You understand that you need the right marketing tools to expand your business. That’s why you’re here! Right?
Well, you’ve come to the right spot because we know which tools are important, which tools are worth the money and which ones really aren’t necessary.
We’ll be going over all of that in this guide. In the ultimate marketing tools guide we’ll take you through tools for all the major components of marketing. Those being:
- SEO Tools and Analysis
- Social Media Marketing Tools and Automation
- Email Marketing Tools and Automation
- Competitor Analysis
Table of Contents
Why are Marketing Tools Important?
Small business, corporation, or solopreneur, having the right tools and resources are important at every level.
Obviously, some tools are better suited for large corporations and some are more geared toward small businesses containing no more than a few employees.
Having the right resources will help you with more than just a few things. It will save you time. By off loading tasks onto apps and services that automate things for you will allow you to put valuable time into other parts of your business.
It will save money. Every business loves saving money! Even though these services will cost you money to use, they will end up saving you money in the long run. How? By catching things like your ROAS (return on ad spend) or email open rates when split testing email creatives, for example.
These tools will also help with clarity. Ever wanted to know where your traffic was coming from? Trying to figure out what SEO tactics are working for your company or website?
No need to blindly guess, these tools will show you all the important data, giving you clarity on what to continue implementing in your business and what to change.
They’ll also help minimize human error. Having the right tools allow you to automate tasks, like email sequences for example, eliminating not only human error, but saving time too.
Those are just four of the important factors that go into making these tools beneficial. Now, let’s hop into the tools themselves!
Which Tools are Necessary?
So, you know why it’s important to have a few handy tools under your belt to help your business. But before we jump into what to look for in certain platforms, let us tell you what type of platforms are essential for your business.
There’s an abundance of services out there that will help improve parts of your business and marketing. But which ones are actually needed and really going to help?
First, we’ll start with SEO. If you have a website, blog, or ecommerce store, it’s vital to know where your website is ranking, which keywords are ranking, and what keywords you can and should be trying to rank for.
This is what makes an SEO platform essential for your website.
Secondly, a feature-packed social media marketing tool. Social media marketing platforms are a must, as long as they supply what your social media accounts really need.
We’ll get into those needed features in a second.
Next on our list, an advanced email marketing platform. Obviously you need an email marketing service to even begin email marketing, but are you using one that lets you maximize your email marketing efforts?
We’ll fill you in on those must-have features in the email marketing section.
Now for the last tool on our list. Competitor analysis.
Want to be able to spy on competitors social media accounts, news feed, keywords and SEO? Yeah, that’s absolutely a need.
These four tools are what we consider essential and game changing for your business.
With that being said, there’s an endless amount of options in each of these niches. So how do you know which platforms you should use?
Let’s go over what to look for, and what you really need, in each one of these types of services.
What to Look for in SEO Tools
The first thing you’ll need to know when picking an SEO tool is what factors are most important and actually going to help improve, as well as better understand, your SEO ranking.
What are these factors? Glad you asked!
First, you’re going to want an SEO tool or platform that gives you in-depth, extensive analytics. For example, analytics on your website ranking, keywords, where your current keywords rank, etc.
Having access to these important analytics will give you an idea on what SEO strategies are working, as well as which ones you need to ditch.
Another game changing factor is the keyword research data. Having in-depth, accurate keyword data is vital for curating content that has a chance to rank higher in search engines.
Secondly, let’s talk competitor analysis. Most SEO platforms come with this feature and it’s a huge game changer!
Using an SEO software that has a competitor analysis feature allows you to see what’s working for your competitors, as well as where their keywords are ranking.
This is great for getting an idea on what you should be implementing and what you can piggyback off of that’s working for your competitors.
These are the two most important factors when finding an SEO tool to use for your business.
We know you’re probably wondering what sort of tools and services are out there, so we’ve got you covered! We have a whole list put together of the most popular and most used SEO platforms and you can find them right here!
Social Media Marketing Tools
Almost every single business has a Facebook or Instagram page. And almost every single successful company is using a social media service or platform of some kind.
If you’ve had experience running a social media page for a/your own business, you know how grueling and time consuming it can be.
This leads us into our first factor for finding a handy social media tool, save time!
Almost all social media marketing tools will save you an abundance of time. With features like auto-posting and post scheduling, they allow you to get a days worth of work done in the matter of minutes.
Let’s say you post three times a day to your social media account, that means three different times throughout the day you hop on, select your pictures, come up with a caption and input your hashtags.
What if you could get all three posts finished and scheduled for your desired times first thing in the morning so you didn’t have to worry about forgetting to post throughout the day?
That would be super beneficial (and from personal experience, I can tell you it is!).
Scheduling posts is cool, but something that might be even better is knowing the best times to post! This is another clutch feature a lot of the best social media tools offer.
They’ll give you the most active and preferred times to post for your niche. So, now you can schedule posts strategically!
The only other absolute need for a well-rounded social media platform is reports and follower analytics, which typically come with every major platform.
Like our SEO list, we have a list of the best social media tools which you can find here!
All-In-One Tool (Bonus)
Before we move onto email marketing tools, we had to throw in this recommendation.
If you haven’t heard of SEMrush, it’s time you get familiar. Instead of scrolling through our list of SEO and social media tools, you might as well just hop right into SEMrush.
They’re an all-in-one SEO and social media marketing service. All the absolutely needed SEO and social media tools, all on one platform. It really does not get better than that.
It’s perfect for small businesses, corporations, even solopreneurs. If you’re on edge, don’t worry they have a free trial!
But all in all, we use SEMrush here at Marketing Tools and the amount of time we have saved, combined with the endless help they have provided to our website and Instagram account, is truly priceless.
Email Marketing Tools
Now, let’s move onto the email portion of our guide!
If you already run email marketing for your company, you’re most likely already using a service that contains all of these features.
But, if you’re just starting out and looking for what you need in an email marketing service, we’ve got you covered.
First and foremost, automation. This should be the first thing you look for when choosing an email marketing platform to use.
Automating your email sequences is so, so vital to not only saving you boat loads of time, but ensuring your email marketing efforts are maximized.
The next component that will make creating your emails a breeze is a drag and drop builder. Many of the more popular services have drag and drop builders and we can’t stress enough how much this helps.
It allows you to create professionally designed emails in no time. Even if you have little experience.
Last but not least, always make sure the service you’re looking into has advanced analytics and reports. Every platform should already have this, keyword ‘should’, since analytics are very important to email marketing.
You absolutely need to know who’s clicking on your emails, if their open rates are poor, etc.
So, having the analytics and reports, and knowing how to use them, are crucial to running successful email marketing campaigns.
If you love testing, similarly to Facebook marketing, you could even find a platform that provides A/B split testing.
With A/B split testing you can test email creatives and see which ones are performing better, etc. While not every email marketing platform offers it, there are a ton of platforms that do.
We have a list of the most popular and most-used email marketing services also! You can find those here.
Tools for Competitor Analysis
We talked a bit about competitor analysis earlier in regards to SEO, but we’ll dive into it more here. As well as fill you in on tools that allow you to monitor competitors social media accounts and more.
There’s a large amount of competitor analysis tools all ranging in a ton of different categories. There’s competitor analysis tools for SEO, social media, even Youtube accounts.
So, what factors are important to keep in mind when selecting a competitor analysis tool?
We like to start with website and keyword rank. Getting your competitors SEO and rank statistics is a cheat code.
If you’re using that all-in-one tool we mentioned earlier, SEMrush, you can go fully in-depth on your competitors SEO, keywords, paid search analytics and more.
Take a look at a graph from their dashboard below.
The screenshot above is just a glimpse of what SEMrush’s competitor analysis tool has to offer.
The next, and last, important factor you’ll want to look for is a service that monitors your competitors social media pages. This includes statistics for their posts, follower counts, hashtags, some of these services even provide data on your competitors influencers.
That’s pretty crazy. Options like those weren’t available as little as a few years ago.
So, when searching for a competitor analysis tool, these are the two biggest features to look out for.
You now know what types of services you need, and you know what important features those services should consist of. So, let’s leave you off with a few of our recommendations for actual companies to use!
We’ll start with a couple SEO recommendations!
Obviously our favorite, and the one we personally use, SEMrush. They take care of three out of the four must have services we mentioned. Those being SEO, social media marketing and competitor analysis.
You can try it out for yourself (for free) with this 7-day free trial.
Our next best SEO recommendation would be Web CEO. It’s not quite as versatile as SEMrush, but they do also offer social media analytics and engagement statistics. You can see more features and try it out here.
Social Media Marketing Recommendation
Our social media marketing pick goes to Crowdfire. Crowdfire is one of those feature-packed services that really outweighs the others, especially at their insanely friendly pricing.
What really sets them apart is their competitor analysis feature. Take a look at how Crowdfire allows you to spy on competitors in the graphic below.
Crowdfire is your best bet if you’re looking for a social media platform. They even have a free plan (this is rare now-a-days) so you can ease into using the platform then eventually grab one of their premium plans if you really like it.
You can go ahead and try them out right here!
Recommended Email Marketing Tool
Now for our recommended email marketing platform. Honestly, you can’t go wrong with a lot of the top rated email platforms, as they’re all so similar and so advanced.
Your decision will really come down to which is easiest to use and which one allows you to create the style of emails you desire.
But with that being said, here at Marketing Tools we use Klaviyo. They have every feature you could possibly need and then some.
What stands out to us is the the Text and SMS marketing. Text message marketing, in our opinion, is the up and coming way to reach customers. You can read more about that in our guide right here!
Anyways, if you want to check out Klaviyo and see if it’s a fit for you, you can do so with this link.
Preferred Competitor Analysis Tool
Last, but certainly not least, our preferred competitor analysis tool.
To be honest, we’re not even going to name a preferred choice because we’re not very keen on the options out there.
This doesn’t mean there are no good competitor analysis platforms out there. There’s a ton of great ones.
But with platforms like SEMrush and Crowdfire, we get our competitor analysis with our SEO and social media marketing tools. So there’s no need for us to spend the extra money on two additional platforms who only do one specific task.
Now with that being said, (this line is for you software developers!) if there was a tool that tracked both SEO/website data AND the social media accounts of competitors, that platform would be an absolute hit!
But as of now, we have not been able to find one.
Hope this guide helped you guys better understand the necessary tools you need and what features those tools should consist of!
Feel free to leave your feedback in the comments below or if you have a specific question don’t hesitate to contact us!