James Parnwell

James Parnwell

Digital Marketing SWOT Analysis Guide

If you’re new to the SWOT framework, here’s a quick introduction.

SWOT is a strategic planning tool that digital marketers use to analyse SWOT: Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats

Strengths and weaknesses are about you and your business.

  • What are your internal strengths?
  • What about your business – what strengths does it have? And weaknesses?

Opportunities and threats are external factors.

  • What’s going on in the business world and in the market around you?
  • What potential threats and competitors out there could negatively impact you and your business?
What is SWOT

The goal is to figure out what’s working (positive factors) and what’s not working (needs improvement) and create some action points around these. So, here’s a quick digital marketing industry SWOT analysis to get you started on building an online marketing plan that works for your business.



What are your company’s strengths?

Ask some trusted friends and family members what they see when it comes to your website and brand. Now, ask yourself these questions:

Your logo has ten seconds to grab people’s attention and make them feel good about what you do so it’s vital that you get this right.

Ours says “Digital marketing that puts people first” – which means we really love working with people and we want to put you – and your customers – first. You should also have brand guidelines to make sure your content is consistent with what you have to offer.

A call to action (CTA) is a prompt that tells people what action to take next. It’s often used in ads, websites, and emails to guide people towards doing something specific. Within 10 seconds of landing on your website, your visitors should have a better understanding of what you do and what they need to do next and be provided with everything they need to take action (e.g., your phone number, email address, etc.).

What’s different about you? What is it about you that will make a customer want to deal with you? What internal capabilities do you have that your competitors don’t? Our USP is the fact that we put people first. What is it that strengthens your brand?

There are more than three social media platforms but these three are the must-haves. It’s important to regularly post engaging, interesting, relevant content to these platforms.

Once you’ve asked yourself these questions and have thoroughly thought through your answers, write down your strengths. These internal factors will give you an idea of what isn’t so strong about your brand and what needs improvement.



Let’s talk about leads.

  • Are you getting any? A few?
  • Where are they coming from? Word of mouth? Through your website?

It’s important to be brutally honest with yourself here.

If you’re getting leads by word of mouth, congratulations! Word of mouth is the best form of marketing, ever. Our job is to get you digital marketing leads – but they’ll never be better than leads that come via word of mouth.

However, while word of mouth is powerful, it’s not always under our direct control. You must consistently provide great products and positive experiences to encourage people to recommend us naturally.

Let’s say one particular customer is very happy with your work and may recommend you to a friend at a BBQ on Saturday night. That friend could try to get in touch with you, but it took three weeks to contact you. A single disappointing experience could undo the positive word-of-mouth marketing that attracted your previous customers initially. You don’t know when or from where this kind of lead will come so you may want other types of leads as well.

If you’re getting leads through your website, they’re most likely coming via Google. This is what we call SEO leads (organic) or Google Ads (paid). Social Media leads are also included here as it will direct people to your website. Fortunately, this is easily trackable, making it easier to see what does – and doesn’t – work.

Now that you’re aware of the different types of leads, figure out where yours are coming from and then figure out which ones are weakest. If you’re getting some great leads through word of mouth, this means you’ve got a great business, that you’re doing something right, and that people like you. If you’re going to grow further, how are you going to augment and make more of those leads?



This section is all about opportunities from external sources. Let’s start by looking at the marketing funnel. This says that there are three types of customers:

These are people who have never heard of you or your brand and they’re not ready to do business with you. Sitting at the top of the funnel, these customers need to be aware of your brand name and learn what you do.

Your marketing campaign towards cold customers needs to be about exposure and building brand recognition. This can be built by using social media or Google Display Network. If your business doesn’t have enough exposure, then you won’t have enough hot customers at the bottom of the funnel.

These people have heard of you, and they like you – but they’re not ready to do business with you yet. It’s time to engage them and educate them about what you do and how you can help them. If they’re going to your website, signing up for your email or engaging with your Facebook page, make sure you use these external opportunities to get them on board and build trust. You want to help them feel comfortable about buying from you.

One thing you can do is find interesting consumer trends or industry trends and write blogs or come up with a lead magnet that your target audience can download, to help with this process. By giving away valuable information for free, you’re helping raise awareness and build a relationship with your customers.

They’ve been cold and then warm and now that they’re hot, they’re ready to buy. Now’s the time for a solid call to action: Contact Me. Book Now. Whatever the product or service that you’re offering, tools like Google, social media, and emails will help you reach hot customers digitally.



When we think about threats, we need to look at the outside environment and what could potentially take business away from us. The main thing to consider is your competition and you can do this by conducting a very simple competitor analysis.

DIY Competitor Analysis

Here’s a simple analysis method you can do on your own. Find three competitors. Don’t look at ten – you’ll just get overwhelmed. Three is enough to give you a sense of what’s happening. There are a couple of ways you can do this.

To find out who’s competing with you on Google, search Google for one of your top generic keywords, related to one of your products or services. Take note of the top three results. To gain the top ranking for a particular keyword, it means you have most of the traffic and therefore, most of the leads. So, it’s a safe bet that they’re amongst your top competitors.

Visit your top three competitors’ websites and take note of the following:

  • Are their logo and branding clean and clear?
  • What is their core message?
  • How easy is it to use their website? Can you easily access what you need?
  • Do they have a clear, unique selling proposition that sets them apart?
  • What are their calls to action?
  • Do they have phone numbers and contact forms, and are they easily accessible?
  • Do they have an onboarding method?

Look at their social media. Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn are the big three. Check for the following:

  • Are they posting regularly?
  • Are their posts interesting for their target market?
  • What can you learn from their social media?

You’re going to come across a whole stack of ideas. Maybe your competitors are doing well with their digital marketing, or perhaps they’re not. Maybe there are opportunities here, even though the initial reaction is to avoid threats, where you might be able to fill a gap in your overall marketing strategy.

Remember, there’s a lot of competition out there, all competing for a similar target market to yours. What are you doing to compete and how much of a threat are your competitors to your business?


Take charge of your digital marketing now!

A strong digital strategy is an essential component for success. By knowing what businesses are good at and where improvements are needed, through a SWOT analysis, companies can refine their branding and engagement tactics. Recognising potential opportunities guides businesses towards effective conversions. Let us help you shape a smart and effective digital marketing strategy that seizes opportunities, handles challenges, and leaves a lasting impact in the ever-changing digital landscape. Book a quick chat with a digital strategies now!

James Parnwell
James Parnwell

James is the Managing Director and resident strategist at TheOnlineCo. He is clever and creative with a flair for making complex things sound simple. He has been in the marketing game for over 2 decades and has watched the landscape slowly shift. James has his finger on the pulse of every aspect within TheOnlineCo, meeting with all clients as well as every core team member and strategising a specific plan tailored to each client.

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