Resource: Growth Tools of the Trade

There are some great products available to help you measure and analyze your growth efforts. Here are some of the common ones:

Analytics Platforms

Google Analytics

Overview

Great platform for measuring website traffic, events, and other metrics for top of funnel as well as product usage.

Pros

  • Easy to setup
  • Powerful out of the box
  • Most people know how to use it
  • Free

Cons

  • Doesn't do a great job of tracking mid-funnel events
  • Sometimes doesn't seem to be 100% accurate - it may not be as in-depth as other platforms for detailed tracking


Amplitude

Overview

Great data platform that enables you to track and manage your event data, as well as slice it and report on it easily with your team.

Pros

  • Powerful and easy to use interface
  • Advanced reporting features
  • Ability to create, save and run ad-hoc reports that go deep into the product metrics

Cons

  • Cohort analysis isn't offered out of the box - it's an add on to their paid plans
  • Not as easy to use as Mixpanel
  • Requires engineering to setup

Mixpanel

Overview

Arguably the industry leader and best option for deep analytics, retention & cohort tracking, and ability to run A/B tests right out of the platform.

Pros

  • Amazingly powerful

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Requires engineering to setup

A/B Testing Platforms

There are some great options for running A/B tests within your product. Here are some of the industry leaders:

Optimizely

Overview

Optimizely's website says:

Optimizely is the world’s leading experimentation platform, empowering marketing and product teams to test, learn and deploy winning digital experiences, every time.

Pros

  • Minimal engineering needed to set it up
  • Very powerful testing capabilities including single-variant and multi-variant tests

Cons

  • Expensive

Google Optimize

Overview

Great alternative to Optimizely, this free product from Google covers just about as much ground but is fully integrated with other google tools, including google analytics.

Pros

  • Free
  • Very powerful testing capabilities including single-variant and multi-variant tests

Cons

  • Not as robust or feature complete as Optimizely

Other Growth Platforms

Phantombuster

Overview

This is my new favorite tool.

Code-free automations and data extraction platform that has a ton of flexibility to help you automate day to day growth functions.

Pros

  • Really interesting toolset that gives you a lot of control across 3rd party platforms that are generally hard to pull data from
  • Great free trial
  • Powerful - let's say you want to auto-message folks in one of your slack communities to let them know about a free resource you just put out - setup a Phantom and you're good to go

Cons

  • It's fairly tricky for non-technical folks to get started with, but it's easy enough once you get the hang of it
  • Likely enables some bad actors to run hacky growth initiatives due to it's power, so it has to be used respectfully
  • Seems like it'd be easy to have Phantoms get banned for misuse though I didn't personally come across this.


Intercom

Overview

Intercom is an all in one startup communications platform.

Pros

  • Handles a lot of the features you'll need from a growth platform early on, including messaging, chatbots, a team inbox, help desk and more
  • Easy to setup and get running
  • Intuitive and works well for communicating with customers through

Cons

  • No SMS functionality, just email and chat
  • Gets very expensive relatively quickly


Buffer

Social media posting platform great for automating timing of posts.

Canva

Great image / graphic creation software with a freemium model.

Google Tag Manager

Google tag manager let's you keep all of your embed code tags organized in one central location. It's a must have if you're using tracking pixels and other 3rd party integrations.

Performance Marketing, SEO, Landing Pages

Spyfu

Overview

Spyfu let's you research organic and paid keywords as well as "spy" on what your competitors are doing via paid and organic. From their website:

SpyFu exposes the search marketing secret formula of your most successful competitors. 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 13 years. Learn how to connect with these domains, too. Find online and traditional leads methods -- social media, email, phone, and address -- you can't find anywhere else.

Pros

  • Powerful interface gives you some quick wins
  • Comprehensive competitor analysis
  • Pro account is not that expensive, starting at $35/month

Cons

  • A bit clunky and hard to use
  • The data is good but it's not super actionable unless you know what you're doing already

SEMRush

Overview

Solid keyword analysis and data platform for researching paid and social advertising options. From their site:

All-in-one Marketing Toolkit for digital marketing professionals

Pros

  • Fairly easy to use
  • More comprehensive SEO toolkit than Spyfu

Cons

  • Not cheap - starts at $99/month

Unbounce

Overview

Unbounce is a landing page builder that's great for getting different versions of pages up quickly to test.

Pros

  • $99 per month starter plan is well worth the money
  • Easy to setup, easy to get your first pages live
  • A/B testing of traffic
  • Much more responsive help / support team than Instapage (their biggest competitor) and more flexible terms for contracts
  • Cheaper than alternatives

Cons

  • Can be tedious setting up initial templates if you don't find what you want from their template catalog, but once you get going, it's great


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