One of the questions I am constantly asked during conference presentations is, “what are some free tools that you might recommend for the non-enterprise customer?” That is a hard question to answer only because every business has different needs and resource challenges. My typical answer is that the business should explore lower cost alternatives with the enterprise tools that we typically talk about. Many of those tools do have small-to-medium size business pricing if you ask them.
That said, there are a number of free-to-inexpensive tools that you can use for quick analytics needs. If you are a smaller business there is a good chance you have heard of, or are currently using some of these. If you are an enterprise business you might think some of these tools do not work for you. You would be wrong. Some of these tools, like Google Trends for example, provide valuable (and quick) information on how people are reacting to your brand online. Other tools, like Simply Measured, are used by enterprise clients every day to measure the effectiveness of social media channels versus benchmarks and competitors.
Google Trends and Simply Measured are two of my favorite free-to-inexpensive tools currently on the market. What are some others? Below you will find a list of my top 10. Is there every free-to-inexpensive tool that I like? No, it is not. Are these the ones I have used most often over the years? Yes, it is. You may have a tool that you use regularly that isn’t represented below. Feel free to let us know what that is so we can all expand our tool vocabulary.