Why There Isn't More Open-Source Marketing Software

I'm grateful for the tools we do have in the open-source community, but I wish there were more. Some of the glaring omissions from this stack include SEO software, social media management, and more options for email marketing.

One of the major obstacles to developing more open-source marketing tools is the self-hosting requirement. Unlike developers, 95% of marketers are not comfortable operating open-source software on their local machines. A challenge for the social media management and email software categories is that these tools don't cost much. There are multiple options for less than ten dollars a month. In the SEO category, the crawling and indexing component is an obstacle. Where do you store the data? Who pays for that? 

That said, lots of marketers don't use SEO software, and the lack of social media management software isn't a real blocker. It just makes social media easier to manage. That leaves us with a perfectly viable marketing stack and here are the reasons we selected the tools above.

Data and Analytics

In the data and analytics layer, Matomo offers everything you would find in Google Analytics and more. Matomo offers session replay, A/B testing, and 100% data ownership. If you don't want to mess with an on-premise installation, you can purchase Matomo's cloud option and support the project. 

The Foundation - CDP & CRM

Next up is Mautic, an open-source customer data platform developed by Acquia. It offers all of the core CDP features you expect to see. Data import, contact unification, Drag-and-drop journey orchestration, email integrations, and more. Mautic is offered in a free, self-hosted version, and paid cloud version.

We chose Odoo for the CRM since it's the only robust open-source CRM we've been able to find. Despite it being one of the only options, it's a great software that's packed with features. Odoo uses the AGPL license but still offers a free cloud-hosted option. Odoo lets you use one of their cloud apps for free and we recommend using their CRM. This is really helpful for marketers that don't want to mess with self-hosting marketing software. 

A challenge with Odoo and Mautic is that neither software offers an integration app for the other. However, there are connectors on Zapier, Make and other platforms to pass data and contacts between the systems.

Content Management Systems

There are lots of great CMS options and we've included 3 of them here. These options offer trade-offs between technical ability and flexibility. WordPress is an OK option for users with limited development capabilities but provides less flexibility. 

Strapi offers a ton of flexibility but requires more development knowledge. Drupal is a great middle option. It offers a lot of flexibility and several hosting companies provide Drupal-specific dev ops workflows. Drupal doesn't require a ton of development knowledge but does require an understanding of data models. Don't let this scare you though. The data model is just the relationship between content types.

Email Marketing

Since we've selected Mautic for the CDP, it makes sense to use their email marketing software as well. There is an integration between Mautic and Tracardi, but this is more straightforward. 


If you know of open-source software that isn't being included, please let us know.