There is no dearth of SEO tools out there, but how do we know which ones are essential for your needs and can deliver on their promise?
Whether you are analyzing your own website to see how you can improve your rankings or whether you are trying to develop a link strategy by checking on what your competition is doing, these SEO tools can give you the clarity and input that you’re looking for.
Narrowing down on the right SEO tools for your digital marketing needs can be confusing. So, here’s a list of the best tried-and-tested SEO tools for different purposes. They do not all need to be used as standalone tools. You can achieve the best results for your website by using more than one of these and seeing what works for you.
1. Screaming Frog
Screaming Frog is a great SEO tool for analyzing your website’s performance and identifying technical tweaks that you can make to improve your search engine rankings.
It can be used to crawl websites to find redirects, meta refreshes, or duplicate page issues that generally are labour-intensive. Some of these take years to identify and by the time they are identified, the damage is already done. After Google released indexing as one of the metrics for ranking, many sites make the mistake of indexing everything, thinking that it‘ll help. Screaming Frog shows you which pages shouldn’t be indexed so that it does not impact the relevance or visibility of the page, and is not identified as spam by Google.
2. Google Search Console
Any website owner needs to have a Google search console. To understand why it’s an absolute must-have, it’s important to know that the website data being analyzed varies based on the SEO tool being used. Most tools have to use guesstimate data owing to accessibility issues, which is where the Google Search Console has an added advantage—it analyses first-party data, or data that comes directly from Google. That way, you know that the number of clicks your site is getting, the keywords that are leading to these clicks, and whether your website is experiencing any mobile issues. This data is accurate and reliable.
3. Google Analytics
Your website content might be top-notch, and you might be the expert in your niche, but the inner structure of your website can make or break your online presence.
Google analytics has a user-friendly interface that gives you information about who clicks the link to your website, how long they stay browsing it, and what they click or do not click on your website. You can use this information to cater to your visitors in a more personalized way.
Now, why is it important to analyze consumer behaviour? Isn’t it enough that they are able to find your website?
The answer is—bounce rate.
Visitors that find your page but do not find what they are looking for might be the reason for your website’s high traffic, but low conversions, leading to a high bounce rate. Google Analytics provides detailed reports on pages that have a high bounce rate, which you can use to make changes to your website that will result in increased conversions.
4. Google Page Speed Insights
Google Page Speed Insights has a specific metric to assess your site. It gives you a score out of 100, in addition to insights on optimizing website performance.
While it has become a point of pride for website owners to chase the 100 pointer test and boast full scores, the best way to utilize Google Page Speed Insights is to look the other way—at their recommendations. While it can be used with other SEO tools to provide the best results, their recommendations can provide website insights that can help your site surge ahead of your competitors.
5. Google Mobile-Friendly Testing Tool
Google’s ranking criteria keeps changing to keep up with user preferences. One significant change has been to prioritize mobile sites over desktop ones. Suffice it to say that your website needs to be considered mobile-friendly to even have a shot at figuring in the top search results.
Google’s mobile-friendly testing tool makes that job a lot easier by measuring ease of reading and navigation. It even comes up with suggestions for improvement. It looks for issues like flash, horizontal scrolling, and inappropriate fonts, which can seem innocuous, but can put you either miles ahead of your competition or miles behind.
6. Google Structured Data Testing Tool
On the surface, this might seem like a simple tool that helps you test your structured data and provides you with actionable feedback, in addition to checking whether your code is correctly implemented or not. It can be used to validate JSON-LD, Microdata, and RDFa formats while administering schemas on your website.
The best feature of this tool, however, is that it can assess the data to help you identify segments of the audience that your page would be relevant to, thus giving you a niche target market to tap into.
The odds of any website’s keywords dominating search engine results at all times are, to put it mildly, impossible.
This is why SEMRush specializes in doing keyword research for your site, analyzing the keyword strategies of your competition, and consistently altering the keyword strategy to piggyback on top trending keywords.
Its insights help capitalize on any relevant opportunities to promote your website data and look for backlinking opportunities, while consistently increasing the organic traffic to your site.
One of the more renowned tools on this list, Ahrefs is used to analyze your website’s overall SEO health.
Its golden feature is providing websites with accurate backlink analysis, which includes:
Tracking your competitor’s backlinks, and
Discovering toxic links that point to your own website thereby lowering SEO
The competitor backlink analysis helps identify the sites that are backlinking to most of the competitors in your niche, but not to you. You can use the competitor backlink analysis to rectify the situation, in addition to discovering newer link-building opportunities so that the backlinks keep rolling in. Their backlink analysis helps sites trim excess spam and focus on high-quality backlinks that contribute to overall rankings.
Mozbar is a pretty good starting point if you want to know how authoritative your site is in relation to your competition, or if you want to drive blog traffic to your site. It is simple to use. Just adding your site will show you all your on-page errors that can be easily fixed, like title tags, or duplicate content.
As the name suggests, Brightlocal is a great tool for businesses that require local SEO. With increased visibility and accessibility to local markets, Brightlocal covers all bases with it’s competition analysis, organic traffic, and its combination of on-site and off-site SEO practices.
It’s the perfect business tool for building local brand awareness, by utilizing its citation tracker, reputation manager, and a local search audit to ensure that your business is easily found by interested parties.
Whitespark is a tool that emphasizes thoroughness. It offers myriad products and services like HTML5, jQuery, and Google Analytics to assist local agencies with local search marketing.
Whitespark’s citation builder is one of its most important services, as citations help in legitimizing your business in accordance with the Google algorithm. It ensures the accuracy of information as it can be corroborated from multiple sources.
Essentially, Whitespark can help any local business obtain Google’s certificate of trust in your business.
Searchmetrics is the tool to have if you would like to understand your site’s visibility, through both organic and paid results, at a single glance.
Searchmetrics’s interface allows you to view the visibility history of the site, thereby giving you a graph-like understanding of your company’s growth, which marketing moves worked and which didn’t, thereby marking incidents of growth and drops. This information can help you restrategize for maximizing visibility.
Deepcrawl is a cloud-based Web crawler, but how is it different from the other bots that crawl your sites?
Deepcrawl lets you have control of your Web crawling, or crawling other sites, your backlinks, and switching between a host of flexible crawl types.
The best part? Many sites do not reach their full potential because of simple coding errors that directly impact revenue, but Deepcrawl allows you to release SEO-friendly code without risking business revenue, thus giving you an added advantage.
14. Website Grader
As an SEO tool, Website Grader helps optimize website performance by analyzing your website traffic, your social media feed, and by flagging potential bugs or areas of improvement for your site.
Some of the features that Website grader examines to ensure that your pages make it to the top are:
1. Mobile compatibility
2. Clarity of content
3. Page speed
4. Marketing effectiveness of the site
With its arsenal of metrics like performance, security, and mobile readiness, it assesses the marketing effectiveness of your site and gives you an inbound marketing score to make your site more efficient.
15. Developer toolbar
Every modern Web browser includes a powerful suite of developer tools. The Web developer toolbar assists you in debugging to reduce the load time of your site on different browsers and to check your site responsiveness on desktop and mobile versions, with options to tweak the screen resolution of your website.
These tools do a range of things, from inspecting currently-loaded HTML, CSS to showing which assets the page has requested and seeing how these changes reflect on your website.
A Page speed analysis tool, GTmegtrix looks for opportunities to optimize website performance and provides recommendations to fix slow pages.
Speed index is one of the performance metrics under GTmetrix that measures the speed at which your page is visually complete on various platforms and provides detailed reports to fix any issues with your Web pages. This information is also gathered by assessing your site latency and lets you simulate different browsers and versions to see how it affects the loading time of your Web pages.
GTmetrix also has a performance report that gives you information about:
Speed index – the time taken for page contents to be visible
Time to Interactive –- for measuring load responsiveness
First contentful paint –- to measure the time taken for site visitors to view the content (text, images, video)
This information can be used to figure out which key aspects of the user experience can be improved upon to increase conversions from your site traffic.
17. W3c Validator
The W3c validator performs the crucial function of ensuring the technical quality of Web pages by checking if your website is up to code, or more specifically, follows the correct formatting standards as put forward by the World Wide Web consortium.
If the list of rookie mistakes like poor readability, or coding errors, which can directly hit your website traffic are plenty, W3c validator makes sure that your website does not suffer as a result and meets the necessary standards.
An SEO software tool adept at link analysis and link building, Majestic focuses entirely on SEO authority building through backlinks. As a specialist in backlink profiles, it can also be used with other tools as a reference tool.
Majestic tracks these aspects of link-building:
Trust flow –- checking if the links are from a high-end website and of good quality
Citation flow –- the volume of links that point to your website
Visibility flow –- editorial style links from highly trusted websites
Majestic uses this information to deliver your flow metric scores, which can pinpoint the areas in backlinking that need more attention. A healthy balance of all three aspects is important to achieve the best results.
Crawling does not get easier than this. Botify is a cloud-based crawler tool that analyses your site and gives you insights, but with a twist.
By letting sites administer the crawl speed, it can be slowed down so as to not stress site servers. It can also identify which sites have been crawled by Google and uses that crawl data to create a unique recommendation report for your website.
Instead of focusing on maximizing content, Botify is a unique SEO tool that can help you organize and present your website content more efficiently.
20. Barracuda Panguin
Panguin is a helpful SEO tool that can measure your website popularity across platforms, including organic visibility. A free tool developed by Barracuda digital, it helps your site assess and reassess promotional strategies. It also modifies it to align with Google’s SEO algorithms, while comparing it with competitors and assessing key trends from the past five years.
Penguin also has an intuitive encryption tool that can protect your best Web pages and generate alerts for any hacking attempts to your site.
They say the devil is in the details. Webpage helps you monitor your website in excruciating detail, by running performance tests across browsers and various locations around the globe while assessing the following:
The time required to load a page
The size of the Web page
The number of requests made by your Web page
The time taken for your request to be executed
Webpage test uses this information to break down critical information about your website’s performance in detail. It tells you if there are any slow elements, element errors, or 3rd party elements that have a heavy load time or file size.
Pick The Right SEO Services
Every business needs to find the right combination of SEO tools to achieve the perfect results. If you are wondering how to find the right strategies for your business and the SEO tools to complement your website’s unique needs, Infidigit is a leading specialist in performance-driven SEO that can help you create better engagement for your business.
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