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The Modern SEO Report (Part 2)

Welcome back to part 2 of our look at how we report for our SEO Clients. In this part we take a look at the current report and why we do things differently now. Thanks for sticking with us.

2011 was the year of standardization. The first thing we did  was make all of our spreadsheets and report documents follow the same narrative. Instead of each report being a little different, each excel document having things in a different order. This way, each new piece of data builds on the last one, creating a story that makes sense and explains where things stand. This is an important, and often overlooked, aspect of reporting.

And we added color. Instead of black and white, we bordered things in Walker Sands orange in order to brighten things up. We added charts to almost all of our data sets so that it was easier to tell the story of the website.

The orange just brightens your day, doesn't it?

After looking at the branding of individual keywords in 2010, I wanted to look at overall branding trends for all the keywords that drive traffic to a site. Now instead of wondering where that spike in search traffic came from, we might learn that those new pages that went up drove up non-branded traffic or that the positive mention of the client on ABC news drove waves of branded search.

I did the same thing with landing pages. We always talked about total landing pages as a way to see whether the content creation strategy was working, but this was just wasn't enough information to see what was actually changing. It was like looking at the your bank account balance and trying to decide what you were spending too much money on. By categorizing and tracking the landing pages, we now know what types of pages are making a difference.

It kind of reminds me of the Chicago Skyline

The last big change for 2011 was mobile. While it isn't an SEO metric by itself, we think it's very important for our partners to be aware of how mobile traffic is changing the web. Not only has it impacted search and the push for results to be more local, but it changes the way visitors use a website. If your mobile traffic is only 5%, this isn't a concern, but for many of our clients their mobile traffic is at 10%, 14%, even 19% of their traffic(check out our quarterly mobile traffic report to learn more). And if 1 in 5 people visiting your site is having a radically different experience from everyone else, that's something you want to look in to.

2011 was definitely the year of mobile

2011 was the year that the story of the SEO program got easier to tell and the sorts of questions we hear in our monthly meetings reflect the growing understanding our clients have of SEO. By providing more in-depth information, we equip our partners with the tools they need to make informed decision about how to move ahead and that helps drive success.

We aren’t alchemists any more, we’re partners who’s solutions can be backed by charts that make sense and data that’s easy to read and I hope that we continue to improve that in 2012. If you're interested in learning more about the Walker Sands SEO process and how we can help your business grow, talk to us today.