Digital marketing is a fantastic way for financial firms to grow their brand exposure, lead generation and other marketing goals. Yet it comes with a ream of data, metrics, tools and key information – all of which can be difficult to keep track of.
One of the best way to overcome this challenge of “data overload” is to craft a marketing dashboard for your business. This allows you to get a quick “snapshot” of how your digital marketing is performing in a single window – like a car dashboard.
Yet what should your marketing dashboard look like, and which metrics should you include? How can financial firms build one without making it overly-complicated and without spending excessive amounts on software? Below, we offer some answers.
We hope you find this content helpful and invite you to get in touch if you’d like to discuss your own marketing project with us.
Marketing dashboards: an overview
A car dashboard is partly effective because it is highly visual. You can see dials, colour-coded numerals and gauges which quickly tell you how fast you are going, how much fuel is left in the tank and other key information. A marketing dashboard should achieve something similar – giving you a real-time view into marketing performance .
A marketing dashboard should clearly display the key metrics and KPIs (key performance indicators) which show the speed and direction of travel for the company’s marketing channels. You should be able to view this on a daily, weekly and monthly basis.
The following should be achieved by a financial firm’s marketing dashboard:
- Answering directors’ questions, such as return on marketing investment (ROMI).
- Flexibility and scalability – allowing you to add new metrics easily and adapt the dashboard to accommodate new layouts.
- Easy to read, for clear digestion.
- Secure – protecting confidential company information from leakage.
- Up-to-date, providing real-time information and answers.
Types of dashboard
Marketing dashboards do not all look the same, because they can be used to achieve a range of different purposes. For instance, one might be focused on displaying information about a set of Google Ads campaigns. Another might be more focused on showing how a financial firm’s SEO efforts are performing (search engine optimisation).
Here are some common types of marketing dashboard for financial firms to consider:
- Marketing performance dashboard – showing ROMI, average order value, revenue, cost and transactions. This provides a “500-ft” view of the company’s overall marketing performance and the conversion funnel.
- Digital marketing dashboard – showing metrics such as total leads, leads by region/country, lead by program/product and key conversion metrics. This focuses on a company’s online marketing activities.
- Web analytics dashboard – showing website visits, bounce rates, traffic sources and session durations. This focuses on the performance of a financial firm’s website.
- SEO dashboard – showing new/lost backlinks, search engine rankings, unique organic visitors and page alerts from on-site audits. This focuses on the SEO performance of a financial firm over time.
Designing a financial SEO dashboard
To create an SEO dashboard that suits your needs and which is fit for purpose, it is important to establish which goals are truly important for your business to achieve with its marketing. Be SMART with these goals. For instance:
- Specific. Grow organic visitors to 500 per month over the next 12 months.
- Measurable. Use data from measurement tools such as Google Analytics to track this over time.
- Achievable. Given our current SEO position and budget, this should be realistic.
- Relevant. Growing organic visitors is one of the core aspects of any SEO campaign.
- Time-bound. Achieve the above within the next 12 months.
With 1-3 SEO goals in mind, it becomes easier to pick the metrics that you will need to monitor to check your progress towards these goals. Popular metrics for financial SEO dashboards often include:
- Organic traffic – the total number of website visitors from search engines like Google Search (excluding ads) in a given timeframe. It will be important to be able to compare these numbers month-by-month.
- Organic bounce rate – the percentage of organic visitors who leave your website without visiting more than one page.
- Session duration – the amount of time organic visitors spend on your website, on average.
- Conversion rate – the percentage of visitors who complete a meaningful action on your website (e.g. using the contact form).
- Search engine position – where your website ranks (roughly) in Google Search for specific keywords, over time.
Software tools for the dashboard
Now that we have a clearer picture of the metrics that we need to track for our financial SEO campaign, it is time to select a suitable software solution – of set of solutions – to gather this information and display it appropriately.
A key tool, of course, will be Google Analytics (free). This will enable you to find key information about your website such as pageviews, traffic volumes and sources, bounce rates and session duration. Make sure this code is installed on your website correctly by checking your homepage with the Google Tag Assistant Chrome extension tool.
Another useful tool is Google Tag Manager. This free tool can be a very good way to “house” your Google Analytics code and set up some key conversion metrics such as PDF guide downloads, newsletter sign-ups and contact form submissions.
You should also consider setting up Google Search Console (previously “webmaster tools”) for your website. This will help identify any SEO problems with your website – such as problems with indexing certain pages on your sitemap.
Finally, you might now want to consider a software solution to bring the data from these different tools/channels together. There are lots of options on the marketplace including Agency Analytics, Semrush and Moz Pro.