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How to build an effective marketing dashboard

There’s nothing more frustrating than having to spend a crazy time on a marketing dashboard. You have it all: the killer marketing plans, the successful actions, a great conversion… and when it comes to highlight your results, you are having a hard time building the perfect dashboard.

Don’t worry: we’ve got you covered. Fortunately, following three simple steps will help you save time and have your marketing dashboard always updated.

The right technology for your marketing dashboard

Needless to say, you need the right tool to build your perfect marketing dashboard. And when we say so, we mean the most convenient tool for your way of working. There’s no need to hunt for the most complex tool if you only play with a few metrics or dimensions. There’s also no need to spend hours on crazy set-ups when you only have 1 or 3 data streams.

The right technology is always the one that will make your everyday work as a marketeer simple. And we’re happy to advise and guide you through the main solutions:

  1. the flat editors.
    Of course, you can always start with Microsoft Excel, Google Sheets. Those editors will help you organise your data with a single flat view, cross 2-3 dimensions and use the onboarded graphs. Don’t get us wrong: these tools can help you create some amazing and complete dashboards. The cons are that they require a lot of time to format everything perfectly. Basically, you know where you start, you don’t know where you end. And if you’re building and adjusting things on the go, your dashboard will probably go the same way and require a lot of maintenance.
  2. the analytics tools.
    Using solutions such as Google Analytics, you will have all your key marketing indicators in one central place. Most of the time, these solutions work as data hubs, and allow you to have flexible data representation. Google Analytics is a good example: you can already do a lot with the native solution, but it will require lots of settings and configurations to obtain the perfect dashboard.
  3. the crm tools.
    Because marketing crm have been so popular, most of them already onboards pre-built or flexible dashboards. Marketo or Hubspot are a perfect example: they offer a library of diagrams and views, that you can customise in every possible way to build your dashboard. Again, finding the perfect tool will depend on your needs.
  4. the dedicated reporting softwares.
    SaaS is a booming market, and it’s no surprise: there are a lot of reporting SaaS available on the market. A few names: Klipfolio,, DashThis, Supermetrics, Databox
    Because they represent an additional cost and requires to master a new software, we generally advise to challenge your needs before selecting such a software. These SaaS are powerful, but you need to ensure you know what you need to track before.
  5. the BIs.
    If you have real data masters, then of course such BIs as Tableau will help you build the marketing dashboard of your dreams. Tableau can do pretty much everything and visualise your data in every possible way. But it comes at a cost, and you will need a real data champion inside.

Organising your dashboard and kpis

If your digital marketing team plays with a lot of data, we strongly advise to keep your marketing dashboard as visual and simple as possible. The more indicators you will have on display, the less clear your trends will appear. The best digital marketing dashboards are the ones you can easily read in a few minutes.

We all have different logics, but to produce a clear and simple dashboard, here are some advices:

  • Use section titles. For example: Website traffic | Email campaigns | SEO | Advertising | Leads generated by source…
  • Select only the Kpis that matter. If you manage to get an helicopter view with your dashboard, then it’s often a sign you’re aiming at efficiency.
  • Use bars and diagrams. You’re not writing an essay, keep it visual with the right data representations.
  • Highlight the trends: green and red, what works and what doesn’t. This will help your Board or Directors understand quickly where your digital marketing effort stands.

Keep in mind that your dashboard is not here to gather all the available marketing data. It is more designed to draft a meaningful summary and a crystal clear view.

Digital marketing dashboard - example of template by Klipfolio

In the example above, Klipfolio produces a very clear marketing dashboard, straight to the point and easy to read.

Using your marketing dashboard as a decision tool

Last but not least, your dashboard must be a real decision instrument. Most of the dashboards we have seen often come with a flat view. It’s a must have first step to understand the trends, but the real challenge is how to improve things and which decisions to take.

We often recommend to use funnel views on your dashboard.

Marketing dashboard - example of funnel by

In the dashboard above, illustrates the funnel from demos requested to closed won. By processing so, you can illustrate how your marketing articulates with the general results: how efficient and qualitative your lead generation is, how much conversion do you have and how you need to scale.

Being a marketing executive, you will cope with the usual sales/marketing drift, and move on to a strategic and comprehensive marketing.

About us

We help brands, SaaS and businesses boost their digital marketing, using a data-oriented consulting and growth hacking techniques.
We’re more than happy to help you build your perfect marketing dashboard: get in touch with us for more info.

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