Do you want to know how to boost your organic search rankings using SEO analytics reporting? It’s not enough to measure your website’s current SEO (search engine optimization) success. Instead, use SEO reports to drive more traffic to your website and continue to grow your business.
In this article, we’ll show you which Google Analytics SEO reports are the most important when it comes to improving your website’s search rankings, and give you some tips on how to use the reports to drive more traffic.
5 Growth Tips Using SEO Analytics Reporting
1. Use Average Time on Page to Improve Content
It may seem obvious, but most people don’t monitor the amount of time site visitors spend on specific web pages of their site.
Sure, you might check your site’s overall bounce rate, which is great for learning how many people click on your website and leave without visiting another page.
You might even keep an eye on your overall Average Session Duration, in the Overview report in MonsterInsights or Google Analytics.
But there’s more to the story than that. Viewing the time spent on individual web pages is so important for understanding the behavior of your site visitors.
To find the time your users are spending on average per landing page, head to the Publishers report tab in MonsterInsights:
Or, you can view the time spent on every page overall in Google Analytics by navigating to Behavior » Site Content » All Pages:
You’ll see a complete breakdown of the amount of time spent on each individual page.
Now, take note of any pages that have a low average time on page. Take a few moments and think about what might be leading to that low time on page. A few of the most common problems include:
- Wrong search intent. If a user comes to your site expecting one thing and you give them another, chances are they won’t stick around. Look at other results in Google that are on the same subject and see what they have that you might be missing. You might need to refocus your content, add a video, or change your post to a listicle or comparison post, for example. Read more about search intent via OptinMonster.
- Content isn’t scannable. Readers like to scan content to find what they’re interested in. Make sure you use bullet points and numbered lists, have helpful headings, and maybe even use a table of contents if the article is long.
- Page targets the wrong keyword. This goes hand-in-hand with search intent. It’s really important to perform keyword research before choosing to write about something, because you need to take a look at what other keyword phrases are related, and what sort of content is ranking for each one.
- Page is actually performing well. Sometimes, a page has a low average time on page because it’s actually sending visitors to a conversion page quickly. In that case, your page is doing great, not struggling! To find out where people are clicking on your page, try using enhanced link attribution.
Record the average time spent on your website’s most important pages, A/B test elements on them to boost engagement, make sure your content is appropriate, scannable and targeted, and see if the time spent on those pages increases over time.
Remember, the longer people stay on your website, the more positive search engine rankings you’ll get.
2. Find Opportunities with Google Search Console
The Queries (keywords) report in Google Search Console is an awesome SEO analytics reporting tool. Not only can it show you the Google keywords that users are clicking on to visit your website, but it can also help you find opportunities for search terms that you could work on to rank better for.
For example, let’s take a look at the Search Console report in MonsterInsights (if you’re using Google Analytics, navigate to Acquisition » Search Console » Queries to access the report).
Look for terms that:
A) Have the most impressions, but low clicks
B) Have a low CTR (click-through-rate)
C) Are almost ranking on the first page of search results (position 10 and up)
In our example, “SEO for small businesses” is close to ranking on the first page of results and could be doing much better in terms of CTR.
To boost the CTR and position of the page that’s ranking for that term, we can:
- Review the other sites that are ranking for the term and make improvements to our page based on our findings.
- Make sure we’re matching search intent. People searching “SEO for small businesses” are likely looking for very actionable tips and guides, so that’s what we should be delivering.
- Tweak the title and meta description of that page to better entice users to click.
- Build internal contextual links and off-page links to that page.
3. Review Mobile Use
Your website will never be SEO friendly if it’s not mobile friendly. Period.
If you’re using the MonsterInsights plugin, you can check out your Overview Report any time to see the basic Device Breakdown of your site visitors:
Let’s dig a little deeper, though, to see how those mobile users are behaving on our site.
To do that, open Google Analytics and go to Audience » Mobile » Overview. In this report, you can see not only what percentage of your visitors came via mobile, but also how long they spent on your site, how many pages they visited, bounce rate, and more.
How do your mobile numbers compare to your desktop traffic? Keep in mind, it’s likely that mobile users use your website differently than desktop users. It’s pretty common for mobile numbers to be lower than desktop ones. However, that doesn’t mean mobile numbers should be super low.
Are mobile users having difficulty navigating your site? If they’re leaving much sooner than desktop traffic and not converting into leads, it might be time to troubleshoot your website on mobile.
After all, if visitors on mobile are leaving too quickly, that can affect your SEO rankings. Mobile friendliness and user experience are both SEO signals that are affected by a subpar mobile experience.
4. Keep a Watchful Eye on Site Speed
In 2021, site speed became a bigger deal to Google than ever before with the addition of Core Web Vitals to their ranking factors. Mobile site speed was already a ranking factor, and had been for a couple years, but Core Web Vitals made speed even more important.
Slow websites lead to a poor user experience, and Google is all about making sure searchers have the best possible experience. So, having a slow website can be very poor for SEO.
MonsterInsights users can access an up-to-the-minute site speed report at any time, right in their WordPress dashboard.
If you don’t have MonsterInsights, we recommend the Google PageSpeed Insights tool to check both your mobile and desktop website speed on a regular basis.
If you’re a WordPress user, check out our article on 17 Easy Hacks to Speed Up Your WordPress Site Performance.
5. Use Internal Site Search to Your Advantage
Knowing which site terms your website’s visitors are searching for once they land on your website is valuable information to have if you are looking to improve your site’s SEO.
If you know what site visitors are looking for, then you can give them what they need, increase organic reach, boost your site’s SEO, draw more traffic to your site, and bingo, convert more site visitors into customers.
The first thing you’ll need to do to see what site visitors are looking for on your site is let Google Analytics know you want to track that data.
For help doing this, check out our step by step instructions on how to set up site search tracking in WordPress.
After the report is set up and has collected data, navigate to Behavior » Site Search » Search Terms. In this report, you’ll see the terms people are typing into your site’s search bar, plus how many pages they look at after searching, how many left after searching, and more.
This report can show you some of the content users are expecting to find on your website once they arrive. If there are search terms you don’t have content for yet, now is the time to start adding that to your editorial calendar.
And there you have it! These unique SEO analytics reports found in MonsterInsights and/or Google Analytics can be used to ensure your site’s content is showing up in search results for the right people so your business can grow.
If you want to learn more about how to utilize the power of SEO in Google Analytics, check our guide to Google Analytics SEO hacks for increasing organic traffic.