Marketing data can be a double-edged sword. The potential insight it offers is immense, and when managed properly, it can be a game-changer. That said, many marketers are drowning in messy or siloed data. They are overwhelmed by manual workflows and often feel like they don't have adequate tools to work with data effectively.
Heading into 2023, technology and skills gaps remain obstacles. Data shows that 45 percent of marketers think technology is the greatest issue, as weak tools limit them, followed by 44 percent who say talent is the most significant issue. Even with the right tools, these teams aren't confident in their ability to work with data.
If you're looking for great tools and software for your performance marketing, here are some marketing tools to consider. Some of these tools are ideal for beginners. As capabilities scale up, there are intermediate and advanced tools to consider. Whether you're a junior digital marketer or a seasoned veteran, this list will help you to become more data-driven.
Note: While this list is far from exhaustive, we think these are great jumping off points to start exploring the world of SaaS solutions for marketers.
Website analytics tools
Google Analytics is one of the top performance marketing tools in use today. That’s partly because most marketers can make use of it regardless of their experience or skill level. This powerful marketing tool has basic and advanced features, allowing users to adapt and evolve. Its core objective is to collect data from your sites and apps to create valuable reports.
While the basic setup of Google Analytics yields incredible reports, they tend to revolve around page views. If you’re running a website with shopping capabilities, though, you’ll want to make use of Google’s Enhanced Ecommerce. This tool places products at the center of your metrics, reports, and dimensions.
If you haven’t already, make sure you get started with Google Analytics 4. This new version of GA is the successor to GA Universal, and comes with a completely new data model. It may take some time to learn GA4, but it is worth it - if only because Universal will stop collecting data this year.
Google Search Console
This suite of tools allows you to track performance, find bugs, and work toward a higher ranking. Check crawl errors, search queries indexing status, etc. All use of Google Search Console API is free of charge. However, it is subject to usage limits, which is why you should only use it as one part of more diverse marketing strategies.
For those seeking a reliable and robust SEO measurement tool, you can turn to Semrush. Founded in 2008, this tool helps marketers to research keywords, track performance against SEO KPIs, and help you manage search-based ads like cost-per-click. It can even help you manage and run a site audit.
Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
This CRM platform is designed to be a one-stop-shop for all of your marketing tools and needs. From the platform, you can manage your social media posts, website content, create and publish blog articles, review your website performance, and more. The Marketing Hub provides free tools for marketers interested in converting visitors into leads, allowing you to upgrade as you grow.
Quite possibly the largest company in the CRM space, Salesforce provides a wide variety of sales and marketing tools. Often used by large enterprises or companies with large sales teams, this tool is designed to support your entire customer journey.
This tool enhances marketing automation across email marketing and social advertising campaigns. Plus, you can integrate Mailchimp with multiple SaaS tools, such as Shopify and Wordpress.
Many marketers begin using this tool for email campaigns before utilizing its full spectrum of features. In fact, beginners can create better content with easy-to-use design tools, leverage AI for custom designs, benefit from personalized emails, and turn insights into winning campaigns.
This end-to-end enterprise management tool supports everything from media planning to optimization. The main features of this Google Management Platform include the ability to collaborate across your team, access audience insights, apply machine learning to automate steps, and better control your ads. These features are detailed, requiring a significant amount of campaign management experience. This tool is ideal when you're managing thousands of campaigns and seeking a tool that allows you to scale.
With DV360, you can tie your creative strategy to your data and media plans. Through the power of smart tools and workflow integrations, you can use the data you collect to drive more targeted campaigns. There are dozens of features across advanced audience management, premium inventory, integrations, etc. If these features are too advanced, small businesses also have an option that requires a fair amount of knowledge surrounding Google Analytics.
You can "turn data into opportunity" with Microsoft Power BI. By accessing advanced data visualization tools, you can drive better business decisions. This platform aims to create a single source of truth so you can make more impactful decisions. Using smart tools with built-in AI capabilities and pre-built custom data connectors, you can find and share insights with hundreds of data visualizations. Several products are available, including Power BI Mobile and Power BI Embedded.
Formally known as Google Data Studio, this free tool allows beginners to start playing around with visualizations but is still robust enough for more advanced users. Access data from 800+ data sets from more than 700 connectors.
When you’re ready to graduate from the free version, you can scale up to Looker Studio Pro or the full version: Looker. Not sure which option is right for you? Check out our Funnel Tip, which breaks down each tool.
A marketing data hub
We may be biased here, but as you start to scale up your capabilities, you need a marketing data hub like Funnel. For those swimming in data, Funnel is one of the top performance marketing tools for a reason — it takes your most vital information and puts it where you need it most. This platform curates and harmonizes data in real-time to present real insights so marketers can act fast. Best of all, with this tool, all the monotonous stuff and heavy lifting are taken care of, so you can focus on how to improve your marketing campaigns.
With minimal effort, you can:
- Connect, bringing all of your marketing data together from any source
- Securely store your data in a centralized hub
- Transform raw data without coding to make it automatically ready for analysis
- Share data with your team to collaborate better
This affiliate marketing platform ticks all the boxes when aiming to launch, manage, and grow your affiliate program. Once set up, you can easily track marketing efforts from one dashboard. Gain access to a range of features, including the ability to perform an in-depth analysis. This software easily integrates with the most popular platforms, such as Shopify, Stripe, WordPress, Mailchimp, PayPal, Slack, WooCommerce, HubSpot, and more.
This SaaS analytics platform effectively unites marketing, product data, and revenue. Whether your goal is improving lead quality or unifying reporting, this B2B analytics and attribution tool will support your journey. Collect and view marketing, sales, and product touch points across varying channels. While the setup is quick, this tool's capabilities run deep, and it will integrate with your entire stack for a more unified view.
Built with enterprises in mind, you can access goal, funnel, and segment tracking. View an interactive demo here.
What is a performance marketing tool?
Performance marketing tools are software products that can be used by digital marketing professionals monitor the ROI of your digital marketing campaigns, focusing on several key metrics. These tools help performance marketers in their job, be it for executing the work or for measuring the impact of their marketing campaigns. For example, some performance marketing tools let you can analyze a campaign's conversions, impressions, clicks, leads, and bounce rates to benefit from data-driven insights. However, not all tools are created equal. Some offer end-to-end solutions, whereas others are much more specific.
Why invest in a performance marketing tool this year?
Performance marketing software has become increasingly popular because of its ability to supercharge campaigns. Whether your goal is to track real-time data, unify access across your entire team, or integrate with other platforms, the tools above will help you streamline and analyze your most critical data. As a result, you'll optimize marketing performance and improve your ROI.
How is marketing changing in 2023?
Marketing trends and the associated technology continue to evolve. In 2023, we'll see how crucial data unification and automation are, as this helps ensure increased sales across multiple channels and a more consistent customer experience. Artificial intelligence (AI) is another area that will influence performance marketing campaigns in the coming years, particularly in how digital marketers collect and analyze data.
For example, AI will help marketers take advantage of more effective targeting. The metaverse is another trend to keep your eye on, which is something Nike, Starbucks, and other major brands are already investing in, as well as Web3 and NFTs. These examples are all at the forefront of digital transformation.