Since this post was originally published in early 2016, online content marketing tools have changed – a lot.
Some have gone away and others have come into being.
To keep you up-to-date and well informed, I’ve made some changes to this list for you.
Let’s face it, its more competitive out there than ever – and it just keeps getting more so.
And, digital marketing — through content — is still the best, cost effective way to stay competitive and in touch with consumers (your customers).
One reason is that it aligns so well with the way consumers approach purchasing decisions.
Not only is the number of people online growing every day, studies have shown that the majority of modern consumers utilize online research and social media to carry out price and product research before they make their final purchase decision.
Online content marketing allows companies to establish relationships with prospects and customers.
The reason is:
It is low-cost, regular, and personalized communication, which reflects the crucial move away from mass marketing.
Since statistics indicate that up to 70% of small businesses can fail before they access industry stability, finding the right marketing strategy is crucial.
The good news is:
Getting more out of your business through content marketing doesn’t have to be an expensive or complicated issue.
In fact, using the right online resources can make your online marketing attempts more effective and efficient than ever.
I’ve put together 26 of the the best resources to help you maximize your digital presence, and crush online marketing.
So let’s dive in:
1. Google Analytics
Read just about any article regarding online marketing and the chances are that you’ll find a reference to Google Analytics.
As the most popular tool for marketing analysis, Google Analytics is a free, and effective way to track the performance of your website over time.
It gives you the insight you need to make crucial changes, build upon your success, and eradicate business draw-backs.
But it gets better:
Not only can analytics help you to maximize consumer experience, but it can also assist you with making the most out of the metrics that you measure.
It can help you figure out how to get more people to visit your site, buy your products, share your content, and value your company.
2. Simply Measured
Social media – in all of its many different forms – is becoming increasingly popular in today’s online marketing sphere.
Through social media, you can expand the reach of your content marketing efforts, and potentially get in touch with influential individuals capable of boosting your brand.
LinkedIn is perhaps the biggest social media website available specifically for “professionals”, and Simply Measured allows you to examine your impact on this platform from a helpful angle.
But here’s the kicker:
With Simply Measured, you can identify which of your posts on LinkedIn are driving the most engagement, and what kind of demographics your primary audience has in common.
3. Google Keyword Suggestion
Even a basic understanding of SEO should be enough to inform you of the importance of Keywords.
However, just because you know you need key words and phrases in your content marketing strategy doesn’t mean you know which ones you should be using.
Fortunately, Google’s Keyword Suggestion Tool acts as a fantastic resource for helping businesses to explore their options.
Here’s the deal:
It’s important, however, to keep in mind that this resource is primarily intended for PPC use, and to recognize the difference between exact match and broad match options. Also, Google now wants you to be an advertiser to use this tool.
Any strategy that involves blogging, articles, or other web copy, the chances are that you’ll want to check on how your content is spreading via “shares” across the web.
Or, you can use the multi-URL dashboard available to check out a number of different web addresses in one go.
Either way you look at it:
The more you know about the current activity of your content, the more you’ll be able to decide whether you’re moving in the right marketing direction.
Remember, your audience will tell you what content they prefer by which titles they click on and the bounce rate.
5. Content Marketing Institute
The minute you’re ready to get serious about inbound marketing or content marketing, you’re going to need to start gathering resources to ensure that the copy you produce is the best it can be.
The content marketing institute is a good place to start, as they are the part of the reason why content marketing as a strategy has become so crucial over the recent years.
Remember, proper content marketing practice is the thing that saves all web browsers from boring, useless, or trivial copy.
6. SEO Quake
Chances are that if you’re serious about online marketing, you’ve got a browser that you rely upon to help you conduct research, manage your websites, and organize your marketing schemes.
SEO Quake is an extension that can be added to Firefox, Opera, Safari, and Chrome, and it gives you immediate access to numerous useful factors such as position, page rank, content age, and so on.
When you visit a site on your browser, you’ll also find that more information becomes available – such as a link to diagnose issues that a page may be suffering from.
If you’re one of those types who prefer to get the most functionalities out of your buck, try NinjaOutreach. Why am I recommending this tool?
One. It has all the typical content and lead prospecting features you need. It already has a well-stocked database you can crawl for data, but you can also include live data (the latest data uploaded to Google in real-time) for a more comprehensive search.
Two. So once you’ve done the prospecting bit, the tool can pull contact data for you, and you can go straight to email outreach, all while using the same platform. And — here comes the fun part — you can even manage communication history with the leads you reach out to, so it’s like a whole CRM system on top of prospecting.
What else? You can also manage email campaigns from here, all while monitoring the most trending topics, most shared pieces, and most influential people from within your niche. As I’ve written before, getting in front of the influencers in your niche is a key to success.
Sounds like a lot for the price of one doesn’t it?
Give it a try and let me know how you liked it.
8. MOZ (SEOmoz)
Known better as “SEOmoz”, MOZ offer a number of great tools for sprucing up your content, especially when it comes to ensuring that content ranks well for your chosen set of keywords or phrases.
This website is brimming with useful blogs …
Topics such as “The Beginners Guide to SEO” which should give you a grasp on the kind of content marketing strategies you’ll need to use.
Moz also offers a tool bar, similar to SEO Quake, that can be added to your browser’s tool bar.
I use it in Firefox and am very pleased with it.
9. Majestic SEO
This tool is less about promoting your own SEO, and more about picking apart your competitor’s backlinks.
Yes, you need to do that.
You need to see how they’re getting their audience members to keep coming back.
Knowing how your competitor does things, can help you with your own marketing.
Here’s the best part:
Majestic SEO offers a number of useful tools, from resources that help you compare a number of different competitors to find the best strategy, to options that help you seek out niche link hubs.
There’s even a tool that can allow you to break down individual domains to build up thorough and specific data about someone you may suspect is stealing some of your target market.
10. The Web Developer Toolbar
Effective online marketing isn’t just about SEO, social media, and content marketing.
It’s also about making sure you have a reliable website to draw your audience towards.
With that in mind:
The Web Developer Toolbar for Firefox offers a number of handy functions.
For example it allows you to turn off elements in a page (scripts, images, etc.), giving you access to verification tools, and providing the opportunity to outline certain elements on a specific page.
Note: I’ve shifted to Chrome as my primary browser and leave this entry here for those who still use Firefox.
Ahrefs is a well known tool for checking backlinks and SEO analysis.
Yet, it is really much more than that. It is one of the key tools I rely on to analyze and keep track of competitors for clients and myself. It helps me to put together a holistic picture of a web property.
One of my favorite aspects to Ahrefs is that it ranks websites based on backlinks — where the real SEO juice comes from.
So, if you want to know where your competition is getting its backlinks from, use this tool to get that answer quickly.
12. Internet Marketing Ninja’s Onpage Optimization
Introduced by the Internet Marketing Ninjas, this free and effective on-page optimization tool is a one-stop-shop for a number of your page development needs.
All you need to do to make it work is type in your chosen URL and check out the stats that show up about internal and external links, keyword density and more.
What’s the bottom line:
In other words, you get all of the information you could need for boosting your SEO rating one step at a time.
13. Save Publishing
Looking for a quick and easy way to publish quotes from your articles, blogs, and press releases on Twitter?
Save Publishing instantly finds complete passages from your chosen works that you can copy and paste into your Tweets.
In other words, rather than having to come up with new tweetable ways to market your content, you can have a number of handy quotes handed to you instantly.
What’s more, you can even publish the quote to twitter instantly with a single click.
14. Domain Tools
If you really want to get into the nitty gritty:
Another tool intended to help with the behind-the-scenes aspect of your online marketing, Domain Tools provides quick and simple domain information that can prove useful in a variety of situations.
With a couple of clicks, you can find out everything from server details, to server location, registration information, and even some basic data on SEO.
15. Character Counter
If part of your content marketing strategy involves improving your social media presence, then you’re going to have to stick to the rules of your chosen platforms.
For example, with twitter, you’ll need to create posts under 140 characters.
On the other hand, it can be important to craft descriptions and titles within your content that sticks to particular length.
The Character Counter tool is an easy way to make sure you don’t go over.
Sometimes, an online marketing strategy is all about the freelancers, clients, and other individuals you bring in to work alongside you.
The secret to keeping track of other workers is this:
Basecamp offers a helpful tool for strategy management, communication, and improved productivity.
If you’re working with freelancers, it can ensure that you’re informed the moment that work is done, so that you can get posting with new blogs and content as quickly as possible.
One of the most popular names in the world of social media data is Followerwonk.
It offers a wide range of helpful statistics and pieces of information about posting on twitter at the right time, and with the right impact.
It gets better:
For companies that consider Twitter to be an important part of their social media strategy, Followerwonk also offers the opportunity to compare followers on different accounts, and figure out possible influencers for your target market.
Not sure what to post about?
Why not take advantage of a conversation that’s already trending in your chosen market or industry?
Latest.is offers an automatically generated list of the most interesting and exciting links currently trending on Twitter.
19. Wolfram Alpha’s Facebook Report
There are a number of different ways that companies can take advantage of the social media boom.
There is a trend in reaching out to their target market and generating a following of loyal consumers.
People that succeed in content marketing do social platforms well:
Facebook is just one of many solutions, but like any other online marketing strategy- you need to be sure you’re using it right.
Wolfram Alpha’s Facebook report provides a detailed analysis of which tips of day you regularly post, the sort of language you use, the connection you have with your followers, and more.
Update: Please note that Facebook has depreciated the API Wolfram relies on for information. You’ll still get a bunch of useful data, but not on your friends.
20. HubSpot’s Marketing Grader
Need a no-nonsense way of assessing just how valuable your current online marketing strategies are?
Marketing Grader can offer the perfect solution.
Developed by HubSpot, Marketing Grader gives web masters an insight into the complete health of your marketing efforts through a number of different categories, from SEO and lead generation, to blogging, social media, and more.
Want to know what your competition is up to?
Search for any domain and see every place they’ve shown up on Google: every keyword they’ve bought on Adwords, every organic rank, and every ad variation in the last 10 years.
You can also learn how to connect with these domains. Find online and traditional leads methods — social media, email, phone, and address.
Once you use SpyFu, you’ll never forget it.
22. Google Trends
If you’re having trouble coming up with new and interesting content to share with your followers, why not start by seeing what they’re already talking about?
Google Trends lets you check out the current trending stories that people are most interested in on the web, as well details about terms specific within your industry.
It could be just what you need to kickstart your ideas.
23. Blog Idea Generator
Another option for bloggers suffering with writer’s block, is Hubspot’s Blog Topic Generator.
Simply enter a few nouns into the search that describe your industry or the kind of content that you want to produce, and you’ll be gifted with a whole week’s worth of engaging post-worthy ideas.
But here’s the best part:
This tool can instantly revitalize any stagnant content marketing scheme.
Just give it a try (it’s fun to see what it spits back) and cross reference the ideas with a tool like BuzzSumo (below).
These days, a lot of people forget about the value of email marketing when they’re addressing their online marketing strategy for the first time.
However, tools like Rapportive can make your email work harder for you, by ensuring you always personalize crucial work-related emails.
This chrome extension gives you a better insight into your contacts by showing everything from the company they work for, to their position, photo, recent tweets, and LinkedIn Profile.
This is very handy!
25. Open Site Explorer
Known as the best search engine for links, Open Site Explorer helps you to maximize your SEO links by providing a list of which sites are linking to you, or a competing site.
This is a great way to build relationships with sites that already like your work, or may be sharing information about you without your knowledge – while you still watch over competing sites.
Finally, another awesome tool to use to analyze content and to see how well it is shared is BuzzSumo.
This tool has become indispensable to me.
I visit this tool at least once per day. It helps me find content that performs best in terms of sharing, and getting backlinks, etc.
You can also use it to check out competing blogs.
Was this list helpful?
Are there tools you think I left out?
Let me know what you think!