Marketing Audit Report: What Are They and How to Make One?

Author's avatar Reporting Mar 7, 2022 19 minutes read

Table of contents

    Peter Caputa

    Enjoy reading this blog post written by our experts or partners.

    If you want to see what Databox can do for you, click here.

    The marketing strategy in your business is what makes or breaks the success of your products and services. In fact, according to Databox’s state of business reporting, marketing is the most monitored and reported operation.

    Even though everyone is aware of the importance of marketing, many people often feel like half of their marketing campaigns are a waste of money.

    The problem? Figuring out which half.

    And that’s where marketing audit reports come in.

    Marketing audit reports provide you with a comprehensive overview of all the different marketing activities and performances in your company.

    By analyzing the data you gather in the report, you will know which areas of marketing need to be improved and which are doing a good job generating sales.

    Do you find marketing audits too complicated? Don’t worry, this guide will teach you all you need to know.


    What Is a Marketing Audit?

    A marketing audit is a type of business report that analyzes the entire marketing structure of a business. It covers everything from marketing strategies, targets, practices, priorities, to the smallest marketing activities.

    This report provides you with insight into how your company’s marketing activities are created and conducted. Also, you will see how close you are to hitting your original marketing goals.

    Marketing reports help you identify your business’ strengths and weaknesses. Once you know which of your marketing efforts are paying off and which are failing, you can work on improving resource allocation and make better use of your staff’s time.

    Compared to weekly or monthly reports, marketing audits require more in-depth analysis. However, you should be completely objective and realistic when creating them. You have to be specific and present information that is measurable and attainable. Only then can you and your internal stakeholders discuss these audits and create better marketing strategies for the future.

    While there is no strict practice regarding how frequently you should conduct marketing audits, it’s best to do it once every few months.

    By running these audits frequently, you will see where you should make changes in your strategy to reach your goals fasters. Even if there are no noticeable problems, it doesn’t mean that the strategy is perfect. 

    To get a comprehensive overview of your marketing activities, you should include data from all your marketing platforms. Each platform and sales funnel is important for understanding the bigger picture.

    A good marketing audit should always be:

    • Comprehensive – Make sure you cover all marketing areas.
    • Independent – This refers to the type of audit. The best type is an outsider audit, we will talk about it in-depth in one of the next headings.
    • Systematic – The audit should be organized and segmented.
    • Periodical – Conduct marketing audits every few months, even if there aren’t any obvious issues with it.

    Types of Marketing Audits

    The term marketing audit doesn’t refer to only one report. Instead, it is composed of a few different types of audits.

    The three main components are the external environment, the internal environment, and the marketing strategy. Within these components, we can identify seven different types of audits.

    We’ll explain each.

    External Environment

    The external environment segment of the marketing audit focuses on the main outside factors that have an impact on your marketing strategies.

    This segment includes:

    • Macro-environment audit – This type of marketing audit covers external elements such as economic elements, cultural elements, political elements, environmental elements, and demographic elements. These are the main things that influence consumer markets and affect your company’s performance.
    • Task environment audit – Although this audit is similar to the first one in terms of analyzing external elements, it has a few significant differences. The main focus of a task environment audit is to analyze your company’s overall industry, recognize competitors, and monitor the relationship your company has with retailers and distributors.

    Internal Environment

    As the name suggests, the internal environment segment primarily focuses on the internal factors in your business.

    Here are the three audits that fall into this segment:

    • Marketing organization audit – Includes a systematic analysis of the organizational resources such as staff, structure, manpower, employee training and development, research facilities, communication, work relations, and overall motivation.
    • Marketing function audit – This audit includes a complete overview of marketing capacities in your company. It’s also known as the 4P audit because it analyzes price, promotion, product, and place of distribution.
    • Marketing systems audit – The systems audit examines your company’s ability to gather and analyze data. The main focus is on the marketing information system and control system that you are using.

    Marketing Strategy

    This segment focuses on your marketing targets and strategies.

    It consists of these two audits:

    • Marketing strategy audit – Analyzes your company’s goal and vision. The main objective of the strategy audit is to make sure your marketing goals are clearly defined. Also, it will determine whether you are using your resources correctly.
    • Marketing productivity audit – Investigates the profitability of your products. It measures the current market situations and cost-effectiveness. With this audit, you can understand how effective your marketing strategies actually are.

    How Do You Run a Marketing Audit?

    Now that you know what a marketing audit is, we can move on to the next step – running your audit.

    Follow these seven steps to successfully run your marketing audit:

    Step 1: Describe All Marketing Goals

    Creating marketing goals requires lots of creative effort. The goals should be thought out, comprehensive, and most importantly, realistic.

    Your marketing objectives should always be in line with your other business objectives.

    These are some of the most common marketing objectives:

    • Developing company visibility
    • Attracting a bigger audience
    • Creating sales leads
    • Improving market share
    • Generating more usage from existing customers

    Keep in mind that both long-term and short-term goals are important.

    Long-term goals are those that you want to achieve in the next two or three years, while short-term goals are something you can do within the next few months.

    Step 2: Develop a Customer Persona

    Creating a detailed customer persona for what would be your ideal buyer is an indispensable step for efficient marketing.

    To develop a customer persona, there are the things you should consider:

    • Job title
    • Location
    • Working industry
    • Business size
    • Behavioral traits
    • Demographic description

    Step 3: Recognize Your Competition

    In marketing, we say, “keep your customers close, but keep your competitors closer”.

    Acknowledging your competitors and their marketing efforts will help you create better strategies for your own company.

    To do this, you can start by creating a list of names of the top five competitors in your industry. Include sections such as their business information, name, website, and HQ location. Categorize all of their products or services and make notes on which overlap with your own.

    Related: How to Do an SEO Competitive Analysis: A Step-by-Step Guide

    Step 4: Define Your Products and Services

    Before running a marketing audit, you first have to know all the details about your own products and services.

    For each product and service that your company offers, you should create a list of features, benefits, sizing, prices, distribution procedures, and overall historical performance of each item.

    Once you have all of these metrics written down, compare your products/services to those of your competitors. This will help you identify your own strengths and weaknesses and let you know which aspects you can improve.

    Step 5: Categorize Your Inventory

    Each business should have a comprehensive document that categorizes current marketing assets. Create this document by adding all of your available brand materials and marketing collateral.

    You can start with a spreadsheet that includes relevant information about each individual item in your inventory.

    Here is a list of some of the things you should include: 

    • Asset name
    • URL
    • Broken links
    • Engagement ratio
    • Number of sessions
    • CTR
    • Page views
    • Page speed
    • Shares
    • Content length
    • Metadata

    Step 6: Analyze Your Data

    After gathering all of your significant marketing data in one place, we can start analyzing it.

    Go through all of the different segments in your marketing audit and make notes on your observations. You will inevitably find things that you can improve on and keep track of the aspects that are doing well so far.

    Related: How to Analyze Data: 30+ Experts on Making Sense of Your Performance

    Step 7: Make a Plan

    When you wrap up the analysis process, you can start making informed decisions about your future marketing endeavors – make a marketing plan.

    The first thing you should do is solve all the issues that you recognized while going through the audit. This includes fixing broken links, analytics-tracking issues, and finding gaps in your content.

    Next, point out areas that you think your marketing team could easily exploit. For example, you can recognize some great opportunities in terms of relevant backlinks or optimize existing pages that already drive lots of conversions.

    Finally, your main focus should be on the future.

    Update your brand guidelines, identify future CRO opportunities, and research any networking openings that could be useful.

    What Is Included in a Marketing Audit?

    Since every business has different marketing strategies, there is no mandatory set of things that all marketing audits need to incorporate.

    However, there are certain metrics that can be universally useful to include. These include branding, website activities, social media, SEO, and an insightful competitive analysis.

    How to Make an Audit Report

    Knowing how to create a great marketing audit report can help you take your business to the next level.

    Marketing audits are a bit more complicated to make than other forms of reports, but this guide will help you start off on the right foot.

    Follow these steps to create a comprehensive marketing audit:

    Identify Marketing Objectives

    Analyzing the efficiency of your marketing activities starts with defining objectives.

    Of course, you can create a few different objectives and categorize them by priority.

    For example, your most important goal might be increasing the number of sales. Secondary goals could be increasing brand visibility, generating leads, engaging existing customers, growing your email list, and many more.

    Once you and your key shareholders agree on which goals to prioritize, you can start developing a marketing plan that can achieve these goals. Go through the audit and make a list of activities that can be most beneficial in reaching your objective.

    Determine Target Audience

    If you haven’t already identified your target audience, now is the perfect time to do it.

    You and your marketing department should work on sketching out the ideal customer persona and if you already did this, you can check whether recent performances comply with your plan.

    Using your social media followers, website visitor analytics, and email subscribers list can all help you gather demographic data on your ideal target audience.

    If the data indicates that you are reaching out to the wrong audience, you should immediately see to the issues and make adjustments to your products and services.

    Here is a full expert guide that will help you how to identify your target audience.

    Analyze Sales Funnels

    Every step in your sales funnel is important and you will have to gather data on each one.

    This will help you answer questions such as:

    • At which step do potential customers enter the funnel?
    • At which step do they bounce?
    • Which content has a good conversions rate?
    • Which content isn’t doing well?

    It’s best that you start from the top. This means analyzing social media data, PPC advertising data, email marketing data, and SEO data.

    Next, you move on to landing pages, CTAs, lead magnets, and the different forms.

    KPI data should be included throughout the whole journey.

    ROI Forecast

    After gathering enough relevant data on your marketing performances, you should use your marketing audit to examine the efficiency of each activity.

    The best way to make accurate ROI forecasts is to start with sales.

    However, this doesn’t mean that you should overlook your other marketing goals. If one of your goals is to raise brand visibility, an engaging platform that doesn’t bring a lot of leads could be worth the trouble.

    Although, you should remember that marketing objectives have a certain hierarchy. In the hierarchy, sales are most commonly come out on top.

    Suggest Next Steps

    The final step when creating a marketing audit is to use the knowledge you’ve acquired for future strategies.

    This can be anything from allocating budget resources, adjusting the budget, or optimizing your content.

    We recommend that you test your new strategies through each phase to make sure you are on the right track to meeting your goals.

    Marketing Audit Report Examples

    If you are new to marketing audit reports, you are going to need all the help you can get.

    Creating a marketing audit can take quite some time, especially if the data you gathered is segmented in different places.

    This is why we recommend using marketing dashboards.

    Dashboard apps can help you communicate marketing performances and overall ROI quickly and efficiently to all the high-ranking members in your company.

    They are a key piece of the puzzle for any marketing team’s success. Not only will you be able to gather your data in one comprehensive report, but you will also have an easier time analyzing your current strategies and finding ways to improve them.

    Marketing reporting software gathers, tracks, and displays all of the most important metrics and KPIs from your marketing channels. This is essential for efficient measuring and campaign analysis.

    The things you include in your marketing dashboard depend on a few different factors. Your company’s size, marketing goals, type of marketing strategy, and overall business goals should all be taken into consideration.

    A successful marketing dashboard should be adjusted to the specific needs of your business. This is why with Databox dashboards, you can customize the templates in any way that seems most appropriate.

    Let’s check out some popular examples.

    SEMrush Site Audit Report Example

    To stay on top of your website’s performance, you can use this free Site Audit Report Example.

    This dashboard will help you understand the key aspects of your website and enable you to quickly recognize any issues regarding internal linking, indexing, HTTPS implementation, and many more.

    Some of the questions this dashboard can answer include:

    • How many crawled pages were there on my website in the last month?
    • What were the issues with my website during the last audit check?
    • How many issues were there during the last audit check?
    • How can I measure my website’s click depth?

    The key metrics included are errors, pages with issues, pages by crawl depth, notices, warnings, and site audit score.

    These are the primary metrics, but you can also track some advanced ones like:

    • Keyword rankings
    • Ranking distribution
    • Visibility trend
    • Ranking distribution
    • Competitor intelligence
    SEMrush Site Audit Report Example

    Google Analytics SEO Report Example

    Use this SEO Report Example to track the performance of your on-page SEO and gain an insight into which pages on your website drive the most traffic.

    SEO is one of the most important aspects of your website and it’s not unusual to have certain questions regarding it. For example:

    • Which landing page drives the most organic traffic?
    • Which landing page should I update?
    • Which search results generate clicks to my website?
    • Which pages drive most search engine clicks?
    • How many organic sessions are generated on my website?

    This comprehensive dashboard will show you all of these things and more.

    Some of the metrics included are organic bounce rate, organic sessions, organic goal completions, and sessions by channel.

    If you use Google Analytics, you can also track pretty much everything related to traffic and conversions.

    This includes:

    • Traffic and demographics
    • Paid ads
    • Engagement through social media
    • Landing page performance
    • Website conversions
    Google Analytics SEO Report Example

    Google Analytics Website Performance Report Example

    The Website Performance Report Example will help you monitor traffic sources, audience behavior, and classify your most-viewed website pages.

    You will also learn:

    • Which marketing channels generate the most traffic to your website
    • How your website sessions are trending on a daily/weekly/monthly basis
    • Which pages generate the most views
    • Average time spent on your website
    • The conversion rate from visitors to customer

    The metrics included in this dashboard are bounce rate, page views, new users, average time on page, sessions, users, sessions by channel, and plenty more.

    Google Analytics Website Performance Report Example

    PPC Report Example

    Looking for a way to monitor the performance and ROI of all your marketing campaigns in one place? The PPC Report Example can help you with this.

    You can use this pre-built dashboard to connect the most important PPC metrics from your tools and customize it later. Once you have imported all the significant data, you can also visualize it with only a few clicks to get a clearer picture of the operational side of your campaigns.

    This dashboard will provide you with insight into:

    • How much money you have spent on Facebook and Google Ads
    • Whether Facebook Ads or Google Ads are generating a better ROI
    • Which ad campaigns are successfully performing
    • Which keywords are driving the most traffic in Google Ads

    Also, you can analyze key metrics such as CPC, CTR, impressions, amount spent, link clicks, amount spent by campaign, impressions by campaign, etc.

    PPC Report Example

    Video Marketing Report Example

    The Video Marketing Report Example is one of the best dashboards for tracking how video awareness leads to high-intent searches. You can import data from your Facebook and Google Ads and analyze whether or not they are generating any returns.

    By using this dashboard, you can find out how your video content is creating awareness through your ad campaigns.

    It helps you to:

    • Understand how video awareness is linked to branded and high-intent searches
    • Track returns on Ad Spend on your marketing campaigns
    • Measure the success of your ad campaigns

    When it comes to key metrics, there aren’t many dashboards that can compare to this one.

    The Video Marketing report includes:

    • Website users
    • Total ad revenue
    • Total ad spend
    • Facebook page engagement
    • Conversions by source
    • Website goal completions
    • Google ads performance metrics
    • Facebook ad reach
    Video Marketing Report Example

    Email Marketing Report Example

    The email marketing program you use is a huge part of each business. To measure its effectiveness, you can use the Email Marketing Report Example.

    This customizable dashboard will help you track email sessions, signups by campaign, signups by device, and give you a better overview of which parts of your email marketing strategy can be improved.

    With this email marketing dashboard, you will have an easier time measuring the success of your strategy. Once you connect your GA account to the dashboard, you can learn:

    • How many visitors does the email campaign generate
    • Which campaign is generating the most visits
    • Which devices do your subscribers use to open the emails
    • How many new signups were there last month
    • Which email campaigns are driving the most conversions

    The key metrics into which you will gain insight are email sessions, mail campaign sessions, email signups, device sessions, and landing pages from email.

    Email Marketing Report Example

    Monitor and Report on Marketing Performance in Databox

    Marketing audit reports are probably the hardest type of reports to create. This is because most businesses typically run dozens of marketing campaigns, which means there is a massive amount of data to gather. And once you do gather it, you will then have to analyze it and present it.

    With new marketing tools being released every few months, doing all of this work manually is becoming a lot harder and more time-consuming.

    Fortunately, there are marketing dashboard software like Databox that help you stay on top of your marketing strategies.

    Databox can help you prepare better marketing audits that you can later use to develop your strategy and make data-informed decisions. With our pre-built dashboards, you can connect data from any marketing channel you use and gather it in one comprehensive report. This also makes the analysis process immensely easier since you will have all the key metrics in one place.

    With this kind of overview of your marketing channels, you won’t have to worry about impressing your shareholders with an amazing marketing audit. What’s more, Databox also helps you turn your data into understandable charts through which you and your colleagues will easily spot patterns and weaknesses in your strategies.

    Sounds interesting? Sign up today for free and upgrade your marketing reporting skills.

    Author's avatar
    Article by
    Filip Stojanovic

    Filip Stojanovic is a content writer who studies Business and Political Sciences. Also, I am a huge tennis enthusiast. Although my dream is to win a Grand Slam, working as a content writer is also interesting.

    More from this author

    Get practical strategies that drive consistent growth

    Read some