Running a business in your area of expertise often means prioritising client needs over your own. It’s a common pitfall, and even I found myself guilty of neglecting my own business while focusing on providing strategies and ideas for my clients. We often make excuses for this behaviour, citing a lack of time or considering our current success sufficient. However, looking ahead and planning is crucial, especially during periods of fewer projects and the potential risk of inconsistent cash flow.
To gain a new perspective, I decided to hire myself as a marketing consultant for my own company and offer the advice I would give to any client. Stepping back and critically evaluating what is working and what isn’t within my own business has proven invaluable.
When I engage with prospective clients, I always begin by asking them about their business, their target audience, and their motivations. I delve deeper, asking “why” questions to uncover the underlying truth. Sometimes, clients desire certain strategies because they heard others are implementing them, without considering their own unique circumstances. It’s essential to unearth these insights and address them effectively. Additionally, time constraints may prevent clients from managing more than a few social media accounts, making it crucial to explore alternatives like outsourcing.
Now, let’s apply the same self-auditing approach to my own business.
Although I work alone, I occasionally outsource certain tasks for specific projects. Defining my services was a challenge since I offer a wide range of expertise beyond just building websites. I firmly believe that a successful website is the outcome of designing a comprehensive business growth strategy. It’s about being visible, standing out, and inspiring potential clients to choose you.
After visiting my website, here’s the information I encountered: [please note this was before I made changes to my website after conducting this audit 🙂 ]
- Digital marketing for small businesses and creative entrepreneurs
- Surrey-based small independent marketing agency
- Web design & brand strategy
- Helping small businesses create and grow their digital presence
- Let’s make your business easy to find and hard to ignore
- Book a clarity call
While it may seem like a lot of information, when appropriately placed, it effectively reflects the services and offerings of my business.
At the top of the page, I prominently display clear contact information, including my phone number and email address.
Surprisingly, I receive minimal spam emails, although I have encountered a few phishing calls and messages. It’s possible that displaying my phone number on the website contributes to this, but I frequently provide it on other websites as well, often for unknown reasons. It’s frustrating that despite data protection laws, our information is not always adequately safeguarded.
Recently, I undertook a website redesign and rebranding, incorporating vibrant colours, fonts, and a new logo that embodies both approachability and boldness—characteristics for which I am known. I am content with my current branding. However, the website’s loading time of 3 seconds can be improved, especially considering that GTmetrix ranked my website as a C. I should optimize the background image to enhance performance.
Call to action buttons
The hero section of the page communicates vital information about my business, including what I offer, who I serve, and the results my services deliver. Additionally, a clear call-to-action button —book a clarity call— directs visitors to the bottom of the page, where they can fill out a contact form and schedule a call. However, I noticed that it’s not immediately apparent that entering a website address requires the inclusion of “https://” at the beginning. This could deter potential customers, so I should improve the clarity of this requirement.
Furthermore, when the “schedule” button is clicked, a generic auto message appears stating, “The form was sent successfully.” This message doesn’t align with my branding, and a more visually appealing pop-up message would be more appropriate. Additionally, I realise that it would be beneficial to request a phone number in the contact form for a more personal touch when following up with potential clients.
As I scroll down the page, I encounter a bar that lists my services, including website design, brand clarity, and marketing strategy. This section provides visitors with a clear understanding of the offerings on my website. Further down, I come across a headline that asks, “Does your brain hurt when you read these?” This question allows me to connect with my clients’ pain points, recognising that these tasks may not be their favourites. Another headline states, “Things you resist and procrastinate with increase pressure and take inspiration away from you,” aiming to resonate with their struggles and convey empathy.
Continuing my self-audit, I introduce myself with a friendly and on-brand photo. I not only discuss my professional expertise but also offer a glimpse into my personal life. By doing so, I aim to attract like-minded individuals who share similar values. I notice a button labeled “Get to know me,” which, as a visitor, I would expect to lead me to an “about” page. However, it currently directs me to the contact page, indicating that I still need to complete my “about” page. Adding this task to my to-do list is essential.
Next, I review the detailed list of my services. While most links function properly, I realise that it may not be immediately clear to visitors that clicking on a service will lead them to an individual page. As someone experienced in building and reviewing websites, I assumed this would be intuitive, but I must consider the perspective of all users. Additionally, each service should have its dedicated page to provide a more focused and tailored experience for visitors, while also benefiting search engine optimization (SEO).
Among the service pages, I particularly like the one dedicated to website design. However, from a client’s perspective, I would recommend including a gallery or case studies showcasing previous projects, as well as pricing information or at least an FAQ section to manage expectations. Sometimes, I receive inquiries from individuals expecting a complete website build for a low price, which requires clarification. Enhancing the contact form to gather more detailed information and specifying the types of websites I offer, such as landing pages, 1-page websites, and simple e-commerce sites, would also be beneficial. Additionally, I’m considering offering paid website and brand reviews, rather than providing them for free. I can offer a short 5-minute Loom video review for free, but a detailed conversation with a comprehensive summary and strategy should be a paid service. Communicating the inclusions of a paid audit is crucial. Additionally, I’m contemplating adding this service to platforms like Fiverr.
To wrap up my self-audit, I examine the functionality of social media icons and their respective links across my website.
Here are my observations:
- My Instagram feed does not reflect my brand adequately. Although I may not currently post regularly, I should make an effort to create a professional-looking feed. As I develop my Instagram strategy, I can commit to posting three times a week. While I may not be keen on sharing personal stories or videos, I can create engaging and educational posts that attract and convert my target audience into clients.
- My Facebook page appears visually appealing but lacks new content updates, similar to my Instagram account.
- On the other hand, my LinkedIn presence aligns with my brand and aesthetics. However, I noticed that flipping the cover photo horizontally would offer a better view. I have already rectified this issue.
In general, the structure of my website is sound, incorporating a clear and intuitive navigation menu. However, I should consider enhancing the mobile browsing experience, as more people are accessing websites via their smartphones. A responsive design is critical to ensure my site is user-friendly and accessible across all devices.
In conclusion, conducting a self-audit of your brand can provide valuable insights and help you view your business from a fresh perspective.
By looking at your brand from a client’s point of view, you can uncover areas for improvement, optimise your website, and refine your marketing strategy.
However, if you prefer a fresh pair of eyes to look at your website, book a free website review to ensure your online presence effectively represents your business and attracts your target audience.
Investing time and effort in self-auditing will ultimately lead to a stronger, more successful brand.