There's only one thing better than stumbling upon a new digital marketing tool that becomes part of your go-to setup, and that's finding one that is 100% free. I'm not talking Freemium (all of the good bits hidden behind a paywall or subscription), but completely free from the get-go.
Annoyingly, there are so many articles out there that claim to list the Top Free Essential Tools For Every Digital Marketer but end up including a list full of Freemium tools or ones that have a restriction on how long you can use it before you have to pay for it.
Don't get me wrong, lots of the top digital marketing tools are well worth paying for, but it's time to give a little shoutout and show some love to the best free digital marketing tools that are actually free.
Note - these tools were free when I wrote this, so apologies if you find that one of the tools suggested now requires payment to use.
1. Google Analytics | Website Data & Performance Analysis
Google Analytics is a tool that allows you to analyse website visitor data in both real-time and historical formats. With an easy setup procedure and a very user-friendly interface, Google Analytics ticks all boxes to allow for stressfree, in-depth website data analysis.
From identifying the types of users who visit your website to the way that they navigate and interact with it, Google Analytics offers some solid data to help understand and create your next marketing strategies.
How I Use Google Analytics
My favourite tool within Google Analytics is the Acquisition tool, where I can breakdown the performance of each user based on the way that they visited the website. This allows me to identify the value of each acquisition channel, highlighting the areas that I need to focus on to improve performance across the board.
If this sounds like something you want to start using, then you can check out Google Analytics here.
2. Hootsuite | Organic Social Media Management
Hootsuite is a social media management tool that allows you to take control of your social media accounts in one place. This powerhouse of a tool allows you to schedule your social media posts, follow and engage in a handpicked selection of hashtags, interact with posts and conversations, and monitor your mentions and post engagements.
Hootsuite does offer a few different paid options, but the free version offers so much that is essential for any small business to use for their social media marketing.
How I Use Hootsuite
For me, Hootsuite's best feature is the scheduling system, as it allows for a slick and simple way to start queuing up posts across multiple social media channels. Having a queue of posts ready to be delivered each month removes any stress that may come from thinking I have not posted in a while, alongside ensuring that I am in constant communication with my audience.
The image editor is also rather good if you are looking to create continuity across your Instagram posts as you can easily choose and stick to a single filter for all your posts.
If you wanted to check out Hootsuite, simply click here.
3. Hubspot: Website Grader | SEO Analysis
Hubspot offers lots of great tools, but the one that stands out for me is their Website Grader, a simple to use tool that rates various SEO factors of a website in a matter of seconds. This is a great way to quickly identify any potential issues with your current SEO setup which could be harming your organic search engine ranking.
By splitting each area of focus into bitesize groups (Performance, SEO, Mobile and Security), Website Grader feels simple to navigate and use, while offering you easy to understand advice for ways to improve your website performance score.
As far as a free SEO tool goes, this one is up there with the best that I have come across over the years.
How I Use Hubspot: Website Grader
After making any changes on my website, I use this tool to check how the changes affected my score. Did the website become slower after adding a new image to the homepage? Did the page size grow after adding a new feature or function to the site? The beauty of Hubspot Website Grader is that I know that I can rely on this tool to quickly answer these questions for me.
To start using Hubspot: Website Grader, simply click here.
4. Keywords Toaster | PPC Keyword Match Type Tool
One of the more obscure tools on the list is the Keywords Toaster tool, a nifty addition to any PPC account managers arsenal when looking to save time and improve accuracy when creating new campaigns and ad groups.
Gone are the days of manually writing each keyword match type yourself, as this tool does this tedious step for you. Simply enter your chosen keywords into the left column of the tool, choose the keyword match types you want to use in your account, and voila, all the variants have now appeared in the right-hand column, so all you have to do is copy these across into your PPC account.
Other great features allow you to transform your text to lowercase, delete extra symbols and remove any duplicates to name a few.
How I Use Keywords Toaster
Since discovering this tool, I haven't manually written any keyword match types myself as this tool saves me so much time and removes any room for error. Let's say your PPC account is going to target 100 different keywords, and you wanted to use each of the 3 keyword match types (broad match, phrase match, and exact match) for each keyword. You would have to manually write 300 keywords, which not only takes quite some time but also opens room for error. By switching to this tool, I save time and increase accuracy when setting up any new keywords on any PPC account.
Start saving time on your PPC accounts by using the Keywords Toaster tool here.
5. Google Trends | Search Term Popularity Tool
The Google Trends tool allows you to analyse the popularity of any search query on Google across various regions and languages. The simplistic graphs allow you to easily compare the search volume (ranked from 0-100) across your desired date range.
The best feature of this tool is the ability to analyse the popularity of multiple search terms at the same time, allowing you to identify which is more popular in general, and if the popularity changes across the date range you have set. This could be used to determine which keywords would be best used for your next blog article, or when a specific term is more popular across the year, highlighting some great strategies for you to use on your upcoming marketing efforts.
How I Use Google Trends
I use Google Trends because I enjoy the ability to not only compare the search popularity of multiple search terms at once but to test the differences of these terms across various countries.
I also use it to compare the popularity of different spellings of the same word. An example of this is Pyjamas or Pajamas. Both are acceptable, both are frequently used, but after using the tool it is interesting to see that the first spelling is more popular in the UK and the second spelling is more popular in the USA. This can now be used for all digital marketing purposes depending on the location of the copy.
If you wanted to start testing out different search terms on Google Trends, simply click here.
So there you have it, 5 awesome free digital marketing tools that are actually free! Give each of them a go and I know that they will most certainly help you on your journey to achieving the coveted digital marketing black belt.
Which is your favourite? Which has sneaked its way into everyday use? Which have you already been using?
Maybe you use a free digital marketing tool which is not on this list?
Let's chat about it, so feel free to drop me a message at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ciao for now,