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24-Point Enterprise SEO Audit For Large Sites & Organizations

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24-Point Enterprise SEO Audit For Large Sites & Organizations

If your website is struggling to rank in search engine results pages, an enterprise SEO audit can help you identify why.

For any SEO provider or in-house marketer who wants to audit an enterprise website, these 24 items should be on your checklist before moving forward with any SEO campaign.

What Is An Enterprise SEO Audit?

An SEO audit is an evaluation of a website to identify issues preventing it from ranking in search engine results.

Enterprise SEO audits are focused primarily on large, enterprise websites, meaning those with hundreds to thousands of landing pages.

Why Perform An SEO Audit?

Auditing your website is the first step in developing a successful SEO strategy.

Why?

Understanding the strengths and weaknesses of a website can help you tailor your SEO campaigns accordingly.

Performing an audit also helps your team direct your time, resources, and budget to the optimizations that will have the greatest impact.

What To Include In Your Enterprise SEO Audit

Auditing a large website can be very demanding, with over 200+ ranking factors in Google’s algorithm.

So to run a more sufficient audit, separate your audit into five parts: content, backlinks, technical SEO, page experience, and industry-specific standards.

You will need to rely on SEO software tools to run your audit successfully.

SEO platforms like SearchAtlas, Ahrefs, Screaming Frog, and others are a must for auditing any large website.

Content

Are You Targeting The Right Keywords?

The foundation of all successful SEO is strategic keyword targeting.

Not only do your target keywords need to be relevant to your products and services, but they also need to be realistic goals for your website.

So before you analyze whether your enterprise website is properly optimized, make sure your keyword goals are indeed reachable.

It’s possible that your target keywords are too competitive, or that you’re not targeting keywords with high enough search volume or conversion potential.

You can utilize a keyword tracking tool to see what search terms your enterprise website is already ranking for and earning organic traffic from.

Screenshot from SearchAtlas, May 2022screenshot of a keyword tracking tool

Then, perform any necessary keyword research to find keywords that may be a better fit for your website.

Once you’ve ensured that improper keyword targeting is not the source of your poor SEO performance, you can move on through the remainder of your audit.

2. Do You Have SEO-Friendly URLs?

The URLs of your enterprise web pages should be unique, descriptive, short, and keyword-rich.

screenshot of a SERP result with a red box around the url Screenshot from Google, May 2022screenshot of a SERP result with a red box around the url

URLs are visible at the top of search results and can influence whether or not a user clicks through to the page.

Use hyphens between words to keep the URL paths readable and omit any unnecessary numbers.

3. Are Your Meta Tags Properly Optimized?

Google crawlers look to the title tags and meta descriptions to understand what your web content is about and its relevance to specific keywords.

Like URLs, these tags are also visible in the SERPs and influence whether or not a searcher clicks.

Your audit should include checking that your web page’s meta tags are unique and following SEO best practices.

Use a site auditor tool to identify the web pages to address to speed up the process.

screenshot of SearchAtlas site auditorScreenshot of SearchAtlas, May 2022screenshot of SearchAtlas site auditor

Make sure to check for:

  • Original and unique titles and meta descriptions for each web page.
  • Proper character length: 50-60 for title tags and 150-160 for meta descriptions.
  • Keyword or variation of target keyword including in both title and meta descriptions.

Google sometimes rewrites page titles and meta descriptions, but this only happens a small portion of the time.

Optimizing these meta tags is still an essential step in on-page SEO.

4. Is Your Content High-Quality And In-Depth?

Although content length is not a ranking factor, in-depth content often displays characteristics that Google likes, such as original insight, reporting, in-depth analysis, and comprehensive exploration of the topic.

There is no magic number when it comes to content length. Google’s Quality Rater Guidelines state that web pages should have a “satisfying” amount of content.

They also state:

“The amount of content necessary for the page to be satisfying depends on the topic and purpose of the page. A high quality page on a broad topic with a lot of available information will have more content than a high quality page on a narrower topic.”

Still not sure whether your content is long enough?

Look to your enterprise competitors who are already ranking and measure how long their content is compared to yours.

screenshot of word length comparison feature in SearchAtlasScreenshot of SearchAtlas, May 2022screenshot of word length comparison feature in SearchAtlas

Then, aim to have content equal to or more in-depth than theirs.

5. Are Your Landing Pages Internally Linking To Each Other?

Internal links help Google find and index your pages. They also communicate website hierarchy, relevance signals, topical breadth, and spread around your PageRank.

Make sure you evaluate whether or not your pages are leveraging an internal linking strategy. Also, take a close look at the anchor text used to link to other pages of your website.

screenshot of site auditor tool in SearchAtlasScreenshot of SearchAtlas, May 2022screenshot of site auditor tool in SearchAtlas

Your pages need to have internal links pointing to other pages, and be sure internal links are pointing to that page.

Otherwise, you will have orphan pages, meaning pages that Google cannot find and index because there is no linking pathway to them.

6. Does Your Content Show Expert Sourcing With External Links To Relevant Content?

Google also looks to external links to understand website content and the authority of websites.

External links should be only to relevant, authoritative sources, and your website links out to sites with higher Domain Authority scores than your own.

Otherwise, Google is less likely to trust your enterprise website if you appear to be keeping low-quality websites in your link neighborhood.

7. Are You Using Rich Media And Interactive Elements?

Google likes to see images, videos, and interactive elements like jump links on the page. These elements make content more engaging and easier to navigate.

However, if these elements slow down your page load times, they are counterproductive to your SEO efforts. That will be addressed in a later part of your audit.

8. Do Your Images Include Keyword-rich Alt Text?

Enterprise websites – particularly ecommerce sites – may feature thousands of images.

But because Google cannot see images, they rely on alt text to understand how those images relate to your web page content.

Your audit should include confirming that image alt text is not only present but descriptive and keyword-rich.

9. Are Your Pages Suffering From Keyword Cannibalization?

With hundreds to thousands of landing pages, there may be times when your landing pages are not only competing against your competitors but other landing pages on your website.

This is called keyword cannibalization and it happens when Google crawlers aren’t sure which page on your enterprise site is the most relevant.

Some tips for resolving keyword cannibalization:

  • Find another keyword and re-optimize one of the competing pages.
  • Consolidate the competing pages into one longer, in-depth page.
  • Use a 301 redirect to point to the higher-performing or higher-converting page.

Backlinks

10. Do You Have Fewer Backlinks Than Your Competitors?

Google’s #1 ranking factor still remains the same: Backlinks.

If your enterprise website is competing against well-known incumbents in your industry, it’s likely they have a robust backlink profile, making it difficult for your website to compete in the SERPs.

backlink report in AhrefsScreenshot from Ahrefs, May 2022backlink report in Ahrefs

You can use a backlink tool like Ahrefs to identify your competitor’s total backlinks and unique referring domains.

unique referring domains competitors in AhrefsScreenshot from Ahrefs, May 2022unique referring domains competitors in Ahrefs

If there is a significant gap in backlinks or referring domains, this is likely a source for fewer keyword rankings or lower-ranking positions.

Dedicate a significant portion of your SEO campaign to link building and digital PR if you want to outrank your competition.

11. Does Your Website Have Toxic Backlinks?

Although backlinks are important for improving site authority, the wrong type of backlinks can also harm a website.

If your website has toxic backlinks from spammy, low-quality websites, Google may suspect your enterprise website to be guilty of backlink manipulation.

Google has gotten better at recognizing low-quality links, and after their 2021 Link Spam Update, Google also claims to nullify spammy links and not count them against websites.

However, there may still be moments when toxic backlinks should be disavowed.

You will want to focus on identifying where those toxic links are coming from and take the necessary steps to create and submit a disavow file.

Some SEO software tools can identify toxic links and create disavow text for you.

screenshot of the generate disavow text feature in SearchAtlasScreenshot of SearchAtlas, May 2022screenshot of the generate disavow text feature in SearchAtlas

Disavowing the wrong way can actually harm your SEO performance, so if you are unfamiliar with this Google tool, make sure you seek the assistance of an SEO provider.

12. Is Your Anchor Text Distribution Diverse?

Google also looks to the anchor text of your backlinks to understand relevance and authority. Relevant anchor text is important, but not all webmasters will link to your pages in the same way.

If the majority of your anchor text is branded, that’s okay.

Look for too much exact-match anchor text or high CPC anchor text that Google crawlers may flag for suspected backlink manipulation.

anchor text distribution in SearchAtlas SEO softwareScreenshot of SearchAtlas, May 2022anchor text distribution in SearchAtlas SEO software

If your anchor text does not display a healthy level of diversity, design a link building campaign around earning links with anchor text that improves diversity and signals healthy backlink practices to Google.

Technical SEO

13. Have You Submitted An XML Sitemap And Did it Include The Right Pages?

Because enterprise websites have thousands of landing pages, one of the most common issues uncovered in enterprise SEO audits is related to search engine indexing.

That’s why generating and submitting an XML sitemap is important. It communicates your website hierarchy to search engine crawlers.

It also tells them which pages of your website are the most important to crawl regularly and index.

If your enterprise website adds new product pages or content to your website, you can also use your sitemap to show Google the new pages rather than wait for crawlers to discover them through internal links.

screenshot of Yoast SEO sitemap generatorScreenshot of Yoast SEO, May 2022screenshot of Yoast SEO sitemap generator

14. Have You Maxed Out Your Crawl Budget?

Google’s web crawlers will only spend so much time crawling your web pages, meaning your enterprise website may have pages that don’t end up in Google’s index.

Although improving your page speed and your site authority can lead to Google increasing your crawl budget, that takes time. So in the meantime, focus on making sure you’re using your crawl budget wisely.

If your audit uncovers essential pages that are not being indexed, your enterprise website may benefit from crawl budget optimization. You want your highest value, highest converting pages to end up in Google’s index.

15. Is Your Schema Markup Properly Setup?

A very powerful optimization that your enterprise website can utilize is schema markup.

If your enterprise website already includes schema on some of your pages, you will want to confirm that your schema is validated and eligible for rich results.

Screenshot of Google's rich results textScreenshot of Google, May 2022Screenshot of Google's rich results text

You can use Google’s rich result to test your pages that include schema markup to confirm they are properly validated but to be even more efficient, use your favorite site crawler to test all of your pages at once.

16. Do You Have Excessive Broken Links Or Redirects?

Over time, links naturally break as websites update their content or delete old pages.

It’s important to check your enterprise website to confirm your external and internal links are pointing to live pages.

Otherwise, it will appear to Google that your website is not well-maintained, and Google will be less likely to promote your web pages in the SERPs.

17. Do Similar Pages Include Canonical Tags?

Enterprise websites (particularly ecommerce sites) may have duplicate content that targets different regions or is programmatically built out.

If those pages don’t have canonical tags, they will look to Google as duplicate content.

It’s important to confirm that the best, most in-depth version of the page has a self-referential canonical tag. All of the similar pages include canonical tags that identify the master version of the page.

screenshot of canonical tag site audit in SearchAtlasScreenshot from SearchAtlas, May 2022screenshot of canonical tag site audit in SearchAtlas

A site auditor tool like SearchAtlas can confirm whether your canonical URLs are properly implemented and if Google crawlers understand which page to promote in the SERPs.

18. Does Your Multilingual Content Leverage Hreflang Tags?

For multilingual enterprise websites, hreflang tags can help you show the right language content to the right searchers.

This improves your relevance signals and can have a huge impact on your conversion rates.

However, it’s easy to make mistakes when implementing hreflang and canonical tags.

As a general rule, only add hreflang tags to your web pages with self-referencing canonicals – not duplicate copies of the page.

Page Experience

19. Do Your Pages Meet Google’s Core Web Vitals Standards?

If your pages do not meet Google’s Core Web Vitals standards, they are unlikely to rank.

Google knows that load times, responsiveness, and visual stability impact the quality of a user’s experience, and thus the quality of a web page and whether or not it’s rank-worthy.

list of Core Web Vitals metricsScreenshot of SearchAtlas, May 2022list of Core Web Vitals metrics

You can see your Core Web Vitals metrics in your Google Search Console account.

You can also use the free platform to validate any fixes and see whether or not they improve your CWV metrics.

Screenshot of Google Search Console Core Web Vitals report with a red box around the Validate Fix buttonScreenshot of Google Search Console, May 2022Screenshot of Google Search Console Core Web Vitals report with a red box around the Validate Fix button

20. Do Your Web Pages Include HTTP Or HTTPS Protocols?

A secure website is also essential to the quality of the user’s experience.

If your web pages are not utilizing HTTPS protocols, you are not providing users with a secure browsing experience.

As a result, Google is less likely to promote your pages.

screenshot of protocols distribution feature in SearchAtlas SEO softwareScreenshot of SearchAtlas, May 2022screenshot of protocols distribution feature in SearchAtlas SEO software

21. Are Your Mobile Pages Responsive And High-Performing?

The majority of searches now happen on mobile devices.

Also, with mobile-first indexing, Google predominantly uses mobile pages in its index.

It is also more likely to use your mobile pages when determining where to rank your pages compared to your competitors.

Some common mobile mistakes that occur include:

  • Unresponsive design.
  • Intrusive pop-ups.
  • Bad UI/UX elements like button size.
  • Unplayable or missing content.

Industry

22. Are You Considered A Your-Money-Your-Life (YMYL) Website?

If your enterprise website is considered a health, financial, legal, or other YMYL website, Google has extremely high standards for the content that it will promote to searchers.

Although this does not impact all enterprise websites, it’s important to know whether your website falls under this banner to make sure you meet Google’s specific standards for your YMYL industry.

23. Does Your Website Show High Levels of E-A-T?

Google wants to see that your content is relevant to users’ keywords.

It also wants to see that your website, as a whole, displays industry expertise.

E-A-T stands for expertise, authority, and trust. It’s hard to quantify, but some more tangible factors include:

  • In-depth, well-researched content (e.g. blogs, ebooks, long-form articles).
  • Expert authorship and sourcing (e.g. an author byline that shows industry-specific expertise and credentials).
  • A clear purpose and focus for each page.
  • Off-site reputation signals (e.g. an article in a reputable online publication that mentions or links to your website).

If you’re still not sure what E-A-T looks like in your industry, look to the top-ranking content of your competitors to see the topical depth, expertise, and sourcing, and model your content accordingly.

24. Does Your Website Have Strong Reputation Signals?

If your goal is to rank for branded searches, other authoritative websites may feature content about your brand competing with yours in the SERPs.

If your enterprise has a Wikipedia page or press in online publications with high Domain Authority, those digital locations may rank higher than your domain.

If this is the case, you may need to take a more unique approach to link building to improve the branded signals of your content.

Optimizations like schema can also help ensure that information about your brand is featured at the top of the SERP, particularly if those websites that mention your enterprise brand do so negatively.

Final Thoughts On Conducting Your Enterprise Audit

Sitewide audits can be daunting, but they are worth the time and effort to craft a tailored, custom SEO campaign strategy.

Make sure to leverage the best SEO software tools throughout your audit to speed up the process and ensure the most accurate evaluation of your website.

Once your audit is complete, you can easily prioritize those optimizations that will be the most impactful.

More resources:


Featured Image: Yuriy K/Shutterstock

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SEO

Examples With Pros & Cons

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Examples With Pros & Cons

Marketing channels are tools and platforms that brands use to communicate with their audience.

If we squeezed the idea of marketing channels into a single picture, it’ll look something like this:

How marketing channels work

Businesses use different means (content, messages, ads) to reach their audience in places where they hang out (e.g., social media, Google Search) or reach them directly (e.g., text messages, emails). They may use a selection of channels or all available channels. 

In this post, you will get an overview of the most commonly used channels today: what they are about, how they are used, and what they are best at. 

Organic search refers to the non-paid search results from a search engine. 

Two types of search results

Organic search is one of the pillars of the entire internet. In all, 68% of online experiences begin with a search engine (BrightEdge).

The practice of optimizing webpages to increase traffic and visibility in this channel is called search engine optimization (SEO).

Example

At Ahrefs, we create blog posts about topics relevant to our product. At the same time, we try to target topics that offer search traffic potential and are within our capability to rank. 

Sample keywords we target with our content
We use Keywords Explorer to find good topics for our blog. The SEO metrics show us how much traffic we are potentially looking at (TP) and how hard it can be to rank (KD).

This way, when people Google things related to SEO and marketing, we can naturally feature our product. 

Example of high-ranking SEO content

Each piece of content that ends up ranking adds up to your overall organic traffic. So the more high-ranking content you have, the more potential customers visit your website. Plus, evergreen topics can generate traffic for years after publication. 

Chart showing traffic years after publication

Pros and cons

Pros and cons of organic search

Learn more: How to Create an SEO Content Strategy (Follow the Ahrefs’ Framework)

Social media platforms are used to engage brand followers and other users through organic reach or by paying to reach a defined audience. 

Social media is not just Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn. Messaging-only apps like Discord, Slack, and WhatsApp also fall into the same channel category. 

Do social media users “consume” content from brands? Quite surprisingly, 90% of people on Instagram follow a business (Instagram). 

Example 

Social media is complex. It’s a mix of product marketing, PR, and customer support. Trying to summarize it is like trying to summarize all conversations in the world. 

Each brand on social media tends to develop its own voice while publishing a balanced mix of product marketing, conversations, entertainment, and company news. 

And so while some brands will be super serious and “business-oriented,” others will try to win hearts with candor and authenticity. 

Social media profile description

Furthermore, this is an effective use of social media:

Advertising products also works: 

Demonstrating value is something fans want to see from their favorite brands: 

Last but not least, one of the best ways to use social media for businesses… user-generated content: 

Example of user-generated content on social media
Users’ photos made with GoPro published on the company’s Pinterest profile.

Pros and cons

Pros and cons of social media

Learn more: Ahrefs’ Twitter Marketing Strategy: Here’s How We Do It 

This marketing channel allows you to distribute your content and ads in a video format.

Does video marketing work? These stats seem to speak for themselves:

  • 70% of viewers bought from a brand after seeing it on YouTube (Google).
  • 96% of people have watched an explainer video to learn more about a product or service (Wyzowl).

Basically, video marketing is about two things:

  • Using video instead of text and images to engage with the audience – Video can make such a difference compared to other media that focusing on this kind of content has become a distinct type of marketing. 
  • Taking advantage of video-first platforms like YouTube and TikTok – These platforms have such a big audience that it makes sense for many brands to create videos just to be there. 

Example 

The great thing about video is that platforms like YouTube have their own distribution mechanisms, which can bring your content to thousands of people for free (of course, you can boost that with some budget too). 

We use this channel on a regular basis, and we’ve even made a video on how to rank videos #1: 

Moreover, you can repurpose videos and create “packages”—like a full-blown Academy. It also works the other way around: start with a course and share it or parts of it on YouTube. 

YouTube videos repurposed for an entire course

Pros and cons

Pros and cons of video marketing

Learn more: The Simple (But Complete) Guide to Video Marketing 

Advertising is about paying media outlets that have access to your audience to display your message near or instead of regular content. 

Digital advertising is the same idea transplanted to the internet (aka paid traffic or paid media). 

Advertising is not dead. Although content marketing seems to be the perfect alternative, most B2B and B2C marketers use paid content distribution (67% and 78%, respectively). 

Example 

Why pay for ads when there are free traffic channels like search and social media? Especially when ads have such a bad reputation? 

It’s all about the creative you use and the targeting.

Some ads can be simply irresistible because they dominate the space, such as this “Stranger Things” Ad:

"Stranger Things" ad on building
Source: Netflix.

Some are genuinely entertaining, such as the Super Bowl half-time commercials

Some ads are just so well-targeted that it makes you wonder whether they’re still legal. 

And unlike free traffic channels, you can simply outspend the competition instead of building authority, backlinks, or a following. 

Pros and cons 

Pros and cons of advertising

Email marketing lets you reach your prospects’ mailboxes with messages that either prompt direct action or are aimed at creating a long-term relationship with the brand.

You can get a “direct line” to your audience either by building an email list (e.g., with a newsletter) or sponsoring someone else’s newsletter (a mix of advertising and email marketing). 

Be prepared for what success looks like on this channel, though: The highest average industry click rate is 5.01% (hobbies), and the average for all industries is 2.62% (Mailchimp).

Example 

Some brands use this channel only to “seal the deal.” They spend so much on brand awareness and product marketing elsewhere that all they need is a nudge sent directly to an inbox (my inbox, in this example).

Email marketing from Vans
We all have our favorite brands. They just need to email us from time to time to sell us stuff. No need to preach to the converted.

Other brands will need more touch points and do more soft-selling beforehand. 

Hustle introduces HubSpot in an email

Pros and cons

Pros and cons of email marketing

Learn more: 8 Easy (But Effective) Ways to Grow Your Email List

Sponsorship as a marketing channel is about attracting prospects to your business through exposure to your brand in a sponsored material or event.

It’s typically used for two kinds of goals: brand awareness and brand image (i.e., gaining customers’ trust). 

Sponsorship is all about visibility. But it works best if the cause/person you fund is something/someone that your target audience cares about, e.g., an event attended by your audience. 

Is sponsorship a popular way to do marketing? If you look at it globally, the spending from 2007 to 2018 was on a steady rise. 

Most probably, the stats are inflated by big brands sponsoring sports. But small and medium brands can engage in sponsorships too, e.g., niche magazines, industry events, or influential content creators. 

Example 

Sports would probably be just a pastime activity if it weren’t for the sponsors. 

Sports is also a great lesson about sponsorship. Watch an FC Barcelona game, and you’ll see and hear “Spotify” thousands of times. The logo is literally on every player, and its home stadium’s name starts with “Spotify.” 

Sports sponsorship example

Pros and cons 

Pros and cons of sponsorship

7. Conversational marketing 

Conversational marketing refers to engaging in real-time conversations with potential and current customers through live chats, chatbots, messaging apps, and social media. 

This channel is supposed to be the answer to generic experiences typically offered on websites where users have to navigate through a set of pages to get information or service. 

What’s more, it seems to be quite effective: 

  • 79% of companies say that live chat has had positive results for customer loyalty, sales, and revenue (Kayako).
  • 82% of companies that use AI conversational marketing solutions find them to be a valuable asset in their strategy (Drift). 

Example 

The way brands usually use chatbots (aka virtual assistants) is to: 

  • Answer basic and frequent questions.
  • Qualify leads.
  • Schedule a meeting with an agent. 
  • Promote specific content. 

Just like Drift does: 

Chatbot example

Anything beyond that is beyond the capabilities of automation for now. However, solutions like Zowie claim their chatbots are ready to sell things to humans. 

Pros and cons

Pros and cons of conversational marketing

Word-of-mouth marketing (WoMM) is the process of influencing and encouraging natural discussions about a product, service, or company.

In other words, it’s about giving people a reason to talk.

Is word of mouth effective? 

Well, it’s probably one of the most effective marketing channels because people tend to trust other people more than brands. According to a study by BrightLocal, 91% of people regularly or occasionally read online reviews, and 84% trust online reviews as much as a personal recommendation.

Example 

WoM is so powerful it can get a company off the ground and help it grow throughout the years. 

We should know. Ahrefs started over 10 years ago with 0 marketing budget and no marketing personnel. What got us where we are today was largely thanks to WoM: recommendations from users and positive reviews. 

SEO industry poll
One of the industry polls on SEO tools.
Word of mouth example
This person subscribed to Ahrefs because their friends spread the word. Thank you, friends. 🙂

Pros and cons

Pros and cons of word of mouth

Learn more: Word-of-Mouth Marketing: A Simple Tried & Tested Guide 

Podcasting allows brands to reach people interested in a given topic by producing, being featured in, or sponsoring pre-recorded audio. 

Podcasts seem to be a growing channel in terms of audience and ad spend:

  • Podcast ad spending in the U.S. is expected to reach $2.2 billion in 2023, a 27% increase from 2022 (Statista).
  • There are more than 850,000 active podcasts today. 

Example 

Let’s take a quick look at three ways brands use podcasts today. 

The first, and probably the most popular way, is being interviewed on a podcast or co-hosting one. The brand and/or the product gets to be featured in a natural way throughout the conversation. 

Brand in a podcast

The second way, and also a very popular option, is to sponsor a podcast. The audience gets acquainted with the brand through advertisements inside the podcast and/or brand identification near the content (like in the example below).

Brand in a podcast

The last way a brand becomes engaged in podcasts is by creating its own series. Products are rarely featured; the focus is on memorable experiences delivered through carefully targeted content. This way, the brand can earn positive associations, differentiate, and give their audience a reason to come back to the website on a regular basis. 

Brand in a podcast

Pros and cons

Pros and cons of podcasts

Whereas other marketing channels are used to communicate with the audience, events are more about meeting with the audience. 

Event marketing can be done online and offline but also in a hybrid model. However, in-person events allow for evoking stronger emotions and more convenient networking. 

But can you rely on the in-person formula only? Probably not. Half of marketers and advertisers predict all future events will have a virtual dimension (MarketingCharts).

Example 

There are a few different types of events used in marketing. They can differ quite substantially. 

Trade shows. Organized around products and technologies. Usually business-oriented, with the goal of networking and generating leads. 

Formnext, example of event marketing
Formnext, an additive manufacturing trade show. Business, business, business.

Conferences. Organized around ideas or technologies. The focus is on exchanging knowledge, entertainment, and networking. Often have a laid-back atmosphere with a mixed agenda. They are the most “open” of all types. 

Inbound 2022, event marketing example
HubSpot’s Inbound landing page. Learn, meet friends, eat well. Like in life.

Seminars and workshops. Focused on exchanging ideas and experiences. Usually smaller in size and organized for a small number of people. 

SEO workshop at Digisemestr
My colleague, Michal Pecánek, running a workshop on SEO for students of Digisemestr.

Pros and cons

Pros and cons of events

Learn more: A Simple SEO Guide for Successful Event Marketing 

11. Affiliate marketing 

Affiliate marketing is where people promote another company’s product or service in return for a commission on generated sales.

The party promoting the product is called the affiliate, and the brand delivering the product is the merchant. Often, there is also a middleman connecting the parties called the network or program (e.g., ShareASale or GiddyUp).

A commission is typically a percentage of the sale price but can occasionally be a fixed amount. 

All those fractional commissions and percentages add up to a huge business. According to Statista, business spending on affiliate marketing will hit $8.2 billion in the U.S. by 2022.

Example 

This article by Musician on a Mission lists eight studio setup essentials and links to products using affiliate links. 

Example of affiliate link
The highlighted link is an affiliate link.

Products mentioned in this one article alone can get a part of that over 10,000 organic traffic (and other traffic sources too). 

Organic traffic to an article with affiliate links

At its best, affiliate marketing is a win-win for all parties involved, including consumers. Affiliates earn commissions on their work testing products (sometimes) and putting up the content, merchants get exposure to qualified audiences via trusted partners, and consumers don’t need to spend much time researching products on their own. 

Pros and cons

Pros and cons of affiliate marketing

Frequently asked questions about marketing channels. 

Why are channels important in marketing? 

Because every brand needs a way to reach out to its target audience and attract customers. Marketing channels simply connect brands to people who might need their products or services. 

What is the best marketing channel?

It’s very unlikely and definitely not optimal to use one marketing channel. Brands usually try to be present in as many channels as possible, as this increases reach and convenience to customers.

That said, it’s common to focus on one channel or a small set of channels. For example, at Ahrefs, we focus on organic search and video marketing because those channels can serve the entire marketing funnel. This has proven to be an effective way to reach out to our audience. 

How to choose marketing channels? 

Do some market research and identify places where your audience hangs out and what channels your competition is using. Then start using those channels to test out what works for you and what doesn’t, and then iterate on your findings. 

What’s the difference between multichannel and omnichannel marketing? 

Omnichannel marketing is about using all available channels to attract and serve customers, providing a seamless experience. For example, Ikea allows you to purchase products in stores, online, through an app, by phone, etc. 

Omnichannel marketing in a nutshell

Whereas in multichannel marketing, multiple channels are utilized. However, not all of them are utilized or integrated. For example, I bought a wardrobe online recently, and the shop sent me text messages about the status of the order. But I couldn’t use the same channel to respond (and warn that it was about to send me the same product twice). 

How are marketing channels different in B2B than in B2C?

B2B and B2C brands invest in the same channels (according to HubSpot). However, the way they use the channels may differ. 

B2C brands usually use these channels to offer entertainment and directly impact sales. B2B brands focus more on educating prospects and forming long-lasting relations. 

These types of brands may also find some types of content or platforms more suitable for them. For example, B2C brands typically don’t publish case studies, and B2B brands find LinkedIn more effective. 

What’s the difference between marketing channels and distribution channels?

Distribution channels are the means by which products or services are being made available to a consumer (e.g., directly via a brand’s website or through resellers), whereas marketing channels are the means by which products and services are being communicated to the consumer. 

Final thoughts 

Multichannel marketing and omnichannel marketing seem to be the way to go these days. More channels mean more convenience for your customers, more prospects reached, and more ROI for your company.

But to make the best use of your channels, it’s a good idea to keep your brand’s messaging consistent across all media; marketers call it integrated marketing communications

Got questions? Ping me on Twitter.



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