How do you do a digital audit of your website and social media? Part 1: Website

When you sit down to do a digital audit, it’s helpful to have your marketing communications goals and objectives in hand so you can see if your digital properties are laddering up in some ways to your farm or business’ overall goals.

To me, your website is always your digital home on the web (don’t trust social networks like Facebook or Twitter to keep your “home” intact – glitches can completely remove your presence) and is probably the best place to drive your target audience if you want them to take a specific action – in other words, your CALL TO ACTION.  What’s your CALL TO ACTION?

Call To Action

Call To Action on Truth or Dairy’s blog is sign up for email

While a digital audit can help you see what is going on with your digital properties, you need to make sure that your CALL TO ACTION is easy to see and act upon for your target audience.

You need to be clear on your CALL TO ACTION on all your digital properties. This is done visually as you look at your properties whether it be a website, blog, facebook page, or youtube channel.

The web is very fluid and you need to be ready to change what you have.

Always be thinking of building with the future in mind – what is hot right now with Google is Social, Local and Mobile (SO-LO-MO).

In the future according to the experts, instead of the battle over what’s in your hand and in front of your face (computer vs. mobile phone vs. tablet), it will be your voice and what’s in your vision (think Google Glass and screens that respond to voice and motion).

But what you need to worry about now is your digital footprint (digital footprint is the results people get when they search for your farm/business/name in Google or on the social networks)  and how your digital properties are performing.

Let’s start the digital audit:

First, you need to pull together a list of all your digital properties.

Do all the ones you know and then make sure you do a search through Google with your keywords and names to make sure nothing else pops up. You might find things you didn’t know about or that someone else might have created for your farm or business. And it’s always good to have searches running on your farm or business with talkwalker.com alerts (free service).

Once you have that in place, we’ll begin was analyzing your websites and blogs.

Google Analytics

google-analytics-image

You should have some sort of analytics on your websites. I recommend google analytics. If you are using Urchin, you need to switch over. Your web person should know how to put google analytics on your website or you can do it if you can access to the code – depending on the blog system they should have a plug-in for this.

I have three training classes (posts) on Google Analytics:

How Should You Set Up Your Google Analytics Dashboard for Your Farm or Business

How Do You Set Up A Goal in Google Analytics

How to Read Google Analytics

I’m not going to go into the details here but you should have a sense of your traffic, time on site and bounce rates.

The overview can help you here but be aware it’s really not the whole story. What you are looking for here right now is trends.

Are people using our CALL TO ACTION?
Are we going up or down in visits?
How about time on site?
Where are people leaving the website?

Google Webmaster Tools

webmaster-tools-search-queries

You need to have your web person set you up with Google Webmaster Tools – this will help show you things like Search Queries (Google Analytics won’t show this anymore if people are logged into Google when looking at your website), Crawl Errors, how many inbound links to your website and how to optimized your website.

The information you really need here is do I have any errors, what are my search queries keywords and how many inbound links do I have?

webmaster-tools-inbound-links

Also, who is linking to me?

You should benchmark this number and then try and grow it in the future. The more inbound links you have the better you are – but just stay away from black hat link building techniques (don’t buy them and don’t submit to useless directories).

It will also show you where you are ranking on Google search engine research pages for keywords – it other words, how are you showing up?

Xenu

xenu-screenshot

Xenu’s Link Sleuth checks Web sites for broken links.

Link verification is done on “normal” links, images, frames, plug-ins, backgrounds, local image maps, style sheets, scripts and java applets. It displays a continuously updated list of URLs which you can sort by different criteria. A report can be produced at any time.

Probably one of the best tools out there for link checking and it’s free!

Open Site Explorer

Open Site Explorer

I use Open Site Explorer to help benchmark the performance of the website.

Copy the metrics on domain authority, page authority, linking root domains, etc…

Much like Google Webmaster tools this will help with showcasing who is linking to you but it will give more information on the sites that are linking to you.

The stronger those sites are, the more power they transfer to your website.

MajesticSEO

majesticseo

MajesticSEO will give you a lot of great information as well much like Opensiteexplorer but you’ll have to login.

Marketing Grader

hubspot-marketing-grader

This is Hubspot’s free marketing grading system and it will give you insights into how the website is performing (0-100 is the grading scale).

The information they provide is pretty self-explanatory.

While they provide some nice insights, be aware they are trying to sell you a product and will probably reach out to you when you use the tool. I do think that Hubspot is awesome but I don’t know how much help they would be for you right now.

SEO Audits are great things

Here’s a great article on how to do this yourself from Philip Petrescu, CEO and Co-Founder of Caphyon, How To Perform a Complete SEO Audit for your website.

This is a very thorough article and I love all the insights and how to fix ideas he has. Definitely worth checking out.

Speed of your Website

google-site-speed

The speed of your website is very important to users and Google. The search engine could downgrade your website if it is not running at a fast enough pace or if a script is slowing it down.

Use the Google Developer Speed tool to benchmark your website. It will also give you a Performance Grade, Load Time and Page Size.

Mobile Friendly

hubspot-mobile-device

Google is not happy with multiple website for mobile and would rather you just have one to meet the needs of mobile users. That’s why going responsive in a redesign is a great idea.

But you need to see how users are seeing your website on their mobile phone so I suggest using Hubspot’s Mobile Device Lab so you can see how your website will render on different devices.  Not everything is represented here.

If it’s hard to navigate, it could cause people to leave the website without doing anything (bounce) and hurt your rankings.

There are probably a bunch of things I’ve missed in the audit (you know like checking different browsers, etc…) so feel free to hit me up with this information.  I’ll add it in if it’s valuable.

Next post will chat about digital audits on your social media presence.

How should you set up your Google Analytics dashboard for your farm website or blog?

final-google-custom-dashboard

How do you get a snapshot Google dashboard?

I’ve been following Christopher S. Penn for years and am a big advocate for listening to his weekly podcast with John Wall called Marketing Over Coffee.

I learned how to set up a custom dashboard in Google from Chris so some of this custom dashboard set-up comes from him, a few others and my own added info. So props to Christopher for showing me how to do this so I can show you how to set up your dairy website/blog analytics?

Before you set up your Google Analytics dashboard, you really need to determine the goals of your website. If you need help with setting up Goals and Conversions, then check out my post on Setting Goals.

If you’ve never set up analytics on your website/blog, you’ll need to do that first. You can learn how to do that from Google with their setting up Google Analytics on your website post.

To build a custom dashboard, it’s fairly easily. But why would you want to, you know, since Google already provides large tabs with the analytics on them. Mainly because you probably don’t have a lot of time to be digging through all those analytics. Your own dashboard will help you get right to the meat of your needs.

1. Log in to Google Analytics

It’s as simple as going to Google.com/analytics

2. Select the profile

You might not have to select a profile if you only have one website. If you are already on the Audience Overview, just skip to Step 3.

3. Select New Dashboard

This will be on the top left navigation. You can create up to 20 custom dashboards.

audience-overview

Look at the top left navigation for Dashboard

4. Select Blank Canvas

You’ll be able to create and move all the widgets you create so the dashboard will look exactly as you want it to look.

blank-canvas

5. Select Add a Widget

Once you click, add a widget you’ll get a pop-up on the page that will help you define each and every widget you want to create.

First you’ll need to fill out the Widget’s name.

The second thing you’ll need to select is what type of widget reporting this will be. Do you want:

Metrics – just a simple figure or calculation.
Timeline – a visual timeline with metrics.
Geomap – a visual map color coded for the metrics.
Table – several metrics tied together in a table format.
Pie – a visual pie chart of the metrics.
Bar – a bar chart of the metrics.

If you select Standard, these metrics will be tied to the time slot you select on the top right.

If you select Real-Time, these metrics will be tied to only real time data and will constantly be changing depending on the real time traffic to the website.

Once you select the visual, the “show the following metric:” will change depending on the visual.

You can also use “Filter this data” to show/don’t show different dimensions with different expressions like “containing”, “exactly matching”, “ends with”, etc…

The last option, “Link to Report or URL” gives you the possibility to link directly to a standard Google Analytics report or a URL within the widget.

Then you would click “Save”.

Here are the following widgets I would set up for dairy industry or farming website. These will make it easier on you to see at a snapshot what is going on.

6. Real Time Active Visitors – how many people are on the website right now.

active-visitors

Name the widget “Active Visitors”
Select Real-time 2.1 Counter
Select Following Metric: Active Visitors
No dimension
No filter this data
No link
Click “Save”

active-visitors-complete

The above image is what the widget should look like.

7. Unique Visitors – how many unique people have been on the site in the timeframe at the top right

unique-visitors

Name the widget “Unique Visitors”
Select Standard 2.1 Metric
Select “Unique Visitors”
No filter
No link
Click “Save”

google-dashboard-1

The above image is what the widget should look like. As you probably noticed, this widget is then on top of the first widget you created. You can drag this widget down under the other widget by simply grabbing the top bar of the widget.

8. Unique Visitors by Source – where are my unique visitors coming from (direct, search engines, websites, etc…)

pie-unique-visitors-by-source

Name the widget “Unique Visitors by Source”
Select Standard “Pie”
Select “Unique Visitors”
Select “Source”
Show up to 5 slices
No filter
No link
Click “Save”

pie-unique-visitors-by-source-complete

The above image is what the widget should look like.

9. Unique Visitors by Content Page and Contact Us (Goal 1 Conversion Rates) – this will tie how many of your unique visitors visited a certain page and then also converted one of your goals

table-pages-unique-visitors-by-goal-1

Name the widget “Unique Visitors and Content Pages by Contact Us” if that is your goal.
Select Standard “Table”
Select “Page”
Select “Unique Visitors”
Select “Contact Us (Goal 1 Conversion Rate)” if this is your goal
10 rows is fine
No filter
No link
Click “Save”

table-pages-unique-visitors-by-goal-1-complete

The above image is what the widget should look like.

10. Unique Visitors and Average Time on Page per Keyword – this will show you how many unique visitors used what keyword to get to your website and how long they stayed on the page.

unique-visitors-avg-time-keyword-table

What does “not set” mean? Well, it’s kinda confusing but Google tries to clear it up with their explanation. To me, it’s tough to tell but basically Google is missing the dimensions it needs to determine the keyword.

What does “not provided” mean? This means that the user was logged into Google and was securing using search so the keywords are not passed along to Google Analytics. This is for privacy but you can “unlock” these keywords through these steps by KISSmetrics.

Name the widget “Unique Visitors and Avg. Time on Page per Keyword” if that is your goal.
Select Standard “Table”
Select “Keyword”
Select “Unique Visitors”
Select “Avg. Time on Page”
10 rows is fine
No filter
No link
Click “Save”

unique-visitors-avg-time-keyword-table-complete

The above image is what the widget should look like.

11. Contact Us (Goal 1 Conversion Rate) – this will show you how many times your goal converted.

conversion-goal-1

Name the widget “Contact Us (Goal 1 Conversion Rate)” if that is your goal.
Select Standard “2.1 Metric”
Select “Contact Us (Goal 1 Conversion Rate)”
No filter
No link
Click “Save”

conversion-goal-1-complete

The above image is what the widget should look like.

12. 3 min or more (Goal 2 Conversion Rate) – this will show you how many times a unique visitor stayed on the site for 3 minutes or more.

conversion-goal-2

Name the widget “3 min or more (Goal 2 Conversion Rate) ” if that is your goal.
Select Standard “2.1 Metric”
Select “3 min or more (Goal 2 Conversion Rate) ”
No filter
No link
Click “Save”

conversion-goal-2-complete

The above image is what the widget should look like.

13. Unique Visitors and Goal Completions – this will show in timeline form the number of unique visitors and how many times there was a goal completion.

timeline-unique-visitors-goal-completions

Name the widget ” Unique Visitors and Goal Completions”.
Select Standard “Timeline”
Select “Unique Visitors and Goal Completions”
Select “Unique Visitors”
Select “Goal Completions”
No filter
No link
Click “Save”

timeline-unique-visitors-goal-completions-complete

The above image is what the widget should look like.

There you go – eight different graphs to quickly view how your website is doing on your own personal dashboard.

final-google-custom-dashboard

How do you get a snapshot Google dashboard?

And of course, if these don’t meet your needs you can add many more widgets customized to your specifications.

In a future post, I’ll go over the main sections of Google Analytics that are important to dive into as well like Content – All Pages and Landing Pages.

And I’ll also look into custom reports – there are many good ones out there that other people have created – and how to add them as well.

If you have any questions, or want to add your own, just let me know by leaving comments below or contact me via your favorite social net.  All my connections are on the right.