Measure How Effective Your Website Is Using


Ever wanted to know exactly how all your efforts at online marketing measure up? Well, hang onto your hat because now there’s a way to find out. And guess what, it’s free.

Website Grader contacted us here at Small Business Branding and asked us to review their website (by the way – did you know you can get your site reviewed on our blog by purchasing a paid review?). Website Grader offer a new software tool that measures the online marketing effectiveness of a website. It assigns a numerical score, or “grade”, ranging from 0-99 (apparently 100 isn’t possible) to a given website. The score is based on a variety of data points about the website including the structure, popularity, traffic, search engine optimisation, marketing features and a host of other factors.

The grade itself is calculated as a percentile score. So, if a given site gets a score of 60, this means it’s more effective than 60% of the other sites that have been graded. And therefore, the more sites that have been graded, the more meaningful the results. During their 3 months of operation, so far they’ve processed and graded over 35,000 unique URLs.

I took it for a test drive on Small Business Branding, so let’s have a look at the process and results.

Grading Your Site

Considering that I’m an internet ignoramus, I found Website Grader extremely easy to use and understand. And there’s great news for those who like instant gratification – it’s also very fast.

When you arrive on their home page there are two simple steps to complete. Firstly, all you do is key in some basic data about your site – in all there are four simple fields to complete (and one is optional). Then just click the “Generate Report” at the bottom of the page. Done.

The report generates in less than a minute and appears on the screen. Along with your “effectiveness” rating, you’ll also see a range of data and stats about your site, including the usual suspects such as page rank, inbound links and so on. But what you also get is an analysis of how some of the data is interpreted, and other interesting measurements such as your site’s readability level.

In all it takes about 2-3 minutes to get a comprehensive “report card” on exactly how your site measures up.

Spy on Your Competitors

A really neat component is that you also have the option of entering your competitors’ websites and the software provides data about these sites which you can then compare against your own.

However, the number of competing URLs that can be processed is limited and is based on the number of keywords. (The limitation is actually imposed by Google whereby Website Grader can’t “hit” their server more than a certain number of times to get the data needed). Usually, entering 1-2 competing websites is the norm. I actually tried 4 (along with three key words) and it worked just fine – but 5 was one too many!

Suggestions for Improvement

Another great feature is that the software also attempts to measure both the ability for a website to attract traffic and the ability to convert that traffic into qualified leads and prospects. So your report will analyse your data and make suggestions for improvement. For instance, the following suggestion was made for the Small Business Branding site:

High Number Of Meta Keywords

There are a high number of keywords in the meta-data of the web page.
We believe that though the search engines don’t weigh keywords as heavily as they used to, they’re still important to get right. By using a high number of keywords, it is possible that you are diluting the effect of your most important keywords. We would suggest keeping the keywords to 10 or less. Currently, this site has 19 keywords in the meta-data.

Not Yet Perfect

This software is still in the beta stage of development and it appears there may still be the odd bug because, interestingly, we were advised that an RSS Feed was not discovered. The report suggests that “though it is possible this site has RSS elsewhere on the site, it is best to make the feed discoverable on the home page itself.” Our RSS Feed is actually on the home page.

Knowledge Is Power

Website Grader is currently a free service, and those who subscribe are offered easy access to extended features of the software; but these are not as yet disclosed. If you think this is a pretty cool tool, you can find out more and stay up to date with their progress through their blog.

Overall I found it a really easy tool that provides detailed and valuable information about what you’re doing right and areas that may need some attention.

The team is keen to keep improving their software and welcome any feedback you may have, both positive or negative. So jump on, have a go and let them know what you think.

But before you race off, would you like to know how Small Business Branding stacked up overall? We were awarded 93. How cool is that?!
I think it warrants a gold star myself!!


  1. Neat site; my Run to Win site got a score of 88.

  2. Hi Dani,

    I guess i have something to shoot for in terms of my site currently which is currently moving from a “hobby site” to a “business site”. I scored a 61/100… but i am working on that. Who knows where it will be 3 years from now 🙂

  3. Danielle says

    Well done Blaine, that’s awesome. You’ve just inspired me to go out for a morning jog! Then again, maybe just a brisk walk 🙂

  4. True Dani… very true but i want to be the best in time 😉 so it gives me a lot to shoot for i suppose. I’ll keep on chipping away for sure!

  5. Hey Luc,

    61% is great, especially for a hobby site! Remember it’s a percentile score, which means it’s more effective than 61% of the other sites graded.

    Keep chipping away – and have fun!