How often do you stop and think about your marketing strategy? Maybe you occasionally glance at your social media stats, check out how your blog content is performing, or carry out some A/B testing on your mailing list. That’s good, but it’s not enough.
Why carry out a marketing audit?
A thorough marketing audit of your website will:
- Show you what’s working and what’s not
- Help you identify areas where you’re wasting time and money
- Give you ideas on how to drive future growth
- Ensure you’re on top of current digital marketing trends
The phrase ‘marketing audit’ might sound a little scary, but it doesn’t have to be an intimidating task. Follow the simple steps below and get the knowledge you need to superpower your digital marketing efforts.
Let’s do this!
Identify your digital marketing goals
Before you begin a marketing audit of your website, you need to identify your goals. These will inform the way you carry out your audit, and ensure that you can turn data into actionable ideas for your future marketing efforts.
Set goals using the SMART technique. That stands for:
- Time bound
Don’t set a goal like: “I want to make more sales on my website,”
Instead, go for something like: “I want 50 customers to get in touch using my website contact page by the end of the month.”
The second goal is easy to measure, so you can be certain of whether or not you succeeded. It deals with a specific part of your website, which can inform your future marketing efforts. It’s also relevant and achievable.
Choose the right metrics
Your marketing audits won’t be useful if you don’t select the right metrics, and these will depend on the goals you set in the previous section. If you don’t have much time for your audit, select only the most relevant metrics. If you’ve got long enough, go as deep as you can. The metrics you’ll want to look at fall into three main categories, which we’ve listed below.
Reach metrics show how much of your content is getting out to your audience. These include:
- Followers on social media
- Website traffic
- Ad impressions
- Newsletter opens/clicks
These metrics will help you understand whether or not you’re using the right digital marketing strategies. Just because Twitter was your biggest source of traffic last year, doesn’t mean you should ignore other social networks.
You’ll need to look at:
- The breakdown of your marketing budget – are you overspending on any low-performing areas?
- Success level of current and previous marketing campaigns – if something isn’t working, you need to know.
- Possible areas of opportunity – new social networks, new ad platforms, etc.
It doesn’t matter how successful you are on social media or how highly you’re ranked in search engines if your leads don’t convert into customers.
Keep conversion in mind by looking at:
- Number of form submissions
- Requests for information
- On-site sales
- Performance of landing pages
- How conversion rates differ based on how leads were generated
How to audit your SEO
SEO is one area you can’t afford to ignore when performing your marketing audit. Follow these steps to perform a successful SEO audit.
1. Check for broken links.
If your site contains broken links or duplicate content, your ranking may be affected. Use a free broken link checking tool to identify and fix any issues. After doing this, update your sitemap and submit to search engines to help them crawl your site more effectively.
2. Check for any search engine penalties.
Your site can be penalized by search engines for many reasons, and this drastically affects your ranking. If you’ve seen a big decrease in search engine traffic for no apparent reason, you may have fallen victim to a penalty.
Try these steps to remedy the situation:
- Check search engine webmaster tools for details of any penalties
- Look at recent SEO news – is there an algorithm change that could have affected your site?
- Review search engine terms of service – does your site violate them?
- Make changes based on your research
- Continue to monitor your ranking
3. Assess your on-page SEO
On-page SEO is a crucial part of your audit, and many issues are easy to remedy. Here’s what you should be looking at:
- URL – does it clearly describe the content and contain the right keywords? Is it short enough? URLs should be 15 characters or less.
- Content – is it useful and readable? Is information up-to-date?
- Titles and meta descriptions – do they accurately describe the content and entice clicks?
- Images – do they have an accurate file name and alt text containing keywords?
How to audit your blog content
If you’re serious about digital marketing, you probably have a blog. Managing large amounts of content can be overwhelming, and it’s easy to try and avoid a content audit. Don’t. Good content can make or break your marketing strategy.
Consider these factors when auditing your content:
- What type of post performs best?
- Are all my posts up-to-date? Could some be improved and republished?
- Am I using relevant, effective calls to action at the end of posts?
- Are all posts search engine optimized?
- Am I posting frequently and consistently?
- Are there any new topics or keywords I should be targeting?
The questions you choose to focus on will depend on the goals you defined earlier.
How to audit your social media
Social media marketing doesn’t need to feel like a stab in the dark. There are many metrics available on social media that you can provide precise information where to focus your future efforts.
- What kind of content gets the most social shares?
- Where am I seeing the most engagement?
- Am I using the most relevant social media platforms?
- Could I be utilizing new features? (e.g. Instagram stories)
Carrying out a marketing audit of your website isn’t easy, but it is extremely worthwhile. The best marketers know exactly how they’re doing at all times, and aren’t afraid to make changes.