There are literally thousands of digital marketing tools on the market. So choosing the best ones for your company isn’t easy, especially if you’re just starting out, and don’t know a lot about business marketing. You may have heard of a couple, or seen some of the more expensive tools advertised. But without doing a lot of research, how can you be sure these digital marketing tools are worth investing in?
It’s also hard to know which avenues to explore – there are tools for email marketing, social media marketing, SEO, and a whole host more. If you’re not sure where to start, in the immortal words written on the back of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, don’t panic! We’ve put together a list of the top ten marketing tools you should consider using below:
Let’s start with Hubspot, which is a pretty comprehensive tool that can help you grow your business, whether you’ve just launched or have been operating for years. Several of the features offered can be used for free, such as setting up web and popup forms, sending email marketing campaigns and adding live chat software to your site. And if you link up to Hubspot’s free CRM system, you can also analyse the behaviour of visitors to your website.
If you branch out into the paid tier options, Hubspot could be one of the only tools you need in terms of digital marketing – it’s all singing and all dancing! You can utilise Hubspot to increase your organic traffic, convert more leads in less time, and generally improve your ROI. Prices do go up to $3,200 a month though, so if you’re a smaller enterprise, you may want to consider using several free or cheap tools, rather than one tool that does it all.
Like Hubspot, Ahrefs offers a pretty extensive service, especially when it comes to SEO. in terms of keywords, they have data on hundreds of millions of keywords, and you can also see what your competitors are doing, like which pages they rank highest for. There is a Content Gap tool too, which identifies key areas in your content you can improve on.
With Ahrefs, you can additionally look at the traffic of your own site, along with that of your competitors. Overall, it’s a fantastic tool, and isn’t too expensive either. Depending on the tier you opt for, prices range from $99 to $999 per month, and if you pay annually, you’ll get two months free.
If you already have a dedicated designer (or a whole team of graphic designers) for your content, you may not need to use Canva. But if you’re running a smaller operation, it’s a brilliant tool to create images and other media – anything from logos to social media posts.
While you can just use the free version, we’d probably recommend upgrading – the Pro version starts from just £11.99 a month. You’ll then have access to things like thousands more templates, millions more stock photos, graphics and videos, as well as the ability to schedule the social media content you create over up to seven platforms.
According to Oberlo, email marketing is used by 80% of marketers. That statistic would suggest that it’s not something you can overlook. MailChimp is a great resource that allows you to set up email marketing and social advertising campaigns. There are a lot of features that allow you to automate your campaigns, so that you don’t have to worry about sending anything at a specific time.
MailChimp also gives you the facility to track and analyse your campaigns, such as your average open rate and click rate. And if you’re only sending out small campaigns (to 2,000 subscribers or less) you can start using MailChimp for free. The most popular paid package is the ‘Standard’ tier though, which has features like allowing up to 100,000 contacts, behavioural targeting and custom templates, all for $14.99 a month.
Managing each individual social media account can be incredibly time consuming. But with Buffer, you can set up and schedule all your social media posts in one place. Buffer is incredibly easy to use, and it’s simple to link up your social platforms to your account.
While there is a free version, the amount of posts you can schedule is pretty limited (10 for each of the 3 channels you can link up), and you won’t be able to see any of the analytics from your Buffer account. The Pro version is only $15 a month, which allows you to schedule up to 100 posts per channel (you can add up to 8) and comes with features like analytics and Instagram tagging. You may also wish to consider the Premium version for $65 a month or the Business account for $99 a month.
This tool is actually owned by Moz, who definitely deserve a mention too. Moz Pro can help you with your SEO – you can track rankings, monitor your link building and help you make decisions on content marketing. It’s a very useful tool for SEO, but can be a rather pricey option.
Followerwonk itself is a great tool to find influencers in your industry, and incredibly easy to use. By using specific keywords, you can locate people who include that keyword in their bio and compare their follower numbers. The main downside of Followerwonk though is that it’s only useful for Twitter – you can’t look at influencers on other platforms. There is a free version, with fairly limited access, but if you’re not sure how useful Followerwonk will be for your business, it may be worth trying out the free version first.
Created by Neil Patel, who is recognised as a leading marketing expert, UberSuggest is a free tool that helps you with your keyword research. If you’re a beginner to digital marketing, UberSuggest is a great place to start, as the dashboard is easy to navigate, and you can quickly find the information you need.
Simply enter the keyword or domain you want to look into – you can get up to three free searches a day – and you’ll be shown details like total search volume, difficulty, paid difficulty, and historical data for that keyword. UberSuggest lives up to its name too – you’ll also be given suggestions that are relevant to your search term.
When it comes to scrutinising your data, you’d be foolish to ignore Google Analytics. Not only can you use it for free, when it comes to search engine optimisation, Google (for obvious reasons) really know what they’re talking about. The primary function of Google Analytics is to track the visitors to your website, such as where they come from (organic search, social, direct or referral) and which pages they visit most often.
With this data, you can isolate successful keywords and other marketing strategies and use these same techniques to try and replicate the results. Google Analytics also allows you to do things like set up goals to track your conversions, look at your audience in more detail, and compare certain cohorts of site visitors. Essentially, you can use Google Analytics to get a complete overview of the results of your marketing strategy, and easily find ways to make adjustments and improvements.
Another great tool for analytics, Kissmetrics tracks your site visitors throughout their entire journey, giving you reports on each part of the process. You can use this information to fine-tune your conversion process, and hopefully increase your sales and overall revenue.
Kissmetrics also has easy retargeting options for you to use, such as promotional banners. Starting at $120 a month, it’s not the cheapest option on the market, but the insights you gain from the Kissmetrics platform can be invaluable to the growth of your business.
We’re a big fan of Semrush – it has loads of built-in digital marketing tools that can help you improve your search rankings. For instance, you can track what your competitors are doing, looking at their ranking fluctuations and backlinks to build up a fuller picture of their SEO strategy.
Semrush has been cited as one of the best all-in-one tools, so if you’re just looking to invest in one platform, you should consider Semrush. It not only gives you all the data you need, it analyses it for you and offers recommendations and strategies for you to follow, in order to improve your SEO and overall online visibility. Prices start from $119.95 per month, and go up to $449.95 a month for the business tier.