The Best Lead Generation Tools – Free & Paid
Lead generation is a big part of most businesses and making the on-going process as streamlined and painless as possible is very important for the long-term success of these campaigns for inside sales teams. This includes finding, prospecting, nurturing and closing business leads.
I have put together a list of my favourite lead generation tools that I think are beneficial to every sales and marketing team, at any business, anywhere in the world. I have tried all of them.
1. Lead Peep – B2B Lead Finder
Lead Peep is your go-to lead generation tool for finding and exporting lists of b2b sales leads for use in your cold email, cold calling and other direct marketing and outreach campaigns.
It starts from $24.99 a month and enables you to find leads by industry name or keyword in any city or state, and any country in the world. It scrapes business names, email addresses, phone numbers, website URLs, postal addresses and social media links. And more. Fast.
Lead Peep puts thousands of business leads in the palm of your hands.
Key features of Lead Peep:
- Find local, national and international b2b leads in any industry instantly
- Filter leads without email, phone, website or postal address
- Bulk search for leads in multiple cities and states
- Export leads to CSV, Excel or into your sales CRM software
- Affiliate program to earn revenue from your clients, students and readers
- API for powering the data in your own software, apps and tools
Cold emailing, if done correctly, can be extremely effective for gaining backlinks with guest posting or blogger outreach, lead generation, affiliate marketing and other PR and sales opportunities geared towards increasing your sales, visibility or business / industry relationships.
Who’s it good for?
Lead Peep was designed for businesses who sell products and services to other businesses.
B2B leads are notoriously more difficult than B2C leads to find, and ultimately, close, and that’s why lead gen tools like Lead Peep are the internet’s version of a superhero for them.
So if your goal is to find new buyers for your products or services and you need lists of email addresses in your target industry, or you’d like to embark on a PR and outreach campaign to pick up coverage and backlinks, then Lead Peep is for you. It will get you leads.
2. Mailshake – Cold Email Software
Mailshake is my personal favourite cold emailing tool, because it’s simple and provides everything you need to quickly off-load the leads that you find in Lead Peep for nurturing and warming.
They provide you with email templates that have been proven to work for different campaign types, such as lead generation, guest posting, link building and PR pitches, and make is so easy to personalise them for the best open rates possible. All using a Gmail or Gsuite account.
Key features of Mailshake:
- Send personalised bulk cold emails using Gmail or Gsuite
- Perfect for PR, link building, content promotion, fundraising and sales development
- Free email templates that are proven to work
- Real-time analysis and suggestions as you put together your cold email
- Personal campaign reviews to make you a better cold emailer
- Automatic follow-ups based on triggers like link clicks
- Monitor clicks, replies, and also A/B test emails
Milkshake is very affordable, starting at just $29 a month, and provides everything you need to set-up and distribute your email blasts along with personalisation and follow-ups within minutes.
Who’s it good for?
Mailshake is perfect for users of Lead Peep (above) and basically any person or business who needs to reach a list of leads they have, regardless of what the campaign aims to achieve.
Cold email is hard to master but one of the other of the many reasons I love Mailshake is because they provide all of the resources you need to master your outreach as effectively as possible. They have a masterclass consisting of 8 lessons that will enable you to get the most out of your campaigns.
You can find out more about Mailshake or get signed up here.
3. OptinMonster – Conversion Optimisation Software
OptinMonster helps you to supercharge your lead generation from your current traffic by providing all of the tools required to design and put together stunning forms that can be served to your website visitors at the right time with behaviour automation and segmentation.
They offer a variety of ways to serve forms to your visitors such as fullscreen welcome mats, lightbox popups, floating bars, slide-in scroll boxes and yes / no forms to name a few.
Their exit-intent technology is brilliant for saving lost leads at the very last moment.
Key features of OptinMonster:
- Drag ‘n’ Drop form builder and beautiful pre-made templates
- Mobile-friendly popups (very important)
- More than 26 animation and sound effects for maximum impact
- Campaign triggers include exit-intent, timed display, scrolling triggers and more
- Dynamic text insertion and traffic source detection
- Geo-location settings to present different offers based on location
- A/B testing for finding the best conversion rates
OptinMonster starts from just $19 a month, a bargain if you ask me, and includes everything you need to get an effective campaign launched to capture more leads from your traffic.
Who’s it good for?
EVERYBODY! No, seriously, I genuinely believe that everybody should be using this.
It doesn’t matter whether you’re selling products or services, or driving traffic to your content to make money with display advertising or affiliate marketing. You must collect email addresses.
If you’re selling products, offer a discount (their coupon wheel is perfect for this). If you’re selling marketing services like SEO, offer a free SEO course (and also free site audit, see the MySiteAuditor tool below). If you have SaaS product (like us) then you could offer a free 6-week course.
You can find out more about OptinMonster or get signed up here.
4. Unbounce – Landing Pages
Unbounce is an awesome lead gen tool for building landing pages that convert like crazy.
If you’re running, or plan to run, PPC campaigns with Google, Facebook or any other advertising platform then you will want to be sending traffic to landing pages rather than a generic website page. Why you ask? Because these convert 65% better than generic website pages.
Key features of Unbounce:
- Build laser-focused landing pages for increased conversion rates
- Achieve a higher AdWords quality score, lower cost per click and better CPA
- Over 100 beautiful pre-made templates to customise
- Drag ‘n’ Drop builder if you want to create a landing page from scratch
- Automatic SSL encryption for all landing pages
- A/B testing to achieve to best conversion rate and CPA
Unbounce starts from $79 a month which is perfectly reasonable for what it offers. Once launched and refined, you’ll save money on ad spend and get a better cost-per-acquisition.
Who’s it good for?
Every website that runs pay per click advertising or is driving traffic via other methods of display advertising, remarketing, etc. either to get direct signups, sales or collect email addresses.
Quickly and easily set-up your attention-grabbing landing pages, A/B test your text and offering and find the best recipe for your lead generation success. Try offering free courses, free whitepapers, trials, coupons for discounts and other things you feel may compel your audience to give out their email address.
You can find out more about Unbounce or get signed up here.
5. Ruler Analytics – Call Tracking & Attribution
Ruler Analytics is a call tracking and marketing attribution product. It helps you to keep track of exactly where all of your sales and leads are coming from, on a per channel basis. Not only that, but it shows you which marketing channel is responsible for each and every phone call.
For example, if you had 10 form conversions in a single day, you could see that 8 of them came from organic Google traffic (SEO win) and 2 of them via Google Paid (PPC fail).
Ruler enables businesses to minimise waste, and maximise time and budget.
Key features of Ruler Analytics:
- Multi-channel marketing attribution for insight to increase ROAS
- Visitor-level analytics with full visitor journeys, sales and lead conversions
- Add lead source data to Salesforce or other CRM software
- Automatically scrape form data even when they’re not completed
- Dynamic phone number insertion to track calls from every marketing channel
- Record phone calls and playback at anytime
Ruler Analytics starts from £99 a month which I think is reasonable for the insight that their product will provide you with. It’ll pay for itself within just a couple of months if you use it correctly.
Who’s it good for?
Ruler Analytics is an ideal addition to any business where budget is being allocated and spent on marketing or advertising of any kind, including SEO, PPC and other forms of display advertising.
You can find out more about Ruler Analytics or get signed up here.
6. A1WebStats – Company Identification
A1WebStats is a business identification tool for discovering potential leads you didn’t know you had. Similar tools include Whoisvisiting, Leadfeeder and Lead Forensics.
Companies who visit your website may or may not be interested in your product or service, but the only way to find out is to find out that they’re actually looking, and then introduce yourself and your business to them. But you can’t do that without a lead generation tool like A1WebStats.
Key features of A1WebStats:
- See the businesses who have viewed your website, and pages they visited
- Business information, including contact information
- Trigger alerts when a new company has visited your website
- Lead scoring based on business interaction with your page and its pages
- Social profiles (LinkedIn) of organisation members
- Email address of most suitable job role at the business for you to use when emailing
Who’s it good for?
Personally, I’d recommend that any business who sells its products or services to other businesses should be using a company identification tool like A1WebStats. It makes no sense whatsoever to leave those potential leads sitting on the table when all they may need is a demo or conversation with a human to get them over the line. More leads, and ultimately sales, are guaranteed.
It starts at around £59 a month but they also offer a free 30-day trial where you’ll get a taste for exactly how they can help you to find and close more leads. I’d recommend at least trying it.
You can find out more about A1WebStats or get signed up here.
7. BuzzStream – Influencer Outreach
Buzzstream is an awesome outreach tool that enables you to find influencers, build relationships and ultimately secure placements for your business, usually the main objective with this is to get backlinks to improve SEO and search engine rankings in Google and other search engines.
By using Buzzstream you can cut out the middlemen you usually use for your outreach, such as Fat Joe, who pay bloggers only a fraction of what you pay them for your blogger outreach.
Key features of Buzzstream:
- Find influencers by keyword including contact info and social media numbers
- Segment data by domain authority or social media reach
- Choose from ready-made templates or create your own easily
- Send personalised emails with automated follow-ups
- Sexy dashboard with the status of every outreach effort
- Allocate team members to campaigns and see their performance
Buzzstream starts from $24 a month with 1,000 contacts which is probably perfect for getting a taste for the power and potential of their brilliant outreach management tool.
Who’s it good for?
Every business with a website, either to be used by the owner or marketing team.
Use Buzzstream to find and reach out to bloggers in your industry to get backlinks from placing pre-written content on their blogs, either for free as a guest post or, more likely, a fee.
You can find out more about Buzzstream or get signed up here.
8. Intercom – Live Chat & Help Center
Intercom is a fantastic tool that enables you to acquire, engage and support either new, potential or current customers through the use of live chat, help centers and more.
Live chat with smart automated bots help to get potential customers over the line faster by automatically qualifying leads for you and routing them to the right people on your team for closing. And help centers will give your potential customers and clients the answers they need so there’s no delay in signing up. Leave no doubt in their minds, and close more leads.
There’s a 82% higher conversion rate when you chat with visitors on your website.
Key features of Intercom:
- Business Messenger (live chat)
- Awesome team inbox for seamless sales and support collaboration
- Chat bot can answer your most common questions
- Auto-route conversations to the right people
- Help center to answer all of your visitors most common questions
- Integration with CRMs and other tools
Intercom have a free plan with just live chat, but to get the extra features such as a help center and bot automated and seamless collaboration, paid plans start at $136 a month.
Who’s it good for?
The real question is – who’s it not good for?
Intercom helps you to speak to your visitors as they’re browsing your website and answer any of their burning questions before they have a chance to change their minds. More leads!
A help center is a very important resource for any business website. Potential customers and clients will usually always have questions they would like answers to before they’ll hand over their hard earned cash, and Intercom makes setting up one of these a breeze with multiple help categories and articles for easy browsing for your visitors. It’s a no-brainer, really.
The seamless chat between sales and support team members is one of my personal favourites and ensures that the visitor is always speaking to the qualified member of your team.
You can find out more about Intercom or get signed up here.
9. MySiteAuditor – Lead Generator for Agencies
MySiteAuditor is a free SEO audit tool that, according to their website, will get you 10x more leads and sales than you would usually get from your marketing or design website.
The tool asks your website visitors “What’s Your SEO Score?” and asks them for their website URL, a target keyword and their email address. That’s a lead interested in SEO services. The audit will provide an SEO score and highlight any poorly performing areas, which is where you and your SEO agency comes in to help. Reports can be used in meetings and include your branding.
Key features of MySiteAuditor:
- Free SEO audit tool for marketing and design agencies
- Add your own branding (logo, colours and contact information)
- Email, Download or Print Report PDFs
- Embed the audit forms into your website for seamless use
- Complete conversion tracking
- Integration with a number of the best CRM software
MySiteAuditor starts from just $39 a month which enables you to add your own branding, but you’ll need to have the $79 plan to embed it on your own website and use the CRM integrations.
Who’s it good for?
I’d recommend that any marketing and design agencies who offer, or want to offer, SEO services to be utilising the powerful conversion qualities offering in the MSA tool.
It’s wonderful at pushing conversions because it shows business owners who are desperate for success online exactly where they’re going wrong from an SEO perspective and, in all likelihood, they won’t know how to resolve it themselves and will therefore require your help in putting together and managing an SEO campaign for them.
You can find out more about MySiteAuditor or get signed up here.
10. Trustpilot – Brand Reviews
Trustpilot is the most popular consumer reviews website on the internet with over 400 million monthly Google impressions, which means being visible on this platform to fulfil customer confidence is not just an option, but a necessity, if you want to make sure your pushing as much as you can from every angle to secure any edge or extra sale that you possibly can.
It’s been proven that the majority of people look at the reviews for a company and its products or services before deciding whether to sign up or make the purchase.
Not only that, but displaying them right on your site provides instant confidence to buy.
Key features of Trustpilot:
- Trustpilot company review page with link and NAP citation
- View and respond to reviews for free
- Request reference numbers to avoid negative reviews from competitors
- Automatically ask for reviews with integrations with shopping cars and CMS software
- Drive traffic with Google Seller ratings and rich snippet star ratings
- Improve conversions with widgets to display on your website
Trustpilot offer a free plan that is perfect for most businesses, just for accepting and responding to reviews, but if you want to send invitations you’ll only have 100 of these a month to play with. Paid plans start from $299 a month which is very expensive, but for the right businesses it can definitely be worth paying for.
Who’s it good for?
Every single business, with a website, on planet earth.
A lot of business owners want to hide from reviews and avoid creating review channels, but that’s the wrong attitude to have in business. Reviews help, not only to provide confidence in potential customers and clients but to also help you to improve.
Embrace reviews and ratings of your products and services. Display the widgets proudly across your website and offer benefits to your users for taking the time to review you honestly.
You can find out more about Trustpilot or get signed up here.
11. Vyper – Competitions
Vyper is an awesome tool for creating viral campaigns, including contests, to boost your social engagement, online revenue and customer retention. And, of course, collect new leads.
A lot of businesses will run regular contests to create buzz and engagement in their industry, among the people who are interested in their products and services. And that’s a great idea. For example, if you have a SaaS product (like us) you could run contests for free plan upgrades or free accounts which is exciting and can save people a lot of money.
That’s something I’m considering right now, actually. Free account giveaways every month.
Key features of Vyper:
- Create viral contests and reward campaigns
- Contest leaderboards to provide a competitive nature to contests
- Provide bonus entries for social interaction to grow social media channels
- Grant bonus entries for referring friends (even more viral growth)
- Smart cheating and fraud prevention systems in-place
- Simple winners draw
Vyper starts at $34 a month for 10,000 participants which is perfectly reasonable and probably more than enough for the majority of businesses who will use it for their campaigns.
Who’s it good for?
Any business who wants to add another element of their marketing growth.
Creating a frequent buzz within your industry, among your target market, is a fantastic and effective way of reaching a lot more people than you usually do. And it fills people with positivity.
Try running a contest once a month or every 6 months just to see how it helps your business. Give away some great products, and give runners-up and bonus prizes to make everyone involved feel like they have a chance next time you run one. Don’t be tight with prizes or nobody with take part.
You can find out more about Vyper or get signed up here.
Hotjar is brilliant data and analytics tool for seeing how your visitors use your website and where they drop off by using highly customisable heatmaps and conversion funnels.
Key features of Hotjar:
- Click, scroll and move heatmaps by device type
- Heatmap recordings of real visitor sessions
- View user actions and take notes
- Create conversion funnels and see where users are dropping off
- Analyse website forms and see which fields are scaring away visitors
Hotjar starts from €89 a month for businesses, for up to 20,000 impressions per day, although they do offer a free limited account for personal websites which can also be handy.
Who’s it good for?
Hotjar is perfect for any website where the end goal is a sale or lead.
It’s great for getting a 360° view of how your visitors are interacting with your website, its menus, your forms and conversion funnels to see where things are going wrong, or could improve.
You can find out more about Hotjar or get signed up here.
So there you have it, a fantastic list of 12 awesome lead generation tools.
Hopefully some of them will come in handy for you and your business, and if there are any you know that we have missed from our list please let us know so we can have a look and include it.
Senior SEO Executive at Paramount Digital and frequent knowledge-sharer on our blog, with over 10 years of SEO and general digital marketing experience.