Online Marketing Blindspots

POSTED ON March 18, 2010
Most companies are doing a good job setting and reaching their online goals, monitoring Web traffic and making any necessary mid course program corrections. Still “blind spots” may be keeping you from getting precise read on your traffic. If you aren’t looking to the left and right in your heavy Web traffic, you may be losing important competitive ground. Here are the most commonly overlooked online marketing blind spots.

Web Analytics: You most likely have Web log or traffic tracking on you site, but are you checking if often enough? Key marketing decision makers need to receive via automated email distribution Web Analytics reports at least monthly, if not weekly. Maybe the VP of marketing gets a high-level dashboard of Web traffic and Webmasters get more detailed views. Bottom line decision makers need to get those reports emailed to them regularly and automatically.  Google Analytics even lets you see a bit of data about how your site stacks up in traffic against similar sites.

Pay Per Click:  Even if you're not employing it to drive massive Web traffic, pay per click (PPC) is important. It lets you test new keywords, find new phrases users are searching on, and drive traffic to deliberately crafted landing pages.  Once a month, search on your top 10 inbound organic keywords to see if your competition is advertising on those phrases.  If so, it may be time for you to start a PPC ad campaign of your own – even low budget. It will enable you to find new phrases to integrate with your search engine optimization, especially when it's time to create new pages on hot topics in your industry.

Search Rank:  The main goal of most of online marketing is "conversions" -- sales or leads.  Many conversions start with a Web search, so you need to track traffic rank.  You can start by taking the top 20 search phrases from your Analytics reports -- ideally the ones that don't use your brand name -- and check your search rank for each.  Remember to log out of Google or you'll be seeing personalized results that probably show your company higher than most regular users would see.

Webmaster Tools:  This free Google tool tells you how its search engine sees your site.  You can find out top phrases where your site appears on search results and pages on your site that others link to that are broken. You also can find where you have problems like duplicate title tags and Meta descriptions. 

Google Local:  If you target local customers in one or more geographies, make sure you have a complete, up-to-date Google Local listing for each location.  To rank higher than your competition, include photos related to your business and hot news and coupons in the new Twitter-like feature Google has just added.  Check to be sure your Google Maps display shows up correctly and look within Google Local for a new Analytics-like report on how many users see your listing.

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