Skip to content

Best Free and Paid Social Media Analytics Tools

Social media analytics is a great way to track the performance and success of your social media marketing campaigns. There are a lot of platforms you can use to do this whether they are free or paid tools. I share some of the best free and paid social media analytics tools that I have used in my previous roles with my agency

Social Media Analytics Tools have revolutionized the way we manage our social media presence and monitor what’s going on. But with so many out there, how do you know which one is the best? Which ones have the most features, and cost the least? In this video, I outline my favorite free and paid tools for social analytics and social media management! Check it out!

What are social media analytics?

First, before we jump into some of the awesome social media analytics tools available, I wanted to quickly talk a little about how we define social media analytics.

At Buffer, we see social media analytics as the gathering of data from social media platforms to help inform us and guide our marketing strategy. By paying close attention to social media analytics, you can measure your performance against your social media goals.

Social media analytics tools are usually used to complement social media management tools. The latter lets you plan and schedule your social media content while the former enables you to measure the performance and informs your strategy.

 Buffer Analyze

Buffer Analyze: Buffer’s Facebook and Instagram Analytics and Reporting Tool

Buffer Analyze is our social media analytics tool for online brands that want to make better decisions about their social media strategy and measure their results without feeling overwhelmed.

3 cool features:

  • Instagram Stories analytics
  • Posting strategy recommendations
  • Create professional reports in as few as two clicks

Social media channels:

  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • Twitter

What analytics you get for free:

  • All features for 14 days
    • Overview and charts for key metrics
    • Posts and Stories analytics
    • Audience insights
    • Answers
    • Easy-to-use report builder

Pricing options: $35 and $50 per month

 Sprout Social

Sprout Social

Sprout Social is a comprehensive social media management and monitoring tool that provides a host of enterprise-level options. Its cross-channel social listening features you perform a contextual and qualitative analysis of topics, hashtags, and keywords. You can tell how your content is performing on various social networks from its visual and intuitive reports.

3 cool features:

  • Analyze paid campaign performance across networks
  • Get group report of your social media profiles
  • Analyze your team’s performance (task performance, response rates, etc.)

Social media channels:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Instagram
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn

What analytics you get for free:

  • All features for 30 days
    • Report builder
    • Reports for each social media channel
    • Reports for internal team performance

Paid options: $99, $149, and $249 per month

 Keyhole

For the sake of expanding your content’s reach, hashtag analytics are a must-have.

Tools such as Keyhole provide a real-time performance analysis of the industry and campaign-specific hashtags on Twitter and Instagram. Doing so allows brands to promote during peak times and likewise understand which tags are most popular among their followers.

Keyhole's dashboard measures a hashtag's optimal times for engagement

Google Analytics

While it’s not solely a social media analytics tool, Google Analytics is one of the best ways to track social media campaigns and even help you measure social ROI.

You likely already have an account set up on your website to monitor and analyze your traffic right now. But did you know you can access and create reports specifically for social media tracking, too?

Google Analytics is a valuable tool for analyzing the behavior of social media traffic

For instance, you can see how much traffic comes to your website from each social network, or use UTM parameters to track specific social media campaigns.

 Talkwalker

Key benefits: Monitor conversations from more than 150 million sources to analyze engagement, potential reach, comments, sentiment, and emotions

Free or paid: Paid tool

Skill level: intermediate to advanced

Best for: social media managers, PR and communications teams, brand monitors, product marketers, researchers

Talkwalker offers analytics related to social conversations beyond your owned social properties, including:

  • Mentions
  • Brand sentiment
  • Important influencers
  • Author lists

You can filter by region, demographics, device, type of content, and more.

Talkwalker is especially useful to spot activity peaks in conversations about your brand. This can help you determine the best times for your brand to post on social media.

 Hootsuite Impact

Key benefits: Track how organic and paid social impact real business goals and get recommendations for how to improve

Free or paid: Paid tool

Skill level: intermediate to advanced

Best for: social media teams at enterprise organizations with lots of moving parts, paid social advertising teams

Hootsuite Impact provides an in-depth look at the performance of your organic and paid social posts. It then compares that performance to specific business goals, like sales and leads generated. Next, it recommends actions to improve your results.

Hootsuite Impact integrates with tools like Google Analytics, Adobe Analytics, and your ad accounts on many differt social platforms. This gives you a full picture of your post and campaign results, all in one place. With organic and paid analytics side-by-side, you don’t have to gather data from separate tools to create a social media analytics report.

Instead, you see exactly how much revenue all your social efforts generate, so you can prove your social ROI. Keep in mind that ROI is not only about sales generated. Hootsuite Impact uses a custom ROI formula developed specifically for your business. Seeing which of your efforts have paid off has never been easier.

You’ll also get a clear breakdown that shows you exactly how to replicate your successes and improve in the areas where you’re falling short.

Then there’s the competitive benchmarks. To get the best insights from social analytics, you need to understand how other businesses in your industry compare. Hootsuite Impact shows how your results stack up against your competitors, so you can spot opportunities to improve.

ShortStack

$99

Social media analytics tool - ShortStack

If hosting contests on social media platforms is your thing, then ShortStack is the best social media metrics tool for you. It lets you manage everything, starting with entry data to long-term campaign performance.

It allows visitors to fill in their details on the page and unlock special offers, including e-books, discount codes, or giveaways. It also has customizable features like landing page templates in various colors and eye-catching fonts, widgets for forms, polls, and galleries.

Pros

  1. It’s effortless to design, launch, and monitor, even for beginners.
  2. It has a drag and drop interface to customize colors, fonts, widgets, etc., to give your visitors an elevated experience.
  3. It gives you the ability to embed any analytics tag for tracking conversions or retargeting.

Shelley F

ShortStack is a very robust and easy-to-use tool. There is a bit of a learning curve on all the widgets, but once you figure them out, it makes developing your entry site a snap.

Cons

  1. ShortStack is a contest platform, so it might not be the best fit if you are looking to manage social media and get analytics.
  2. The tool offers comprehensive contest analytics but doesn’t consider entry-fee processing.
  3. ShortStack doesn’t necessarily increase your profile views or followers.

 Sendible

Sendible is an all-in-one social media management tool with powerful analytics features. It integrates with all the main social media platforms but also supports Pinterest and Google My Business, which most of the tools in this list don’t.

Sendible Homepage

The Sendible analytics tool is really useful and extremely easy to use. With just a few clicks, you can create customized analytics reports that make analyzing metrics a breeze.

It also has functions for sending regular email reports to clients to keep them in the loop. Sendible also uses Google Analytics to track the effect that your social media efforts have on website visits and page views.

Aside from the analytics functions, Sendible is a useful social media management tool. You can use it to schedule posts manage collaborations, monitor your social mentions, and more. Due to the low monthly price, Sendible is a great choice for individual creators that only need one user profile.

Pricing:

Pricing plans start at $29/month for the creator plan.

There is also a 14-day free trial available. No credit card required.

 Mentionlytics

Key benefit: Track mentions, keywords, and sentiment across multiple languages on social channels and elsewhere on the web.

Free or paid: Paid tool

Skill level: Beginner to intermediate

Best for: PR and communications teams, brand monitoring teams, product marketers, researchers at small to medium-sized businesses.

Want to get a big picture view of what’s being said about your brand on the internet? Mentionlytics is a great entry into the world of social media monitoring — especially if you run a global business in more than one language.

Mentionlytics "Top Website Mentioners" chart

Other things you can do with Mentionlytics:

  • Sentiment analysis
  • Find top influencers that follow you
  • Filter results by keywords
  • Reply to mentions directly

 Zoho Social

Zoho Social

Zoho is a unique and powerful software suite that has CRM, collaboration, and other SaaS options that take care of your entire operational workflow. Zoho Social is the part that enables you to understand your social media audience and how they engage with you. You can listen to multiple channels from a single dashboard and respond in real-time. You can also dig deeper into each post to measure their reach and engagement.

3 cool features:

  • Create intuitive reports from a huge list of pre-defined segments based on demographics of your fans, influencers, or people reached.
  • Get a breakdown of the content formats that your connections are engaging with and compare it to those that you publish.
  • Compare fans vs. other people reached for every post.

Social media channels:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Instagram

What analytics you get for free:

  • All features for 15 days
    • Stats for individual posts
    • Analytics for content type, best time to post, etc.

Pricing options: $10, $25, $200, and $300 per month (annual pricing)

Conclusion

Social Media Analytics has become an integral part of any B2B or B2C social media marketing strategy. No matter if you’re a huge multinational corporation, small time entrepreneur, a blogger or a regular person who spends his time on social media- analytics are very important in helping you to track your effectiveness and meet your goals.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.