As a website publisher, your primary concerns are search engine optimization (SEO), email performance and website traffic. Essentially you want to know the answers to the following 9 questions, plus the results of 5 calculations below:
- How big is my website? Using the Yahoo Site Explorer tool, keep track of how many pages of content your site is being indexed on. The more the merrier!
- How many links does my website have? Using the same Yahoo Site Explorer tool, keep track of how many inbound links your site is receiving from other website publishers.
- How big is my audience? Many of you use internal metrics to measure your unique visitor count – you should also keep track of what free tools like Compete.com are reporting and understand how visitors are counted.
- Which keywords do my audience use to find my website? Most internal metrics tools will tell you the keywords your audience is using to find your site. Compete.com also has a Search Analytics tool. Analyze your top terms and explore how you could be taking better advantage of that traffic, perhaps by putting stronger conversion architecture on those pages.
- How popular are those keyword phrases? Using the free Google Keyword Tool, query how many people are searching for any particular keyword phrase per month.
- How many other websites use those keyword phrases? “Google” the term in “quotation marks” and see how many competing web pages are using that term in an exact order. This tells you how many web pages are competing for that phrase.
- How many times does that keyword phrase appear on the winning pages? Using a keyword density tool like KeywordDensity.com (for a specific search) or Motoricerca’s Keyword Density Analyzer (for a much broader search) you can analyze the keyword density on the winning pages.
- Where does my website rank on that keyword phrase? Using a free tool like RankingCheck.com, or a paid tool like Advanced Web Ranking, see where your website ranks in Google on any given keyword phrase.
- How fast does my homepage load? Using a free tool such as the Web Page Analyzer from WebsiteOptimization.com to test your website load time
- Google Visibility Index
This is your estimated search impressions divided by total searches for a given keyword universe at a point in time.
- Unique conversion rate
Email adds divided by unique visitors for a specific period, normally a month – 5% is a good number.
- Revenue per M (RPM) emails sent
Email revenue divided by emails sent, often a single effort.
- Revenue per M (RPM) impressions
Website revenue divided by unique visitor, for a specific period of time.
- Email opt-out rate
Email opt-outs – both voluntary and bounced – divided by average email subscribers for a given period.
As long as the numbers are going up (or down, depending) you’re doing well. While there are plenty of metrics to pay attention to, we’ve found that acting on the results of these metrics can make all the difference in your online publishing business.