Before I jump into what reports you should be giving to your clients let me discuss what your clients want. Your clients want more profits or at least they should. If you acquire a client that is not interested in profits then they are going to either need to get educated about running a business or they will need to find a new Internet Marketing Company. You want smart customers that understand ROI and profit margins for their business. If your clients are basing the success of their Internet marketing campaign on keyword placement, you will be fighting a battle you just can’t win.
Even Google does not want websites to worry about banking on a single keyword. Keyword research is still important, and you should be targeting the keywords that are driving traffic for your client. However, understand that the way consumers search today is different than they did just a few years ago. Today you will find that searchers are using questions, descriptions, and statements to perform searches. These three, four and five keywords strung together are called long-tail keywords.
It’s important to rank for long-tail keywords for success in your SEO campaign. Searchers are also adding the city, county, and sometimes state to the query. There is no more keyword stuffing involved in getting a website to rank. Today content marketing is a huge part of the SEO structure. We still have to add the proper title tags and H tags, but we should be concentrating on the customer experience. Creating great content that answers the questions these long-tail searchers are asking.
That was a pretty long explanation of what the customer should want. But it’s important to know and understand so you can deliver the reports that answer these questions.
As an SEO agency, we work with four different reports. The first is the keyword placement report. A tool like BrightLocal does a very good job at this. You enter your list of keywords, and it tracks where those keywords are in all three search engines. You can’t use long-tail keywords in these reports because it’s hard to pinpoint what long-tail query a searcher will use. So here we just upload the common keywords for your client’s industry. As an example, if Landscapers were your target client some common keywords are probably “city+landscaping, city+landscaper, city+landscape design”. This report sounds like it goes against what I described earlier banking on the keyword. We use this as an internal report. You still want to rank for the typical keywords, but there is no reason to have the client reading this report and complaining to you that they are number two and why are they not number one. These are conversations you don’t want to have because if the client thinks he should be number one for everything then you are always going to be in the defensive mode. So keep the keyword report internal and use it as your roadmap. Our jobs are hard enough as it is, adding an upset client to the mix is a headache you don’t need.
The next report is the Google Analytics report. This is the most comprehensive report about the health of your website. We run all Google Analytics reports through Raven Tools. This allows us to modify what the customer sees. We are not trying to hide anything here but as you know, a Google Analytics report can be very confusing for someone who doesn’t know what they are viewing. The last thing you want to do is be on the phone for an hour discussing everything in Google Analytics. Raven Tools (www.raventools.com) allows you to pretty up your report with your company logo and keep the report simple and easy for your clients to read. I like to show the following:
• Number of visitors to the site
• Number of page views
• Bounce rate
• A daily graph of the month
• Keywords used outside of the “Not Provided.”
• Links to the site
•Which search engines are driving the traffic.
These are all the basic things your client will understand.
The next report we use is CrazyEgg. This is another internal report that allows us to see a heat map of where searchers click on your website. This is a great report to help with the website’s conversion.
The last and final report we use is the call tracking report. You must use call tracking to measure the success of a campaign. You can’t rely on your customer telling you they are getting telephone calls. I have seen many occasions where a customer was complaining they were not getting any calls. Then when we look at the report, they see they are getting 30-80 calls a month. Don’t assume your customer know how many calls they are getting. Call measurement is the most important report because it’s the one report that measures the result.
A good call tracking tool like Call Rail not only counts the number of calls but also records the telephone conversation so you and your client can listen and see what kind of clients you are attracting. It’s also an amazing training tool so your clients can see how well their people are answering the telephone.
These are the four reports you should be pulling every month for your team and your clients. Good reporting tools are the window to a successful Internet Marketing campaign.