There’s no denying that search engine optimization plays a key role in digital marketing. While it isn’t the only method that allows you to maintain a consistent web presence and drive traffic to a website, SEO is certainly one of the most effective -- particularly in terms of long-term growth.

If you run an agency that offers internet marketing services or even web design, it’s likely you already understand the value of SEO. However, your clients might not see the value of SEO, especially if you don’t present the information in a way they can easily understand. Even if they initially agreed to have their website optimized and have new content published on a regular basis, they may not really know what’s going on behind the scenes (or even why they should care). What’s more, they may be paying attention to the wrong metrics, which can make it more difficult to set expectations and retain clients over time.

Ultimately, you’ll need to show a client exactly how their business has improved as a direct result of your SEO and other digital marketing efforts. And while sending an email or pointing out a win on a call can help, utilizing SEO reporting can ensure you have all the compelling data you need to illustrate your value and keep your clients happy.

Let’s discuss the concept of SEO reporting in-depth, find out what an SEO report should include, and learn how Semify’s SEO reporting software and all-in-one dashboard can make it easy for you to grow your business.

What is SEO Reporting?

Simply put, SEO reports are status updates that show how well a digital marketing campaign is progressing. They typically contain both precise data and expert recommendations, which will show what kind of progress the campaign has made and how to build upon that momentum.

SEO reports will be created at various times. Sometimes, a client will ask for a monthly report; in other cases, clients may need a status update once every six months. The frequency of SEO reporting may come down to your agency’s internal policies or the preference of an individual client. But no matter how frequently these reports are compiled, it’s important to have access to the information that your clients really care about and to display it in a way they can easily digest.

What Should an SEO Report Include?

At its core, any SEO report should show the progress that has been made within a given time, which tactics have been used to achieve those results, and recommendations to consider moving forward that can build on the growth that’s already been achieved. That may sound simple enough, but SEO reporting may be more in-depth than a lot of agency owners realize.

SEO reports should be more than just a screengrab of the last month’s worth of web traffic. However, they shouldn’t be so long and filled with unnecessary information that the client loses interest. It’s important to strike the right balance between too long and not long enough. One of the best ways to do that is by ensuring every feature of the report has a definitive purpose and will support the ultimate goal: to convince the client that their time and money are being well-spent.

There’s no doubt that metrics are important. Although not every type of free SEO reporting software will include the same metrics, digital marketing experts will often advise that an SEO report should feature data that includes keyword performance, on-page and off-page optimizations, backlinks, web traffic, and any other metrics you feel your client will want to know about. Different metrics will matter more for different industries (or even for different businesses) than others, so it’s important to be flexible and to do your research to ensure you’re including information that’s relevant and valuable.

Metrics also need context in order to resonate with clients. In other words, it’s not enough to simply copy and paste the results, send it off to the customer, and call it a day. You need to provide the proper framework to illustrate what the results mean for the client and ensuring that the information is communicated in a way that feels important in relation to the client’s ultimate goals. That means you should emphasize gains based on what they care about -- and not necessarily on what excites you the most. While these two concepts may align in certain situations, that’s not always the case. And if you want to keep the client around, you need to show them why they should care about the work you’re doing.

Usually, that means highlighting your client’s goals for SEO or digital marketing, going over the methods you’ve employed, and showing them how those methods have directly impacted their results. This cause and effect, backed up by valuable data, can show a client that what you’re doing really is working for them.

Keep in mind that it’s not just enough to show a ranking improvement for traffic, SERP positioning, or keyword movement. You’ll also need to find out how these improvements have helped them achieve their business goals. Being number one in Google search results may be nice, but if it isn’t helping them make more sales, they might not care about all the work you’ve put in. So while it’s essential to record observations and show them the progress their campaign has made, you’ll also need to connect the dots to ensure they see how the SEO work your team has done has helped them achieve their business aims.

For successful SEO reporting, it’s important that you do the prep work to really get to know your clients. It doesn’t make sense to use the exact same reporting format for each and every client. Rather, you should specialize these reports to ensure they capture what matters to each client and adeptly shows off all the work you’ve done to help them succeed -- however they define “success.”

Of course, there’s always room to grow. If the client feels they’ve achieved everything they’ve set out to do, they might not be convinced to continue paying for their services (even if you see the value in doing so). Not only should you include recommendations for improvements over the next few months, but you may even want to use negative metrics to your advantage. As long as they understand that SEO is a long-term solution and requires a bit of patience, it can actually benefit both you and your client to point out what you feel should be adjusted and what they can expect to see if they follow your recommendations. These recommendations can provide a great opportunity to sell other products and services you offer -- and if you can highlight exactly why these recommendations could help them realize their vision, you’ll be more likely to keep this client around by building trust.

How Can My Agency Improve SEO Reporting For Clients?

Now that we’ve covered the basics of SEO reporting, you might be worried that your current methods aren’t cutting it. As the owner of a small agency, you might find yourself scrambling to compile data from different documents, software platforms, emails, and systems in order to show your clients that all the work you’ve done hasn’t been in vain.

It’s understandable that you might feel a bit disorganized when you have to pull data from so many different places and cobble it together for each client. But both you and your clients deserve a better setup that will reflect your professionalism and promote greater understanding.

This is one of the most compelling reasons to use SEO reporting software. While there may be a number of free SEO reporting software options available at your disposal, it’s best to look for a platform that offers some kind of API integration and that allows you to keep track of all of your client data in one place. This can help you discover all of the data you need -- and with just a few clicks, you can easily compile it into a report.

At Semify, our easy-to-use dashboard allows those in our SEO reseller program to keep all of their marketing and content data in one place. Resellers gain access to expert reporting tools that help them to retain clients and maintain their brand at the same time. Not only will you be able to access analytics, search rankings, paid search data, phone tracking, and lead generation info, but we also ensure that every aspect of your dashboard and subsequent reporting is white-labeled with your agency, logo, and custom URL. This provides a streamlined and specialized experience for both you and your client while providing you with the support you need to deliver what’s expected. You can even choose how frequently you receive campaign updates right in your inbox, as well as how frequently reports are consolidated. That way, you’ll have all of the information you need to know that the work is being done and that it’s having results your clients will be thrilled about. Best of all, our free SEO reporting software is included in your SEO reseller experience to ensure both your agency and your clients’ businesses can grow without any barriers holding you back.

By streamlining the SEO reporting process -- whether through our all-in-one reseller dashboard or through other means -- you can more effectively showcase all the hard work you’ve done for your clients. If you’re able to highlight exactly how that work translates to improved results and overall success for their business, you’ll already be well on your way to retaining your clients and scaling your agency.

To learn more about how Semify can help your agency grow or for additional information about our white label SEO reseller program, please get in touch with our team today.