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Guides and Templates

Free templates for benchmarking your marketing

Benchmark marketing effectiveness and plan how to improve it with our free industry benchmarks for digital marketing.

How will these free benchmarking templates help me and my business?

'What is a benchmark in marketing'? Marketing benchmarks allow you to answer common questions such as 'How do we compare to our competitors?' and 'What does good or excellent look like?' that companies often ask when aiming to get more from their digital marketing. But how do you know what to compare and how can you structure your review and recommendations?

These comprehensive one-page benchmarking templates help you quickly review how well you are currently performing using the key digital marketing techniques on a five-point scale for different criteria and so identify the gaps in your current capabilities. Edited by Dr Dave Chaffey, these templates will help you:

  • Compare how well you are currently using the key digital marketing techniques
  • Identify the gaps in your current capabilities
  • Communicate priorities for improvement to your teams or budget-holders
  • Create a plan of how you need to improve

Who are the benchmarking templates for?

The benchmarking templates will help marketers who are responsible for managing and improving the business contribution from digital marketing as a whole, or specific channels like search or email marketing.

Marketing professionals who will benefit from using these templates include:

  • Marketing and digital marketing managers
  • E-commerce managers
  • Inbound marketing managers and email marketing executives
  • Content marketing and campaign managers
  • Social media managers and executives
  • Marketers dedicated to user experience and conversion rate optimization

Because each area of a business’ marketing has a dedicated benchmarking template, it is important that all stakeholders share visibility of their benchmarked performance. Channel-specific next steps should be identified that ensure all channels work under a single, unified digital marketing plan.

How are the benchmarking templates structured?

Our benchmarking templates use the five-point scale of the Carnegie Mellon capability maturity model, which rates different processes from an unmanaged approach as you start out at Level 1 up to a well-managed process at Level 5.

The benchmarks cover:

  • Digital transformation assessment
  • Integrated lifecycle marketing using the Smart Insights RACE planning framework
  • Digital analytics
  • Marketing campaign planning
  • Content marketing planning
  • Email marketing and marketing automation
  • Online customer experience
  • SEO capability
  • Social media governance
  • Influencer relationship management
  • International marketing – website localization and translation
  • E-commerce
  • Marketing agency services

Complete a comprehensive digital marketing audit by score your business (or your clients) from Level 1 to Level 5 for the different ‘best practice’ activities you are using for each of the core processes we have defined as each row.

Once you know where you are currently at you can focus your efforts to improve. Use our guides to increase your skills and understanding in the key areas identified by the templates. We have seven-step guides to all major areas of marketing, meaning we can help you upskill and improve your efforts whether you need help with email marketing, social media, paid media, SEO – you name it!

Latest updates

All capability audits have been updated for the latest techniques.

Resource Details

  • Authors: Created by Dave Chaffey and reviewed by sector specialists.
  • Format: 12-page downloadable PDF with capability reviews for most of the main areas of digital marketing.
  • Recommended premium member resource:
    • Capability maturity review – this interactive Learning Path module is intended to be completed alongside these templates. Its aim is to support your review of your organization’s digital maturity.
    • Digital marketing audit – After you’ve reviewed the benchmarking templates, this Excel spreadsheet will help you complete a more detailed review of your digital communications and experiences. It’s structured using the 25 key activities of the Smart Insights RACE planning framework.
    • Essential marketing models – These templates have been created from the Carnegie Mellon capability maturity model, but there are several other marketing models that you may find instructive once you’ve decided on your areas of improvement. Our free guide breaks down each concept so you can understand and apply them to areas of your company including business growth, communications planning, and new product development.
  • Example: Download latest version for full-size landscape printing

achieving digital transformation benchmarking template

About the author

Dr Dave Chaffey

Dave ChaffeyDave is co-founder and Content Director of Smart Insights. He is editor of the 100 templates, ebooks and courses in the digital marketing resource library created by our team of 25+ Digital Marketing experts. Our resources used by our Business members in more than 80 countries to Map, Plan and Manage their digital marketing.

For his full profile, or to connect on LinkedIn or other social networks, see the About Dave Chaffey profile page on Smart Insights. Dave is author of 5 bestselling books on digital marketing including Digital Marketing Excellence and Digital Marketing: Strategy, Implementation and Practice. In 2004 he was recognised by the Chartered Institute of Marketing as one of 50 marketing ‘gurus’ worldwide who have helped shape the future of marketing.

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