Synopsis – With a variety of studies indicating that SEO is becoming an integral part of more and more online businesses, the use of search analytics to track and administer search optimization efforts is also growing. A recent study by Conductor.com (carried out of eConsultancy in December 2010) of trends in the use of technology among search marketers found that 42% identified SEO metrics as “much more important” as influencers of business strategy in the last year, while 36% stated they were “more important.” Only 4% identified them as “somewhat less important.” These figures reflect the growing importance of SEO to business, especially given that almost half (48%) of respondents classed themselves as “basic” in terms of the level of SEO they practice — experience has taught them the value of SEO to their organization as a whole.
In his article, “The Wheat & Chaff of Search Analytics,” Andrew Spoeth discusses the problem of measuring the results of SEO in light of the different models of search attribution. The key is to figure out what is vitally important to know and what is just extra, “nice to know” information and then find the appropriate methods to track that data. Andrew identifies seven key steps to take to separate out that core information from the extra details that are not vital to understanding what is happening with your business.