In my overviews of multiple seo tools, I repeatedly looked into tools that check or track keyword rankings. Hamlet Batista recently wrote a brilliant post encouraging us not to rely on ranking metric too much.
One of the points discussed in Hamlet’s post is that keyword position should not be the ultimate goal of SEO campaign and hence it shouldn’t be an SEO process success metric. That’s the point I’d like to further discuss here. I’ve outlined the pros and cons of most popular SEO measurement items below:
|SEO campaign measurement item||Advantage(s)||Disadvantage(s)|
|Keyword ranking||Easier to define, analyze and visualize in the form of an SEO report. (e.g. easier to explain to the customer)+ Easier to aim at.||High rankings don’t mean the site benefits from them (i.e. doesn’t mean conversions) – ranking should not be the end goal of any project. + Rankings can move up and down naturally (e.g. due to local variations) – this fluctuation might be hard to keep track of.|
|(Search) traffic rise||Again, this is the easiest aim to achieve and keep track of.||Traffic doesn’t mean more sales or customers (the quality of traffic is what really matters).|
|Conversions||In the end, each customers ultimate aim is to make sales or convert in any other way (subscriptions, clicks, etc).||This aim can only be achieved if you are delivering full service (SEO, PPC, usability tests, etc).|
And now please share your thoughts in the post comments: