A few of our content marketing team members are not exactly what you’d call number-crunching wizards. Calculations? Equations? Numbers? Icky. Shiny pictures and words? Much more fun.
But at the same time, marketing is math. We need to know our numbers to ensure that our tactics are working. That’s where ROI comes in.
Knowing how to calculate the return on investment in any company process is one of the most important things you can do as a business owner. This is especially true for marketing. That’s why knowing how to calculate the return on investment for every process within your marketing strategy is essential. Especially your Search Engine Optimization.
This week we broke down the actionable steps you can take as a business owner to ensure your SEO campaign is actually working!
Without further ado, here are our steps to measure ROI of SEO for your website and marketing materials!
By the end, you should know what values go into the following equation:
Step Zero: Know Your Goals
We call this step zero because it should be done before investing time, money, or energy into your SEO or marketing strategy.
Before measuring how well your SEO is performing, you have to have a goal for implementation. Is it increasing traffic and improving search rankings, or are you happy with your traffic and just attempting to increase your conversion rate?
If you’re unclear on your goals, you’ll be left with fistfuls of meaningless numbers! This is the first step in determining the values to ensure your ROI values are correct.
Step One: Calculate Your SEO Investment
How much money are you spending on your SEO? This can include in-house SEO resources, external tracking tools, and more. These costs may fluctuate. If that’s the case, make sure you’re carefully tracking these expenses.
Once you have the value of your SEO investment, you’ve met the “b” requirement in your equation. We’ll call this Cost of Investment or “CoI” for short.
Speaking of tracking…
Step Two: Tracking, Tracking, Tracking
Once you know your goals, you can use tools like Google Analytics to measure the performance of your websites. You can begin tracking everything from website traffic to page engagement rates and more. But when we’re talking about ROI, conversions are key. If your website gets a ton of traffic but doesn’t meet sales goals or submission deadlines, something isn’t working. It could even be that you aren’t choosing the right keywords to rank for.
The only way to know is to get those numbers—so from the beginning, you need to ensure that you’re tracking for these. We have a blog dedicated to examples of tools designed to help you measure performance and make the most of your SEO.
Step Three: Assess your current SEO performance
To measure the ROI of your SEO efforts, you need to track your progress over time. Use tools like Google Analytics to see how your traffic, rankings, and conversions change as you implement your SEO strategy. Your KPIs will include things like search rankings, organic traffic, and bounce rate.
The values for these metrics may sometimes be tangible (sales-based conversions, for example). In other cases, you may have to determine your own numerical value depending on what step in the customer value journey you’re attempting to measure. (Not sure what a customer value journey is? No worries – we’ve got a whole blog for you here!)
These numerical values will be vital to determining your ROI. Ideally, you should be able to pull them quickly so that the final step in your process is the easiest.
Finally, we have our “a” value! For our purposes, we’ll say the goal of the SEO, in this case, is increased conversions. So a=value of conversions or VoC.
Step Four: How to Calculate ROI for SEO (Time for Math!)
By this step, you should have clear numerical values for calculating the ROI for your SEO. So we’ve got (Value of Conversions – Cost of Investment)/ Cost of Investment =Return on Investment.
So let’s say your website generated $400,000 in conversions for your business as a direct result of your SEO, and you spent $100,000 on your SEO implementation. Your formula would look like this:
This means that for every $1 you spent, you saw a return of $3.
To determine a percentage, you multiply that final number by 100.
And that’s it!
SEO is a system that you’re setting up – and so is tracking it. The calculations are pretty simple if you have suitable systems in place.
But what do you do if your strategies aren’t working?
SEO is a long-term investment, so you won’t see a strong ROI right away. And honestly, you’re not alone if you have given it time and are still unhappy with your results.
Business owners spend tens of thousands of dollars on lousy content marketing strategies every year. One of our mantras at SizzleForce Marketing is: if something isn’t working, you shouldn’t spend money on it! That’s why we have several team members who are great with numbers and experts at ascertaining what strategies work best for our clients to ensure the greatest return on investment.
If you’re looking for a marketing strategy that works, don’t hesitate! Schedule a free consultation today, and we’ll discuss how we can help you grow your business!