This Market Share Technology Report (MSTR) from Datanyze examines market share and trends for marketing automation software over the prior 12 months. Vendors can use this MSTR report to track technology market share among competitors and learn about the frequency of customer implementations, while software end users can read about the industry leaders and trends that influence popular features in marketing automation tools.
Market Summary: HubSpot Continues to Reign, While Beeketing Fizzles
Roughly four out of 10 companies intend to install marketing automation tools by the end of 2020.
Why is this software in such demand? Because aside from ending the drudgery of manually sending out email campaigns, marketing automation also allows businesses to more easily personalize their messaging and increase conversions. There’s a lot to love.
Figure 1: A look at marketing automation technology by unit market share. Source: Datanyze.
In the winner’s circle is longtime marketing automation seller HubSpot. The company’s Marketing Hub platform continues to hold a comfortable lead, in terms of unit market share, over its competitors when it comes to the number of installations across all companies and industries, according to analysis from Datanyze. The analysis tracks unit market share, which is the number of units (i.e., tech installations) that vendors sell as a percentage of total sales in a market. Datanyze does not measure revenue market share.
On the flip side, other vendors have struggled in 2019, such as Beeketing, whose number of installations is eroding following a dispute with Shopify’s App Store. Also, Marketo -- a name frequently mentioned by marketers -- surprisingly looks stagnant.
For buyers evaluating marketing automation software, there are at least 350 options to choose from, by Datanyze’s count. However, installations of this software are largely dominated by three products: HubSpot Marketing Hub, Adobe Marketing Cloud, and Oracle Marketing Cloud -- making up nearly 50% of the total unit market share.
As of November 2019, HubSpot Marketing Hub had just over 97,000 installations, nearly 37,000 more than its nearest competitor, Adobe Marketing Cloud. HubSpot offers four main products: Marketing Hub, Sales Hub, Service Hub, and a customer relationship marketing (CRM) platform.
Attributing to its continued growth and dominance in the market, HubSpot recently acquired PieSync, a Belgian startup that lets users see updated customer information in a single dashboard, as opposed to toggling between various tools, according to the Tech.eu news site.
PieSync brings added automation functionality to HubSpot in areas such as email segmenting and merging marketing qualified leads into customer relationship management systems. This acquisition bridges the gap between HubSpot’s marketing automation and CRM tools.
Figure 2: Leading 10 marketing automation vendors by unit market share as of November 2019. Source: Datanyze.
Shopify Removes Beeketing App and Market Share Drops
Things haven’t been as rosy for Beeketing. The company hit a pothole in summer 2019 when Shopify’s App Store removed Beeketing’s apps. Shopify offers eCommerce services to new companies and is the #3 eCommerce platform by unit market share.
That timing is reflected in Datanyze’s unit market share analysis, as Beeketing installations dropped from 27,413 in August 2019 to 16,692 a month later -- a 39% drop month over month. By November, Beeketing’s installations numbered only 8,824.
Figure 3: Beeketing’s unit market share decreased in 2019 after Shopify dropped Beeketing from its App Store in August. Source: Datanyze.
In a community post, Shopify stated, “After several months of working with Beeketing and their related app companies to resolve multiple violations of our Partner Program Agreement, including inadequate support for merchants and abuse of our marketing tools, Beeketing apps and the apps of their related companies were removed from Shopify on August 27, 2019.”
The confrontation had been building since January, when Shopify expressed concerns with Beeketing app performance and customer service. In response, “We doubled our engineers, scaled up our server, tripled our support team in order to bring you the best experience,” Beeketing CEO Quan Truong wrote to customers.
Since the Shopify delisting, Beeketing has changed its company name to OpenCommerce Group and is building its own open eCommerce ecosystem. Its first new product, ShopBase, shows no traction yet for unit market share, according to Datanyze.
New Marketo Feature Aimed at Sales
Meanwhile, in a surprising development, Adobe, which acquired Marketo in 2018, expressed disappointment in Marketo’s Q3 2019 performance.
“While we had strong overall revenue in Q3, our subscription bookings growth for Marketo in the midmarket did not meet our expectations -- which is being addressed by increasing our focus and investment on demand generation and inside sales,” John Murphy, executive vice president and chief financial officer at Adobe, told investors in September.
Among those features is a new account-based marketing integration with LinkedIn. “Marketo Engage, part of Adobe Experience Cloud, is making it easier to draw information from LinkedIn’s base of users that can contribute to highly targeted, effective campaigns,” CIO.com reported.
And in early 2020, Marketo’s account profiling capabilities will get a boost from AI-powered models that can search more than 25 million companies to suggest new accounts for customers to target.
Marketo’s estimated unit market share numbers stayed relatively flat from March 2019 through November 2019 -- a pattern that may indicate little growth or loss of customers.
Looking at Datanyze’s numbers, one marketing automation tool clearly stood out for its growth in 2019: ZenDesk Connect.
ZenDesk -- a public company with nearly $600 million in sales in 2018 -- launched Connect in May 2018. Then came a noticeable bump in companies using the technology: In January 2019, Datanyze’s platform detected 14 installations of Connect, but by November 2019, that number had grown to 5,418. A similar increase in 2020 could easily put the product in the top 10 list of marketing automation technologies by market share.
ZenDesk Connect lets customer service teams send automated messages to clients based on past actions and preferences, across various channels. Astha Malik, Vice President of Go-to-Market Strategy, Planning and Enablement at Zendesk, told PCMag that a typical use for Connect involves alerting customers about item details before they buy it -- for example, shoes that don’t run true to size.
"It's all about getting ahead of your customers. If I order something, I'd rather know about a problem with my order as it happens before I reach out to the store," Malik said.
Figure 4: ZenDesk drastically increased its Connect installations in 2019. Source: Datanyze.
Email marketing campaigns are not dead, which explains the wide interest in automation platforms. But successful email campaigns are not easy, which is why features like audience segmentation, for example, are popular in automation software.
“Research shows list segmentation can increase open rates, limit unsubscribes, and drive more revenue,” according to a recent ZoomInfo blog.
Based on customer survey results collected by Datanyze, the amount of companies planning to invest in automation technology has stayed steady. A consistent 4% to 6% of respondents increased their spending in this area in a given quarter during the period of Q3 2018 through Q3 2019.
There is a similar consistency for those companies that decreased investments in marketing automation, generally staying at 1% of respondents during the same period.
Figure 5: Comparison of surveyed companies increasing investment in marketing automation technology vs. those decreasing investment. Source: ZoomInfo.
It’s also clear that many companies have tackled marketing automation projects in the last year or so. Q3 2019 saw a yearlong high of respondents (47%) who said marketing automation initiatives are in progress at their companies. Also, anywhere from 9% to 14% of companies have completed a quarterly marketing automation project since Q3 2018.
Figure 6: Many companies surveyed indicated they had a marketing automation project underway in 2019. Source: ZoomInfo.
It also looks like more and more companies will roll out marketing automation systems in the near future. In its 2018 “State of Marketing” report, Salesforce pointed to a pair of technologies that it anticipated will see the largest increase by 2020 in the marketing industry:
- Marketing automation platforms (increase of 95% from 2018).
- Artificial intelligence (increase of 157%).
Research firm Forrester likewise predicted that global spending on marketing automation software and platforms will surpass $25 billion by 2023. If that happens, the annual growth rate for such spending will be 14%.
Further, Forrester said using AI with marketing automation will help companies reach more customers.
Buyers should watch for jockeying at the top of the marketing automation world.
Although HubSpot Marketing Hub leads the marketing automation pack by unit market share, Adobe Marketing Cloud has been increasing its growth slowly during 2019, rising two percentage points from January to November 2019.
Should that pattern continue, Marketing Cloud could -- in combination with the market share of Marketo -- put Adobe in a position to challenge HubSpot’s top spot.
Finally, buyers looking to purchase marketing automation software in 2020 should consider these two factors:
- Does AI functionality need be part of any marketing automation packages?
- How well does the software allow customer personalization efforts?
An important aspect when deciding whether to pursue AI is what business questions you need answered, ZoomInfo CEO Henry Schuck wrote on Forbes. For example, yes/no questions are good starting points: Is this a fraudulent transaction? Is this person’s computer activity unusual? A similar approach can be used for questions or processes where a choice is made, such as: Does a customer like this shirt color based on past purchases?
“If you can’t identify questions with [these types of] answers at the outset, then the process of applying AI could be substantially more difficult,” Schuck said.
About our data collection
Datanyze collects technographic data by scanning more than 35 million web domains daily, using a combination of web crawling, third party providers, and natural language processing. Most technologies leave behind a footprint or “signature” that helps the crawler identify it from other elements of a website or mobile app. By finding and cataloging these signatures across millions of sites, Datanyze can determine how many companies use a given technology -- and take note of when certain technologies appear or disappear from a company’s site.
For technologies that leave no footprint (such as databases and CRMs), Datanyze uses natural language processing as an alternative method to identify tech deployment. This involves scanning and digesting unstructured data -- text from job postings, social media, press releases, and more -- to infer a relationship between a company and a particular technology. This method involves complex keyword targeting.
Also, ZoomInfo (the parent company of Datanyze) conducts quarterly surveys of a percentage of business professionals within its database, asking them detailed questions about technology purchases and upcoming projects.
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