level KPIs offer a broader overview of site performance. It is important to note that businesses have the ability to formulate their own KPIs in addition to taking advantage of industry-established iterations; the key takeaway here is that each business will have its own goals, objectives, and processes, and KPIs must reflect those differences.

Choosing What to Measure with KPIs

Now that the concept behind KPIs is clear, the question becomes “what should I measure?” Again, this answer depends on the goals and objectives of the digital marketing team. In SEO for insurance agents, KPIs typically focus on factors like conversion rate and time on site – factors that speak to the performance and impact of SEO efforts.

Conversion rate can be defined as an online interaction that brings value to the equation. For most digital marketing endeavors, conversion refers to the process of “converting” a website visitor into a paying customer. It can also mean something else beneficial, like a visitor filling out an online contact form or signing up for a company newsletter.

Time on site – a potentially valuable KPI – measures how long a site visitor spends interacting with the site and its features. As a KPI, for example, the SEO team can measure the number of people who spend three or more minutes on the site before completing a transaction. The information obtained by measuring this factor can help improve visitor engagement; a low time on site may mean that visitors are not finding the details they are looking for, and that site developers must address those shortfalls.

The SMART Model

Key Performance Indicators help guide and track SEO for insurance agents, serving as a roadmap of sorts in digital marketing. There is still some confusion surrounding the mechanism of KPIs and their value, and that is why it is critical that every stakeholder understands both the KPIs and the goals behind them. To help alleviate confusion and to get everyone on board with KPIs, business leaders have developed the “SMART” KPI model. SMART stands for:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Achievable
  • Relevant
  • Time-Dependent

Under this model, everyone involved can use the same performance figures to achieve stated goals. This helps solidify the process and makes it clear whether or not goals are being achieved. Because SMART KPIs are time-dependent, there is no confusion about when goals need to be reached. This model is a cost-effective means of tracking a website’s or SEO campaign’s performance over a specified period of time.

KPIs offer tremendous value in SEO. Being able to set goals, implement the steps needed to reach those goals, and being able to track progress through measurable, relevant factors is the key to success, especially in SEO for insurance agents. KPIs help to eliminate the guesswork, allowing SEO teams to focus on what works best and what needs improving in the quest for search visibility.

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