01 Mar 2018

HubSpot Audit: Is your portal setup for success

Are you getting the most from HubSpot?

HubSpot is a fantastic platform capable of helping you cover all aspects of inbound marketing, but it's such a massive sprawling beast of options, it's very easy to overlook a lot of the settings that are really key for driving your success when it comes to online marketing and could mean you're never going to maximise your ROI.

We've put together this blog of the top 20 things we've found people forget to implement on their portals throughout our years of working on the platform which should save you many headaches as you strive to perfect your marketing and sales activities.

1. You haven’t set up your personas!

Whether you write the content yourself, or you’re planning on outsourcing the writing to an agency, you’ll both need a clearly defined picture of who you’re trying to appeal to with the content you’re writing.

It gets overlooked a lot as it feels like a massive task a lot of the time this one, and you’ve probably read a lot about defining personas that appear to make no sense at all:

“40 year old director, likes novelty socks (I don’t sell novelty socks), drives a BMW (none of my products are related to automobiles) and spends his weekends playing golf (we’re shut at the weekend)”

These don’t really seem to help you’re writing content and deciding how to market that content, but the idea is to think about what appeals to this person, what approach do you need to take?

Is it all educational and cosseting, is it hard facts about ROI. Does this person appreciat a bit of humour and personality to get them engaged, or do they want you to stop faffing about and get to the point?

What are their pain points? What are their aspirations? How do you reach them? Are they always on the web or do they have so many external responsibilities that there’s interlay hours of windows to hit them with your offer?

Will the offer you send to the marketing manager on a Sunday be lost in their inbox come Monday morning, whereas the one you fired at the Director gets read on his iPhone whilst he sips a cool one at the 19th hole?

Personas need to be a series of best guess educated assumptions that you then do your level best to ratify through research, and with social media nowadays, you can get out there and do just that. Give it a go, you’ll be amazed at what you find!

Fill in the following as you go: Persona development document

2. You haven’t set up your campaigns!

The enthusiasm of creating create content and imparting what you know to draw people into your site can carry people away without thinking what it is they’re trying to achieve and monitoring the end results.

If you go to Content > Campaigns you’ll see a ‘Browse recipes’ link at the top right hand corner (don’t worry, the trolley is just a browse icon, you don’t have to buy anything!). There’s two recipes in there, they’re both very short but they give you a quick idea of some of the component parts you’ll need for a campaign.

If you’re up to speed on HubSpot’s latest campaign advice, they suggest creating a piece of ‘pillar’ content, such as an asset or guide, generate blogs to support and direct people to that pillar content, then use emails to nurture people who download the pillar content to lead them to fill in your bottom of the funnel content form. What’s key really is that you tie all these things together in a campaign and set a deadline and goals for it.

This isn’t about putting yourself under pressure by trying to achieve the unachievable, what you’re trying to do set a period of say the next 6 months, to use 12 blogs, 3 assets, 6 emails and 8 calls to action to drive 12 visitors right through the campaign to convert to customers. If you don’t set the goals and timeframe, you’ll just have this sprawling mass of content that isn’t really being measured (if you’ve never used a campaign and you’re still struggling to measure results in HubSpot, that’s why!) and you’ll never be able to learn anything and you’ll never get any better results as you’ll repeat the same mistakes over and over again

Time framing campaigns doesn’t mean you bin everything once that campaign is over, people can still pass through it, but you could run another campaign, add those assets in using new landing pages, with new copy that you rewrote based on the responses you got in the last campaign and hopefully that one will perform even better than the last.

You should find this sort of structuring of content deployment will give you a much better insight of the content you produce and what you do with it going forward, refining everything and building on your success more and more each time.

3. You haven’t set up your social settings!

You’ve been to Social > Social Settings right? You need to make sure you’re on ALL of the major social networks and make sure you’ve then connected them to HubSpot to make publishing your new content on your networks easy.

There’s usually at least one dissenting voice in your organisation when it comes to usefulness of social media marketing. A lot of the time it is difficult to imagine certain audiences taking to Twitter to solve a problem like your company’s products and services would do, but you have to remember that the influence of social runs a lot deeper than this.

The sharing of content across these networks is absolutely key to success in inbound marketing. It should be 20% content and 80% marketing, and if you’re not maintaining a strong social media presence, you’re going to be incredibly hard pressed to achieve anywhere near that ratio. And don’t make assumptions about which social media sites are going to provide you with the best traffic.

In a B2B environment LinkedIn seems like the most sensible choice, and you’d be mad to ignore LinkedIn (it’s one of our strongest allies in content distribution and providing thought leadership sources), but don’t ignore Facebook & Google+.

Facebook allows you to add your business and it’s address which is great when it comes to helping get you listing in local search results. Bing also indexes all the Facebook business pages, so you’ll rank higher in Bing if you have one.

Google+ is often overlooked, but seriously, you’re going to ignore a social network from the search Gods themselves? If you visit the MOZ local search website (https://moz.com/local) they list Google+ as first, which means you better have your business listed on there if you want to appear in the local search results.

Don’t discount Google+ as an ally when it comes to driving traffic to your site. You can and should automate all your blog posts to be shared on social sites automatically but don’t discount manual re-socialling of blogs. We socialled old blogs on Google+ when something relevant came up as a hot topic in the news and it drove a months worth of traffic to the site in 2 days, resulting in 2 massive leads for the client!

4. You haven’t set up workflows!

Setting up a workflow is easy, guide people through the desired funnel but remember not to give up if they don’t take the desired action and have something else to offer in an attempt to reengage.

A workflow should be the main backbone of your campaign, so its title should be related to the campaign. Ideally you want to load people into the top of the workflow when they download your top of the funnel asset which they’ll have been led to with blog creation.

You should use the workflow to nurture your prospect with emails. Ideally you’d have another asset to offer in each of these nurturing emails, but that’s not always possible, so perhaps reworking and shortening a blog to send in the email instead, remembering always to include your bottom of the funnel CTA

So as not to burn through your content too quickly, if someone doesn’t open the email you send them, don’t just move onto the next step. Try resending it after a few days with a different title. They have an interest in your content because they read a blog and downloaded you asset, but maybe the title of the email didn’t peak their interest sufficiently or they just didn’t see it. You should try a few different iterations of the title of the same offering to try get them to engage at that stage of the funnel.

If they don’t engage at that level don’t give up, they may have already learnt what they wanted to at that level which is why they’re not biting and they want something more in-depth, so press on by sending them the next stage in the workflow. Again, if they don’t open the email at this stage, try a different title to re-engage.

If you follow this process you will eventually get them to return their focus to USPs and they’ll be back onboard the workflow track which they should ride all the way down the funnel before getting in touch.

5. You haven’t added your competitors!

The name of the game is to be better than the next guy. You can only see whether or not you’re achieving this by adding your competitors to the tool.

Go to Reports > Competitors and you should at the very least see your own site in there.

This system is the marketing grader which was a standalone tool until a while back but we can’t seem to find anymore, but this is a very powerful tool that creates an overall grade from your site as well as giving you data from people like Alexa and Moz to how well you’re doing in the world wide web as well as how many pages you have indexed and how many people are linking to you.

First of all make sure your record is up to date. There should be a little grey ‘i’ at the end of your record. If you have a yellow triangle then it means HubSpot is missing data and therefore your grade might be off a little. Click on the icon at the end and check to make sure all your fields are filled in correctly.

You need to complete your Blog URL and RSS Feed URL. If you want to use your RSS feed from your HubSpot blog, just append ‘rss.xml’ to the blog address, so it should look something like ‘http://blog.yourdomain.com/rss.xml.

Remember to include your Facebook page and Twitter handle. If you haven’t got either of these then now is a good time to get them setup as you’re missing out on key marketing platforms. Get them used today!

Populating the rest of the list should be straightforward. You can add up to 20 competitors. Try and do a mix of people you see as competitors, as well as those who are ranking for keyword terms you want to rank for. Even if someone offers a different solution to the pain the customer is searching for, they’re still a competitor and therefore worth tracking.

Make sure you follow the same steps for each competitor to make sure you’re getting a true value for their scores. The grader is pretty good at collecting all the data correctly, but it’s definitely worth double checking manually to make sure...

This is an inline guide purely for the editor, it will not show in the final blog, designed to assist you with setting the options below in the 'Gate Trigger' section.

You will not be able to use the WYSIWYG editor for this it's code only so follow these instructions carefully.


Button
We cannot use a standard call to action to open the rest of the content, but we do want to track when someone clicks on the button to read the rest of the blog. Here's what the code should look like:
<a class="gate-trigger-button" href="#" id="HubSpot Audit: Is your portal setup for success - Read the rest of the post" title="Read the rest of the post">Read the rest of the post</a>


Survey
Instead of using a button, you can ask people a what their intent of being on the blog is. Here's an example.
<h3 style="text-align:center;">Ready to read the post?</h3>
<p style="text-align:center;">Great, just let us know why you're here today</p>
<ul id="survey">
<li><a href="#" id="HubSpot Audit: Is your portal setup for success">Answer One</a></li>
<li><a href="#" id="HubSpot Audit: Is your portal setup for success">Answer Two</a></li>
<li><a href="#" id="HubSpot Audit: Is your portal setup for success">Answer Three</a></li>
<li><a href="#" id="HubSpot Audit: Is your portal setup for success">Answer Four</a></li>
<li><a href="#" id="HubSpot Audit: Is your portal setup for success">Answer Five</a></li>
<li><a href="#" id="HubSpot Audit: Is your portal setup for success">Other</a></li>
</ul>

If you want to connect what the user selects in the survey with the call to action at the bottom, use the following:
<ul id="cta-list">
<li><a href="#">CTA One</a></li>
<li><a href="#">CTA Two</a></li>
<li><a href="#">CTA Three</a></li>
<li><a href="#">CTA Four</a></li>
<li><a href="#">CTA Five</a></li>
<li><a href="#">Default</a></li>
</ul>


Form
We need to add the same form for each blog, you can if you want to make your own form but you'll need to change the formId which will be in the URL for the form e.g. https://app.hubspot.com/forms/145288/ee2dd282-1afb-4040-b67a-6ea2fe6e32cc/edit:
<script charset="utf-8" type="text/javascript" src="//js.hsforms.net/forms/v2.js"></script>
<script>
hbspt.forms.create({
portalId: '145288',
formId: 'ee2dd282-1afb-4040-b67a-6ea2fe6e32cc',
css: '',
onFormSubmit: function($form) {
gateTriggerForm('HubSpot Audit: Is your portal setup for success');
}
});
</script>


CTA Form
If people are clicking the CTA but then not filling in the form on the landing page they're being taken to, it may be worth loading the form on the same page to see if that helps the submission rate:
<div class="cta-form-image">
<a class="cta-form-image-button" href="#" id="CTA Click - HubSpot Audit: Is your portal setup for success"><img alt="Title of the CTA" src="https://cdn2.hubspot.net/hubfs/145288/hub_generated/resized/21421668-c868-457c-8f68-142438f1e246.png" title="Title of the CTA"></a>
</div>
<div class="cta-form-inputs">
<a href="#" class="cta-form-inputs-close"><i class="fa fa-times" aria-hidden="true"></i></a>
<script charset="utf-8" type="text/javascript" src="//js.hsforms.net/forms/v2.js"></script>
<script>
hbspt.forms.create({
portalId: '145288',
formId: '80edeb18-6298-4325-9d45-eb64c02b2d1c',
css: '',
onFormSubmit: function($form) {
gateTriggerCTAForm('HubSpot Audit: Is your portal setup for success');
}
});
</script>
</div>

6. You’ve no page at your root!

The default setup in HubSpot tends to mean people’s blogs live at something like blog. yourdomain.com/blog and unless you’re on basic where you have a single subdomain, landing pages live at keyword.yourdomain.com/an-amazing-piece-of-content-you-need-to-download-now which means you’ve probably got two domains blog.yourdomain.com and keyword.yourdomain.com that don’t have anything at them and therefore will return a Google hating 404. Dependent on your account setup there’s a few ways around this. If you’re on basic, then it’s just a case of setting up a landing page and setting the URL correctly.

  1. Go to Content > Landing Pages
  2. Click the blue ‘Create a new landing page’ button in the top right hand corner
  3. Select one of your templates. This page isn’t designed to convert, so use one with just text and no form.
  4. Title it ‘Systems – Root Page’ or something similar so everyone knows it’s not something they should be making changes to.
  5. Under the ‘Settings’ tab in the editor, you’ll see the Page URL field. Make sure this just has a single forward slash in it. This will mean the landing page appears if a search bot or a user arrives at this address. It will also allow you to have a page where you can attach verifying meta codes like Google Webmaster Tools to collect data about your blog and landing pages.

The content of this page is up to you. You can explain to the end use it’s there just as a holding page, but if you then include a series of links to other pages on your site, that will benefit the end user and the search engine bots that arrive at it.

If you have a separate domain for your blog as well as your landing pages then you’ll need to complete the above, as well as checking your blog is located at the root. If you visit blog.yourdomain.com and get a 404 then you need to move your blog. STOP!

At this point get in touch with HubSpot support first. We’ve moved the address of blogs >before and they’ve automatically redirect old to new perfectly fine. Then again we’ve done exactly the same thing and everything breaks! That was fine as we had listed all the addresses of the old blogs and therefore we could use Content > Content Settings and COS URL Mappings to repoint everything. Make sure you have dialogue with support and a backup list before proceeding! Once you’re all set visit Content > Content Settings and select Blog on the left hand side. Select the blog you want to modify from the dropdown at the top of the page, then scroll down to the bottom of the ‘General’ section where the ‘Blog Root URL’ field lives and make sure that’s blank. That way your blog listing will be at the root page and you’ll get no more 404 errors!

7. Your File Manager isn’t managed!

Everybody piles files in at the root level, then 6 months into using HubSpot realises that they need to sort out their folder structure as it’s a jumbled mess and you can’t find anything. You should be setting the up from the get go. Here’s a simple structure of how we order our files:

  • Files
  • Checklists
  • Guides
  • Infographics
  • Presentations
  • Images
  • Asset Images
  • Blog Images
  • Calls To Action
  • Template (This is just for any templates so your content and design files don’t get mixed together)
  • CSS
  • Images
  • JavaScript

Keep the structure simple and clean. HubSpot is clever to create redirects so if going forward you want to expand the structure of the sub folder to more detail you can move files around and it’ll point the old links to the new. Remember not to structure based on what you know, but what can be assumed. We’ve seen files structured by campaign before, which seems sensible, but you then need to go routing around in folders to find what asset or call to action is associated with what, and if you’ve got a new starter who’s trying to re-deploy and re-social old assets they’re going to have to trawl through everywhere to find what they’re after without the knowledge you have to ascertain where everything is. DON’T DO IT!

Keep your folder names short, title your files, images, PDF etc using keywords separated-with-a-hyphen. No spaces or underscores. Trust us when we say image names can affect what keywords you rank for in a positive, and sometimes negative way.

8. You’re using the default File Manager Hosting Domain!

The content delivery network (herein referred to as CDN) that HubSpot uses is superb. They deploy Akamai web servers which means they have access to masses of storage and computing power, sharing the load put on the sites across a raft of up to date servers meaning no downtime and ultra fast sites.

When you first setup HubSpot, by default all of your files, images, PDFs etc will be served from the default CDN address. This is fine but this content isn’t then actually being attributed to your domain or subdomain, so you won’t receive any benefit from Google to help with your ranking in the search engine results or SERPs. Fortunately it’s easy to change this.

Under Content > Content Settings is the drop down for ‘Default File Manager Hosting Domain’. Make sure you change this to one of your sub domain addresses. Using the one you use for your landing pages is your best bet, or if you’re on basic just use the default one.

A lot of people forget about all the ancillary media they create with their websites and there’s often huge swathes of valuable content in separate files, especially search engine robot readable files like PDFs, that can count towards your domains overall ranking. Making this part of onsite SEO strategy as well as things like include keywords and LSI keywords in your alt tags can really help put you ahead of your competition.

9. You haven’t integrated Google Analytics!

HubSpot does a fantastic job on reporting on your users activity around the site, but it won’t tell you things like bounce rate, exit pages, site speed issue etc so you’ll need this extra tool to really dig into site problems.

Assuming you already have a Google Analytics account setup, it’s really straightforward to integrate Google Analytics into your HubSpot portal

If you don’t know your tracking code for Analytics, login and click on ‘Admin’ at the top. Under ‘Property’ is the option of ‘Property Settings’ where you can copy the ‘Tracking ID’. Go to ‘Content > Content Settings’, scroll down to ‘Google Analytics’ and tick the ‘Integrate with Google Analytics’ and then paste the the tracking ID into the box that appears.

In actual fact we don’t always use this technique for including Google Analytics on the page, one of the reasons being we’ve had clients who have forgotten logins but have old codes and want to track with a new and an old code until they find those logins and therefore need to track across multiple accounts. For this you can employ the the ‘Site Header HTML’ textarea which is situated just below the standard Google Analytics option.

Here’s the code we often deploy:

<script>
(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i[‘GoogleAnalyticsObject’]=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){ (i[r].q=i[r].q||[]).push(arguments)},i[r].l=1*new Date();a=s.createElement(o), m=s.getElementsByTagName(o)[0];a.async=1;a.src=g;m.parentNode.insertBefore(a,m) })(window,document,’script’,’//www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js’,’ga’);

ga(‘create’, ‘UA-XXXXXXXX-1’, ’yourdomainname.com’);
ga(‘create’, ‘UA-XXXXXXXX-1’, ‘yourdomainname.com’, {‘name’: ’anotherAccountTracker’});

ga(‘send’, ‘pageview’);
ga(‘anotherAccountTracker.send’, ‘pageview’);
</script>

10. You haven’t integrated Webmaster Tools!

There’s two sets of Webmaster Tools you should be thinking about, Google and Bing. The process of setting them up is the same for each.

You need to have a site setup for each of your subdomains as it won’t give you details on blog.yourdomain.com if you’ve got www.yourdomain.com added so you’ll need to have both. The data is very valuable so you need to prove you have the rights to access it. There’s a few different ways to verify your ownership, but the simplest way in HubSpot is to use the meta tag they’ll provide.

Assuming you’ve followed the steps on slide 1 of the presentation, you’ll have pages at the root of your blog and/or landing pages. You can therefore include the meta tag in the ‘Site header HTML’ under Content > Content Settings and the webmaster tools will pick that up. Remember you must have those pages at the root of your subdomains otherwise the tools will just report they can’t find the tag. If that’s the case then you’ll need to work with your domain registrar to put a txt record on your account for that subdomain But be warned we’ve tried this before and it was a lot of hard work and rather unsuccessful!

Once you’re all verified you’ll need to be patient as the tools take time to start gleaning information about your site. It’s not a one time thing as SEO is a moving target. You’ll get a list of keywords your site is ranking for, where it’s ranking, the number of people who are seeing you at that position as well as how many of those clicked through. Really great information to help you steer your online marketing efforts.

It’ll also tell you who is linking to your site which should be boosting your positions in the SERPs, but remember not all inbound links bring value to your site, some can be seen as spammy and can have a negative effect on the site. You can review all the inbound links to your site via the tools and create something called a disavow list which will remove the association that could be hurting your sites ranking.

All a bit too much? Request a free HubSpot audit now, and we'll take care of  the rest!

11. You haven’t setup your 404 page!

Something that often gets overlooked, even by the HubSpot COS implementation team if they’ve copied your site for you, is the 404 template. Now ideally no one should ever see this page as you’ve been super organised and stayed on top of your webmaster tools and therefore all of the links to your site new and old all work perfectly right?

Realistically that’s not the case, you’re going to get links that no longer work or were setup incorrectly that you won’t have been notified of yet and people will type in addresses rather than copying and pasting and that can result in mistakes so the page won’t be found, so you need a nice friendly 404 page to greet them.

You can’t modify the original 404 page so you need to clone it out to a new file and get the system to use that instead.

  1. Go to Content > Design Manager and go to Templates > HubSpot Default > System > Error Pages
  2. Open ‘Default 404 Error Page’ and click the blue ‘Clone’ button that appears and save the cloned file to your own folders.

You’ll need to setup the template to match your other templates, including your group headers and footers. Dependent on how your templates are setup, you may need to go into ‘Edit > Edit Head’ on the template and switch around the Primary CSS and domain stylesheet settings to get the page to display correctly.

Including your sites navigation means people can move forward from the 404 page as you’ve given them options to do so, but it doesn’t hurt to aplogise for having to present the 404 page in place of what they were looking for (even if it was their error) and direct their attention to the navigation to try and get them back on course. You could even include some helpful links to the main parts of your site so they don’t have to go scouring the navigation for what they were after

Once you’re done remember to go to Content > Content Settings > Custom 404 Page and select your new template from the list.

12. You haven’t set a favicon!

Ok so it’s not the most essential thing but makes for a nicer bookmark when someone hopefully saves your site to their favourites. There’s a greater range of favicons now with the advent of touch devices which allow someone to bookmark a web page directly on their device home screen you don’t want to miss the opportunity to shine there!

We recommend you use something like http://www.favicon-generator.org/ be careful to actually use an .ico file when you upload it to Content > Content Settings > Favicon as although it will accept a PNG file this often doesn’t work in some browsers

http://www.favicon-generator.org/ will allow you to upload an image, we recommend using a square image with a transparent background at least 192px x 192px, and it will then output a series of files you can download and include under file manager, as well as a very handy list of code you can include under Content > Content Settings > Site Header HTML. You will need to change the code however as the default addresses for images won’t be right.

If you click on the cog to the right of an image in File Manager, you can select ‘Get file URL’ to get the full address of each of the images you’ll need to use in the code inside each of the ‘href’ tags

13. You haven’t setup your COS URL Mappings!

Chances are in the excitement of setting up your new HubSpot portal, you may have forgotten about all the old pages you had on your site or blog. It’s really important that you carry over as much credibility and page rank as possible from your old pages to the new.

Don’t worry if it’s been a while since you made the move, it’s likely there’s still links to your old content that are getting 404s when people try to access them. Make sure you regularly log into your webmaster tools accounts to get details of pages that Google and Bing have found when spidering the web that no longer exist but are still being linked to

You can add individual links via Content > Content Settings > COS URL Mappings, or if you wish you can paste in rows of redirects separated by any punctuation you wish, though HubSpot recommend a comma.

The original path and the destination path can be absolute (as in they have the whole domain in them) or relative (as in they start with just a forward slash) dependent on whether you’ve changed domain names or you’re redirecting from more than one domain. You should try and use 301 as the type of direct to let the search engine bots know this redirect is permanent.

Don’t forget to have a look at the ‘Advanced options’ whilst you’re in there. A lot of the times old CMS systems used query strings and unique IDs in their URLs to identify the pages so the system could load the correct content from the database. If this is the case you can save yourself a heap of time setting up a single redirect using a pattern match on the URL to redirect people, so have a look into that before you deploy your redirects one by one.

14. You haven’t setup subscription emails for blog notifications!

By default HubSpot includes a handy module that allows a visitor to sign up for notifications from your blog. Usually this is an instant notification, though you can if you wish (and this depends on how you think your audience likes to absorb their information!) give people the option to change that frequency to daily, weekly or monthly. To get these notifications though you need to setup the emails they’ll receive.

Head over to Content > Content Settings > Blog. Scroll to the bottom where you’ll find the ‘Subscriptions’ box, which has switches for all 4 frequencies. You need to make sure you switch them to on and go through to add in name and email address, as well as selecting, or if needs be creating, a responsive template from Settings > Advanced settings to send the emails out on to increase the open rate on mobile devices.

15. You haven’t set up your Email Footer Information (Can SPAM)!

To comply with Can-SPAM rules you must include your address and contact details in the footer of all the emails you send through HubSpot. In fact it won’t let you send anything before you do this.

Head over to Content > Content Settings > Email. Fill in the ‘Email Footer Information’ with your address, and this will be included in all correspondence you send out via the HubSpot system.

Regulations for UK websites say that you should include the following in the footer of every page on your website:

  • Company name
  • Registered address
  • Registration number
  • Place(s) of registration
  • VAT number (if applicable and even if you’re not an ecommerce site)

Ideally you should include this extra information on all your email correspondence as well. Unfortunately HubSpot doesn’t give you a provision for doing so. You could include them in an extra module in each template, but that means remembering it and modifying it each time which isn’t great.

To get round this we extend the ‘Country’ field in the ‘Email Footer Information’ to include all this information. It’s a bit of hack but it works great and gives us and our clients peace of mind that we’re fully compliant with all regulations and it’s always good to be as transparent as possible!

16. You haven’t set up your email types!

By default you get two email types under Content > Content Settings > Email > Email Types, Blog subscription and Marketing Information. Usually these are sufficient for any emails you may wish to send out, but they can be a bit limiting.

If you’re looking to output a range correspondence, and really you should be, it’s a good idea to break these down into more defined categories. Maybe you want to send out sales information, products updates, hints and tips, news and events etc. Ideally breaking down the types of emails you send out gives people the opportunity to opt out of some of your correspondence whilst remaining in others.

When the user is presented with the unsubscription page, they’ll be able to see what they are and are not signed up for from you. This could actually be an opportunity to get them to signup for a different type of email you send out that they didn’t even know about but is more suited to what they want to read.

17. You haven’t set up individual forms!

It’s really tempting to redeploy forms that ask for the same information across multiple landing pages, BUT DON’T!!!

It might seem harmless but it will hurt your reporting down the line, plus you can guarantee someone else will come along and make an adjustment to the form relevant to a landing page and it’ll get replicated site wide.

If you have ‘blueprint’ of a form you want to use, simply click on the cog at the end of the row and select ‘Clone’ and NAME IT PROPERLY to something else. This will give you unique stats on the forms usage on your site and trust me will make your whole life a lot easier when you’re trying to compare the performance of the various elements of your campaign

It feels like you’re giving yourself yet another plate to spin and look after but when you really get into measuring and testing and refining all of your content to maximise the conversion, you’ll be glad you gave yourself this extra flexibility to differentiate and disseminate the resulting information.

18. You haven’t reviewed your page performance!

Are you paying attention to title and meta description lengths? Are you paying attention to titles and meta descriptions full stop? Remember to include the target keyword for your page as early in the title as you can and again in the meta description. Make sure to keep the title under 70 characters and the meta description under 150. Use https://wordcounter.net/ to double check.

Your keyword should also make it into your H1s, and if you’re not using H1s then change that quick! You need to make sure you indicate to search engine bots and users alike what the key focus of the page is.

I’ve already mentioned setting alt tags for images to help with your SEO, you can deploy supporting phrases on these to extend the relevance of the page. By default HubSpot adds the file name automatically to each image added, and although that should already be relevant, make sure you clear it up, removing the hyphens, extending it’s relevance to the page.

Make sure all the links on a page work! Your users, and Google for that matter, hate having their time wasted by being sent down dead ends so you’ll get punished for them as it’s a poor user experience.

To get a real in depth report to how optimised for speed your pages and content are, you’ll need Google Analytics, but HubSpot gives you a scratch of the surface about your HTML load speed.

Dependent on your website setup need to deploy a caching and compression system to reduce loads times from the server. Speed is really important for your site, not only for the users experience but it’s also a ranking factor as well.

HubSpot uses super fast content delivery networks and compresses all files automatically so you shouldn’t run into any speed issues with COS related pages, but any external resources will need optimising.

19. You haven’t included all your target keywords!

Keywords are really important. You might have read over recent years that they’re becoming less important as other signals determine the ranking of sites pages, but the fact is for effective SEO you need to be building cornerstone pages on your site and create relevant content to support those pages.

HubSpot gives you up to 1000 keywords so you should have plenty of space to include all the ones you might want to use on your site. Include long tail and short tail versions of the words, you might find a longer more focused search query is a lot easier to try and rank for and has traffic against it which if your content is good and makes people stick around when they get to you from the search results will increase your ranking for the short tail version.

If you’re struggling to think of long tail versions of you short tail keywords then Google suggest can help you out with that. To speed that process up you can use keywordtool.io which will append letters and numbers to your keyword and return the Google suggestions in a big list, which are really easy to copy and paste into the tool.

Make sure you get all the keywords that are relevant from your webmaster tools so you can monitor how well you’re doing for those. Make sure you visit your competitor sites and see what keywords they’re using in their page titles, meta descriptions and alt tags and include any of those that are relevant. You can use tools like Keyword Spy and Majestic to find out the keywords you and your competitors are ranking for to build up the list.

You can also use an LSI tool like LSI graph which will take your keywords and locate keywords that Google associates with those keywords. This will give you more topics to create content about, as well as a good indicator of phrases you should be including on your cornerstone and supporting content pages to make them more relevant and trustworthy in the eyes of Google to increase your ranking.

20. You haven’t set your location!

Unless you are in the good old US of A you’re unlikely to want details of how many people are searching using your keywords in the States.

By default the keyword tool is setup to show default, which will completely throw out the actual numbers of people searching for the keywords, as well as how difficult those keywords actually are in your market. It can completely steer you off course with your marketing so it’s key that you set it to the right country.

Don’t worry, everybody misses it. I don’t think I’ve ever seen an inherited client portal that had it set to the right location. it’s a real bug bear of mine as it is hidden out of the way quite a bit which is odd for something that is so key to your planning. If you’ve signed your site up for Google’s Webmaster Tools, and by now you should have, you’ll know that the first thing it bothers you about is the location you’re targeting as it wants to give you accurate results based on your territory.

Changing the location in relatively straightforward, just go to Reports > Keywords and on the left hand side is the option to ‘Set you location’. Select you location from the dropdown box that appears on the following page and then click the ‘Save location’ button.

You’ll find this send HubSpot off into recalculate mode as it retrieves the new data based upon the location you’ve set, so go off and have a coffee to give it time to work it’s magic then you can come back and get cracking with hopefully a new batch of potential traffic and super easy keywords to work with!

Conclusion

Wow! Sorry, that was a lot to take in wasn’t it? Hopefully though you’ve found at least a few things you’d missed when setting up your portal and you’re now on your way to becoming a lean mean inbound marketing machine!

This guide covered a lot of the ins and outs of setting up HubSpot but to really get the most out of this fantastic platform, it’s always a good idea to consider working alongside a HubSpot partner. We’re always looking for new companies to work with and really maximise that ROI that you made in the HubSpot platform, so if you’re ready to talk, head on over to https://www.axongarside.com/contact-us and let us know.

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