If you’re like the majority of small to medium-sized businesses, you do your best to use digital marketing practices that are best suited for your business and industry. It’s seemingly impossible to know which steps are the right ones and to make sure you’re making the most out of every marketing effort. At Responsival - a leading Pittsburgh web design and digital marketing company - we know how hard it is to navigate the complex world of digital marketing. That’s why we work hard to provide our clients with the most advanced, industry-leading digital marketing solutions possible. How do we do this? We begin every process with an in-depth digital marketing assessment that helps guide us and our clients the right direction in their efforts. What exactly do we include in a digital marketing assessment? We’re here to break down the 20 areas of assessment that we use to design a comprehensive digital marketing assessment.
We begin every digital marketing assessment by getting to know your business. As we start, we send a discovery questionnaire that familiarizes us with your brand, your objectives for growth, your services, and more. Additionally, we perform research on your existing digital presence to familiarize ourselves with what makes your business so unique. If you’re local to us, we might even drop in to get to know you and your business first-hand.
The next step in our digital marketing assessment involves taking a deep look at your website. More than 83% of people expect a seamless website experience no matter what kind of device they are using. For your business, this means that your website is one of the most important aspects of your digital marketing strategy. That’s why the team at Responsival takes a look into the following pieces of your website during a digital marketing strategy:
First, we’ll take a look at the overall design of your website. This not only includes aesthetics and proven approaches to designing for the web, but examines whether or not your website is secure, navigatable, mobile-friendly, and more. This insight provides the first layer of information needed to create a website that works as hard as you do.
UX (user experience) and UI (user interface) design are two important principles in the web design process that help web designers ensure a positive experience for your users. This part of our assessment ensures that the interface is designed to be appealing and functional while providing users with a clear path to usability that differentiates good web design from bad.
Next, we take a look at the analytics regarding your website traffic. Responsival uses software that tracks the number of users on your website, how frequently they view your website, and how long they view the pages on your website. This information gives us insight into what your users are looking for and where your website needs improvement.
SEO, or search engine optimization, is an ever-changing process that helps your business be found on search engines like Google. We pull in-depth reports about what pieces of your SEO strategy are missing - like proper headings, meta descriptions, and alt text - so that we can make improvements and help your business be found by new users.
The final part of our website assessment involves taking a look at what pages on your site are the most popular. In most cases, a company’s homepage is the most heavily trafficked page. We use the information on what pages your audience likes the most to design a user journey that helps your users reach the most valuable pages on your website with ease. By doing this, we can close the gap between your high-traffic homepage and the all-important pages in which your customers contact you or purchase your goods.
One of the most valuable things a business owner can understand is their audience. Knowing what your audience looks like, where they come from, and who they are as people help you create competitive pricing, complete proper merchandising, and build effective marketing strategies.
That’s why the next aspect of our digital marketing assessment involves taking an in-depth look at your website’s user demographics. We use in-depth reports on your users - including their age and gender distribution and location - to hone in on what your core audiences look like. Additionally, if you’re an e-commerce business, we analyze the physical locations that your users live in. This provides us insight into the type of people who are likely to buy your products or use your services. Additionally, we’ll look at the times in which your users are using your website to understand their consumer and online behavior.
Using this information, we build detailed 3-4 audience profiles that represent the members of your audience. Marketers frequently design their target customers as ‘living, breathing personas.’ For instance, we may build these two audiences for your succulent business:
These two markets - while interested in the same product - should be targeted with different imagery, messaging, and mediums in your marketing practices, which is why we make clear, simple personas to use in your ongoing digital marketing practices.
When we talk assess accessibility, we look into the ways in which people are viewing your site and the ways your site is helping maximize the number of people accessing your site. We start with a breakdown of the type of device your users are viewing your website from. More people than ever before are using cell phones and tablets to view your website, which is why we make creating responsive websites - or websites that look and function great across all devices - the core of our business (and our name!). Additionally, we look to understand the source of your traffic, which comes from four primary sources:
Additionally, Responsival takes a look at how accessible your website may be to people with physical or intellectual disabilities. We check to see how your website complies with the ADA and do our best to design in accordance with ADA standards.
Organic search, as we mentioned before, should be one of the most popular ways that potential customers reach your website. It is every business’s goal to rank on the first page of Google for as many business-related keywords as possible. Responsival pulls an in-depth report on all the keywords that people use to find your website. For us, some of these keywords include:
These keywords are all listed with information on search frequency, your current ranking on Google, and how difficult it would be to ‘snag’ or rank for that keyword. Using this information, we have guidance on the types of words and phrases you should use in your website copy and content strategy to boost traffic and SEO.
Social media serves a wide variety of purposes in your digital marketing strategy. Not only does social media drive traffic to your website, but it helps engage your customers, start conversations, and serves a ‘social proof’ of a trustworthy business.
We take the time to analyze each platform you use in your social media strategy. Using knowledge about industry-leading practices and benchmarks for measuring success, we evaluate how each social platform is performing for your business. We take a look at what types of posts are performing well and how your audience reacts to them to gain information about how your social media presence can be improved.
Additionally, we perform an in-depth analysis of your backend social media analytics. Using these reports, we draw conclusions about how to best reach your target audience and best capitalize on the engagement you receive on social media. Want an example? Take a look at a previous analysis we completed above. We found that the most engaging posts were not leading to sales, and used this information to help develop strategies that would boost sales for our client.
In addition to understanding your own audience, it’s extremely important for any business to know where its competitors exist. These businesses are your competitors for a reason, so taking a look at what they do to gain a market share can help you take over that portion of the market over time.
In essence, we perform a mini-assessment of your competitors. We look at their websites, what keywords they rank for, and what they do on social media to make a list of things to do and things to avoid when recommending fresh digital marketing strategies for your business.
Using the information we’ve gathered from a variety of assessments, we complete our digital marketing audit with strategy recommendations for your business. These strategies, which custom-tailored to your business, are based on years of industry experience, industry-leading best practices, and a surplus of research into managing marketing issues for small to medium-sized businesses. Our strategy recommendations include suggestions in the following areas.
Many times, we’ll make suggestions regarding your branding and messaging. We build you a brand guide with suggested colors, fonts, and styles for both your online and print media. We take the time to develop an online voice for your company, planning out how we suggest addressing your audience to keep messaging consistent and well-branded. If you’re interested in a logo redesign and additionally branding suggestions, we’ll be sure to include recommendations for those too.
One of the most trusted ways of boosting your business’s SEO is through a content strategy. We combine the information we’ve learned about your audience and our keyword assessment to create a content strategy designed to help grow your organic traffic. In doing so, we also make your website larger, more valuable, and align your business as an industry leader by providing your audience with valuable information.
Next, we’ll suggest a social media strategy designed with three primary objectives in mind:
Whether this involves adding new social media platforms into the mix, increasing your post frequency, or expanding the types of posts that you share on social media, our experts develop a customized social media strategy for your business to use to grow your social media following.
Using the information gathered from the in-depth analysis of your existing site as well as a variety of other information, we make suggestions for the major changes we see necessary on your website. These recommendations help ensure accessibility, functional design, and SEO so that your business continues to grow and make a statement online.
And there you have it: the 20 steps involved in creating a comprehensive digital marketing assessment! Ready to get started with your assessment and implementing positive change your business? Get in touch with Responsival - the leader in Pittsburgh web design and digital marketing - today to get started.
The Digital Marketing Team at Responsival Conducts a Social Media Marketing Assessment on Their Favorite Brands