How Much Does a Business Need to Spend on Marketing Software

Discover how much others pay for online marketing tools. And let's make a digital marketing budget breakdown!

Denis Sushchenko
October 06, 2023

So, you are a small business owner and you have decided to spend money on an all-in-one marketing platform. But how do you know if you're paying too much? Or maybe it's worth adding money to make your online marketing skyrocket? We'll talk about this in this article.


Table of Contents




Why an All-in-One Platform Is So Good


Statistics report that as of spring 2022, there are almost 10 thousand solutions in the marketing software market. This is 24% more than in 2020. On the one hand, for small businesses this means huge opportunities — you can find a bunch of tools to solve absolutely any marketing problem. On the other hand, putting together your own “package” of tools with such a huge selection is damn difficult. This is partly why many people prefer all-in-one marketing platforms.

All-in-one platforms include all the applications necessary for online marketing — CRM, website builder, chatbots, and email marketing software. They are integrated with each other out of the box, and you pay not for each application individually, but for the entire package — and that makes the payment process convenient.

However, in the case of all-in-one platforms, as a rule, a freemium pricing model is used. This means that there is no fixed price — it is flexible and depends on what exactly and how much you use. In other words, it’s up to you how much to pay for the software.


How Much to Pay: Industry and Growth Stage


Software expenses should be a separate item in your marketing budget. This means that whether you like it or not, first of all, you’ll have to calculate how much you’re going to spend on marketing in general and on digital marketing in particular.

According to The CMO Survey, in 2023 the amount of money companies are spending on marketing has risen to 10.9% of their total earnings. More than half of this money (53.8%) is the digital marketing budget. So, it turns out that companies invest 5.7% of their revenue into digital marketing every month.

When looking at specific sectors, education leads the way by using 75.5% of their marketing budget for digital marketing. Technology firms are not far behind, spending 65.7% of their marketing funds. Health care companies also heavily invest in digital approaches, allocating 64.6% of their marketing budget to them.

However, when discussing the marketing budget, we must not forget about the growth stage. Let's divide companies into three types: high-growth, moderate-growth, and stable-growth companies.


Startups or High-Growth Companies


They need to grow quickly, so they should spend 15%-30% of their expected revenue on marketing. For example, if a startup expects to earn $100K, they should spend $10K-$40K on marketing. Another way is to decide on a specific amount of money for their advertising. Simply because their earnings might be too small to use a part of it as a measure for the marketing budget.


Moderate-Growth Companies


These companies should increase their marketing budget to stay competitive. Typically, they spend 10%-15% of their total revenue on marketing. So, a company earning $2 million should spend about $400,000-$500,000 on marketing.


Stable-Growth Companies


These are usually larger companies with more marketing budgets. They spend 2%-10% of their revenue on marketing, aiming to maintain their market position.

Not so simple, right?

Well, luckily there’s a general guideline, and it suggests that B2B companies should use 2-5% of their income on marketing, while B2C — 5-20%. At least.

Specific figures are revealed by Databox. After surveying 85 small businesses, they found out that 52% of respondents spend 5-15 thousand dollars a month on marketing. At the same time, 16.4% of respondents spend more than 15 thousand, and 31.6% spend less than 5 thousand.


Digital Marketing Budget Breakdown


Now that we know that companies spend 5.7% of their revenue on digital marketing every month, let’s see what digital marketing budget includes. Keep in mind, that this is just one of the variants, of how you can manage your money:


Content Marketing (30-40%)

This covers costs for creating and publishing things like blog posts, videos, social media posts, etc. It takes time and money to produce good content that helps your business grow. Consider how much content you want to publish each month and how much you want to promote it when setting your budget.


Paid Ads (20-30%)

Paid ads can help bring more people to your website and increase brand awareness. You pay to show your ads to the audience of the platform you're advertising on. This could be online ads, traditional ads, or both. You can track your return on investment (ROI) from these ads, so research and allocate funds to different ad channels.


Creative Design and Branding (5-10%)

This includes costs for things like printing, hiring freelancers or specialists, software tools, etc. Good design can make your marketing stand out, so don't overlook this part of the budget.


Public Relations and Events (5-10%)

This is money spent on activities to build your business presence, such as hosting events or managing your brand reputation. Costs can vary based on the type of event and other factors.


Analytics (2-6%)

Analytics help you make informed business decisions based on your data. The cost of analytics depends on the tools you use and whether you outsource the work.


Tools and Software (10%)

These help streamline tasks and track the success of your campaigns. They usually charge a monthly or yearly fee.


Staff Members (10%)

This covers salaries, training, benefits, and other employee-related costs. Investing in your staff can boost their knowledge, motivation, and morale.

As we said, this is just one option for your digital marketing budget. And, as you can see, as much as 10% is allocated to software here. It includes a marketing automation platform, email marketing platform, CMS, CRM, and other stuff. But what if we boil it down just to one thing — An all-in-one marketing platform?


How Much Does an All-in-One Platform Cost


Let's take our TruVISIBILITY Suite as an example. Our pricing model is freemium. It means that pricing is based on usage over the free monthly allotment. As your business grows, you only pay for what you use without any contract. Thus, our TruVISIBILITY Suite is extremely affordable for small to medium businesses.

A freemium TruVISIBILITY account allows you to:

  • Create a chatbot that can conduct up to 100 conversations per month
  • Launch email blasts, start drip campaign, etc. with 1000 free emails sent monthly
  • Send 1000 SMS texts per month
  • Build 1 website including a blog
  • 1 GB of storage usage
  • 1 SSL certificate
  • Unlimited API usage

Trust us, this functionality is more than enough to get started! And when you realize that it would be nice to boost your email marketing and 1000 free monthly emails is not enough for that, just adjust your pricing in our cost calculator. So simple!




When you start your business, you are full of enthusiasm. However, later it turns out that just baking cupcakes is not enough. You also need to count expenses, taking into account all sorts of little things — for example, such as marketing software.

It’s difficult to say exactly how much you should spend on a CRM and chatbot, a website, and an email marketing platform. Everything is individual, so some businesses spend less than 5 thousand dollars a month, while others spend more than 15 thousand.

But one thing is for sure — it’s always better to start with an all-in-one platform that works on a freemium pricing model. When you are just starting your business, a free monthly allotment will be enough for you. When you realize that it’s time to step up your marketing, add what’s necessary.

Register a freemium TruVISIBILITY account and get unlimited access to fully functional marketing software free of cost!