What does the term ‘organic search’ mean?

The term ‘organic search’ (which is also known as natural search) represents unpaid search results. Organic search results are based on significance to the user’s search query. These results are also based on links and domain authority in addition to other organic ranking factors. Paid search results (pay-per-click advertising) are populated via an auction system.

DSM Digital school of marketing - organic search

Organic search outline

What are other organic ranking factors?

According to a study done by Search Engine Journal, the top 17 organic ranking factors are the following:

  1. Direct website visits
  2. Time on site
  3. Pages per session
  4. Bounce rate
  5. Total referring domains
  6. Total backlinks
  7. Total referring IPs
  8. Total followed backlinks
  9. Content length
  10. HTTPS (in other words, a website which has an SSL certificate)
  11. Total anchors
  12. Keyword in anchor text
  13. Keyword in body of content
  14. Keyword density
  15. Keyword in title
  16. Keyword in meta description
  17. Video on page

How do you measure organic search results?

One of the top ways to calculate the overall success of your SEO campaign is to look at your organic SEO traffic. Rank just isn’t a good SEO metric for a number of reasons. These are, for example:

  • The increased rate at which search is becoming personalised,
  • The influence of social signals on the search results,
  • The consequence of local SEO on search results.

The ranking of a site rank changes too often. This means that is can’t be a viable method of measuring your long-term SEO success. Examining your organic SEO traffic, however, can give you a much better idea of what is going on with your website, marketing efforts and SEO programme.

What Google Analytics reports tell you about organic traffic?

Total percentage of traffic that is organic traffic

To view this figure, go to the Acquisition section of your Analytics dashboard and then proceed to Channels.

When you get to the  Channels screen, you will see a list of your top Channel Groupings. While still on the same screen, use the date picker in the top right of Analytics to view a longer time period. This will allow you to see how your traffic is trending. In order to accomplish this, first click on the Organic Search Channel in the list. After this, adjust the Date to show the last year.

Click on “Apply”. Then, the page will refresh and will show the updated data. After adjusting that, the table refreshes again to display a month-by-month summary of the Organic Traffic. Hover your mouse over any single month dot. When you do this you’ll be able to see a summary of that month’s numbers.

Contact DSM Digital School of Marketing

Want to know more about how to put together an SEO programme that will make your website soar to the front page of the Google Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs)? The Digital School of Marketing’s SEO and Web Analytics Course will help you achieve this goal! For more information about this and our other online digital marketing courses, please visit our website.

DSM Digital School of Marketing SEO and Web Analytics course registration