What Is HubSpot’s Marketing Grader For?
Judging the performance of your marketing efforts can be challenging. Generally speaking, you have to track various analytics and measure the data you collect against the goals that you've set for individual strategies and tactics. While this is extremely helpful for judging individual strategies, it doesn't really give you an idea of how your overall marketing efforts are performing. Fortunately, you can get an overall view of your marketing performance with HubSpot's Marketing Grader.
The HubSpot Marketing Grader is a free tool that grades your overall efforts on a scale of 1 to 100. Not only are these grades incredibly useful, running the Marketer Grader takes all of 30 seconds to do, so there's really no excuse not to use the tool. Take a look at what the HubSpot Marketing Grader measures when it grades your marketing efforts and what you can do to improve your grade.
How Is The Report Categorized?
The Marketing Grader will formulate a grade that's broken up into three categories. These categories include the top of the funnel, the middle of the funnel, and analytics.
Top Of The Funnel
The Top of the Funnel category consists of numerous marketing elements that the Marketing Grader will analyze, including the strength of your site's SEO, the presence of a successful blog, your social media presence, and whether your marketing efforts are mobile-friendly. The tool grades how successful you are at creating, optimizing, and promoting content that is unique, relevant, and interesting.
Middle Of The Funnel
The Middle of the Funnel category consists of how successfully your blog and social media efforts lead to actual conversions through the use of links to landing pages, conversion forms, social media promotion, social media links, and more.
The tool will grade your analytics efforts based on whether you're using HubSpot and Google Analytics, the number of unique visitors you receive on a monthly basis, and how your results compare to your competitors.
Marketing Efforts Analyzed
By analyzing your marketing efforts in the three different categories, the HubSpot Marketing Grader will give you a clearer understanding of the following:
The tool gives you an idea of how effective your marketing efforts are when compared to your competitors (if you've manually entered any competitors on the competitor analysis page). This also gives you some idea of how far behind or far ahead you are of your competition in general.
Based on an analysis of your marketing efforts, the tool will determine whether you're generating enough leads and sales. The Marketing Grader will identify whether or not your blog posts are linking to landing pages and whether or not those landing pages include lead capture forms. If you don't have landing pages or lead capture forms, you're likely missing out on a significant amount of leads--especially if you seem to be attracting a lot of visitors to your site.
The Marketing Grader will also identify whether you've implemented any automation tools. For example, a CRM will allow you to automatically track user behavior on your site so that you can identify what users you should engage based on their actions.
Mobile responsiveness refers to whether or not your website is optimized for mobile use. If it's not, not only will it perform poorly for mobile SEO, but mobile users who do visit your site will have difficulties with navigation. Sites that aren't optimized for mobile use will often have difficulties loading properly or displaying properly on smaller screens. HubSpot Marketing Grader will determine how mobile-friendly your website is.
Social Media Presence
Social media marketing is a vital component of any inbound marketing campaign. The HubSpot Marketing Grader will take note of any social media presence you have (specifically, whether you have a Facebook or Twitter business page), how often you engage on social media, how many followers you have, whether your content is being shared on social media, and if you have links to your social media accounts from your homepage. The tool will give you an idea of whether or not your social media presence is bringing visitors to your site.
Blog Activity And Rss Feed
Your blog is the foundation of your content marketing strategy, which is why HubSpot's Marketing Grader will take note of whether you have a blog on your site and if you have an RSS feed. However, having a blog is one thing, having a successful blog is another. The Marketing Grader will evaluate your blogging activity and the effectiveness of your blog. For example, if certain blog posts are attracting more visitors than others, it may be the result of the blog titles you use or the type of content you are posting. When you post content is an important factor as well. Posting content to your blog regularly is important, or you could lose readers.
Does Your Homepage Have A Link To Your Blogs?
The ability to bring traffic to your blog is essential since your blog provides one of the most effective ways to capture your leads. The Marketing Grader will identify whether or not you have a link leading to your blog from your homepage. It will also evaluate the sharing capabilities of your blog.
Are Social Subscription Options Enabled?
Connecting your blog to your social media accounts is important because it allows readers of your blog to instantly follow you on your social media account with the click of a button. This way, when you post links to new blog content on your social media accounts, they will have a better chance of seeing it on their timeline.
Is Email Subscription Option Enabled?
An email subscription option allows blog readers to sign up for notifications of when new blog content is posted so that they never miss out on new content. It makes nurturing your leads much easier.
A website needs to be properly optimized for SEO to achieve high page rankings, which, in turn, helps to bring in more organic traffic. Marketing Grader will evaluate your SEO efforts in a variety of ways, including checking to see whether your images have alt tags, making sure that you have unique page descriptions, and making sure that you're not using your company name on the page titles.
In addition to evaluating your blog, social media presence, SEO, lead generation, and mobile-friendliness, HubSpot's Marketing Grader will provide an overall analysis, which will highlight some of the strengths as well as some of the weaknesses of your website, giving you an idea of what you're doing right and what you need to work on.
How Do You Improve Your Grade?
First, note your actual overall grade is and how it compares to your competition. If it's incredibly low, you'll need to do a lot more than just comply with some of the action items outlined in each category. For reference, the average Marketing Grader score, according to HubSpot, is 45. If you're well above that score or near it, then that doesn't mean that you shouldn't try to improve it.
Comply With The Action Items Provided Per Category
The Marketing Grader will list what's working and what's not in each category. For example, they might highlight the fact that you are using unique blog titles and that you're posting new blog content at an acceptable rate; however, they may also point out that your blog posts aren't being shared on Facebook. Go through these action items and make adjustments to your marketing efforts to address any issues.
Use The Added Resources To Help You Improve
If the tool discovers something that could be improved, they will provide you with a link to a resource that provides more information that can help you to make that improvement. For example, if your page descriptions are not unique, they will link to a downloadable SEO guide that contains more in-depth information about creating unique page descriptions.
Is Marketing Grader A Substitute For A Professional Website Audit?
Marketing Grader is a very helpful tool in that it provides you with a basic overview of your overall marketing efforts and will give you an idea of where your marketing needs to be improved. However, while running HubSpot's Marketing Grader once in a while is a good idea, it's no substitute for getting a professional website audit. A professional website audit will look at all of your marketing tactics as well as analyze the details of your website to give you a much more in-depth look at how your marketing efforts are performing.
Speak to a HubSpot Certified Marketing expert today!