These days, it’s no longer possible to run extensive SEO campaigns with the help of the Google Keyword Tool only. There are so many powerful tools available that make an in-depth analysis of data easier than ever, that those who don’t use them immediately face an uphill battle trying to keep up with the competition or second guessing the strategy.
Now, you may find that you don’t need to use all of these tools – some of them share the same functions, while others complement each other in different ways. However, all of them are trustworthy, reliable and very effective, therefore you can be sure that no matter which ones turn out to be more suitable to your individual preferences, all of them provide immense value to any SEO campaign.
These are the tools we employ ourselves as well for all our marketing campaigns.. Some of these have been around for a while, others are just starting out, but all of them are great for search engine optimisation and are truly worth the investment.
As far as SEO tools go, SEMrush can be considered the Cadillac. It’s used by millions of marketers and business owners around the world to effectively and conveniently track all the data from their SEO and PPC campaigns.
In fact, it’s so useful in many different aspects, that it might be viewed as multiple tools conveniently bundled with one software.
The main functions of the app can be split into four categories – domain analytics, keyword analytics, projects and reports.
The domain analytics section allows you to delve deep into analysing numerous traffic statistics for keywords, both for your own sites and the competition. This helps to develop a very deep profile of the market and understand which keywords are worth pursuing, as well as evaluate the competitiveness and chances of ranking quickly.
Keyword analytics help to sort through all the possible keywords that might be relevant in your niche – you can see what your competitors are ranking for, how much traffic are they getting for different keywords, which allows to quickly find keywords that are worth pursuing.
The Projects and My Reports are very helpful at keeping track of your projects, as well as having a convenient and fast way to generate reports of your progress, which comes in handy when communicating with clients.
To put it shortly, AHrefs is a terrific tool for backlinks analysis. It has been around since 2011, and since then has grown to be one of the biggest providers of such services online, with their crawler processing up to 6 billion pages per day, an absolutely incredible number, considering that Google itself only crawls three times as much.
This means that you always get the most recent backlink info available, and can use it to analyse the competition and form powerful backlink strategies for yourself.
While the price isn’t the cheapest, with the Lite package starting at $99 per month (or $82, if you choose the annual billing option), it has the luxury of charging a premium for its services – the data gets updated every fifteen minutes, so you can have the most accurate information as possible when it comes to backlinks.
3. RegisterCompass (for finding auction and expired domains)
Finding a domain name that has excellent metrics, contains relevant keywords and is available can be a very difficult task. When you’re in a competitive niche that has a lot of websites, that can be almost impossible.
At least, not without some help.
That’s where RegisterCompass becomes so valuable – it’s unmatched when you need to keep tabs on what relevant domain names expire or become available for auction.
In order to claim a real winner of a domain name, you need to act fast, and the various tools available at RegisterCompass help to do just that.
It has a terrific filter operator, which allows you to sort the domains according to many different criteria such as keywords, authority, domain name quality, backlinks and many others until you find the perfect domain name for the campaign you’re working on.
A good way to impress potential clients is to use Mysiteauditor.com – you can generate a beautiful 9-page audit of a client‘s website in under 30 seconds.
It‘s very easy to use, looks amazing and provides an in-depth audit of what needs to be improved on a website.
The audit follows the best guidelines for website optimisation and SEO and can help quickly spot any flaws a website has that might hinder its efforts of attaining rankings on the search engines.
It‘s a good starting point when working with potential clients, as it helps them see the issues explained in clear and specific terms, but it can also be very beneficial if you want to improve your own site as well – the audit can help you try and fix the solutions yourself, or at least be more educated when discussing an SEO package with a company that‘s providing the service for your business.
5. Screaming Frog
While quick audits are great, you can’t really compare them to the stuff you can do with a tool as effective as Screaming Frog. Whether it’s analysing internal links, looking for flaws in the site content and metadata, or just general troubleshooting, Screaming Frog provides an incredibly detailed and thorough solution to make sure the website is optimised as well as it can be.
But, of course, saying that Screaming Frog is a kick-ass auditing tool would be underselling it – it’s basically an all-in-one SEO tool, which can also help you do deep-level keyword research, analyse your competition, build links, or in other words, set up the complete SEO strategy using just this one tool.
And while that’s not recommended, as different tools have their own strengths, with Screaming Frog being amazing at deep-level auditing and optimising of a website, you could do a lot worse that trust at least part of your SEO legwork to the tool that has won the UK Search Award for helping to ‘inspire and revolutionise the UK search industry’.
6. MOZ Toolbar
As you can probably see by now, auditing and tweaking aresome of the most important parts of any long-term SEO strategy.
That’s why getting different perspectives from a few tools is so helpful, and the MOZ Toolbar, or MozBar as it’s also known, is so popular among search engine marketers. It can help you keep tabs on a lot more Moz metrics (Moz Rank, Domain Rank, Spam Score to name just a few), track your rankings, and provide a thorough search visibility score, which is a good indicator of how well your website is performing.
It can also help with analysing your page authority, domain authority, doing competitor analysis or keyword research, as well as many other useful tasks.
Majestic is mainly a backlinks analysis tool, similar to AHrefs in a lot of ways, and there has been a continuous discussion in the SEO community about which tool is better.
And while a lot of people prefer AHrefs for its larger index size, there is doubt whether that doesn’t come at a cost of less accurate data regarding the quality of the links. Majestic has been trying to emphasise their focus on only indexing quality links and providing more accurate data, especially after the Google’s Panda update.
But all competition aside, you can still enjoy the enormous benefits that both of these tools offer, and in the end, it does come down to individual preferences more than anything else.
We mainly use this tools for analysing the Trust Flow and Citation Flow. Trust Flow (TF) is one of the Majestic Flow Metrics, which is weighted by the number of clicks from a seed set of trusted sites to a given URL, or Domain. Citation Flow (CF) Citation Flow is the other Majestic Flow Metrics, which is weighted by the number citations to a given URL, or Domain.
Trying to find good content ideas can be a boring and time-consuming chore. Especially when you want more than just to fill your website with words.
This is where BuzzSumo is a true revelation – it allows you to see what kind of content in your industry gets read and shared the most, basically you a shortcut to seeing the biggest problems your audience faces, and the hot topics of today that are addressed by some of your industry’s experts.
You can develop countless content ideas, but perhaps the second part of BuzzSumo is even more powerful – it allows you to find the biggest influencers in your market, the people whose opinion truly matters to your audience. That can be invaluable information since you know who to turn to when you want someone to help spread your message.
Another cool feature is the possibility to set up content alerts in relevant niches, which allow you to keep tabs on the top content in your industry.
A huge part of running successful SEO campaigns is finding as much as possible about what your competition is doing. And that’s where SpyFu can be simply invaluable – it allows you to “Spy” (pun intended) on your competitions’ organic and PPC keywords, clicks per day, bid prices, daily budget and many other stats.
This means that you can emulate the good practices, learn from the bad ones, and try to improve on what they are doing, taking a chunk of their leads in the process.
When entering a new market, or starting out with SEO, this tool can shortcut your way to actually seeing tangible results by a lot, since after analysing even just a few of the competitors you can start seeing clear patterns of what works and what doesn’t.
10. Longtail Pro
As the name suggests, Longtail Pro is a keyword research tool that lets you dive deep into finding the best keywords in your niche. And while there are plenty of keyword research tools available, many as part of a larger software, what makes Longtail Pro so effective is it’s simple and user-friendly interface and the ability to do deep research for multiple keywords at once.
Instead of having to do each option individually, you can simply set up the parameters, plug in your seed keywords and let it work for you. This makes finding the keywords that have the most potential in your niche easier than ever.
With so many companies fighting for the same Google rankings position for the premium keywords, every little advantage you can get becomes essential. That’s why there’s always room for additional SEO tools which can provide you more data, make your research process easier, or give you new ideas on how to reach your target audience.
These ten tools, while somewhat overlapping, all make thelife of SEO experts worldwide easier by giving them in-depth knowledge about SEO, that just a short while ago was very hard to obtain.
Right now, it all comes down to who can get the most of the tools that are available to everyone, but that means that utilising them to the best of your abilities is no longer optional – it’s a necessity in order to remain competitive.