The concept of SEO is straightforward: optimizing your website to deliver better information to search engines to ensure your content is indexed correctly and displayed among the top search results. But, with rules changing so often, putting it into practice can be challenging. Although you might consider SEO a daunting task, rest assured that its importance outweighs the efforts needed to implement relevant strategies. To start you off on your endeavors, we bring you some fascinating SEO statistics. We tried to keep things simple and ensure that by the end of it, you have a solid understanding of the most critical aspects of search engine optimization and how to make the most out of it.
SEO Stats (Editor’s Choice)
- 93% of online experiences begin with a search engine.
- 12.3% of search queries contain a featured snippet.
- 61% of Google searches are done via mobile devices.
- Mobile searches for “where to buy” + “near me” have grown over 200%.
- 42% of SEO professionals devote equal time to building internal and external links.
- Repurposing content can increase organic traffic by 106%.
- 50% of search queries contain 4 or more words.
- 32% of small business websites don’t have an H1 tag
SEO Facts and Figures – The Basics
1. The SEO industry is worth over $80 billion.
Estimations are that businesses in the US are spending more than $80 billion on SEO services. This number is significantly higher than in 2016 and 2018 when businesses were spending $65.26 and $79.27 billion on search engine optimization, respectively.
2. If done right, SEO can drive a 14.6% conversion rate.
SEO is focused on attracting visitors that are actively searching for information about products or services, which makes it an excellent tactic for lead generation. Not surprisingly, SEO stats reveal that leads that come as a result of search engine optimization have a 14.6% average conversion rate. For comparison, traditional strategies like print ads and direct mail have an average conversion rate of 1.7%.
3. 93% of online experiences begin with a search engine.
This is one of the most well-known search engine statistics, but we just had to include it to emphasize the importance of SEO. Getting more eyes on your website is extremely important, as almost all online experiences start with a search engine like Google, Bing, or Yahoo.
4. The number of US search engine users is estimated at over 239 million.
SEO statistics reveal the number of search engine users in the US was 213.6 million in 2014 and has been consistently rising throughout the years. Statista estimates that the latest number of internet users who accessed search services through engines like Google, Bing, or Yahoo is approximately 239.1 million.
5. Search engines drive 10x more traffic to ecommerce sites than social media.
Search engine traffic statistics show that search is the dominant ecommerce traffic source. In fact, online stores get ten times more traffic from search engines than from social media. Proper ecommerce SEO includes adding relevant keywords in the blog content and product descriptions, external links pointing to industry experts, a robust web of internal links, a solid backlink portfolio, and speed optimization.
(Search Engine Land)
6. 12.3% of search queries contain a featured snippet.
Featured snippets are convenient and serve quick answers to people. They give the opportunity for low-ranking pages to appear on the top of SERPs, which opens new possibilities for search engine optimization professionals.
7. 50% of search queries contain over 4 words.
Search engine marketing stats show that half of the queries are long-tail keywords. That means that your user intent strategy has to include discovering and targeting these terms. Otherwise, you’re missing about 50% of your audience and potential leads.
8. 75% of users don’t even scroll past the first page of the SERPs.
Recent SEO facts reveal that the majority of users scan the first page of Google results quickly and never go past it. Additionally, it’s worth mentioning that 18% of organic clicks go to the page on the first position, 10% to the page on the second position, and 7% of organic clicks go to the third-ranking result.
9. 21% of users access more than one of the search results.
Search engine marketing statistics tell us that every fifth user clicks on more than one of the search results. This is likely to happen if they cannot find what they were looking for or they want to double-check the information they initially found.
10. Approximately 18% of searchers change their search terms without clicking on any result.
Close to 20% of searchers don’t find what they are looking for and go on to change their search terms without clicking on any result. That means users judge the content of the pages based on their meta titles and descriptions, further emphasizing their importance in a well-thought-of SEO strategy.
11. 62% of Millennial and Gen Z consumers want visual search capability more than any other emerging technology.
Ecommerce SEO statistics highlight that images are on their way to replace keywords. The majority of Millennials and Gen Zers want visual search capability to enable them to easily discover products when searching on their mobile devices. To capitalize on this trend, make sure to include visual search in your strategy, starting with prioritizing metadata and schema markup.
Google Search Engine Stats
12. Google holds over 86% of the search engine market share.
Despite the emergence of search engines like Yahoo and Bing, Google has remained on the throne for over 20 years holding more than 86% of the global search engine market share. Search engine use statistics indicate that other search engines are holding a significantly lower market share; Bing around 6%, Yahoo less than 3%, and Baidu less than 1%.
The secret behind Google’s enormous success lies in the UX-based business model. Its algorithm takes into account multiple factors like relevance to a user’s search, page quality, and backlink profile, thus providing the best value to searchers.
13. Over 7 billion searches are performed on Google every day.
Search engine traffic stats show that, by the end of 2010, there were 1.9 billion internet users. Today, this number has jumped to 4.021 billion, noting a 7% year-on-year rise. Along with the number of internet users, the number of daily searches also rises. Consequently, in 2000 there were 32.8 million searches per day. This figure passed the 1 billion mark in 2010 and today, the number of daily searches surpasses 7 billion.
(Internet Live Stats)
14. Approximately 500-600 changes to Google search algorithms are presented every year.
SEO facts confirm that ranking well on Google means keeping up with the hundreds of algorithm changes the tech giant presents every year. The good news is, only a few of them are major game-changers.
(Affiliate Marketing Training)
15. On average, Google receives over 80,000 search queries every second.
This staggering number translates into more than 4.8 million searches per minute. These numbers add up to over 2.55 trillion searches per year.
(Internet Live Stats)
16. Sites that make the first page on Google have an average of 1,447 words.
This is another one of the most well-known search engine optimization facts. Publishing in-depth content is pivotal for search engines to love you. Detailed pieces will also position you as an industry leader, helping you boost the conversion rate and attract backlinks which also influence ranking positively.
17. Up to 20% of Google queries are searched for the first time.
As much as a fifth of all Google searches is conducted for the first time. To answer such queries, Google uses extensive indexing, crawling, and millions of search precedents.
18. Organic Google results with 3-4 words in the title drive higher CTR.
Search engine optimization stats tell us that organic results that include long-tail terms in the title have a 3-5% higher CTR than organic results with 1-2 words in the title.
19. Search queries of the “__ to avoid” format have increased by 150%.
Users rely on their devices for search information more than ever, and search queries have become more conversational. As a result, the query “___ to avoid” has noted a major rise of 150%. while the query “ is ___ worth it” has risen by 80% in recent years. These stats show that users tend to apply the process of elimination to determine which products should be avoided and then decide on the product or service worth purchasing.
20. A half of Google searches get no clicks at all.
Google goes to great lengths to yield the most relevant information in the top search results. However, recent research showed that 50.3% of Google searches resulted in no clicks.
Mobile SEO Stats
21. In 2020, there were an estimated 221 million mobile phone search users in the US.
Americans are increasingly connected to the world of digital information while on the go. A growing share of Americans use smartphones to access the internet and one out of five adults access the internet only via smartphone. In 2014, the number of mobile search users in the US was 133.6 million, and in 2017 this number rose to 196.5 million. In 2019, this figure grew to 215.8 million and reached 221 million in 2020.
22. Over 60% of Google searches are done via mobile devices.
This is one of the search engine optimization statistics that emphasize the importance of mobile optimization. Mobile devices have become the main way to communicate and access information. For comparison, this figure was nearly half that (34%) only 6 years ago. Taking this into account, Google has updated its algorithm to consider mobile website usability when ranking pages. The bottom line is: if your website doesn’t work well on mobile you’re likely to experience a drop in rankings.
23. Mobile-optimized sites are more trusted by 51% of consumers.
Having a mobile-friendly website is critical because more than half of consumers don’t trust websites that aren’t optimized for mobile. They would simply avoid the companies that have a poor mobile website. This figure reflects the fact that you must have a mobile website to have a successful business.
24. 27% of the global online population is using voice search on mobile.
SEO statistics prove that the voice revolution is real and you cannot afford to ignore it anymore. The range of virtual assistants, such as Alexa, Siri, and Cortana have changed the way people search. Besides having strong mobile SEO, you should use schema markup and try to get your point across concisely and more conversationally to ensure top-notch optimization for voice search.
25. Mobile will dominate online sales, driving 54% of them.
Not having a website optimized for mobile devices will cause you losses now and even more so in the future. Mobile ecommerce, or mcommerce, was responsible for 34.5% of total ecommerce sales in 2017. As this trend is rapidly growing, projections are that, by the end of 2021, mobile ecommerce sales will be driving 54% of total online sales, accounting for over $659 billion.
26. 69% of smartphone users are more likely to buy from companies whose sites answer their questions easily.
Meeting consumers at the moments when they need something is important. What’s even more important is how you meet them. Consumers want to find answers to their questions effortlessly, and if you don’t provide a useful and relevant brand message, they’re likely to move on. Furthermore, SEO stats show that 61% of mobile users prefer buying from sites and apps that customize information according to their preferences and location.
(Think With Google)
27. The ideal load time on mobile devices is 3 seconds or less.
Speed matters. Mobile marketing stats showed that 53% of people would abandon the site if it takes over three seconds to load.
28. 57% of consumers said they wouldn’t recommend a business with a poorly designed mobile website.
If the user is not able to browse and read the content effortlessly on their mobile device, they are likely to abandon the page. Not only you won’t manage to convert that visitor into a customer, but they won’t recommend your site to their peers either.
29. SEO statistics reveal that the first-ranking organic result on mobile gets 27.7% of clicks, compared to 19.3% of clicks on desktop.
If you’re still wondering why you need to invest time and effort in mobile SEO, consider that mobile drives higher click-through rates to the top-ranking organic result compared to desktop. This isn’t a surprise as mobile accounts for approximately 60% of all Google searches.
30. Smartphones account for 55.73% of the market share globally.
Smartphones make up 55.73% of the total search engine market. Tablets account for 2.81% making the total market share of mobile devices 58.35%. According to the latest statistics, desktop lags just a bit behind accounting for 41.46% of the market.
Local SEO Statistics
31. About 46% of Google searches have local intent.
Almost half of all Google searches are local. People go to Google to find out information for local businesses such as working hours, phone number, or availability of certain products.
32. 82% of smartphone shoppers conduct “near me” searches.
New technologies enable consumers to adopt the trend of proximity-based searches. In fact, 82% of the respondents have conducted “near me” searches. At 92%, this number is higher among millennials. Restaurants and the quick-service industry get the majority (84%) of “near me” searches. Entertainment, banking, and apparel also rank among the industries with the most “near me” searches.
33. SEO statistics confirm 50% of “near me” Google searches performed on mobile result in a store visit.
About half of smartphone local searchers are likely to take action and visit the store within 24 hours. This is a clear sign that ranking in local search can directly impact your in-store traffic. That said, it’s essential to get your business listed on GMB, ensure your NAP is consistent, use a local keyword, and local business schema markup.
(SEO Expert Brad)
34. Mobile searches for “where to buy” + “near me” have grown over 200%.
Google reports that mobile searches for “where to buy + near me” have grown by over 200%. Additionally, mobile searches for “store open near me” and “on sale + near me” have seen a 250% increase each.
(Think With Google)
35. 32% of small business websites don’t have an H1 tag.
Recent small business SEO stats indicate that while almost all SMB sites have a title tag, 32% of them don’t have an H1 tag. Furthermore, 25% of small business websites lack meta description which is another important SEO feature that correlates with higher CTR.
36. Over half of shoppers watch videos while shopping in-store.
People are increasingly using videos while in-store. Some of them are using videos as a virtual to-buy list, while others show the salesperson what exactly are they looking for. Furthermore, over half of shoppers said that video helps them decide which product or brand to choose. Marketers should capitalize on local video SEO to meet the in-the-moment needs of potential customers.
(Think With Google)
37. Over 60% of consumers would contact a local business if it has a mobile-friendly site.
Having a mobile-friendly website is important for local businesses too. With consumers heavily relying on handheld devices, optimizing your online presence for mobile can make 6 in 10 internet users more inclined to get in touch with you.
38. 88% of consumers will interact with a local business within 24 hours of searching for it on a mobile device.
Local SEO stats show that when a consumer searches for your business on their smartphone, they are almost ready to either call you or come and visit your location. Local SEO companies can assess your site’s mobile optimization to ensure that you take advantage of all the incredible opportunities out there.
(SEO Expert Brad)
39. Almost all consumers check the internet to learn more about a local business.
Search engines are the top source for users to look up information about a local business. A whopping 97% of them check the internet presence of a company before deciding whether it’s worth it. Ensure you provide Google with accurate information for your business, collect reviews from satisfied customers, and focus on SEO.
40. 6% of local retailers haven’t claimed their business listings on Google.
Claiming a business on Google is easy and gives you control over the information that the search engine displays when consumers search for you. Besides providing accurate and consistent information as well as customer reviews, you can also add images and videos to further improve your SEO ranking.
(SEO Expert Brad)
41. SEO stats show that 82% of businesses haven’t claimed their Bing listings.
Google sits on the throne in the search engines realm. So, you might think that if you need a GMB listing your job is done. Well, don’t pat yourself on the shoulder yet. Bing is Google’s main competitor, and if you don’t claim your business there, you could be missing out on potential traffic.
(Local Marketing Institute)
42. 79% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.
Reviews can make or break your business. Nearly 80% of consumers trust online reviews more than recommendations made by their friends or family. Moreover, reviews account for 7% of the total ranking factors and user-generated content also gets you extra points with Google. A recent SEO industry report found out that businesses with at least 4 starts on GMB outrank the others by 11%.
(FreshChalk, Search Engine Land)
Video SEO Statistics
43. In 2021, people will spend 100 minutes a day watching videos online.
Video consumption is getting bigger with time. In 2018, it surpassed the one-hour-per-day mark, and estimates are that the average online video consumption in 2021 will be 100 minutes a day.
44. 62% of Google searches include video.
Video rules content so including it on your website will attract more traffic. Just make sure to make your videos helpful and engaging.
45. The average first-page YouTube video is 14 minutes and 50 seconds long.
SEO insights show a correlation between the length of the videos and their ranking. Videos ranked on the first page have an average length of 14 minutes and 50 seconds. YouTube search statistics also show that 68.2% of the first-page YouTube videos are in HD.
46. 49% of marketers agree revenue grows faster when incorporating video in their strategy.
Nearly half of marketers acquire revenue faster when including video in their strategy. Additionally, 51% of experts name video as the best type of content in terms of ROI.
Content Marketing Statistics
47. 6 in 10 advertisers say that a well-optimized content strategy generates the highest-quality leads.
Content marketing is undoubtedly the most cost-effective way to promote your business. Instead of wasting a lot of money on paid search, you should consider creating high-quality, relevant content, as SEO statistics confirm it can triple your lead generation.
48. 72% of marketers consider relevancy the most critical factor for improving SEO.
Content marketing experts agree that writing relevant content around the keywords instead of merely incorporating them into it is essential for traffic. Relevant content attracts backlinks which will make you more prominent in SERPs and increase your brand’s authority.
(Search Engine Journal)
49. Marketers prioritizing blogging are 13x more likely to see ROI.
Blogging has a great financial benefit. According to recent SEO ROI statistics, digital marketing specialists who prioritize blogging are up to 13 times more likely to see ROI compared to those who discard it as an obsolete tactic.
50. Content creation leads to 434% more indexed pages.
Creating blog content will result in 434% more indexed pages in search engines and, in turn, boost your traffic and conversion rate. The secret to unlocking content’s full potential is to create relevant pieces around the topics your audience is interested in.
(Content Marketing Institute)
51. 49% of companies outsource their content creation.
Nearly half of companies are hiring content marketing experts because they consider they lack the time, expertise, or resources to execute a content strategy in-house. A recent report found out that companies mostly struggle to find talent with expertise in the subject matter.
(Content Marketing Institute)
52. 90% of marketers agree that repurposing their content is better than creating new pieces.
Content marketers agree they benefit more from repurposing old content than producing new, considering the time and cost involved as well as the result. SEO industry statistics have shown that repurposing content can increase organic traffic by 106%.
Link Building Statistics
53. Companies with blogs get 97% more backlinks.
Websites that have a blog receive nearly double the number of links than those without one. The reason behind this surprising fact is simple: the more indexed pages you have, the higher the possibility authors who look for information will come across your site.
54. Long-form content gets 77.2% more backlinks than short articles.
SEO statistics confirm that long content drives 77.2% more links compared to short articles. Additionally, results from the same study indicate that “why” and “what” posts, as well as infographics, receive 25.8% more backlinks compared to other content formats, including videos and “how-to” posts.
55. Link building is the most challenging tactic for 41% of marketers.
It takes a lot of time and effort to build quality backlinks. Therefore, link building is the most challenging tactic for 41% of marketers so it’s not surprisingly many of them turn to hiring link building professionals. Creating a solid website structure, off-page content, and social media sharing are also among the most challenging SEO tactics.
56. 42% of SEO professionals devote equal time to building internal and external links.
42% of search engine optimization professionals spend equal time on building internal and external lists. More SEO facts reveal that 34% of SEOs said they prioritize acquiring external links, whereas 24% said they spend more time on internal link building.
Showing outstanding results across multiple industries, SEO is a digital marketing technique you don’t want to miss on. While it does take time to yield results, SEO statistics confirm that it is well worth the wait, considering figures on everything between brand awareness and industry authority to ROI and conversion rates.