With the total number of websites reaching over 1.8 billion worldwide, SERPs are experiencing cut-throat competition for top rankings. Businesses and individuals compete for enhanced traffic, exposure, and conversions – making SEO a vital marketing strategy.
This brings in SEO consultants who use effective strategies to help your websites perform better. However, with so many consultants in the game, it can be challenging to set apart the good ones from the bad ones.
One of the best ways to do so is by judging their SEO reports.
A comprehensive SEO report summarizes important data, gives insights on the noticeable fluctuations, and provides valuable suggestions. Additionally, it educates a client on the work you have done as an SEO consultant and why you chose specific methods.
On the other hand, a bad report is laden with useless data, providing no insight to the client.
While every report is different, depending on your work and how you create it, you can read ahead to look at our take on what a good SEO report should entail.
It is essential to gauge a website’s performance in search engines. SEO reports provide insights into this performance, focusing on rankings, organic traffic, and domain metrics. Additionally, they include the works of in-house, freelancer or SEO agencies.
Planning and effectively carrying out the work are essential components of a good SEO. These reports analyze the combination of work and planning to gauge their effect because, without your work’s analysis, you can’t figure out if it’s working or not.
However, an SEO report is mainly for your client to understand what you are doing and to monitor the key performance indicators (KPI) to evaluate performance. The report is the only source of information to see the effects of the work you do.
An SEO report needs to be easily understandable for your clients to know they are not wasting their money on your work. There are three essential aspects that a good SEO report should show:
Highlight any knowledge you can provide regarding your client’s work, especially identifying issues and areas that need improvement in the coming months.
As important as it is to show your client why they hired you, it is equally necessary to show your progress. For instance, the report should show the growth their site has undergone in a month with your efforts and the improvements you have made since the last one.
These are any recommendations you can give to the client that can help them reach their goals. Your client pays you to see improvement on their site performance, so they need to understand the methods you employ for their site and track its progress.
Every client needs evidence that your SEO techniques and efforts bring in a positive ROI for the company.
While every client is different with varying preferences of what they want to see in an SEO report, there are some ideal things that every client is interested in:
Backlink Health: What types of backlinks point at the client’s site?
SEO Health: A rundown of all the technical issues that can impact SEO visibility
Sales: Show the clients how SEO techniques have helped gain tangible ROI, essential for their business
Organic Traffic Progress: Show the effects of organic traffic on the site performance and the pages that drive the most traffic
Ranking Progress: Indicate any changes in rankings and track all potential drop-offs
An SEO report isn’t meant to display data that doesn’t provide value. Since this report is for your clients to understand your efforts through their site’s performance, it has to make sense to them.
If you think you can outsmart your client with a report filled with complex numbers and graphs that they can’t understand, they’ll probably cancel the service.
The clients pay you to drive their business by identifying trends and understanding the correlation between metrics. You need to provide an informative yet precise report for them to know they are not wasting their money, keeping them from leaving.
While it is a top priority to create a presentable report showing marketing capability, there’s no point in indulging in creating a fancy report and wasting your time.
Your report has to have style and substance to convey the information that the clients need clearly.
This is what report templates are for:
A client-based SEO report is made up of three things:
A concise yet comprehensive report following the above guidelines is the best way to highlight the site’s progress to your clients.
Here is a standard SEO report template that you can follow:
A title slide is essential to create with the reporting month date, client’s site URL, and your logo.
This page provides an introduction to your report. You can highlight that month’s major marketing campaigns and the significant wins.
You can either provide a simple overview or a complete summary of your work for that month, providing context to your client and making it understandable for different departments in the company.
You can include any tasks you completed in that period, a summary of traffic changes, upcoming meetings, and issues that need to be addressed.
A website’s health is essential to gauge for the owner. In this part of your report, provide a health score screenshot, and give a rundown of the technical issues that impact SEO visibility.
You can use a site audit tool to get a snapshot of URLs crawled, page types, and health score.
Some of the prevalent SEO issues that you can point in your report are as follows:
As advanced as search engines are, images need alt tags to describe via text what the image is all about. Audit tools take note of all image sizes, load times, and absent alt tags, which you can include in your report.
Writing duplicate content on your site is a big no! Not only does it not add any value for the visitors, but different pages will end up competing in the SERPs with one another.
This negatively impacts rankings as search engine crawlers wouldn’t know which pages they need to serve up.
Even though Google does not require a minimum word count per page, it ranks pages with more informative content higher. As a result, it is best to aim for a higher word count.
A site is bound to have broken links because as it grows, links change without any redirections giving you 404 pages. However, it becomes a massive problem as the number of these pages piles up. A site can lose traffic if users land on 404 pages and do not get what they came for.
HTML issues are generally related to title tags, Meta descriptions, and H1 tags. You can use graphs to visualize and identify these.
Use audit tools to generate and present reports related to content, links, HTML tags, and performance.
Your client should know what kind of backlinks point to their site, driving organic traffic. Link building is a considerable SEO challenge, and this part of the report communicates its importance to the clients. You can include the following details:
This part of the report details the SEO health highlighting URLs crawled and the health score. The problems increase if a website has more or fewer pages when you recrawl it.
Consequently, an SEO report should show the client how you’ve made progress on their website’s performance by highlighting the differences or improvements made after you took over.
Clients are usually concerned about whether the SEO techniques work and the source of the incoming traffic. They want to know the extent of progress that your involvement has brought on.
With the right tools, you can track big data, including keywords. When a client’s website emerges in the top 100 for several targeted keywords, it indicates that the SEO strategy is working.
While it is essential to show the amount of organic traffic you drive to your website, you also have to display how much of it is brought on by each keyword.
You can use graphs to depict the organic rankings’ spread throughout website pages to give a holistic view of all the organic keywords and how they perform on the site. You can highlight:
Rankings are a focal part of an SEO report to depict search visibility and how well your online marketing campaigns perform.
You can show the best-performing keywords, which might be different than what your clients want to target. You should educate them about the pages and keywords that drive the most traffic to get a better idea of the type of search traffic their website attracts.
It is also best to identify the search terms that drive traffic using an organic keyword tool before tracking keyword rankings.
There’s no point in ranking number one for some keyword that doesn’t bring in any traffic and is just used as a vanity metric, and you should communicate this to your client.
SEO efforts are mainly focused on rankings, and an SEO report will be incomplete without it. You can give a valuable overview to your client about their essential keywords to indicate their performance over a period.
Use graphs that show trends of average position, traffic for specific keywords, and visibility.
In this part of the report, you can educate your client about their keywords in the search results based on SERP features, indicating those they can and can’t own.
Along with showing clients all the SERP features they don’t possess, you can also point out the features they appear in to show that the SEO works.
With the help of graphs, you can show your client how people engage with their website. This can help you form a basis to give reliable suggestions to them. For instance, if you see more keywords in the Image Pack, you can suggest they generate more content with high-quality images to prioritize their optimization.
It is essential to track keyword ranking and communicate them to the client as they show search visibility.
Using tags in a Rank Tracker, you can help your clients understand keyword rankings through a straightforward method.
This feature lets you label keywords for easy groupings. For instance, if you have a client with a car garage website that offers various related objects, you can use tags to group them:
If you track a few keywords, you can include all of them in the report. But, if you track hundreds of them, you should filter out the most essential ten to twenty keywords and include those in the report.
However you present the client rankings, they will show the direction the client website is moving in, even if the traffic is not increasing.
It is also essential to plan what your clients should know through your report:
Once you send all the graphs and data through your report to the client, you must tell them what you plan to do next month to improve SEO further. Furthermore, outline the issues you plan to address that may be hindering your website from performing optimally.
You could make a simple to-do list to highlight the actions you plan to take for next month. No need to go into details since you will be providing them in the SEO report. This list serves two purposes:
SEO reports are an essential part of building a trustworthy relationship with your client. They pay you to improve the performance of their website, using various SEO strategies. As a result, it is your job to show them your efforts and the changes they make towards driving more traffic or resolving the previously not addressed issues.
An actionable monthly SEO report highlights the work you have done, the problems your website faces, and your knowledgeable advice to your clients. However, you can not dump all the data and information but present it systematically through a template using graphs and charts.
The report must be understandable to your clients since they have a right to know if they are getting a good return on their investment by working with you.
Follow our guide to create a highly informative yet precise report to improve your chances of continuing the work with your client.