There are a lot of off-the-shelf tools available for companies to use, sample, or buy. But there are a few that are absolutely free and absolutely necessary. Be sure you are taking advantage of these tools and some of the features they offer.
If you have a website you should have GA (Google Analytics) setup to monitor your website traffic. It’s a free platform that is easy to integrate to any website, especially if you are using a cms like WordPress, Squarespace, etc. Even if you don’t want to look at the data, having GA integrated will provide historical insights that are are a necessity for any online marketing effort.
Conversion Tracking Setup in Google Analytics
One easy way to track success metrics across all platforms is to use GA to report purchases or conversion points based on site pageviews, actions or events. Depending on your level of comfort with code, GA can take all of the pain-points out of needing to hire extra development support to track conversions in adwords or other channels. Setup e-commerce tracking to track orders and build funnel reports to see how your carts or conversion paths are converting.
You can also export your conversion data into Adwords to help track events without the need to drop extra adwords tracking code on your site.
Tracking Specific Sources in GA
Be sure you are using “UTM” tracking parameters in your paid search, social, mail, and referral links. This will allow you to see traffic by specific source so you can make better decisions about ad spend, conversion optimization, and attribution values. UTM codes are easy to setup and there are lot of resources to help you get started.
Building Remarketing Lists
Integrating this tool will provide you with the ability to segment traffic and build lists for re-marketing in your Adwords account. Get fancy with email lists, unique lists that target people who only visited certain pages, like cart pages with no purchases, and re-market more effectively with banner and text ads.
Google Webmaster Tools
For SEO’s and digital marketers alike, webmaster tools are a crucial account to have setup for monitoring site performance, helping to get pages indexed for rankings in Google SERPS, and for evaluating site speed, schema markup, and much more.
Monitor 404’s, 301’s, & Indexed Sitemaps
Webmaster tools will show you pages that are showing up as 404’s, and other website errors, that can help you keep an eye on pages that might be threatening your online revenues. Set alerts to keep you posted and ready to take quick action when needed. Be sure to also checkout the page speed insights recommendations which could help you with a core ranking factor or two – they also give suggestions for mobile layout user-experience.
A fantastic feature allows marketers to submit xml sitemaps. Once submitted you can view reports that show how many pages are indexed. Don’t see all your pages? Do an advanced lookup and find out what’s holding you back from seo traffic.
Be Sure to Export Your Search Query Data to GA
Another key feature is the ability to see seo traffic from specific search queries. This will show you which terms are driving traffic and where you may want to focus your efforts. Be sure to take advantage of the feature to export this data into Google Analytics for more robust reporting within the GA UI, it’s a powerful tool!
Bing Webmaster Tools
Bing offers a free webmaster account which functions very much like Google’s. They offer the ability to submit pages for indexing, upload sitemaps, view seo traffic by page and query, and you can see problems and errors with specific web pages.
With Bing and Yahoo boasting roughly over 25% of the search traffic, there’s no reason anybody should be ignoring the opportunity for this amount of search traffic to their website.
User experience is arguably the most effective strategy to help optimize digital efforts. Optimizely offers a platform that allows quick and easy variation tests to be setup, you don’t need to know how to code and you don’t have to create separate pages to test.
Setup Free A/B & Multivariate Tests
This is an amazing tool for small or large companies. Even if you are a large company you can still use the free version of Optimizely to run tests for a large amount of web traffic. Setting up goal tracking is a breeze, and this tool will show you the effect of changing those button colors or headlines with almost instant setup.
This is an awesome tool that allows you to crawl your site and export reports to see if you have missing title, meta description, or other important tags like h1’s. It was created by a clever seo company overseas. We’re not sure if the company is any good at seo but we do know they build a very handy tool that is used by most every seo professional with any expert level of knowledge.
The SF tool isn’t the only crawling tool, Moz, SEM Rush, Spyfu, and others also offer great features, but if you want fast free crawl information we recommend adding this tool to your bag immediately.
Google Keyword Planner
In order to get access to keyword planner you’ll need a Google Adwords account. You don’t need to spend any money in Adwords.
In order to have any success at digital marketing, you’ll need to know information about what people are searching for. Get search volume’s by month for keywords by match-type, and get keyword suggestions for building out ppc and seo strategies. Plenty of great tools charge a fee for providing this information, and it could be yours for the amazing price of absolutely free.
Information is Power
Don’t miss the chance to find new keywords for adding relevance in your landing pages and title tags. Need a blog idea? You can be a content marketer and still have a reason to use an Adwords account. Give it a try, or go back to your to do check-list and get started on that keyword expansion.
Mailchimp Email Marketing Platform
Did you know that you can send amazing looking emails from a free tool to all of your email list? Why are you not taking advantage of one of the most effective ways to impact your sales? You probably didn’t know how easy it is. Even if you aren’t ready to start email blasting, setting up an account now will start accumulating your emails in list that you can segment, scrub, and target with some cool content.
Email Marketing Made for Chimps?
Not exactly, there are a lot of amazing ways you can engage with your contacts and MailChimp offers tons of free information for setting up campaigns, targeting lists, and creating emails that work.
There are many different templates that you can use to build astonishingly professional emails. Send newsletters, bounced cart emails, or just impress your customers with sophistication and style.
Every business should be taking advantage of the ability to email! Learn more about email marketing or get answers to any questions you may have. Send us an email and we’ll be happy to help.