In our previous post in this marketing tools series, we wrote about our top 5 web analytics tools. This time, it’s time to look at some of the best SEO tools out there.
SEO is one of the most effective ways of increasing your traffic without a huge budget. But you won’t get very far without the right tools. Some are free, but others are well worth spending a few bucks on.
So, without further ado, here are our top 5 free and paid SEO tools.
1. Google (and Bing) Webmaster Tools
We love free tools and it doesn’t hurt when it comes straight from the source. SEO is all about ranking better in the search engines, so using the free tools from Google and Bing is a must for all SEO enthusiasts. Google recently rebranded Webmaster Tools to Google Search Console (GSC) and it is the most used tool in our toolbox. and Even though it’s fairly basic, it comes from the most trusted source and it doesn’t hurt that it’s free.
Most companies have set up and regularly use GSC but ignore Bing. This is a mistake, as it offers more in-depth SEO improvement recommendations.
2. Screaming Frog
This is our go-to tool for technical SEO audits. It gives you a ridiculous amount of data and you can crawl up to 500 URLs for free. Use this tool to find duplicate content, server errors, meta robots tags, canonical tags, and more. If you want to unlock all the features and unlimited crawl, get the license for only £99 for the whole year.
3. AdWords Keyword Planner
All SEO starts with thorough keyword research and the AdWords Keyword Planner is definitely the best free option out there. It might not give you exact numbers, but it’s very useful for comparison and being directionally correct.
4. Google Analytics
Google Analytics is probably the only tool that makes it to more than 1 list of marketing tools (SEO and web analytics). An important aspect of SEO is understanding your website visitors and that is what Google Analytics helps you do. You can set up your SEO dashboard and have access to a wealth of information that will help your SEO efforts, especially when linked with Google Search Console. Read this post for some ideas about how you can use Google Analytics to get the most out of SEO.
5. Yoast WordPress SEO Plugin
Did you know that WordPress counts for more than 20% of all websites in the world and almost 60% of all websites that use a content management system (CMS)? This blog is actually run on WordPress. If you had to choose only one plugin for your WordPress website, the Yoast WordPress SEO Plugin would be my definite recommendation.
Moz is the number 1 SEO company in the business. It offers a lot of useful tools, both basic and advanced, and a Moz subscription is well worth it. You can easily set up campaigns and let Moz do all the hard work for you, such as tracking keywords rankings, grade your landing pages and more. Moz’s biggest strength is its ability to analyze your competitors links and reveal opportunities for link building.
SEMRush is another powerful tool, packed with advanced features. SEMRush is really versatile, offering a comprehensive lineup of tools. Their main focus, however, is on competitor and keyword research. If you have an international (or non-U.S.) business, SEMRush does a great job providing data from various markets.
SpyFu is my go-to tool for competitor research. This tool is particularly helpful for those who are looking to set up a PPC campaign. They also have 7 years of keyword ranking history, which is very impressive, and a range of other useful SEO features.
4. Raven Tools
If you are doing SEO for a client, where reporting is an important factor, Raven Tools could be the right tool for you. Raven Tools pulls data from various sources, such as Moz and Majestic, and gives you a great overview of your SEO efforts. It is probably the most comprehensive tool out there, giving you access to many other non-SEO features.
Raven Tools Website
Although different from Moz, Majestic is comparable to Moz when it comes to link building. Majestic gives you all the data you would need for effective link building and has numerous features that you won’t find elsewhere.
Have you used any of these tools before? How was your experience and which are you favorites and why? Let us know in the comments!