SEO has been around for a while, but not everyone’s familiar with the best practices. This is mainly because SEO rules change, and new practices are often being developed. These SEO statistics will tell you a bit more about optimization, why it’s useful, and maybe even show you how to predict future trends.
Top 10 SEO Statistics and Facts
- Between March 2020 and 2021, 88.62% of the US search market share was Google’s.
- 74.71% of SEO experts charge their clients a monthly retainer fee.
- Shifting from 6th to 5th position on Google can bring a page 53.2% more clicks.
- In July 2020, 52% of online purchases were completed over cell phones.
- 90.63% of content found on Google gets no traffic.
- Keywords don’t really help YouTube videos rank higher.
- 2018 data shows buying a link costs $361.44 on average.
- Shares, comment counts, and video quality affect YouTube rankings.
- 75.1% of all clicks go to the top 3 organic search results for a specific keyword.
- 73.6% of websites have reciprocal links.
General SEO Statistics and Facts
What is SEO in general? Let’s see what we can find out about its practices, uses, and overall effectiveness.
1. In 2017, on-page content was stated by marketers as the most effective optimization tactic in 57% of the cases, as SEO stats show.
The second most effective strategy was keyword research (50%), while link building ranked third with 46%. Off-page content scored the lowest, with only 10%. Surprisingly, social media sharing was second to last, reaching no more than 32%.
2. 88.62% of the US search market share between March 2020 and March 2021 belonged to Google.
According to recent SEO stats, another 5.73% belonged to Bing. On the other hand, Yahoo only had 2.99% of the search market share. Baidu scored the lowest, reaching a mere 0.08% of the total market share.
3. In 2017, Google secretly started working on a search engine called Dragonfly that would comply with Chinese censorship laws.
Since Google got banned in China in 2010 due to censorship laws, the giant wanted to make a search engine for the 772 million internet users there which complied with the laws. Interestingly, 1,400 of Google’s employees gave signatures against the project, and 700 did so publicly.
4. 74.71% of SEO experts charge their clients a monthly retainer fee.
According to search engine marketing stats, the prices of these services vary from country to country, the upper limit being $5,000. Moreover, 23.08% charge between $500 and $1,000 a month, while 24.23% will ask for $2,000+. Finally, 19.23% of experts charge from $250–$500.
5. In the US, 35.29% of SEO experts charge from $100–$150 an hour.
Globally speaking, 25% of all hourly rates fall within the abovementioned range. Furthermore, 19.53% of hourly rates are in the range between $75 and $100. Only 11.72% of Ahrefs’ respondents state that they charge more than $150 an hour.
6. Statistics on search engines tell us that shifting from 6th to 5th position on Google can bring a page 53.2% more clicks.
As you can see, moving up or down a single spot can mean a huge difference. However, the actual result depends heavily on the position you’re moving to. Research has proved that when it comes to single-spot shifts, moving from #6 to #5 exhibits the greatest CTR change.
7. The optimal bounce rate for a website falls between 26% and 40%.
Bounce rates simply can’t be avoided and it’s pretty unrealistic to expect getting them down to zero. Even the strongest domains can have higher bounce rates. If your site’s bounce rate is between 41% and 55%, it’s within the average range.
eCommerce SEO Statistics
If you sell products or services online, you can definitely benefit from proper SEO practices. It’s tough to compete with other brands if you don’t have an edge, and optimization can definitely be the thing that takes your business to the next level.
8. When it comes to B2B, SEO stats indicate that these companies gain twice as much revenue from organic search than other channels.
Moreover, B2B companies reach a combined search traffic rate of 76% on average. A remarkable 64.1% of their visits come from organic visitors, while only 3% come from social visits. Paid search scores pretty low as well, averaging no more than 12.3%.
9. In July 2020, 52% of online purchases were completed over cell phones.
During this period, 81% of all Internet users went online to find a necessary service or product. Moreover, 90% of them checked out eCommerce sites or stores. Finally, around 67% of people used shopping apps on tablets and cell phones when making a purchase.
Mobile and Local SEO Statistics for 2021
Since SEO tactics are always changing due to ever smarter algorithms, it’s important to keep up with Google’s updates in the new year.
10. Google’s data from 2016 shows 30% of mobile searches are related to location.
(Think With Google)
People searched for “stores open now” and “food open now” 2.1 times more in 2016 than in 2015. In addition, mobile searches for “where to buy/get/find” increased 1.3 times during the same period.
11. As mobile SEO stats indicate, 76% of people who use phones to search for a nearby business visit it in the next 24 hours.
(Think With Google)
Not only does this mean that focusing on local SEO will make you more visible in your area, but it can also bring people straight to your door. In fact, over a quarter of those searches—28%, to be exact—result in sales.
Links, Keywords and SEO
How important are backlinks and keywords, and what do companies do to improve them? What about link mills? Read on and find out.
12. Keywords don’t really help YouTube videos rank.
Obviously, shares and views will significantly boost your video’s ranking. A high subscriber base helps, too, not to mention video quality. However, search engine optimization statistics point toward a lack of correlation between descriptions containing keywords and higher rankings.
13. Zero backlinks, not matching search intent, and content lacking long-term potential are among key reasons sites fail to get traffic.
The second two issues in particular reveal your site doesn’t have much to offer Google’s users. If you don’t match search intent, you’re not really giving them what they’ve searched for. Also, articles that become dated after a month or so don’t have much value by themselves, do they?
14. Ahrefs’ 2018 data shows buying a link costs $361.44 on average.
Years ago, Google brought the hammer down on link buyers and sellers, which can clearly be seen through analyzing SEO industry statistics. It devalued the links people were selling, slowing down this particular optimization method.
However, numerous businesses still practice it, as you’re probably aware. Frequently, they attempt to score backlinks (for themselves or their clients) under the guise of real outreach guest-posting work.
15. 73.6% of websites have reciprocal links.
No matter what your stance on reciprocal links is (hopefully it’s in line with Google’s guidelines), they do seem to be everywhere. Around 44% of top ranking pages have them. Even Ahrefs’ blog itself has 19.25% of domains it links to and which link back to it.
16. One-word keywords are outranked by long-tail keywords by 3%– 6%.
According to search engine traffic stats and keyword data, long-tail keywords (usually more precise phrases containing at least four words) are more effective than generic ones. The most likely reason behind this is that they’re less competitive.
17. 75.1% of all clicks go to the top 3 organic search results.
Almost a third (31.7%) of all clicks are absorbed by the highest ranking webpage for a specific term, according to Google page statistics. Also, it’s common knowledge that the second Google-results page is practically invisible in comparison, receiving only 0.78% of all clicks.
18. Including keywords in your URL can lead to 45% more click-throughs.
According to Backlinko’s research, the most likely reason for this is that people trust a page will answer their search queries better if the web address is related to what they’re looking for.
Besides bettering the overall user experience, Moz states that keywords in URLs can also slightly contribute to ranking. Finally, a precise and user-friendly address can even act as its own anchor text in specific contexts.
19. SEO stats remain unambiguous—organic search is (still) king.
In 2019, 53.3% of website traffic came from simple organic search by users. The same goes for revenue results (44.6%). The technology segment seemed to be gaining the most from this type of search. Here the organic share of revenue averaged no less than 58.8%.
20. Marketers are turning more to videos as a form of content distribution.
When a number of marketers were asked which channels they’d employ for content distribution, 45% said YouTube. Also, 43% wanted to avail of professional networks like LinkedIn, while 41% intended to use Facebook Video. Slack was at the bottom of the list, with 5%.
21. 90.63% of content found on Google gets no traffic, according to Internet search statistics.
Ahrefs researchers were led to this number upon analyzing one billion pages from their database. They emphasize that even this sample size isn’t that impressive, since there’s an estimated 297 billion pages online, with roughly 1.8 million new ones showing up every day.
22. Having your article reach the first position gives you three times the clicks the second place gives you on mobile devices.
27.7% of all clicks analized for this study go to the top position. The second place gains 9.20% of clicks. This disparity isn’t as big with the desktop, where 19.3% of clicks go to the top position, while 11.4% reach the second position.
23. Shares, comment counts, and video quality affect YouTube rankings.
SEO marketing statistics show that other factors play a role, too. For instance, videos with high numbers of likes rank far better, and so do longer videos. In fact, research has revealed that a first-page video lasts an average of 14 minutes and 50 seconds.
24. Meta descriptions are absent from 25.02% of high-ranking pages.
Google often rewrites meta descriptions and replaces them with snippets of its own preference—in 62.78% of the cases, to be more exact. Though they don’t influence ranking directly, it’s still wise to have them. They help attract more organic traffic and shares on social media.
25. Only 5.7% of top ten pages reach the #1 spot on Google for a specific keyword within a year.
As search engine statistics show, it typically takes them between two and six months to reach this position. Unsurprisingly, achieving that goal is much harder with pages that use high-volume keywords. Only 0.3% of such pages become #1 in less than a year.
How effective is SEO?
SEO can be very effective or not effective at all, depending on what tactics you employ. Since algorithms evolve and change frequently, you need to be doing your research constantly to stay on top of your game. If you manage to do so, SEO will be very beneficial for your website.
(Search Engine Journal)
How much should I spend on SEO?
This will depend on your budget, type of business, and goals. First, you need to calculate the budget for your digital marketing services. From there, it’ll be easy to estimate how much money you’ll need for a good SEO specialist. Depending on your financial capabilities, you could either hire someone to work in your office or find independent SEO specialists working remotely.
Just to know roughly what you can expect, you should bear in mind that the majority of SEO experts or agencies (74.71%) charge a monthly retainer fee. Generally, their fees range from $250 to over $5,000. When it comes to hourly rates, they typically go from $75 to $150, sometimes even higher.
(Web Strategies) (Ahrefs)
How is SEO ROI calculated?
Calculating your ROI can generally be done in three steps. First, you’ll need to set up conversion tracking with Google Analytics. After you’ve been tracking your conversions for a month, you’ll need to sort them by channel. Finally, you’ll be able to calculate your ROI with this simple formula: (Value of Conversions – Cost of Investment) / Cost of Investment.
Reading SEO statistics is a great way to get more familiar with optimization and understand its full importance for your business. Whether you’re just getting into the game or want to update your knowledge, we’re sure this article will provide the info you need.