Last Updated on May 26, 2022 by Scott Charleboix
This post, How to set SEO Goals is a round up post focusing on setting your SEO Goals. In Step 2 of my post, Ultimate SEO Roadmap to Learning SEO one of the 10 process steps is Learn to Execute an SEO process and within that, there are: setting SEO Goals, Measuring SEO, Reporting SEO and SEO Process Management. In addition, I want to put a lot of stress on what Ahrefs calls the SEO Goal Pyramid which is more than simply getting more traffic. It’s the SMART way to set your SEO goals. This post will provide you with the SEO goals and objectives and provide SEO SMART goals examples.
Initially for this post I wanted to concentrate solely on pictures that depict how to set SEO Goals. However, I think a better alternative so that you can quickly grasp some of the main SEO goals is to quickly give a Reader’s Digest condensed version of the for the SEO Goal pictures that I’m providing, and the source for where I’ve found these pictures and the name of the post. I would encourage you to check out the links (in this post) that I’m providing so that you can determine what SEO Goals you want to have for your own website/blog.
At the top of this post, I’m going to begin with the information from Ahrefs discussing their SEO Goal Pyramid from their post called How to Set the Right SEO Goals with 3 Examples.
How to set SEO Goals
SEO Goal Pyramid
The reason that I’m putting this information at the forefront of the post is that when you develop your SEO Goals it’s important that you have a clear vision of what you want your results to be so that they’re likely to be achievable. My hope with reading this post is that you’ll go from being confused by SEO to having more knowledge on SEO as pictured below.
By setting the right SEO goals you’ll go from shooting in the dark (using your SEO as a shot in the dark) to hitting your target.
So, let’s turn our attention now to the SEO pyramid goal.
The problem with the simple SEO goal of “get more traffic” (that most bloggers aspire for), is that it’s not a SMART goal. It totally disregards the principles of a SMART Goal. Whereas, if you use the SEO Goal Pyramid, you’ll know how you’re going to achieve your overall outcome goals and how you’ll be getting there with performance goals and process goals (your SEO objectives to reach your performance goals). By putting your goals in writing and using the SMART principles of Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Trackable you’re more likely to reach your goals.
The Ahrefs post How to Set the Right SEO Goals with 3 Examples describes the layout of how to use the SEO Goal Pyramid. Here I want to provide you with the 3 simple steps that are self-explanatory, but you can read the post if you’d like. The end result is the SEO Goal Pyramid on the far right called The SEO Goal Pyramid – Complete.
Viola, now you have your full SMART Goal as laid out below (in the processes – Complete). Let me type that out for you so that you can copy and paste the information to set up your own SEO goals.
- Outcome Goal: Rank in the top 3 (for high-value keyword) in 6 months.
How to measure: Use Ahref’s Rank Tracker (or Ubersuggest) to track rankings.
- Performance Goal: Get 40 high-quality backlinks to the page in 6 months.
How to measure: Use Ahref’s Site Explorer or Ubersuggest
- Process Goal: Send 133 ‘skyscraper’ outreach e-mails per month for 6 months.
How to measure: Track the number of e-mails sent per month.
Whatever SEO goal you decide to use (I’ve used a number of them to build my site’s SEO) replace your goal in and write out each of the steps to identify how you’re going to get there by defining the outcome, the performance, and the actual process of how to get there.
Let me remind you that Ahrefs said that you shouldn’t fall into the trap of just saying that your goal is to get more traffic because it’s vague.
Rather than: Get more traffic
Use: “Rank in the top 3 for [high-value keyword] in 6 months.”
The second goal is SMART driven and here’s why? “This goal is specific and relevant because ranking for [high value keyword] will increase revenue. It’s measurable because you can track keyword rankings with any good rank tracking tool, such as Ahrefs’ Rank Tracker. It’s achievable because you already assessed keyword difficulty. And it’s time-based because you specified the timeframe.” – Ahrefs.
The second heading in this post is going to be looking at 7 SEO Goals and objectives
The 3 strategies on the left and the 3 strategies on the right all lead up building your domain authority strength.
Therefore, I’ve placed Domain Authority Strength as your outcome and the other 6 are your objectives to get there.
- Domain Authority Strength
- Upgrading backlinks
- Increase Organic traffic (using SEO to optimize your posts)
- Increase your sites page speed
- Promote featured snippets
- Optimize Internal links
Of the 6 objectives the one that draws my attention that I haven’t done before is promoting featured snippets. For example, here’s my most recent snippet that I want to take a chance to promote that features three of my categories: Blogs, Artwork, and my free Blogging Course.
PinArtwork – Learn to Start, Grow, or Monetize your Blog –
PinArtwork – Learn to start your blog! Improving the world by helping Pinterest users to start a blog, grow their blog, monetize it, improve their SEO strategy, …
Blogs – all of my blogs on PinArtwork
Artwork – the pins that I’ve created for Star Trek, Cruella, Norman Rockwell, and many more.
Be sure to check out the categories under Blogging 101 to learn about Pinterest, Blogging, and/or SEO.
We’re in a new year now, 2022 and it’s time that you need to determine your SEO Strategy and how you’re going to be accomplishing it. To get you started in the right direction I’ve written a prior post called What does an SEO Strategy look like?
PinArtwork: In that post, what does an SEO strategy look like you’ll be provided with an opportunity that you can download the SEO template in Word or PDF. You can use the SEO template to build your SEO strategy and I’ll be defining what is an SEO template. The information contained within the SEO Template will be very valuable to implement SEO Strategy and lays out SEO process steps for a new website. Once you get done with the “initial” steps of SEO you can divert your attention to the Ultimate Roadmap to Learning SEO which provides you with a strategy – (the “what” of how-to SEO).
By utilizing SEO goals on your website, you’ll be more likely to achieve something a lot of bloggers would really like to have – an effective optimized website. The results from this are astonishing that it’ll bring you more traffic and you’ll be more likely to get higher Google rankings. So I would implore you to start putting your SEO goals into writing so that instead of being dreams they become a reality.
I can’t tell you what SEO goals you need for your website because it’s inherently different for every website. What I can tell you is that your SEO goals should be aligned with the objectives that you have for your business.
If you’re looking to figure out some SEO goals I can steer you in the right direction with a post that I wrote called Can I Learn SEO on my own? In that post, I’ll show you the Reader’s Digest condensed version of how to learn SEO and you’ll be able to teach yourself SEO on your own.
I’ve been blogging for a year and a half and I’m quite the SEO enthusiast so in the post I’ve provided a recommendation on how to proceed with learning SEO. Now let’s turn our attention to the blog post, How to set and achieve realistic SEO Goals.
A fellow blogger pointed out that I left out one of the most important things, especially for new bloggers. So I’m rectifying that by adding in his comment. Thanks to John Rodgers.
You need to set goals that you can achieve by targeting keywords you have a chance to rank for. For example, I can’t go up against a blog like Neil Patel and outrank him. However, ideally you could outrank others that show up in your backlinks and outrank them pretty easy with superior content. Content is king!
This blogger says that there are three steps in the process of setting up and achieving your SEO goals: 1) Measuring targets, 2) Establishing SEO benchmarks, and 3) Developing an action plan
- The bottom line to measuring targets is that you should know the answer to the question of what does success look like (for your website) in 3, 6, or 12 months out?
- Establishing SEO benchmarks is identifying the things that you want to track that will change from time to time as you modify your SEO goals.
- Developing an action plan – There are two parts to developing an action plan:
- 1) Setting up a new website and implementing all of the SEO suggestions –
How to setup SEO for new bloggers – This post, How to setup SEO for new bloggers is a very useful guide that you can use to run through all of the first things that need to be need on a new website when it comes to Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Because SEO is a continual process of improvement. This post is a Guide for new bloggers on SEO basics. New bloggers should use this post as a WordPress SEO checklist because it’s a very useful SEO checklist for new websites and provides How to SEO your website for beginners? It’s my hope that you’ll use this post as your SEO implementation checklist.
2) Using an SEO plug-in to optimize your posts (like Rank Math SEO)
The next topic we’re going to be looking at is 4 easy strategies to set your SEO Goals
In a nutshell, this post can quickly be summarized in three points:
- Define your Target Audience – have an idea who’s your ideal targeted audience.
- Make sure that you’re using the “Right” keywords in your SEO
- Perform an SEO Audit on your website.
- Content is King – To bring traffic you need to have great content.
I’ve been harping about setting SMART goals and one of my blog posts was talking about using SMARTER goals called Setting goals and objectives with SMARTER goals. The acronym SMARTER still applies and although the author of the post called Setting Smarter, Not Harder SEO Goals doesn’t use the same definitions that I use, they’re pretty much the same. So I’d like to leave you with these 7 SMARTER SEO goals. In my SMARTER goal example, I used Specific, Meaningful / Measurable, Achievable / Attainable, Realistic, Timely, Evaluate, and Readjust. In place of the last two, Aleyda Solis uses Ethical (use white-hat SEO methods) and Recorded (document your results).
Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic or Relevant, Trackable / Time-based, Ethical, and Recorded
Lastly, I want to draw your attention to the last post called 7 SEO Mistakes That can Hurt your Business
After reading this portion hopefully you don’t make the same mistake others ahead of you have already made that may jeopardize your SEO.
Although these are not goals, these are mistakes that are worth taking a look to ensure that you’re properly using SEO.
- Be cautious if you’re using Artificial Intelligence programs to write your blog posts. You might get dinged by Google so don’t use the exact terminology from automatically generated content. It could bring down your Domain Authority (DA) score.
- In summary, don’t cheat how backlinks are made.
- Don’t publish duplicate content on your website. That’s probably the best way to get penalized by Google. When I was trying to optimize some of my posts for keywords I added some keywords and was in a hurry so I just added some bulleted items and a few days later I got my first (and hopefully last) ding from Google where my DA dropped 2 points. I won’t make that mistake again.
- Cautious of using 301 redirects – they can tremendously slow down your PageSpeed.
- Optimize your website’s PageSpeed. I highly recommend WPRocket.
My last post (that I’ve reviewed) is called 10 SEO Goals You Should Target for 2022. I didn’t include a picture from this post because I didn’t like the pins that they used.
You can read their post for their actual verbiage on each of the 10 SEO goals, here’s a list of those 10 SEO goals that you can consider using and I’ve added a few more extra goals for you to consider.
- Increase Organic Traffic by x amount
- Improve Your Backlink Profile
- Strengthen Your Domain Authority
- Maximize Page Speed
- Diversify Your Traffic-generating Pages
- Capture More Featured Snippets
- Decrease Your Bounce Rate
- Boost Visitor Time on Page
- Convert More Organic Traffic
- Optimize Your Internal Linking
- Don’t have any Non-rated posts in Rank Math
- Don’t have any Fair posts in Rank Math
- Aim for all of your posts in Rank Math to be Good
I hope that you’ve been able to narrow down your list of SEO Goals and that you’ve been able to use some of these SEO milestones in order to reach your website optimization goals.