Competition on the web is fierce. Companies just like yours are trying to rank on the first page of search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo. Some businesses rely on consultants, SEO firms or Pay-Per-Click ads to try and get placement in front of the right audiences. If you practice inbound marketing, you know that creating, optimizing and promoting high quality content can help you improve your search rankings. But how do you know what a good benchmark is — or how much work you need to do to move ahead of the pack?
The list of data you could gather is endless, but there are a few key online metrics that can give you a clear idea of where your website stands relative to the competition and what you can do to be on top.
The chart above, featuring a few of HubSpot's own websites, combines the key metrics you should consider as you develop benchmarks for your inbound marketing strategy:
1) Website Grade
This is an overall grade provided by HubSpot’s Website Grader that measures a site’s overall SEO readiness, including a scan for keywords, conversion forms and more. On a scale of 1 to 100, 100 being best, your website grade gives you a snapshot of your overall effectiveness in getting traffic to your site based on inbound marketing best practices.
2) Moz Rank
This score from 1 to 10, 10 being best, is provided by SEOMoz and measures link authority and popularity. High quantity and quality inbound links are key to improving your rankings in most search engines.
3) Traffic Rank
The lower this number the better. A ranking from Alexa , this is an indication of how much traffic your site gets compared to all other sites on the Web. If you ranked #1, you’d be the most popular site in the world. Your goal is to have a rank lower than your competition. One way to get similar data online is to check out your Compete rankings .
4) Blog Grade
On a scale from 1 to 100, your blog grade is based on the level of traffic your blog receives and the quality and quantity of links pointing to it. Compiled by HubSpot’s Blog Grader , this report will provide you with actionable recommendations to improve your blog's effectiveness.
5) Inbound Links
This often overlooked metric is one of the strongest indicators of your potential online rank. An inbound link is like an online vote for your content and site: the more votes you accumulate, the more attention search engines give you. To beat your competition online, you need to build more inbound links with higher quality. You retrieve such data from public sources, like Yahoo’s Site Explorer .
6) Indexed Pages
This simple metric indicates how many pages the search engines think you have. (Sometimes, based on your site structure, you might have more pages than they index.) More indexed pages generally means more content and more chances to build links and rank online. If your competition is blowing you out of the way on the other metrics, you can be almost certain they have a lot more pages. One of the ways you can easily create more pages is through blogging — every blog article is a new page and a new opportunity to rank for a valuable keyword by providing remarkable content to your audiences.
7) Keywords in Top 100
This is an approximate count of the number of keywords on your or your competitors' sites that rank in the top 100 search results. That means you are showing up within the first 10 pages. The higher the count, the better, because it means you get more chances to attract qualified visitors to your site.
Is there a competitor that’s beating you in online rankings?
Do a little research to find out why and then develop an inbound marketing strategy to improve your position and start winning more visitors, leads and sales online. You can do the work of getting a lot of these stats from the different tools mentioned above — or, consider getting a quick benchmark by using HubSpot’s free 30 Day Trial to get your own Competitors Report.