Most Popular Marketing Automation Software Solutions

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Capterra Top 20 Marketing Automation Software InfographicWe talk to many software buyers who begin the process by wanting to know the top ranked or most popular software products.  For Capterra’s entire 12 year history, we have always advised against this.  “Ignore the rankings” we tell them.  “It depends on the specific needs of your company.”

But today, we launched our first infographic: The Top 20 Most Popular Marketing Automation Software Solutions.

So why a change in heart?  Why a popularity index now?  Two reasons:

  1. There are more data points than ever before. Private software companies are more often disclosing stuff like their revenue and customer counts.  Websites have become a central hub for software marketing efforts, and several indicators exist for measuring web traffic.  And, of course, social media has become a platform for widespread community engagement, and the number of followers a company has is public domain.
  2. If someone feels more comfortable beginning a process by knowing who the “big” players are, then so be it.  While our end goal remains the same – helping them make a fully informed, smart software decision – we can still answer buyers’ initial questions, show them the most popular vendors (not to be confused with “best”), and then try to persuade them to open up their software search efforts.

The Data

We started with every software company listed in Capterra’s Marketing Automation Software Directory.  We strive to list every single solution – vendors do not have to pay to be listed.  (If you see any missing, let us know!)  We then collected Alexa, Compete, Google and Twitter data for all the vendors.  We recognize that none of these are perfect indicators.  Alexa and Compete, for example, are notoriously inaccurate for B2B websites and tend to underestimate web traffic.  However, each provide a decent starting point for identifying relational and trend data.  And the four combined provide a fairly accurate picture of overall web activity.  We considered Facebook fans and LinkedIn company followers, but found both to be less indicative of a software company’s popularity.

Here is the web data for each of the four channels:

Once again, we looked at this data for all of our marketing automation vendors (more than 180), but these four indicators allowed us to narrow down our considerations to about 40 vendors.  Then, for those 40, we performed additional research to identify their number of customers, users, and revenue.  Three of the vendors had been acquired and the two we included had released the acquisition values to the public.  (The third was Oracle’s asset acquisition of Market2Lead) Here is what we were able to find:

A few things worth noting:

  1. The Unica and Aprimo revenue numbers are estimates.  They are both owned by public companies and are not required to break out their revenue separately.
  2. Infusionsoft, Hubspot, and Signal all made the Inc. 5000, which requires revenue data.  The numbers you see above are rounded.
  3. Companies that did not disclose their numbers of customers or users were bumped down in the popularity index due to lack of data.

This is the first time Capterra has ever published popularity rankings.  We welcome all feedback and suggestions.  If you have ideas for other publicly accessible information worth including, please send it our way!  We are considering doing something similar for other software categories (Capterra has 360 categories on our site), and we’re also considering updating this one down the road.  Something tells me the Marketing Automation space will continue to change rapidly.

Looking for software? Check out Capterra's list of the best software solutions.

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Michael Ortner

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Mike started Capterra in 1999 as the first website dedicated to helping people find the right software for their business. Today, Capterra lists over 30,000 software companies, displays more than 250,000 software reviews, and receives over 3,000,000 monthly visitors. He's been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Fox News, and Inc. Magazine, among other publications, where he's spoken on topics ranging from the business software industry to running and growing a business in the 21st century. Mike received a business degree from Georgetown University and a philosophy degree from the University of London. He lives in McLean, VA with his wife and six children.

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[…]  Capterra has long stated that such rankings shouldn’t be used in making a decision. From their blog post on the […]

[…]  Capterra has long stated that such rankings shouldn’t be used in making a decision. From their blog post on the […]

[…] details on these findings as well as to learn more how other marketing automation vendors ranked, read more on the Capterra Blog. They produced an infographic titled, The Top 20 Most Popular Marketing Automation Software […]

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Martin,
Thanks for the comment. I’m also a fan of Marketo. They are definitely doing great things in the marketing automation space – as evidenced by being placed in the top half of our top 20. To address your specific points:

1) You stated that web and social media presence as an indicator of popularity is “ridiculous”. Why? 9 times out of 10, a software company that receives a lot of web traffic will be more popular than one that receives very little web traffic. In fact, this seems to be true by definition. Is it imperfect? Certainly and we admitted as such in the blog post. But ridiculous? That seems to be a gross overstatement.

2) I have no idea how Salesforce does their user awards, but using that (and not other user awards by other CRM vendors) as one of the data points would seem to bias the results toward those vendors that focus their integration efforts on Salesforce to the exclusion of others. I believe that is the case with Marketo.

3) Actually we show Marketo ahead of Eloqua in customer count, 1,350 to 1,000.

4) Our table above does not show Marketo’s number of users because as far as I know Marketo has not published that number. If it has, please forward the link or press release. Eloqua, on the other hand, is very transparent about their number of users. They issued a press release in August 2010 when they passed the 50,000 mark. I can only guess that they are well above that now but that is the latest number we have seen released. If Marketo releases their number of users and it compares favorably, they may crack the top 5 when we eventually republish the infographic.

5) Our table clearly shows that Teradata / Aprimo has the highest reported number of users, not Eloqua.

I hope this was helpful!

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I’m sorry but I almost choked when I saw this post and the infographic being rewteeted!

I’ve now done 5 marketing automation implementations and 2 global RFP’s.

I’ve recently implemented Marketo after another RFP and your numbers just don’t make any sense and are a total farce.

How social media mentions and web presence is some sort of gauge of ‘most popular’ marketing automation is ridiculous. Marketo beat Eloqua in the Salesforce user awards which is voted by users! Marketo has also outgrown Eloqua in one third the time in terms of customers yet your infographic shows Eloqua ahead of Marketo in terms of customers when there are lots of stories online with the data (you don’t even mention Marketo in the user section even though your table above shows them ahead of Eloqua!

Also, you only have 4 data points for users but you disingenuously create a graphic saying Eloqua is leading with number of users!

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Thank you for putting together this great guide. It’s interesting to see the specific data points you used to compile your rankings.

If they were publicly available, the retention rate of the above companies would be interesting to know as part of your research.

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