Creating an SEO strategy for your website is one thing. But measuring the impact of your efforts? That’s where the real work begins. You need a reliable way to track progress and understand if your strategies are yielding the desired results.

Enter SEO reports. These reports provide detailed insights into your website’s performance metrics. With a snapshot of key indicators such as search engine position and organic traffic, you can gauge the effectiveness of your SEO efforts and make data-driven decisions.

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What is an SEO report?

A search engine optimization (SEO) report is a document or analysis reflecting a website’s performance in search engines. It typically includes critical metrics such as:

  • Organic traffic
  • Keyword rankings
  • Conversions
  • Backlinks

Together, these SEO metrics enable you to present a clear and evidence-based assessment of how SEO strategies contribute to achieving business goals.

What are the benefits of using an SEO report?

An SEO report is crucial for companies of every scale. Acting as an SEO audit tool, it reveals the amount of organic traffic your pages attract and identifies SEO challenges potentially limiting your website’s effectiveness.

Here are seven key benefits of creating and using an SEO report:

Analyzing performance

An SEO report gives you a clear picture of how well your strategies are working. It looks at your site’s rank in search engine results and shows what’s working and what areas could use some help.

Evaluating competitors

You also get to see how you stack up against others in your field. This part of the report can point out where you have an edge and where there’s room to leap ahead.

Making data-driven insights

An SEO report hands you key info like where your keywords rank, how your traffic is doing over time, and the state of your backlinks. With this data, you get a solid base to figure out what’s working and what’s not.

Improving decision-making

Armed with all this information, you can make relevant adjustments to your SEO strategy. This might involve changing up your keywords, tweaking your content, or fixing parts of your site to make Google happier.

Solving technical hurdles

Running an SEO report also reveals technical SEO errors that can negatively impact your site’s search rankings and user experience. Addressing these errors is crucial for ensuring your site meets search engine standards and facilitates smoother navigation for your users.

Demonstrating ROI

For anyone putting money into SEO, like for writing content or getting links, this report shows if it’s paying off. It tells you if your efforts are bringing in more clicks, conversions, and cash, proving that your investment is worth it.

Tracking progress

By looking at these reports regularly, say every month, you can watch how things change over time. If you’re doing better, you know to keep pushing. If not, it’s a heads-up that it’s time to try something new.

Key components of an SEO report

An effective SEO report breaks down several key metrics to show how a website is doing in search results, especially on Google. Here’s a closer look at these KPIs:

Google SEO rankings

Google is a big deal in online searches. Make sure your site meets Google’s needs by focusing on important aspects like using the right keywords and making your site work well on mobile devices. Google Search Console helps track how your site stacks up against Google’s expectations.

This part looks at the links from other sites pointing to yours. It checks the number of these links, where they’re coming from, and their quality. Getting links from respected sites can make your own site look more trustworthy to search engines.

Website analytics

Here, you find out how your site is doing in terms of loading speed, how high it ranks in search results, and which pages are most popular. This helps you see how users experience your site and how well it’s doing in searches.

Local SEO performance

If your business focuses on local customers, this section is crucial. It includes how well you’re doing in local searches, including your rankings for local keywords. This boosts your visibility to local customers.

On-page optimization

This part checks how well your website’s pages are set up to be found by search engines. It looks at things like the titles of your pages, descriptions, and the quality of your content. This helps make your site more visible in searches. 

Technical SEO metrics

This section covers the technical health of your site, including loading speed, mobile responsiveness, HTTPS security, crawlability, and duplicate content issues.

Referral traffic and engagement

This section provides insights into how people find your site and what they do once they’re there, using data from Google Analytics. This includes where your visitors come from and how they interact with your site.

Keyword performance

Lastly, this section shows which keywords are bringing people to your site. Understanding this helps you know what’s working and where there’s room to get even more visibility in search results.

An SEO report with these elements gives a comprehensive view of your site’s performance in searches, guiding improvements to attract more visitors and rank higher.

How to create an SEO report

Creating an SEO report, whether for your own business or for clients, involves using both paid and free tools to analyze a site thoroughly. Here’s a seven-step guide to assembling an SEO report that ticks all the boxes:

1. Gather data using SEO tools

Start by collecting data. Use tools like Google Search Console, Google Analytics, Semrush, and Ahrefs. These tools help you grab all the info you need on things like how keywords are doing, how much organic traffic you’re getting, your site’s backlink situation, and how fast your site loads.

2. Define your key metrics and KPIs

Every website has its own goals, so you need to pick out the metrics that show you’re hitting those goals. Is it about getting more people to read a blog, or is it about selling more products? Choose your key performance indicators (KPIs) based on what success looks like for the website you’re working on.

3. Organize and present your data clearly

Once you’ve got all your data, you need to put it somewhere. Use a template or a reporting tool to make everything clear and easy to get at a glance. Charts and tables help turn raw data into visual stories.

4. Analyze and interpret your data

This is where you dig into what the data is telling you. Which keywords are bringing in traffic? Which pages are people spending time on? And which backlinks are making a difference? Look for the patterns and key insights.

5. Offer recommendations based on your analysis

After analyzing the data, suggest ways to improve. This might involve optimizing certain pages, targeting new keywords, improving the quality of backlinks, or fixing issues found in the technical SEO review. Highlight steps that are likely to improve SEO results the most.

6. Summarize findings and plan next steps

End with a summary that puts the key points front and center. Then lay out a plan for what to do next, who’s going to do it, and when it’s going to happen. Keep it clear so everyone knows what the focus should be moving forward.

7. Adjust your report for your audience

Creating an impactful SEO report demands a solid grasp of your audience. The effectiveness of your report relies on tailoring it to the reader’s understanding and what matters most to them.

“You’ve got to match your report to who’s going to read it,” says Andreas Hopfinger, SEO director at Tim’s Coffee. “If it’s for someone deep into SEO, they’ll want all the details, like technical audits and competitor stuff. But if it’s for the big boss, stick to the big picture—how all this SEO work is helping the bottom line. This way, you make sure your report isn’t just informative but also hits the right note with whoever’s reading it."

SEO report templates

Looking for a quick way to jump into SEO reporting? Here are three SEO report templates you can adapt to fit your business needs.

Monthly SEO report template

Report For: [Your Website’s Name]
Month: [Month, Year]


Summarize the month’s SEO activities, key achievements, and any challenges faced. Highlight significant changes in traffic, rankings, and conversions.

Traffic summary

Detail the total organic search traffic received, comparing it with the previous month. Include a breakdown of traffic by source and highlight any notable trends or changes.

Keyword performance

List the top-performing keywords for the month, including any new keywords that have started to rank well. Mention improvements in rankings and how these have impacted traffic and engagement.

Backlink growth

Update on new backlinks acquired, notable mentions, or partnerships formed during the month. Mention the quality of these links and their expected impact on domain authority.

Conversions from SEO

Track the conversion rate from organic search traffic, comparing it to previous periods. Highlight any specific pages or keywords that have contributed significantly to conversions.

Quarterly SEO report template

Report For: [Your Website’s Name]
Quarter: [Q1/Q2/Q3/Q4, Year]

Executive summary

Provide a high-level overview of SEO performance over the quarter, summarizing key metrics like traffic, keyword rankings, and conversions against previous quarters.

Traffic and engagement

Analyze trends in organic traffic over the quarter, including user behavior metrics such as bounce rate, average session duration, and pages per session. Compare these with the previous quarter to assess progress.

Keyword rankings overview

Highlight changes in keyword rankings, focusing on gains in high-value keywords and addressing any losses. Discuss the impact of these changes on overall SEO strategy.

Content performance

Review the performance of content created or optimized during the quarter, including blog posts, landing pages, and other key assets. Analyze traffic, engagement, and conversion data to identify standout content.

SEO opportunities and challenges

Identify new SEO opportunities based on quarterly performance, such as untapped keywords or content gaps. Discuss any challenges encountered and the strategies implemented to address them.

Yearly SEO report template

Report For: [Your Website’s Name]
Year: [Year]

Year in review

Reflect on the year’s overall SEO performance, comparing it with the previous year’s data. Highlight milestones, major achievements, and any setbacks along the way.

Annual traffic analysis

Provide an in-depth analysis of organic traffic patterns throughout the year. Discuss seasonal trends, the impact of specific campaigns, and overall growth in audience engagement.

Keyword performance analysis

Summarize the year’s keyword strategy successes and areas for improvement. Include a discussion on the evolution of keyword rankings and their contribution to traffic and business goals.

Link building efforts

Review the year’s backlink strategy, detailing the growth in backlinks and referring domains. Highlight high-value links acquired and their impact on SEO performance.

Looking forward

Based on the year’s data, outline goals and strategies for the next year. Include potential areas for expansion, such as new markets or content strategies, and any adjustments to existing SEO tactics.

What is the future of SEO reporting?

Companies are updating how they report on SEO. This change recognizes that understanding a customer’s journey, especially in B2B sectors with long decision cycles, requires more than traditional metrics.

“For sectors like B2B where the conversion journeys are very long and include a list of various touchpoints, it’s hard to only look at SEO and say how much of the revenue/pipeline was generated by the search,” says Usman Akram of TripleDart about this evolution in SEO reporting. “I think the demand for modern attribution and GTM analytics tools like Dreamdata and HockeyStack will rise, which connect all sources of data to help you visualize the influence of each channel in conjunction with each other.”

This new approach aims to convey the broader influence of SEO beyond direct sales attribution, focusing on its part in the entire path a customer takes from discovery to purchase.

Creating your first SEO report

Now that you understand the basics of SEO reporting, it’s time to get started on your first report. Gather your data, concentrate on the key metrics, and begin discovering insights to guide your SEO efforts.

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SEO report FAQ

How long does it take to create an SEO report?

The time it takes to create an SEO report can vary based on the level of detail you’re going for, the data sources you’re using, and how complex the report is. For a basic report, you might need just a few hours. But for a more detailed report, it could take several days to put everything together.

What are the best tools for creating SEO reports?

Paid tools like Moz, Ahrefs, and Semrush work best for building comprehensive SEO reports. For a free SEO report, consider pairing Google Analytics with Google Search Console to get valuable data related to your site’s SEO performance.

What makes a good SEO report?

A good SEO report clearly presents important metrics, provides actionable advice, and recommends improvements, all in a way that’s easy for the audience to understand.