There's a diverse mix of free tools available listed below. One of the more enjoyable aspects of working in digital marketing with a Digital Toolset. Below the most widely used free tools.
FREE SEARCH (SEO) tools
This free SEO tool lets you find new content ideas. Start with knowledge about your competitors, and then choose keyword suggestions for your content. It performs much like other paid tools. See the paid services:
KWFinder Keyword ResearchFree or $29/month
Monitor Backlinks Domain AnalysisFree or $25/month
Searchmetrics Domain AnalysisFree or $69/month
Serpstat Full AlternativeFree or $19/month
SpyFu Competitor ResearchStarts at $33/month
AhrefsFull AlternativeStarts at $99/month
MozFull AlternativeStarts at $99/month
SEO Powersuite Full AlternativeStarts at $299/lifetime
So if you're a do-it-yourselfer it could be a great option for those who don’t quite have the budget for a pricey SEO tool.
Upon entering your website’s URL, you will be provided with a list of keywords that your website currently ranks for. You will also be provided with an estimate of how many times those keywords are searched for each month. This valuable information can help you decide which keywords are worth optimizing on your website, and which are worth targeting in your SEO campaign. Better yet, with SEMrush you can also search for information on your competitors and examine how you stack up against them.
The Alexa Toolbar
Once in place, it will give you up-to-date information about any website that you visit. The toolbar will provide you with Alexa data, including the popularity of the website, the loading time of the website, and how it compares to other sites on the web.
Widely considered to be one of the most versatile tools for SEO.
It works best when used in combination with the Google Keyword Planner; examining the relative level of interest for a key phrase during a pre-determined amount of time. For example, if you are selling car parts, you can use Google Trends to work out when the majority of searches for these happen (it’s during the summer, in case you were wondering). By understanding this information, you can step up your SEO campaign during the spring, to fully capitalize on it during the summer.
Now the most widely used web analytics service on the Internet. Integrated with AdWords, users can now review online campaigns by tracking landing page quality and conversions (goals). Goals might include sales, lead generation, viewing a specific page, or downloading a particular file.
Google Analytics approach is to show high-level, dashboard-type data for the casual user, and more in-depth data further into the report set. GA analysis can identify poorly performing page with techniques such as funnel visualization, where visitors came from, how long they stayed and their geographical position. It also provides more advanced features, including custom visitor segmentation.
The Google Keyword Planner
Whether you are implementing your first SEO campaign or making changes to an existing one, the Google Keyword Planner can help.
Once logged in, you can search for an ad group and keyword ideas, and see how these keywords may perform. While searching, you can discover other relevant keywords that you may not have thought of, and you can also multiply keyword lists (especially useful if you want to perform SEO for a local campaign).
HootSuite is one of the best free social media listening tools available and covers multiple social networks, including Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, WordPress, Foursquare, and Google+. It is well known for its social media management functions.
With Google Alerts you can monitor the web for interesting new content, mentions of your brand or even yourself, your competitors, industry leaders and so on. As they’re extremely easy to set up, this is social media monitoring for beginners.
By creating a Google Alert, you will receive email notifications every time Google finds new results on a topic that interests you across blogs, forums, and news sites.
The free version is quite impressive. Its main USP is an all-in-one dashboard that enables you to monitor your business data all on one screen. The social media aspect monitors brand mentions, Twitter follower patterns, Facebook demographics, and a whole heap more. From our brief analysis, it’s worth a try.
It’s also worth noting that Facebook, Twitter, YELP, Pinterest are starting to offer detailed in-platform digital media tools, keeping access to certain insights from the 3rd party tools.
NOTE: Gradually data made available to 3rd party tools will be less and less available, so always look at the native digital search and social platform tools that you already have available for free.
FREE EMAIL MARKETING
The free plan enables you to send up to 4,000 emails per month and store up to 1,000 contacts. This isn’t as many as MailChimp and Benchmark Email offer, but if you don’t send high volumes of emails, this plan could still be a good fit for you. An auto-responder tool is included free for a limited time and you can create an unlimited amount of signup forms. You also have the option to connect one Facebook and one Twitter account, which is great if you want to keep up with your contacts on social media. No credit card is required to get started, and if you find you outgrow this plan, you can always update to VerticalResponse’s monthly or pay-as-you-go plans.
Forever Free plan is great if you have less than 2,000 contacts. You can send up to 12,000 emails per month completely free, and you will never have to worry about your plan expiring. A credit card is not necessary to sign up, and you can cancel your account at any time. If you decide to upgrade later on, you can do so easily right from your account. Although MailChimp’s free email marketing plan gives you access to the majority of their tools, certain functionalities like autoresponders and spam filter diagnostics are unavailable without an upgrade. All email campaigns delivered through the Forever Free plan will have MailChimp’s badge in their footers, though this, too, can be removed with a simple upgrade.
Email’s Free for Life plan allows you to send up to 10,000 emails per month, which is far more than what some of the other free plans offer. You get access to all of Benchmark Email’s extensive array of features, enabling you to create online surveys, use email templates, and track email statistics. All that’s needed to sign up is an email and a password, so you could be up and running in just a few minutes. The only problem with Benchmark Email’s plan is that you are only allowed to build your contacts list with users who subscribe through your signup form. If you already have a ready-made list of contacts, it can be a big hassle to get them all to subscribe to your Benchmark Email account, and if this is the case for you, it is probably best to choose another company
FREE MARKETING AUTOMATION
While it focuses on small to medium-sized companies, the company’s understanding of what “small” and “medium” mean is tempered by the small Scandinavian market it started in — Sweden is home to just about as many people as New York City or L.A.
“In Sweden that is not the same as in the U.S.,” founder and CEO Markus Lundin told me. “We target companies with 10-200 employees … we end where Act-On starts.”
Leadsius has a full-ish suite of features. But the company might be strongest in website visitor tracking and analytics since that’s where the company first began.
Landing page creator
Web forms creator
Website visitor tracking
Lead analysis and reporting
Pricing: $0 to $1,195/month
Tries to do a little bit of everything, including some basic customer relationship management (CRM).
Based in Hungary, Sales Autopilot offers complete functionality for free for its fairly extensive list of features, as long as you stay below 400 emails a month and one user. In other words, it’s incredibly easy to say yes to Sales Autopilot, and yet it can expand up to as many as two million emails a month for thousands of dollars in a monthly cost.
“You can start using one of the world’s most sophisticated yet easy to use ‘all-in-one’ marketing and sales machines with no cost to you,” the company says.
Integrated email, SMS and direct mail campaigns
Sales process management
Automated marketing campaigns
Call center integration
Website customization/personalization on the fly
Surveys and polls
Pricing: $0 to $3,500/month and up
This is a hybrid system that does a bit of sales, a bit of marketing, and a bit of customer service. In some sense that can be a bad sign, and sometimes all-in-one systems do everything adequately but nothing extremely well, but in another sense, it speaks to the ongoing melting of marketing and sales and customer support into a single set of activities with different foci in each.
The company is a few years old Seattle-based startups that is built to automate and connect cloud-based business processes into what it calls “workFlõ” scenarios.
For example, someone could tweet about you, which Azuqua notices. The system then analyzes the tweet for sentiment and routes it to different departments such as sales or customer service depending on what it finds in the tweet. That creates actions in, for instance, Salesforce, which then trigger customer or prospect contacts from your team.
Automation of workflows
Social integration (but not Facebook yet, apparently)
Pricing: $0 to $250/month and up
FREE PR Listing
24-7PressRelease.com - Free release distribution with ad-support
1888PressRelease.com - Free distribution, paid services gives you better placement and permanent archiving.
ClickPress.com - Distribution to sites like Google News and Topix.net, Gold level will also get you to sites like LexisNexis.
EcommWire.com - Focuses on eCommerce and requires you include an image, 3 keywords, and links.
Express-Press-Release.com - Free distribution company with offices in 12 states.
Free-Press-Release.com - Easy press release distribution for free, more features for paid accounts.
Free-Press-Release-Center.info - Distributes your release, offers a web page with one keyword link to your site. Pro upgrade will give you three links, permanent archiving and more.
I-Newswire.com - Allows for free distribution to sites and search engines, premium membership differs only slightly in adding in graphics.
NewswireToday.com - All the usual free distribution tools, premium service includes logo, product picture and more.
PR.com - Not only will they distribute your press releases, but you can also set up a full company profile.
PR9.net - Ad supported press distribution site.
PR-Inside.com - European-based free press release distribution site.
PRBuzz.com - Completely free distribution to search engines, news sites, and blogs.
PRCompass.com - Distribute your press release with a free or paid version, others can vote it up ala Digg style.
PRUrgent.com - Not only distributes your release but attempts to teach you how to write one, and even offers downloadable samples for you to work with.
Press-Base.com - Submit your release for free and get on their front page and the category of your choice.
PressAbout.com - A free press release service formatted as a blog.
PressMethod.com - Free press release distribution no matter what, but extra services based on the size of your contribution.
PRLeap.com - Free distribution to search engines, newswires, and RSS feeds. Fee-based bumps get you better placement.
PRLog.org - Free distribution to Google News and other search engines.
TheOpenPress.com - Gives free distribution for plain formatted releases, fees for HTML-coded releases.