A digital marketing audit is simply an inspection of all the practices, strategies, and outcomes of what a business has been doing to establish and improve its online presence.
It’s important to conduct this examination from time to time as it brings to light the loopholes in a strategy (and you can bet there will be a few.) In the absence of an audit, businesses don’t usually ask themselves these pointed questions that are crucial to refining a strategy and ensuring their efforts and dollars are getting invested in the right direction.
How To Carry Out A Digital Marketing Audit
This audit requires examination of the all the aspects – content marketing, SEO, social media marketing, an on-site optimization – that comprise digital marketing.
Auditing Content And Content Marketing
There is a reason you spend long hours on creating share-worthy content, but where is this leading you?
As important as not having unrealistic expectations from content is having a clear idea of what you want this content to achieve for the business.
Which are your best performing articles and which ones have been passed over completely? Which articles have generated the greatest engagement on social media? Which ones have been shared the most? You want to build on them and use them for furthering your reach.
Similarly, get rid of outdated or low-quality content that may exist on your blog. If you want to keep old content for ranking purposes, have it all edited and get fresh links inserted.
Auditing social media performance
A social media strategy involves having clear goals about where the efforts are going to lead a brand a few months down the line, but these goals tend to get wishy washy, if not downright impractical as time goes on.
I want a million subscribers in three months. Possible, but not likely. I want a lot of my content to go viral. Again, possible, but not likely. How to create the right kind of social media goals is an art in itself, and important metrics to track may vary from industry to industry.
In general, however, businesses need to ascertain:
- Has the traffic from your social media page(s) to the website risen? If yes, by how much. And, if no, your social efforts are clearly not paying off.
- What are you generating more of in terms of traffic -- repeat visitors or new visitors? It should ideally be a mix of two.
- How long are people staying on the website?
- Is your presence on social generating engagement?
- Has the brand awareness increased?
- How many leads have you generated through social media?
If you have been conducting in-depth SEO work for some time now, it should reflect in the results.
A sound SEO strategy should lead to a big jump in the search rankings of the website and in no way should it lead to a decline. This is not something that is directly obvious to business owners. Don’t just assume that if you carry out SEO as usual, you will continue to climb up the Google ladder.
Google puts out frequent updates to its search algorithm and sometimes they lead to a freefall in rankings for unwary businesses. Many couldn’t find out for months that their websites had been penalized, following the Hummingbird update.
A regular audit will clear up a lot for you:
- The ups and downs in the rankings of the website.
- The best-performing keywords for the website.
- The best-performing keywords for the competition.
- The non-performing keywords for the website.
- New keywords that might benefit the website.
Auditing the website
If you have gone for a long time without cleaning the house, expect nasty things to have emerged.
Technology requires constant vigil on our part to keep performing along expected lines.
A website that hasn’t been checked for flaws can also lead to a drop in rankings.
- Are all the links, internal as well as external, working?
- Are all the images loading properly and is the text wrapping around them the way it should? (Sometimes bugs crop up out of nowhere.)
- Any spammy comments in the blog that need your attention?
- Is the metadata crisp and up to the mark or could it use rewriting?
- Is all the information up-to-date?
Take stock of where you are headed
On auditing the individual aspects of your digital marketing campaign, you will gain a clearer idea about the bigger picture. Data doesn’t lie. If you don’t like what you see it’s up to you to change it, and we believe bad news is better received sooner than later.
When auditing becomes a regular practice, it also becomes a less time-consuming process. It gives you insights into what is performing, that which is lagging, and that which is downright harmful to the business.
Sometimes an audit leads to a reassessment of the strategy. In certain cases, it may even lead to major changes. For this reason, we highly recommend setting aside time for a thorough audit every few months.
How often do you re-evaluate your digital marketing strategies?