3 Uncommon Ways to Determine if Your SEO Initiatives Work
As digital marketers, there's never been more data at our fingertips. With this abundance of information comes a significant challenge: How do you decipher the data? The goal of any search engine optimization campaign is to look at a project and quantify its impact. Was the project a success? What was the lifetime value of a project? What types of projects work best for each objective?
Once we know these answers, we have a better understanding of how and why projects were successful and are then able to predict the impact of future projects. More specifically, if we know what the expected return is on a project, we can prioritize budget and timing accordingly.
Most marketing experts measure unique users, page views, time on site, bounce rate and Google search rankings to determine if a campaign is working. That doesn't determine why the campaign worked, however. At Red Door Interactive, we've developed processes that get to the root causes by leveraging three lesser-used statistical analyses to make these determinations. It's a mainstay in our service to the mid-market and is something we feel can and should be leveraged by more marketers. Here they are in a nutshell:
Simple Linear Regression
A simple linear regression is a basic input versus output equation. In SEO terms, we analyze organic search trends over a 12-month period and adjust for seasonality.
To do this, we first find the seasonal index, a breakdown that shows the relationship of one month to the entire year. Once the index is complete, we "de-seasonalize" the data by dividing each month by its seasonal index, run a simple linear regression to find a true forecast and then reapply the seasonal index to each corresponding month.
Once this simple linear regression is complete, we're then able to create yearly forecasts for organic search traffic, set accurate SEO program goals and generate monthly expectations for a project that all take seasonality into account.