Attribution Analysis

Attribution analysis is a methodology used to evaluate the impact and contribution of different marketing channels toward a specified goal, commonly conversions or revenue. In the realm of SEO, attribution analysis plays a crucial role in determining which strategies and tactics are effectively driving organic traffic and influencing a user’s journey from initial search to eventual conversion.


SEO specialists employ attribution analysis to understand the value that various organic search touchpoints provide to a campaign. This involves pinpointing which keywords, content types, and on-page optimizations are most influential in the conversion funnel. Using this data, SEO professionals can allocate resources more effectively, refining content strategies, and optimizing user paths for better performance in organic search results.

Key considerations:

  • Attribution Model Selection: There are several models of attribution analysis, such as last click, first click, linear, and time decay. The choice of model can significantly impact the interpretation of data, and SEO experts select models based on business objectives and conversion paths.
  • Multi-Channel Funnels: SEO is part of a broader digital marketing ecosystem. Therefore, attribution analysis often includes assessment of multiple channels (e.g., social media, email, paid search) to ascertain their contribution to overall SEO success.
  • Data Analysis Tools: Robust analytics platforms, such as Google Analytics, are vital for conducting attribution analysis. These platforms track various user interactions and help identify the organic search contributions to conversions.
  • Conversion Path Analysis: SEO pros perform a deep-dive into conversion paths to reveal the roles different website pages play in the searcher’s journey. This can highlight important touchpoints that require optimization.
  • Continuous Optimization: Attribution analysis is an ongoing process. As user behavior and search engine algorithms evolve, so too must the approach to SEO attribution to ensure resources are focused on the most impactful elements.

Practical tips:

  • Regularly assess the performance of different organic search touchpoints and adjust your SEO strategy based on the results of attribution analysis.
  • Experiment with different attribution models to gain a complete picture of how each search interaction contributes to your end goals.
  • Be aware of the limitations of attribution analysis, such as cross-device tracking challenges, and account for these in your SEO strategy.
  • Collaborate with other marketing teams to incorporate a comprehensive view of all digital touchpoints in your attribution analysis for more accurate conclusions.
  • Utilize UTM parameters and other tracking mechanisms to facilitate precise measurement of organic search’s role within the broader marketing mix.


Why is attribution analysis important in SEO?

Attribution analysis helps SEO professionals understand the impact of different organic search touchpoints on conversions. By identifying the most effective strategies and tactics, businesses can better allocate resources and optimize their SEO efforts for improved performance.

What are some common attribution models used in SEO?

Common attribution models used in SEO include last click, first click, linear, and time decay models. Each model offers a unique perspective on how organic search interactions contribute to conversion goals, allowing SEO experts to choose the most suitable model based on specific business objectives.

How can SEO specialists leverage attribution analysis for continuous optimization?

SEO specialists can leverage attribution analysis for continuous optimization by regularly assessing the performance of organic search touchpoints, experimenting with different attribution models, collaborating with other marketing teams, and utilizing tracking mechanisms like UTM parameters to measure the effectiveness of SEO strategies within the broader digital marketing mix.

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