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10 SEO Goals & Objectives to Target in 2024

An astonishing 96.55% of online content gets zero organic traffic from Google!

That’s enough to put off any digital marketer, let alone SEO specialists.

On the flip side, a study reveals that organic search drives a whopping 53.3% of all website visitors, dwarfing the mere 27% from paid search.

Our takeaway?

Like every other marketing channel, SEO works—but only if you have a solid plan in place. That would explain why 88% of marketers with an SEO strategy plan are well on their way to increasing or maintaining their investment in 2024.

If you’re one of them and need some inspiration to clarify your SEO goals and take your business places, this guide is perfect for you.

You’ll learn how to align your SEO efforts with your overall business objectives, discover specific SEO goals you can start working on today, and gain the tools you need to track and measure your progress toward achieving SEO success.

By the end, you’ll have a clear roadmap to success that will help you outrank your competitors and drive qualified leads to your website.

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What are SEO Goals?

SEO goals are specific objectives that aim to improve website visibility and attract more organic traffic. These goals ultimately tie into a company’s overall goals of increasing revenue and improving customer engagement.

Simply put, they are milestones and results that you want to achieve through your SEO strategy—targets that help you measure progress and ensure your SEO efforts are actually driving tangible results for your business objectives.

For instance, if your SEO goal is to boost organic traffic, you’ll need a strategy that includes keyword research, content optimization, and high-quality backlinks. 

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Understanding Effective SEO Goals and Their Significance

Effective SEO is much more than just keyword stuffing and backlinks. It’s a strategic approach to optimizing your website and content to improve its organic ranking for relevant search queries on search portals. 

SEO project management involves the planning, communication, and execution of all SEO efforts—and SEO goals play a crucial role in this process.

Here’s why aligning your business objectives and SEO goals is so crucial:

  • Strategic management: SEO goals become an integral part of your overall digital marketing objectives. They ensure your SEO work is not disjointed but contributes to achieving specific business goals
  • Brand awareness: Higher SEO rankings increase your website’s visibility, making your brand discoverable to potential customers actively searching for the solutions you offer
  • Web traffic: Effective SEO attracts more qualified website visitors and organic traffic to your website—people who are genuinely interested in your products or services

How SEO goals contribute to goal setting in businesses

By setting specific SEO goals, you can define what success looks like in the digital landscape. These goals target SEO metrics that directly impact overarching priorities like increased leads, boosting sales, or improving organic traffic. 

This clarity keeps everyone on the same page and ensures your SEO efforts contribute to achieving those bigger business objectives.

Effective SEO goals are always part of a bigger picture—your company’s overall goals. For instance, if you aim to expand into a new market, the SEO strategy might target specific keywords to increase website visibility in that region. 

This alignment shows how SEO adds value and boosts your business’s ROI.

In essence, SEO goals bridge the technical aspects of search engine optimization and your broader business ambitions. By clearly defining what you want to achieve with SEO, you can leverage it to drive progress toward your overall goals.

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10 SEO Goals to Set in 2024

Now that we understand the significance of SEO goals, let’s explore 10 actionable and specific SEO goals—including SEO goal examples—you can set for 2024:

1. Increase organic traffic from targeted keywords

Increase organic traffic
via Moz

Identify high-volume, relevant keywords that your target audience is searching for. 

Set a goal to improve your keyword rankings for these target keywords over a specific timeframe. This will drive more qualified website visitors and organic traffic to your website, increasing the chances of conversions and boosting sales.

Quick tips to achieve this goal:

  • Leverage long-tail keywords with informational intent: Most people focus on high-volume keywords, but these are often fiercely competitive. Instead, target long-tail keywords with lower search volume but higher relevance to your audience and, consequently, higher conversion rates. These longer, more specific phrases tend to have informational intent, meaning searchers are looking for answers, not just browsing. By creating content that addresses these specific questions, you can attract a more targeted audience likely to convert
  • Optimize for featured snippets: Featured snippets, also known as answer boxes, are short summaries that appear at the top of search results for specific queries. Identify long-tail keywords with high potential for featured snippets and tailor your content to provide clear, concise answers to those questions. This can significantly increase your website’s visibility for those searches
ClickUp’s blog posts
A featured snippet from one of ClickUp’s blog posts
  • Revamp existing content for better ranking: Update older content with fresh data, new insights, and optimized keyword placement. Look for existing content that partially ranks for your target keywords and improve it for a stronger push

Example goal: Increase organic search traffic from the target keyword ‘best-running shoes for beginners’ by 20% within the next quarter.

Backlinks are essentially votes of confidence from other websites, and they play a crucial role in your performance. Earning backlinks from relevant, high-authority websites improves your website’s credibility and ranking potential on search engines. 

Strive to acquire a specific number of backlinks from high-quality websites within a timeframe.

Quick tips to achieve this goal:

  • Guest blogging: Create high-quality informational assets people link to news reports, studies, original research, and infographics
  • Broken link building: Identify relevant dead links on other sites and offer your content as a replacement.  

By offering relevant content to replace dead links, you’re increasing the chances that visitors on the referring site will click through to your content. 

This targeted traffic is more likely to be interested in what you offer, potentially leading to conversions (e.g., sales, sign-ups)

Example goal: Secure 10 backlinks from websites with a domain authority (DA) of 50 or above within the next three months.

3. Improve domain authority score

Domain authority score
via Ahrefs

Domain Authority (DA) is a key SEO metric that predicts a website’s ranking potential on Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). 

Your goal should be to increase your DA score by a specific percentage within a set timeframe. 

Building high-quality backlinks from authoritative websites is a key SEO strategy for improving DA. Here are a few additional ways to improve your DA:

  • Post consistently: The first step is to create high-quality, informative content that people find valuable and engaging. Then, maintain a consistent posting schedule to stay relevant and keep your audience coming back for more. Focus on topics relevant to your niche and target audience. This establishes you as an expert in your niche
  • Spark conversations: Ask questions at the end of your posts to spark discussions and get people to comment. It’s also vital to share your content on social media platforms to reach a wider audience and drive traffic back to your website. Optimize your content for social sharing by including social media buttons and creating visually appealing content

Example goal: Increase DA score from 50 to 60 within the next six months.

4. Enhance user experience (UX) with faster page load times

Load Time graph
via Moz

A slow website not only frustrates users but also negatively impacts your performance. 

Work toward improving your website’s page load speed using techniques such as image optimization and code minification. 

Image optimization makes images smaller in file size without sacrificing significant quality. Code minification reduces the size of code files (HTML, CSS, JavaScript) by removing unnecessary characters. 

Example: Reduce website page load time by 2 seconds within the next month.

5. Boost mobile friendliness

Boost mobile friendliness
via Ahrefs

With most searches now happening on mobile devices, a ‘mobile-friendly’ website is no longer optional. So, it’s vital to work on your website’s mobile responsiveness and user experience for mobile users. 

Here’s how you can do that:

  • Use responsive design: This ensures the layout automatically adjusts to different screen sizes, offering an optimal view for smartphones and tablets
  • Mobile-friendly navigation: Simplify your navigation for mobile users. Large, clear menus with minimal nesting are ideal. Consider using a hamburger menu to house less frequently used items
  • Fast-loading pages: Mobile users are impatient. Optimize your website for speed. This includes using efficient code, compressing images, and leveraging browser caching
  • Finger-friendly interactions: Since mobile users interact with the screen using their fingers, ensure all clickable elements (buttons, links) are large enough to be easily tapped without accidental clicks on nearby elements
  • Readability for small screens: Optimize text size and font for mobile. Use clear, easy-to-read fonts and ensure there’s sufficient contrast between text and background for better readability on smaller screens

Example goal: Achieve a score of 90 or above on Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test within the next two months.

6. Increase content engagement with higher dwell time

Content engagement
via GA4

Dwell time, the time users spend on your website pages, is an important SEO metric. Higher dwell time indicates engaged users who are finding your content valuable. 

Monitor the metric in your Google Analytics account and increase dwell time for key website pages by creating informative, high-quality content that keeps users interested.

Here are a few examples to help you work toward this goal:

  • Explore unique content angles: Don’t just rehash common knowledge. Offer fresh perspectives, surprising facts, or counterintuitive takes on your topic. Tailor content to different user segments within your audience. Address their unique challenges
  • Offer industry insights: Tapping into niche expertise is also a great idea. Partner with subject matter experts (SMEs) for exclusive interviews or data-driven insights. Quote industry leaders, showcase case studies, and compile diverse perspectives to make your content valuable. This ensures readers stay on your page for longer, absorbed in your content
  • Experiment with content hubs and clusters: With a central pillar with links to related cluster content, you offer users a clear path to explore a topic in greater detail. They can stay on your site, diving deeper into sub-topics that interest them. These sub-topics or content clusters keep your content organized and easy to navigate. Users can find exactly what they’re looking for without getting lost in a maze of unrelated content. You can also offer a variety of formats within a cluster, e.g., blogs, infographics, and videos. This helps you cater to different learning styles and keep users engaged for longer

Example goal: Increase average dwell time on blog articles by 30 seconds within the next quarter.

7. Use local SEO for improved visibility

If you have a local business, local SEO is crucial for being discovered by potential customers in your area. Ensure information is accurate and up-to-date, including name, address, phone number (NAP), website URL, category, and hours of operation.

Add high-quality photos and videos showcasing your business, products, or services. Encourage customers to leave reviews and respond to them promptly, both positive and negative. This builds trust and engagement.

Boost your local search ranking by optimizing your Google My Business listing, building local citations, targeting local keywords, and generating more leads.

Local Search Maps
via Google

Quick tips to optimize for local search:

  • Keyword integration: Throughout your website content, naturally integrate keywords that include your city, town, or surrounding area
  • Optimizing page titles and meta descriptions: Include your target location in your website’s title tags and meta descriptions
  • Local landing pages: If you have multiple locations, create specific landing pages optimized for each location

Example goal: Achieve a top-3 ranking for the keyword ‘best plumber in [your city]’ within the next six months.

8. Optimize internal linking structure for improved user flow and navigation

Optimize internal linking
via Ahrefs

A well-structured internal linking system helps search engines understand your website’s content hierarchy and user flow. 

It also enhances the user experience and potentially boosts rankings for linked pages.

Aim to enhance your linking structure by strategically linking relevant pages together. This improves user experience and potentially boosts rankings for linked pages.

Quick tips:

  • Targeted anchor text and user experience: When creating internal links, prioritize using descriptive anchor text that clearly indicates the content the link leads to. Avoid generic phrases such as ‘click here’ or ‘learn more’. Instead, use keywords relevant to the target page’s content. This improves user experience by giving them a clear understanding of what to expect when they click, and it also helps search engines understand the relationship between the pages. For example, instead of linking to your ‘About Us’ page with the text ‘click here’, use an anchor text like ‘Our Story’ or ‘Who We Are’. This is more informative for both users and search engines
  • Strategic formatting: Leverage various formatting styles to make your internal links visually distinct and encourage user clicks. Here are a couple of ideas:
    • Highlight important internal links with callout boxes. These can be colored backgrounds with bolded text or even small icons to grab attention and make the links stand out from the surrounding content
    • At the end of your content, include sections like ‘Suggested Reading’ or ‘You Might Also Like’, where you can list relevant internal links. This provides users with a curated list of related content to explore after finishing the current page, keeping them engaged and navigating deeper into your website

Example goal: Implement a silo structure for blog content and link relevant articles within each silo by the next month.

9. Increase brand mentions and brand awareness through online PR

Building brand awareness online goes hand-in-hand with SEO success. 

Set a smart SEO goal to increase brand mentions through online PR efforts. This could involve guest blogging, influencer outreach, or participating in industry forums.

Example goal: Secure five guest blogging opportunities on high-authority websites within the next quarter.

10. Improve conversion rates by optimizing landing pages

Conversion rates
via Moz

SEO is not just about driving organic traffic—it’s about converting that traffic into leads or sales for your business. 

Accelerate the conversion rate of your landing pages by A/B testing different elements like headlines, calls to action, and page layout.

Example goal: Increase conversion rate on the product page by 10% within the next two months.

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How to Set & Track SEO Goals

Setting and tracking realistic SEO goals is crucial for measuring the success of your SEO efforts. Here’s a breakdown of the process:

Aim for SMART goals

Ensure your SEO goals fall within the SMART framework—specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound. This ensures clarity, focus, and the ability to track progress towards achieving your SEO goals.

Use SEO tools and website analytics

SEO tools and website analytics
via Ahrefs

Use powerful SEO tools and website analytics platforms to track progress toward your SMART SEO goals. 

SEO agency software like Google Search Console, keyword research tools like SEMrush and its alternatives, and link-building tools like Ahrefs can provide valuable insights into your website’s organic traffic, keyword rankings, backlinks, and other key SEO metrics.

As far as goals are concerned, you need just one tool: ClickUp Goals, which can streamline your goal-setting and tracking process. You can integrate ClickUp with your preferred analytics tools to centralize your SEO data and make tracking a breeze.

ClickUp Goals
Stay on track to hit your SEO objectives with clear timelines, measurable targets, and automatic progress tracking on ClickUp Goals

Here’s how you can use ClickUp Goals to support your smart SEO goal-setting strategy:

  • Create, manage, and track all your SEO goals in one centralized location
  • Design custom dashboards to visualize your progress toward different SEO objectives at a glance
  • Link SEO tasks to specific goals, ensuring a clear roadmap for achieving your desired outcomes
  • Collaborate with your SEO team by assigning tasks, sharing progress updates, and fostering better communication around your SEO goals

Review and improve your SEO goals

Schedule regular reviews (e.g., monthly or quarterly) to assess your progress and identify areas for improvement. This allows you to adapt your SEO approach based on new data, industry trends, and changing business objectives.

ClickUp’s SEO Roadmap Template offers a structured framework for planning and executing your SEO strategy while keeping your relevant goals in focus.

Create an elaborate digital marketing plan with the ClickUp SEO Roadmap Template

This template includes tasks, checklists, and resources specific to several SEO goals, helping you stay organized and on track.

Here’s how you can use ClickUp to review and improve your SEO goals over time:

  • The goal-setting template lays out your strategy in a clear, visual format, making it easier to see the big picture and identify any gaps or redundancies. This allows you to ensure all the necessary steps are included for SEO success
  • Track the progress of your SEO tasks and initiatives over time by monitoring key SEO metrics

By analyzing SEO performance trends, you can identify what’s working well and what needs adjustment to keep progressing toward your desired outcomes

  • Define your smart SEO goals upfront and break them down into smaller, actionable tasks. This helps prioritize your tasks and ensures your team is aligned on what needs to be done
  • Improve collaboration by keeping all your SEO data, achievable goals, and tasks in one centralized workspace. This transparency allows stakeholders to easily stay informed and provide inputs on any adjustments
  • Having a visual SEO marketing roadmap makes it easy to see how your current SEO goals align with your overall digital marketing objectives and business strategy. This prompts re-evaluation to ensure your ultimate goals remain relevant and achievable
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The Effects and Results of Successful SEO Goals

Investing time and effort into setting and achieving well-defined, actionable SEO goals can have a profound impact on your business growth and online success.

  • Enhanced brand visibility: High rankings on search engine results pages (SERPs) make your brand more discoverable to customers actively searching for the solutions you offer. This increased visibility boosts brand awareness and recognition
  • Increased advertising revenue: Efforts to boost organic traffic and performance often translate to increased advertising revenue if you employ website monetization strategies
  • Boosted customer engagement: SEO-focused content that addresses user search intent fosters stronger customer engagement by providing value. This leads to higher conversion rates, more qualified leads, and business growth
  • Measurable business growth: By tracking and analyzing key SEO metrics, you can demonstrate the tangible impact of your SEO initiatives on overall business goals like increased sales, market expansion, and revenue growth

Documenting the benefits you achieve through smart SEO goals allows you to continuously refine your strategy, justify your efforts, and secure ongoing buy-in from key stakeholders.

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Charting Your Course to SEO Success

As the digital space grows more competitive, optimizing your SEO performance becomes more crucial than ever for sustainable online success.

Whether you use advanced tools for keyword research and content optimization or AI for SEO, tracking and measuring their effectiveness through smart goals is vital to maintaining their positive impact on your business objectives. 

By setting clear and measurable SEO goals aligned with your business objectives, you can unlock a world of possibilities: 

  • Improved brand visibility and recognition
  • Increased organic and website visitors
  • Qualified leads and conversions
  • Stronger customer engagement
  • Measurable business growth and increased revenue 

SEO is a continuous journey, so embrace continuous learning, adaptation, and refinement of your SEO strategies to stay ahead of the curve. 

Use powerful tools like digital marketing reporting software, ClickUp Goals, and the ClickUp SEO Roadmap template to streamline your SEO goal-setting process, track progress toward your objectives, and collaborate with your team to achieve lasting success. 

Take control of your online presence and dominate the search engine results pages—the road to digital success starts with setting smart SEO goals.

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