Work Faster and Smarter with SEO: Setting SMART Goals

Learn how setting SMART goals for SEO strategies can help businesses work faster and smarter by providing clear direction, tracking progress, and aligning with overall objectives.
  • Headshot of smiling woman with black-framed glasses and brunette hair.
    Abby Fields SEO Specialist
    Author block right corner shape
  • October 25, 2023
  • 4 min. read

How to set SEO SMART goals

Good SEO goals should be Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely (SMART). By following the SMART framework, you can set goals that help you achieve your wider business objectives.

It’s no secret that search engine optimization (SEO) is one of the most effective marketing strategies for driving traffic and revenue. But that’s only if you implement an effective campaign and smart marketing decisions to help you reach your business goals.

So, how can you do that? With SMART SEO goals! Keep reading to learn how to implement goals that help you implement smarter SEO strategies and reach new heights for your business!

Work faster and smarter with SEO SMART goals

When it comes to working faster and smarter with SEO to drive better results, you need to implement goals to keep you on track and inform your strategies moving forward.

Every optimization and tactic you implement across your website should help you progress toward achieving your goals and SEO KPIs (Key Performance Indicators)

But to reach your goals, you need to set them in the first place. That’s where SMART goals come in!

SMART is an acronym for the rules of you goals. It stands for:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Achievable
  • Realistic
  • Timely

Let’s dive into each category below and explain how you can achieve actionable SMART goals that can help you implement an SEO strategy that powers growth for your business!


The more specific your goals are, the better. Many businesses make the mistake of setting generic and broad goals without clear direction.

Without setting a specific goal, you won’t have a clear idea of what you’re trying to achieve.

Let’s look at an example.

A non-specific goal is “Generate more leads.” This goal will be difficult for you to measure its success since you didn’t establish how much traffic you want to drive.

A better, more specific goal is “Generate 50 new leads from organic traffic.” Now you know exactly how many leads you want to drive through your SEO strategy, and it will be much easy for you to track your progress toward reaching this goal.


SMART goals are also measurable. How do you measure the success of your goal without setting a numeric value to demonstrate whether your strategy is working?

Maybe you want to drive more traffic to your website. How do you measure that goal? By setting a goal like “increase web traffic by 2,000,” you now know how much traffic you need to drive to reach your goal.

Once you’ve reached 2,000 in organic web traffic, you know that you’ve reached your goal through your SEO strategy. A SMART goal is always measurable to make it easy to track and evaluate using KPIs.


Another common mistake with setting SEO goals is that many companies will set goals that are near impossible to achieve.

A SMART SEO goal is always realistically attainable. It’s important not to set your team up for failure and set goals that your team can achieve with hard work and dedication.

A great way to set attainable goals is to think about what your team has achieved in the past and look at your current SEO performance. For example, you might note that your team has increased conversions from organic traffic by 10% in the past year.

If you set a goal to increase conversions by 40%, it’s likely unattainable for your team since it’s far more than what they’ve accomplished in the past.

In that case, you may set a goal to increase your conversions from organic traffic by 13%, which is more feasible.


When doing smarter SEO, you need to set relevant SMART goals that relate to your business’s overall objectives.

For example, if your company wants to drive more revenue, your SMART SEO goals should help you achieve that goal. For example, you can aim to increase form submissions from organic traffic.

This goal is relevant to your overall company objective before contact form submissions will likely lead to conversions and sales. Relevant goals keep you focused on achieving your wider business objectives.


Working faster and smarter with SEO also requires setting SMART goes that have a deadline. You should always strive to achieve your goal within a specific timeframe. Without setting a deadline for your goal, your team may not work as diligently as possible to complete it since there is no set deadline to work toward.

Setting a due date for your SEO goals also helps you easily track your progress toward achieving them. For example, if you set a goal to increase your organic traffic by 2,000 by the end of the third quarter and already drove 1,500 in web traffic in August, you know you need to increase your traffic by 500 by the end of September.

Creating deadlines can also help you establish whether you need to reevaluate your strategy and make adjustments to help reach your goal on time.

Headshot of smiling woman with black-framed glasses and brunette hair.
Abby is a data-driven content marketer with certifications in inbound marketing and content marketing. She’s written hundreds of articles covering digital marketing topics — a few of her specialties include first-party data, marketing and data analytics, marketing strategy optimization, and SEO. When she isn’t writing or optimizing content, Abby loves to spend time reading the latest mystery novel, having movie marathons with lots of snacks, and jamming out to Shania Twain.

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