The Marketing Stack of Top SMB Software Providers

June 13, 2016 Sam Laber

This post takes from a presentation I gave at The Small Business Web Summit back in May. It includes information pulled from Datanyze and cleaned up by my arch nemesis, Microsoft Excel. Enjoy!


Successful small business software companies like Constant Contact, Shopify and WordPress usually have two things in common:

1. They know how to reel in customers with inbound marketing
2. They know how to delight them with stellar training and support.

So that got me thinking: What kind of technology stacks do these small business acquisition artists use to power their marketing? Judging by this year's Martech Lumascape, there are quite a few to choose from. But using Datanyze, this kind of information is just a hop, skip and a (pivot table) away. Here's how I broke it down.


631 SMB Software Providers

First things first, I needed to determine what criteria would define success amongst small business software providers. After scanning through about 2,500 companies, I decided to narrow the list down to providers that had over 5,000 websites using their product. The best way to think about the term "using" is to think about these websites as having some sort of pixel or code snippet installed in the code. Here are a few of the more common examples:

 

I then weeded out the vendors I knew to be enterprise and was left with 631 small business software companies. Here's a small segment of the list. Do these guys look familiar?


Onto the good stuff. Let's see what marketing tools these inbound pros are using to power their business - other than quirky podcast commercials (looking at you MailChimp).


The Small Business Software Provider Stack

To get as clear a picture as possible, I looked across 15 different martech categories. Some categories, like Analytics and Advertising, are seen as "core" marketing technologies, while others like Support and CMS tend to leapfrog between departments depending on the setup.

Anywho, here's the breakdown. Read the 97% figure as "97% of the 631 vendors are using an analytics tool".

Any surprises for you? Personally, I was surprised to see that over half of the providers were incorporating Retargeting, while only 31% were using a hosted Support service (think Zendesk, Intercom, etc.).

But let's not stop there. What about the individual martech tools? What types of advertising networks were these companies using? What was the most popular analytics platform? Does Optimizely own the market for A/B testing?

To answer these questions, I created what I'll retroactively name the SMB Tech Stack Power Rankings. The x-axis is the total number of SMB providers using a particular product and the y-axis is that product's market share as compared to all other products in the category.

Here are a few things I found interesting. Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments.

  • It appears that Facebook Retargeting outperformed Google Adwords, Google Remarketing and Twitter Ads as the premiere Advertising solution.
  • Google Analytics is by far and away the most used marketing tool by SMB tech providers.
  • Disqus is beating out FB Comments quite unanimously in the Comments category.
  • Marketo seems to be the Marketing Automation system of choice for this group.
  • Webinar platforms aren't used too often, but Citrix seems to be leading the charge for those that do.

Hope this was helpful! If you'd like to do your own snooping, we've got a Chrome Extension for that!

About the Author

Sam Laber

Sam is the director of marketing at Datanyze. He's a big John Hughes fan who occasionally fills the DZ office with the sweet sweet sounds of 90s rock giant, Creed.

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