With a new client on board, it’s important for an agency to gather as much information about the client as possible. The client will probably provide all the basic details from key values, mission and vision, USP, goals and future plans. However, this isn’t always enough. With the internet moving at an uncontrollable rate and the ease at which user generated content swamps social networks, it’s important to conduct a detailed analysis of the clients online presence as well as off. After all the client is likely to be biased and you want to make sure you have an accurate report to present at management level; that includes strengths and weakness.
Conducting an audit of the clients online presence can start with a simple search engine and checking out the official websites and social networks. These details should be simple enough to get hold of. If the client doesn’t have a social network presence, make sure you analyse it anyway. Remember – just because the client isn’t online, doesn’t mean they aren’t being talked about.

When conducting the audit you want to look out for similar domain names that are in use and whether they belong to your client or not. Many big organisations will have several domain names but perhaps doesn’t operate across all of them. If that’s the case; are they consistent? Is the branding accurate and does the content provide links to the official websites and social networks?

Once you have carried out your own search and filter approach, you may want to go a step further. There are a selection of online tools which can help in putting together a more detailed audit;

Woorank, is a free website anaylsis tool. Simply enter the client’s website and let woorank do all the work. This free tool will provide key data from the number of site visitors and the most popular pages to highlighting areas of error. The woorank score will allow you to see whether the website is performing below or above the average and provides tips on improvements that can boost the score.

Whois.domaintools, is another free tool. By entering the client’s website this site will generate a website breakdown. This tool will identify similar domain names and also available domain names should the client want to increase its online presence and reduce competition. Domaintools will also provide a site profile with an SEO score and an overall rank based on the number of unique visitors the site recieves per month.

Klout & Peerindex, are simple social network ranking tools. Providing you have the login details for the clients social networks; simply sign in through Twitter and add on the additional social network accounts. Klout and Peerindex will provide you with a score based on how influential the clients presence is. The two sites differ slightly to its worth while using them both.

For a more in-depth social media audit there a host of free real time tools available too. Sites like icerocket, Topsy and 48ers are free and easy to use. By entering your search term e.g, the brand name or client, these sites will generate a list of the conversations, posts and stories that are being uploaded in real-time.