Setting specific goals that you want your website to achieve is vital. This is the only way you can control your use of resources and determine whether your investments in the Internet presence are paying off. This is important because websites require significant financial and time resources to serve their purpose. It is important to invest in a stable technical basis, to write useful texts, to create or to acquire pictures or graphics.
It goes without saying that these investments should pay off after a few months (it usually doesn’t get any faster). You can determine whether this happens by means of precise target definitions in two areas. I suggest you define
- objectives in the area of organic visibility
- goals in the area of conversions
definition of goals and evaluation of organic visibility
The organic visibility relates to search engines such as Bing, Google et al., Google’s market share in Germany is more than 90 percent .
It’s important to show up in search results. Because every visitor who comes to you naturally via the search result pages represents a specific value that can be quantified. You save yourself a corresponding advertising measure.
You can find out what it would cost. For example, use the Google Keyword Planner. This is a tool that tells you how much it would cost to be listed in search results for a fee (as an ad) and to attract a visit to your website. Then you have a clue and can calculate what monetary value your organic visibility represents in the search results.
Using Google Keyword Planner: Here’s How
How you can use the Google Keyword Planner to determine the specific value of your organic visibility will be explained at this point in a video that is only available to members. Sign up to benefit from it. It doesn’t cost anything and doesn’t oblige you to anything.
The Google Keyword Planner provides absolute numbers. You see,
- how often the respective term is searched for per month
- the competitive pressure on Google Ads (search engine ads) for these keywords.
Google Trends: What is the world looking for?
Google Trends has a different purpose. This free, no-registration service reveals what the world is looking for. In contrast to the Google Keyword Planner, Google Trends does not output the absolute number of search queries. It provides relative data. The information is given on an index from 0 to 100. You will get an impression of which terms are searched for worldwide or in a specific country and how often. This will help you better assess the importance of topics on the timeline. You can see whether the interest in terms is increasing or decreasing.
The following chart shows an example of how often people in Germany Googled for the term “home office” between 2004 and the end of 2020.
In this case the interest benefited from external factors. It was reflected in the search results that “home office” suddenly became a necessity due to the 2020 pandemic. Accordingly, interest in the term increased.
In other topics, such as new technologies, interest is growing more organically and evenly.
Such trend analyzes can make topic planning for your website more efficient. You will learn what people are interested in by regularly studying Google Trends. You get a better sense of how hypes arise. Ideally, your work with Google Trends will enable you to anticipate trends at an early stage. Then you can position yourself with pages and articles on your website in good time. You benefit from higher organic visibility.
Definition of goals and evaluation of conversions
A conversion occurs when a person relevant to you carries out an action on your website that is desirable from your perspective. Conversions can be defined differently. Possible events to which you can ascribe a concrete equivalent are, for example:
- Sales, if you operate an online shop
- gained contacts (leads). A person uses your contact or registration form and signals interest in your content or ideally even in business contact
- an outstanding occupation with your content (high engagement), for example through an above-average number of pages that were visited within a user session or a particularly long time that people spend consuming your content
I see the three points in descending order of priority. The last criterion in particular (long dwell time, many pages accessed) can, but does not necessarily have to be, a good sign. Because if people stay on your website for a particularly long time, it can mean that they think your content is great. On the other hand, it can also mean that these people simply did not find what they were looking for quickly enough – or that they were distracted while reading, for example because they had a coffee in between.
The first two points, sales and leads, are, however, tough criteria that directly contribute to your business. It is your responsibility to define what a lead is worth to you. It’s easier with a sale: Here your profit margin represents the value. With the lead, you have to build up the certainty of what it’s worth on average over time. If you don’t earn a cent with 90 percent of your leads and 10 percent profit in the first year for 1,000 euros, you can basically calculate the average value per lead as follows:
10 x EUR 1,000 = EUR 10,000 (profit)
10,000 EUR / 100 = 100 EUR equivalent per lead
Nobody tells you exactly how you do it. But you can automate this approach pretty nicely by using your web analysis software to track how many conversions bring you visitors from which platforms. Then at the end you will see data like this:
- Conversion rate (proportion of conversions in relation to the number of all visitors) per traffic source or campaign
- Value of a marketing measure: Was an advertisement or content written with the aim of organic visibility worthwhile?
Needed time: 1 day.
This is how you define goals for your website
- Research what your target audience is looking for.
Ask Google Trends about the development of search volume on the timeline. Use the Google Keyword Planner to find out search volumes per month, competition and bids on Google Ads. Make a plan in which you determine the keywords and keyphrases for which you want to be visible in the search results.
- Set conversion events for your website.
Determine which events will bring concrete progress towards your business goals. This can be interested parties (leads), contacts with you or sales.