| Jan 16, 2019 | | 19 min read

Digital Marketing Reports: The Key to Client Retention

It should go without saying that marketing reports are an essential part of your digital marketing agency’s work. Without them, your efforts mean squat to your clients. “Trust me, it’s working,” just won’t cut it.

So, kudos to you for reading this blog. It means you understand the importance of marketing reporting. On the other hand, you’re likely reading this blog because like so many other digital agencies, you struggle with client reporting. On top of the effort put into your clients’ digital marketing, you now must prove it’s working. Where do you start?

67.5% of agencies rate reporting a difficulty of 3 or more out of 5. Get more insight into the challenges that agencies face!

What to include in marketing reports

Digital marketing reports show your clients how their investment translates into real results. Present it in a way that a busy business owner will understand, without excessive data or confusing metrics. Marketing reports need concise, timely, logical, and actionable data, and should include the following:

The full marketing stack

If your agency does work for your clients across the entire marketing stack, it’s important to report on all areas. Separate sections for each piece of the stack ensures the marketing report is easy to read and produces a great tool for your team to educate their clients. The report, however, should also be easy to read without your team’s help, so avoid industry jargon. A simple explanation accompanying each section empowers your clients to understand why the data is important.

Executive Report

Results over time

There is nothing like a marketing report filled with red arrows to discourage your clients and devalue their investment. Like seeing a school grade drop from an A to a B, it leaves your clients feeling deflated without understanding how they got there. Reporting progress over time is more effective (and positive)! A graph line trending up and to the right over time encourages your clients and accurately depicts the hard work of your digital marketing agency. For example, even if the client received fewer website visits from Google Maps this week, their website traffic has more than tripled since they’ve started working with you 6 months ago. Simply changing the way data is presented contextualizes changes for your clients and helps them understand the bigger picture.

Google My Business

Relevant highlights

Besides seeing their progress over time, business owners benefit from seeing a bird’s eye view of their business. At a glance, show them what changed and where they can improve going forward. Your client should understand what’s included in the comprehensive report from the highlight section. Put data in the palm of their hands on a regular basis to drive engagement with their report and continue proving your value.

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Benefits of marketing reports

Show results (both good and bad) and build trust

Deliver a marketing report including both the good and bad data to build trust with your clients and foster a positive relationship. Deliver it regularly to prioritize transparency and communication, and create a clear connection between the work your agency completes and the client’s goals. Each report opens the lines of communication and education and establishes you as a trusted source for their digital marketing needs. 

Show progress and reiterate your value

Your client is the expert of his or her business, but they’re not a digital marketing expert—that’s why they’ve hired you. That being said, small businesses with tight marketing budgets cannot spend money on services with unclear value. When they don’t see their investment paying off, they churn. Beyond proof that your agency is doing work, the client wants to see a positive impact on their business: more customer calls, followers on social media, website visits, and sales! If you can prove that these aspects are improving because of your partnership, they’re less likely to churn. To show everything you do for your client and cover all the data and metrics in one dashboard, you can use a tool like Dashthis to automate your marketing reports.

Grow your business

Marketing reports are also a great tool for growing your business. Marketing reports demonstrate the value of social media, SEO, and other digital marketing strategies. If the report shows your client an increase in customers and brand awareness or an improved online reputation, it’s a strong selling point on the merits of digital marketing in general. Clients who love the results thus far are the perfect candidate to upsell a related product or service.

On the other hand, if the data shows a need for improvement in a specific area, you can also upsell. Has your client’s social media game been flatlining for months? Show them that you have the solution! The more problems you solve for your clients, the more meaningful you are to their business. Understand your clients’ problems, provide a solution, and reduce churn.


Digital marketing reporting is critical for an agency’s success. Prove that your work provides real-world results, and you’ll keep your clients happy while growing your business. This is exactly why we have improved our reporting! Now with more key performance indicators, better visuals, and value-packed metrics, our automated and white-labeled reports turn you into the real reporting hero.

Powerful reporting capabilities within your clients’ Business App will make your agency the proven digital marketing expert and keep your clients returning for more of what is proven to work!

Already a partner? Click here to learn more about our new and improved Executive Report and begin sending to your clients today.

About the Author

Paige is a former Product Marketing Manager, who proudly crafted the marketing and communication strategy for some of Vendasta's owned & operated products Her passion for marketing runs deep, but her first loves are movies, musicals, and (you guessed it) movie-musicals.

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