Keyword Performance – The Ultimate Guide To Analyze Rankings

Keyword Performance image
Table of Contents

Tracking SEO keyword performance forms a vital part of any digital marketing strategy. Making sure that your website and its content rank well on search engine results pages (SERPs) depends greatly on your website’s keyword performance, the focus of our article today. We’ll cover everything you need to know to measure your keyword performance, analyze, report, and ultimately, drive your success.  

Key Takeaway

  • Understanding SEO keyword performance is crucial for the effectiveness of your content marketing strategy.
  • Efficient measurement and tracking of keyword performance allow for better decision-making in SEO campaigns.
  • Analyzing and reporting keyword performance provides insightful data and highlights the efforts required to improve your website’s SEO.

What is Keyword Performance?

Keyword performance can be defined as the measurement and analysis of how effectively your selected keywords are driving traffic to your website. It is the quantifiable outcome resulting from your keyword strategy, depicting its robustness or otherwise.

When you designate specific keywords to represent your content, you are implying that these words accurately summarize what users can expect to find. However, your assumptions are only valuable if they lead your target audience right to you. Search engines use complex algorithms to evaluate the relevance and quality of content, making it essential to align your keyword strategy with these algorithms to ensure your website ranks favorably. This is where keyword performance comes into play. 

Specifically, it scrutinizes how your chosen keywords rank on search engine result pages (SERPs), how often they’re clicked (click-through rate), and the user behavior once they reach your site, such as bounce rates or interaction with your content. These key metrics give you a comprehensive overview of how well your keywords are resonating with your audience, which can directly affect your online visibility. 

In essence, assessing keyword performance is the litmus test for the efficacy of your SEO strategy. It’s a critical concept to grasp if you’re aiming to increase organic traffic, elevate brand visibility, and ultimately, drive conversions.

Importance of Keyword Performance

Keyword performance plays a crucial role in optimizing your SEO strategy and hence, understanding its importance is vital. Let’s dive a little deeper into why this metric is significant. 

Boosting Website Traffic: Performing well for important keywords increases the visibility of your website in search engine results pages (SERPs). A high rank in SERPs leads to greater click-through rates, driving more traffic to your site. 

Relevance and Intent: By analyzing keyword performance, you can identify the keywords that are most relevant to your brand. Equally important is the ability to discern the user intent behind these keywords, helping you craft content that truly fulfills your audience’s needs. 

Competitor Analysis: Studying keyword performance lets you know which keywords your competitors rank for. Armed with this data, you can construct a strategy to compete more effectively and take advantage of their missed opportunities. 

Increasing Conversions: The ultimate goal is not just to increase traffic but to convert that traffic into customers. A high-performing keyword optimally positions your content right at the point where a potential customer is ready to convert, such as when they’re searching for a product to buy. 

Trending Topics: Evaluating the success of your keywords can also help identify the latest trends in your industry. These insights allow you to stay ahead of the curve and produce timely and relevant content. 

In summary, understanding the performance of your keywords not only improves the visibility and relevance of your website, but it also provides essential insights to outperform your competitors and increase your conversion rates.

Understanding Keyword Performance Metrics

Deciphering the realm of keyword performance metrics can initially seem like a daunting task. It’s not just about observing which keywords are driving traffic to your site; rather, it demands the comprehension of multiple metrics and how to measure the KPI. When measured correctly, these metrics can provide invaluable insights into the performance of your SEO efforts. By harnessing the insights from tools like Google Analytics, you can refine your SEO strategy, focusing on keywords that resonate with your audience. Let’s break down the key keyword performance metrics you need to understand. 

Understanding keyword performance Metrics


The most basic aspect of keyword performance is your keyword ranking, or where your page appears in search engine results for a particular keyword. This is the starting point of your keyword performance journey. You want your targeted keywords to rank on the first page of search engine results as it receives the majority of clicks. 

Click-Through Rate (CTR) 

CTR revolves around how many people click on your link after it appears in their search results. A high ranking does not necessarily guarantee a high CTR, so it’s critical to pay attention to this metric. Factors such as compelling meta titles and descriptions can lead to a higher CTR. 


Impressions denote how often your site shows up in the search results. Even if users are not clicking on your site, the number of impressions implies the reach of your keywords and their potential for future clicks. 


Conversions illustrate how many users completed a desired action on your website after clicking on it from search results. This could be anything from purchasing a product, signing up for a newsletter, to scheduling a consultation. Tracking conversions is key to realizing the ROI of your SEO efforts. 

Bounce Rate 

Bounce rate reflects the percentage of visitors who leave your site quickly after arriving without interacting further. A high bounce rate typically indicates that your content did not match the search intent or the user’s expectations based on their keyword search. 

Avg. Time on Page 

Average Time on Page is measured by how long a visitor stays on your webpage. The longer a visitor stays on your page, the more likely they found value in your content. This can indirectly influence your search engine rankings. 

Understanding these keyword performance metrics is your ticket to mastering SEO keyword performance. By tracking and interpreting these metrics, you can gain insights into your SEO strategy and make data-driven decisions that boost your website’s visibility and overall success. 

How to Track Your Keyword Performance

 As an online business owner, the keywords you choose to focus on in your content are vital to your success. It’s not just about selecting the right keywords, but about knowing if they drive the results you want. Measuring keyword performance is no different. Utilizing specialized tools and analytics, you can assess the clicks, impressions, and rankings associated with your chosen keywords, allowing you to gauge their effectiveness in the ever-changing landscape of search engines. But how exactly do you do this? Let’s walk through the process.

How to Track Your Keyword Performance

Start with your keyword list 

Start with a list of keywords you’re currently ranking for, or would like to rank for. This could be a single keyword or a long list of them. 

  • Use Google Ads Keyword Planner: This can show you search volume and competition for your chosen keywords.
  • Consider related keywords: If you’re focusing on a specific niche or topic, consider variations of your chosen keyword.

Google Search Console is your friend 

You can also use Google Search Console to delve deeper into keyword performance.  

  1. Find your page in Google Search Console: Under the ‘Performance’ tab, you’ll see a list of queries. These are the search terms people are using to find your site. Look at the ‘Clicks’, ‘Impressions’, ‘CTR’, and ‘Position’ columns. These can help you understand how well your keywords are performing.
  2. Analyze your data: With this data, you can determine which keywords are getting the most clicks and impressions, and which ones are not. Adjust your strategy accordingly.

Regularly update your keyword list 

After assessing and analyzing your keywords, regularly update your keyword list. This will ensure that you’re always targeting the most effective keywords for your business. 

Note: Keep in mind that the search landscape changes often. What worked today may not work tomorrow. So, always keep an eye on your competitors’ keywords as well. This can help you stay ahead of the game.

By using these techniques, you can effectively measure keyword performance and improve your SEO efforts. Be sure to keep your keyword list updated and to regularly analyze the impact of your SEO strategies. The more data you have, the better decisions you can make.

Tools used to track Keyword Performance

 When it comes to maximizing your website’s potential through keyword optimization, having the right tools at your disposal can make all the difference. Tools like Google Analytics can also assist in modifying your SEO strategy as per the results. Here are some of the most commonly used tools:

  • Google Analytics: The most popular and widely used tool for assessing keyword performance. It provides in-depth insights into your website’s traffic and the sources driving that traffic.
  • SEMrush: This tool doesn’t merely provide keyword performance data; it offers an array of features, including competitor analysis and backlink research.
  • Ahrefs: Well-known for its backlink analysis, Ahrefs also boasts robust keyword tracking capabilities. It provides detailed reports on keyword performance and SEO health for a date range of your choice.
  • Moz Pro: Moz Pro comes bundled with a strong keyword research feature, mitigating the guesswork in keyword strategy planning. Its intuitive dashboards make tracking keyword performance a breeze.
  • Ubersuggest: If you’re on a budget, Ubersuggest is a valuable tool. It’s user-friendly and offers insightful keyword performance report and SEO metrics.

While these tools offer robust keyword tracking, each tool has its unique strengths and capabilities. Your decision should align with your specific needs and budget.

Adapting your Keyword Strategy

Keyword Strategy

Adapting your keyword strategy means you have to stay agile and ready to make changes based on the data you gather and the evolving search landscape, based on which search terms users input. These can be your primary keywords or, in some instances, can be secondary keywords that you use on your web page. Here are some key guidelines on how to maintain an adaptive keyword strategy. 

Monitor Keyword Trends 

Firstly, understanding what your audience is searching for in real time is key. Platforms such as Google Trends, Twitter Trending Topics, and BuzzSumo can help you understand what is currently popular. 

Competitive Analysis 

It’s also crucial to keep an eye on your competition. Find out what keywords they’re ranking for and consider if these are valuable for your business as well. Tools like SEMRush and Ahrefs are perfect for this work. 

Frequent Auditing 

Regularly check your keyword performance. Are they still giving you the desired results? Get on that trusty Google Analytics to check the status. If not, then it’s time to reassess and adjust. This might mean you have to optimize some of your content or find new, relevant keywords. 

Stay Open to Change 

SEO isn’t a one-and-done deal; it’s an ongoing process that requires constant adaptation. Good SEO strategies are fluid, changing as needed. Always be prepared to tweak your keyword strategy in light of new trends, algorithm updates or a change in business focus. Staying open to change also involves understanding how search engines evolve, ensuring your strategy aligns with their algorithms, and being flexible to adjust accordingly.

To sum it up, an adaptive keyword strategy means staying on top of ongoing changes, keeping abreast with your industry, consistently analyzing your data, and never being afraid of re-optimization or shift strategy when necessary. This will help you to maintain a successful and effective keyword strategy which will ultimately boost your overall SEO performance.

Take action

Explore our keyword research services and beat your competitors in rankings.


In conclusion, monitoring and tracking SEO keyword performance is a vital process in improving your website’s visibility. It helps you gain valuable insights into what’s working and what needs improvement. 

The practice involves intricate steps, from tracking organic traffic, targeting specific keywords, analysing click-through rates, to assessing the impact on the overall website performance.

Understanding keyword performance goes a long way in shaping your SEO strategy. It can help you make informed decisions and sharpen your focus on what’s essential.

Once the keyword performance is measured and tracked, you should be ready to report these metrics. Clear and concise reporting is crucial to communicate the success of your SEO strategy.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What does a high-performing keyword mean? 

A high-performing keyword is one that brings quality traffic to your site, achieving a balance between the volume of searches and relevance to your content. This will ideally result in a high CTR, low bounce rate and increased conversions on your page. 

2. How often should I update my keyword list? 

There’s no solid rule for this, as it largely depends on your industry and competition. However, a general good practice is to review and update your keyword list monthly. This will keep your SEO efforts in line with any new trends, seasonal topics, or shifts in your market. 

3. How can I improve my keyword performance? 

Improving keyword performance involves several strategies like thorough keyword research, crafting high-quality content around your keywords, regular monitoring and tweaking based on performance data, and staying up-to-date with SEO trends and algorithm changes. 

4. Do long-tail keywords perform better than short-tail keywords? 

Long-tail and short-tail keywords each have their benefits. While short-tail keywords generally have a higher search volume, they are also more competitive. Long-tail keywords, on the other hand, may bring in less traffic, but they’re more targeted, often resulting in higher conversion rates. 

5. What factors affect keyword performance?

Several elements can influence the performance of your chosen keywords. Competition level is a significant factor; the more businesses targeting the same keywords, the harder it will be to rank high. Similarly, the relevance of your keyword to your business and its contents directly contributes to your SEO success. Search volume, indicating how often a specific keyword gets searched, also directly affects performance, as does the geographical location of your searchers.

6. How does quality content effect keyword performance?

Quality content significantly impacts keyword performance. It establishes relevancy and context for your keywords, making your content compelling to both search engines and users. 

You might have the most researched, industry-relevant keywords, but without high-quality content, those keywords won’t have a platform to intersect with user interest, search engine algorithms, or your business objectives. In simple words, keywords are only as good as the content in which they appear. By crafting valuable, informative, and unique content around your targeted keywords, you increase their performance potential.

Was this article helpful?
Ajay Deep
Ajay Deep

Hi, I'm Ajay Deep, founder and CEO of Authority Ventures. I work as a strategy consultant - passionately aiding businesses in optimizing their digital presence. Apart from working with clients, I also work on some niche websites - which are my own experimental projects. One of my website recently got acquired by a Fortune500 company (for a whooping 6-digit figure). Click below to know more about me and my work.

More About Me