No matter how well you’re doing at something, there’s always room for improvement—and this holds true when it comes to digital marketing.
There’s a lot that goes into a digital marketing strategy. And every once in a while, it’s a good idea to pull back, take a look at yours, and see what areas you could step things up to achieve better results.
That’s where a digital marketing audit comes in. An audit serves as an accountability check and helps you analyze every aspect of your marketing to better understand your current performance and opportunities for growth.
If it’s been a while since your last audit, or you’ve never completed an audit, there’s no time like the present.
Here’s the lowdown on what a digital marketing audit is, how it works, and the best way to go about getting one done.
What Is A Digital Marketing Audit?
A digital marketing audit is a process of analyzing the practices, strategies, and outcomes associated with your digital marketing.
Your audit uses data to deliver an analysis of your performance—allowing you to see opportunities to improve. A comprehensive digital marketing audit looks at channels and tactics including:
- Social media
- Email marketing
- Using AI in Marketing
If you’ve ever questioned how well your marketing strategy is working, it’s time to run an audit.
You don’t want to continue pouring time and money into a certain strategy if it’s not producing good results. A digital audit will point you in the right direction to go.
Conducting a full audit of your marketing channels is the best way to ensure your digital marketing strategy is working. Remember, doing the same thing and expecting different results is the definition of insanity. An audit will indicate places where you could change and improve.
In general, you should do at least one comprehensive digital marketing audit per year. Specific aspects of your marketing may need smaller audits more often—for instance, an SEO audit every couple of months, or an audit of your blog content every six months.
Do I Need A Digital Marketing Audit?
If you’re asking whether you need a digital marketing audit, the answer is probably yes. Every business can benefit from analyzing its marketing strategy.
There are a few telltale signs that it’s time to take a deeper look at your online presence, though. But first, let’s talk about the overall benefits of performing an audit.
Benefits of Digital Marketing Audits
A digital marketing audit holds major benefits for your business.
First, an audit highlights your strengths and weaknesses. You’ll know where you’re doing a good job and which areas need work.
You’ll also be able to compare yourself to your competitors, understanding where you can get a leg up. And if you have any gaps in your content—areas where you could be generating leads, but you’re not—you’ll be able to patch those up, too.
Your business will save time and money as you invest in strategies that are most effective for you.
When you share audit results with your entire team, everyone will be on the same page to help implement the results.
Signs You Need an Audit
Again, every business can benefit from a digital marketing audit, but how do you know if it’s time for one right now?
Think about whether your sales have recently been up or down. If you’re not seeing the sales and revenue numbers you’d like, you may need an audit.
Engagement is another big piece of the puzzle. Are your social media followers interacting with your posts? How is your web traffic looking? What about your click-through rates–how have they changed over time?
If your engagement and traffic are down, this is another sign that it’s probably time to perform a digital marketing audit.
Your audit will provide the results you need to understand the best way to move forward and grow.
What to Look For in a Digital Marketing Audit
There are many different digital channels and aspects that go into digital marketing.
Hopefully, you’re using as many as possible. However, this can also make your audit seem overwhelming. Where do you even start?
We’ve identified eight key areas you should target with your audit. Here’s an explanation of each one, helping you know why it’s important, what to look for, and how to do it.
Every digital marketing campaign you launch should be in line with your company’s branding. Your branding makes an impression on your customers and helps them remember you well.
It communicates who you are and why they should choose you. So it’s only fitting that any digital marketing audit should look at your branding, too.
A brand audit should encompass aspects of your branding including:
- Internal branding
- Brand values
- Company culture
- External branding
- Business logo
- Advertising and marketing materials (both print and online)
- Public relations
- Social media platforms
- Email marketing
- Content marketing
- Customer experience
- Sales process
- Customer support
- Customer service policies
Where do you begin to pull all of these separate elements together? Conducting customer surveys is a good start.
Ask your audience questions like:
- When you think of our brand, what comes to mind?
- Describe our brand in three words.
- How did you discover our brand?
- What have you heard from others about our brand?
This will give you a good feel for how well your branding is being communicated. You can also interview employees to gauge internal branding success.
Next, review your external marketing to ensure your branding is consistent across all digital marketing channels. Consider which pages on your website get the most traffic and whether they’re the ones you want to get the most traffic.
Finally, conduct a competitor analysis, reviewing your competitors’ branding to see how it compares to yours.
A UX audit can also be thought of as a usability audit or a user experience audit. During this part of your website audit, you’ll find out how easy it is for customers to navigate your site, from Google search results to landing pages and your service pages.
Consider creating a user persona that represents your average customer. Then create a flow that explains how that user would likely interact with your website. (You can also use Google Analytics here to better understand your site’s performance.)
Compile the information you’ve discovered and analyze it. When you’re finished, you’ll be able to pinpoint where and why people might be clicking away from your site. Then you can fix those issues to improve your website traffic and keep users on all the pages of your site.
Up to this point, you’ve already covered some aspects of your website-—like its SEO, content, user experience, and branding.
But there are still a few other areas to touch on in a good website audit. Here’s a recap of everything to check on your site:
- Page load speed
- Broken links
- Mobile optimization
- Indexing issues
- Organic traffic
- Click through rate
- Structured data and snippets
Again, many of these tasks are naturally included in other parts of a digital marketing audit, but it’s good to make sure you’re hitting them all.
SEO is a major way that many customers find online brands. A good SEO audit will make sure your strategy is up to par–encompassing on-page SEO, off-page SEO, local search, keyword optimization, and more. You’ll be able to update any content that needs it, staying on top of the ever-shifting search engine algorithms and webmaster tools.
Helpful tools that you can use for a good audit include:
- Google Analytics
- Google Search Console
- Google PageSpeed Insights
- Google Schema Markup Testing Tool
The first thing you should do is run a site crawl of your website using a site audit tool. Then use analytics tools to:
- Analyze your website’s speed
- Resolve any indexing issues
- Improve your on-page SEO
- Check for broken internal links
- Improve your sitemap
- Conduct backlink analysis
- Analyze your competitors
When you implement the results, you’ll be able to add whatever is needed—like technical SEO or relevant keywords—to ensure your website is properly indexed and receives a healthy amount of organic traffic.
A content audit focuses specifically on your content marketing. This kind of audit covers all of the content on your site—from blog posts to service pages to even content beyond your website, such as social media posts.
A comprehensive audit will help identify strategies to improve your existing content through updates or search engine optimization, as well as add new content that will attract your target audience.
The first thing you’ll need to do is aggregate all of your content in one place. Depending on how many digital channels you have a presence on, this can be a big job! Luckily, an SEO tool or analytics tool will do it for you, crawling your site to find everything you have.
Use a spreadsheet to organize all of the pieces involved in your content marketing strategy. You should analyze each item based on its:
- SEO (meta title, meta description, keyword optimization)
- Content (does it appropriately address the target stage of the customer journey? Does it cover the topic in a comprehensive way, answering all customer questions and providing value?)
- Linking strategy (internal and external links)
Your content audit will indicate where you might need to improve your content marketing.
Social Media Audit
Next up: Social media marketing.
In today’s world, social media is one of the most important marketing activities you can do. You’re likely active on multiple social media channels. And now is the time to analyze your strategy and see how good of a job you’re doing.
Begin your social media audit with a list of all your company’s social media accounts (including profiles that may not be currently active). Make sure your branding is consistent across these accounts.
Next, use social media analytics tools (either built-in insights or third-party information) to understand the growth of your overall account and how well your individual posts are performing.
Evaluate how much progress you’re making toward your social media goals. (If you’ve never identified performance metrics, there’s no time like the present.)
It’s also helpful to refresh yourself on your audience demographic for each social media platform.
Once you have all of this information in hand, incorporate the insights you’ve gained as you plan content for the next week, month, or quarter. This will help improve your social media performance.
SEM, or search engine marketing, should be an important facet of your digital marketing efforts. A good way to start is by simply searching for your brand or for relevant keywords online (use an incognito browser window or a non-work device).
You can see firsthand where your site or other content is ranking, and how it looks. This website performance data will indicate where you may need to improve.
This is also a good time to review your paid media, like Google Ads. Use analytics to understand their performance. Then optimize these paid search ads based on your findings.
Email Marketing Audit
The final area of your digital marketing to cover—which is arguably the most crucial— is email marketing.
As you work through this audit, you’ll gain insights into how well your marketing emails are doing–and you can tweak your digital strategy accordingly to make those emails worth it.
There are a few different aspects of email marketing that you’ll want to cover. These include:
- Email content and design
- Email campaign performance analytics
- Contact list quality and your segmentation
- Your ESP (email service provider)
- Email timing and schedule
For each of these areas, walk through your current process, tools, and results.
Are you satisfied with the results you’re seeing in each area?
If not, it may be time to run some A/B tests on your subject lines, try sharing a different type of content within your messages, or switch to a new ESP that has more features to use.
How to Conduct A Digital Marketing Audit
Convinced it’s time to conduct a digital marketing audit, but don’t know where to start?
There are a couple of options.
One is to follow all the guidelines laid out in this blog to gather insight into your current marketing efforts and assess if they’re operating in your best interest.
In most cases, however, handling an extensive audit is a time-consuming process that is best passed off to a team of experts that specialize in optimizing marketing efforts.
Here’s a little more insight into the pros and cons of both methods.
Conducting an Internal Digital Marketing Audit
Can you do a digital marketing audit by yourself? Yes.
Should you do a digital marketing audit by yourself? Will you get the best results with a DIY audit? And do you even want to tackle this massive job on your own?
The answers to these questions are less clear.
It’s completely possible to conduct a digital marketing audit on your own. You might be able to find a digital marketing audit template on the web to get you started.
Template or not, though, it’s going to be a lot of work–and it needs to be done right. So get ready to roll up your sleeves and dive in.
Every good project starts with goals and an audit is no different. There are many different metrics you could use for an SEO audit or a content marketing audit, and it can be overwhelming to choose which ones to focus on.
Think about your yearly or quarterly goals for your business and choose metrics that support those goals the best. This will ensure you’re finding the most relevant information to help you move forward.
Find Your Data
The next step is to find data and analytics from your various digital channels. We’ve already talked about where to find data for many platforms, but here are some tools that can be helpful:
- Google Keyword Planner
- Google Page Insights
- Google Analytics
- AdWords Performance Grader
This list can get you started gathering the data you’ll need.
Analyze Your Data
Once you have the data in hand, use it to gauge how well your digital marketing is doing. Which of your keywords have the highest search volume? Is your branding consistent across each digital marketing channel? Does your website need some work to improve the user experience?
The final step is to work everything you learned into your marketing strategy. You might not be able to change everything at once. Making small changes over time is effective, too.
Conducting an Audit With a Team of Experts
The other option for your digital marketing audit? Outsource the job and work with an expert, letting them complete the audit and provide recommendations on how you can improve.
Here at Brandetize, we conduct digital marketing audits that come up with personalized recommendations for clients.
We’ll identify issues in your marketing, give you actionable insights on how to leverage your marketing to get more customers, and you’ll implement those suggestions to get more conversions.
Here are a few of the benefits you can enjoy by working with an expert.
As we’ve already stated, running a comprehensive digital marketing audit is a lot of work. Even for experts, the process can sometimes take months to properly complete.
If you aren’t familiar with the audit process and you’re trying to squeeze it in around everything else on your plate, the audit might drag out so long that you never get it done.
If you work with an expert, all of these concerns are eliminated. At agencies like Brandetize, we’re completely focused on you and how to improve your marketing strategy.
It’s our job!
Your audit won’t fall by the wayside–we will work diligently to do a thorough job in an appropriate amount of time, so you can improve your marketing as soon as possible.
Get an Objective Opinion
When you’re analyzing your own work, it can be hard to have an objective opinion. That’s another reason why having a third party complete your audit can help.
Objective feedback is beneficial because it’s unbiased. The feedback will tell you the truth about your design or your content.
At Brandetize, we serve as that third set of eyes for our clients. Sometimes you’re so close to your own business or your own marketing that you can’t pull back to take an objective view.
That’s okay; that’s normal! And that’s where we step in to help.
Not everyone is a digital marketing expert, and that’s okay! You might be an expert at something else.
But here at Brandetize, we specifically hire team members with top-tier digital marketing knowledge, skills, and experience. Our team is full of people who know their stuff when it comes to SEO, social media, and other aspects of digital marketing.
This expertise allows you to get an accurate, helpful idea of where your digital marketing strategy is currently and where it needs to be.
You don’t want to mess around with your marketing—which is why it’s critical (and most effective) to let an expert take the wheel.
Get A Free Digital Marketing Audit
Are you ready to improve your marketing?
If you don’t have the time or expertise to take on this big job alone, we’re happy to help. We offer a free digital marketing audit that you can use to improve your bottom line.
Click here to request your audit today!