So you’re sitting in your office perusing reams of sales data when the CFO walks in and says “Hey, what is our hard data on the ROI of our SEO spend?” You can feel perspiration forming on your upper lip. A flashback of the last attempt appears to you in vivid detail. His last effort to calculate SEO costs resulted in a team meeting that was mired down for hours in minutia. You’ve scheduled bumper-to-bumper meetings throughout the day. Where will you find the time?
You could respond with “Gee, that’s kinda hard to nail down. You know, SEO is as much art as it is science.” or “Funny you should ask, I was going to tackle that next.” The truth is that most businesses are unsure of what their SEO costs are in terms of dollars allocated. The time involved to find out also becomes a factor. Disparate components such as customer funnels, conversion ratios, CRM pipelines, disconnected silos…, the list frankly goes on and on. Who has the time to put into this? Perhaps it would be less costly and more productive to hire an outside consultant or do some onboarding for someone who can focus exclusively on these issues.
Relax. There are ways to calculate your SEO’s ROI without going into conniptions. But the approach you take first depends on what kind of business it is: eCommerce or a lead generation business? Calculating the ROI of your SEO spend for an e-commerce business is just a matter of knowing where to retrieve the information. Estimating costs on an eCommerce site is not nearly as challenging as it might be for a leads generation business. Let’s tackle e-commerce first.
Calculating ROI for an e-Commerce SEO Campaign
The first stop you make is to the Google Analytics Dashboard for e-Commerce Sites
If this is your first visit, sign up for an account post-haste. With that accomplished, you can begin to familiarize yourself with its user-friendly applications. Your first task is to enable the e-commerce dashboard to determine the views with which you want to see the data. Google provides the following step-by-step details.
- Sign in to Google Analytics.
- Click Admin, and navigate to the view you want.
- In the VIEW column, click e-commerce
- Set Enable e-commerce to ON.
- Click Save.
Ok. You’re almost there! This is where a decision needs to be made on what data you wish to view. Just follow the prompts found on Google Support and you are good to go. Google will provide prompts through the entire process, and the CFO will thank you for all of your hard work.
Calculating Your SEO’s ROI for Lead Generation and Service Companies
Making sense out of ROI for lead generators and service companies is like trying to complete a Jackson Pollock jigsaw puzzle under time constraints. However, if you break the parts down to the most common denominators, you’ll get through this in one piece. The first task is to set up the Google conversion tracking system. The problem with lead generation businesses is that you’re not just counting purchases. A conversion tracking system will permit you to overcome this obstacle. All you have to do is ascertain the actions of your customers. Even if you are not trying to figure out an ROI equation, you’ll nevertheless find this information invaluable
When it comes to making your customer data actionable, Google’s Conversion Tracking System is the way to go. Just as with e-commerce sites, your issues might entail data stored in disparate information silos. However, a robust CRM program can help you access data in a more unified way. While there are several platforms that offer ROI solutions, you can’t go wrong with a Google Analytics product. We caution you that before you can activate this program, you first have to be signed up with a Google Analytics Account. For those among us squeezing budgetary pennies, it’s FREE!
Introducing the Unsampled Reports Developer Guide
- Google Analytics This tutorial will guide you through the process of sorting out data in an actionable format. Its purpose is to “Set up and customize measurement for websites, web and mobile apps, and internet-connected devices.” You’ll then be given an option of devices from which to choose: website and web apps, mobile apps, and internet-connected devices.
- Select a Google-certified partner from this list to support your journey. These Google experts will smooth your path to fully actionable data retrieval.
- Google Analytics permits you to use the latest tracking library, js.
We are now deep enough in the weeds to bring your IT, sales, and marketing team out of the weeds to craft a dashboard designed to make everybody’s lives a little less stressful and a lot more productive. The Google programs will enable you to manipulate data instead of the other way around. Google’s arsenal of productivity tools will have you performing calculations you never dreamed were possible. Granted, it might take a little time to put all the pieces together. However, it will pay back 100 folds in hundreds of saved time and wasted effort. To put it simply, it’s good for your SEO’s ROI. This link is an excellent place to get started. Share it with your team.
PC Magazine gave Google Analytics a 4-star ranking, stating, “Due to its brand recognition and the fact that it’s free, Google Analytics is the biggest name in website and mobile app intelligence. It has a steep learning curve, but it is an awesome business intelligence tool.”