7 Best SEO Tools to Help You Rank Higher in Google
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The key to building and maintaining organic traffic is knowing what are the best SEO tools to use. There are so many SEO checkers on the market today that it’s hard to know where to start. Should you invest in software or use a free program and conduct your own SEO analysis?
It doesn’t matter if you’re a search engine optimization specialist or just starting to understand how Google works. These are the best SEO tools for keyword research, link building, traffic analysis and understanding the competition.
Best SEO Tools for Keyword Research
Keywords are the basis for driving traffic to your website.
No matter what you write, it’s important to understand your target audience, which means knowing what search terms they’re typing into Google.
There are many different SEO tools to perform keyword research. Whether you’re running an individual startup or starting an SEO business, the following tools provide some of the most actionable insights.
Related: 4 Keyword Research Strategies to Grow Your Business
SEMrush is one of the most popular SEO analysis options out there. It lets you track paid traffic, social media traffic, and of course desktop and mobile traffic.
It also houses a popular keyword research tool. Enter a word or phrase and this SEO checker will tell you its search volume, potential, difficulty, and competing companies that are already ranking for it.
SEMrush also recommends related keywords and helps you build a keyword strategy. This means looking for long tail keywords or keywords containing more than three words.
This is just one of the features of SEMrush. They can also perform an audit of your website, which examines the quality and quantity of your backlinks.
Related: Mobile audiences are your future
Google Keyword Planner
Although SEO analysis is becoming increasingly important for Youtube, Amazon, and the App Store, most entrepreneurs are primarily concerned with how their content appears on Google.
You will need a Google AdWords account to access all features of Google’s Keyword Planner. However, Google’s Keyword Planner is actually free for anyone with a Google account.
This SEO tool has two main capabilities: discover keywords and examine keyword metrics.
In the first case, you enter words related to your industry, for which Google will offer you a list of suggested keywords. This includes approximate monthly search results, cost-per-click estimates, and competition.
In the second, you can use Google’s Keyword Planner to compare keyword analyses. It tells you the number of impressions and clicks for a thirty-day ad targeting a specific keyword.
It also shows you how much it would all cost.
Of course, the main goal of search engine optimization is to avoid paying for advertisements, it can be useful to know how much that traffic would cost and how much you would save with a successful optimization strategy.
Related: Make the Most of Google’s Keyword Planner
Want to learn more about keywords without investing in an SEO tool? Ubersuggest is a free program that lets you collect data related to a keyword or domain name.
Specifically, Ubersuggest will tell you a keyword’s volume, average cost per click, and how hard it is to rank for it. It also suggests related long-tail keywords and displays the site’s best ranking for the word you entered.
If you enter a URL into Ubersuggest, it shows the organic keywords and traffic for that site. This SEO checker also quantifies the number of backlinks to a website and can track the progress of that site’s search engine optimization over a few months.
Keyword.io is an SEO checker for performing keyword research on a number of different platforms, including Google, Amazon, Youtube, Alibaba, and Wikipedia. If you’re looking for keywords beyond Google, Keyword.io is a useful place to start.
Once you enter a keyword and select your region, Keyword.io will create a list of hundreds of long tail keywords related to your entry, which you can filter. You can look specifically at keywords from Wikipedia, for example, or search through those from one of the other platforms.
To export this list and see monthly search volume and related keywords, you need to invest in the PRO option of Keyword.io.
SEO analysis for link building
Another important part of optimizing your website is building off-page domain authority. In other words, how other websites link to yours affects how Google sees your site. The more backlinks you have on your site, the more Google considers you to be a quality resource.
Keep in mind that not all links are of value. The higher the domain ranking of another page, the more valuable its backlink to your site is.
Moz Link Explorer
In addition to running a blog, Moz offers search engine optimization software.
Moz has an “SEO toolkit” that can audit your website with a Keyword Explorer tool. This includes essential keyword metrics such as monthly search volume and SERP analysis, which means a review of the top three ranked websites for that keyword.
Moz also has a Link Explorer tool, which finds problems in a website’s structure. Does Google index all your links? How do backlinks affect your domain score? What can you learn from your competitors’ link structure? Moz’s SEO Checker can provide all of this data.
Measure traffic with an SEO Checker
Measuring organic traffic — the number of people who find your website through search, not advertising — is the only way to know if your approach to search engine optimization is working.
Google Search Console
A great way to find out if your SEO is working on Google is to get this information directly from Google.
Google Search Console shows you everything you need to know about how a website appears in Google Search. This means how often it appears on Google and what keywords it ranks for. It will also show your click-through rate.
Additionally, Google Search Console analyzes a website’s potential indexability, spam issues, and sites linking to yours. All of these features are free.
Best SEO Tools to Audit Your Website
Not sure where to start with search engine optimization or what to do next? The only way to improve your website’s SEO is to understand what you need to improve. It starts with auditing your website.
A website audit involves using a program to crawl your website like Google would.
This means finding important and easy-to-fix errors on your site, quantifying organic search data, and analyzing backlinks. An audit typically considers factors such as page load speed, content quality, and HTML tags.
Most of the tools on this list have an auditing feature as part of their SEO checker. But different software can give you conflicting information. This means that it is useful to perform an SEO analysis with several programs, but this information is not equally valid.
Ahref is one of the most comprehensive SEO tools for auditing your website. Within hours, Ahrefs crawls every page on your website and creates a report about it.
Ahref’s SEO checker includes a wide variety of features, starting with an overall site health rating that it graphically compares to past audits of your website.
Another important feature when it comes to auditing your website is understanding how your external and internal links are performing. Ahrefs will find 404s, slow loading pages, orphan pages, and broken pages.
It also reviews internal website issues, including content quality. Is the word count high enough? Does the website have duplicate content? Ahrefs can also identify these issues.
Ahref’s site audit is just one of its SEO tools. One package includes Keyword Explorer, Content Explorer, and Site Explorer. Site Explorer provides data on keywords, traffic, links, and more over time for any website, including your competitors.
The best SEO checkers on the market
Ignoring the online component of entrepreneurship is no longer an option. And given the price of Google advertising, it’s more important than ever to develop an SEO strategy.
This means having the best SEO tools for keyword research, traffic measurement, understanding the competition, and auditing your website. For those new to SEO analysis, a free tool to learn more about keywords, links, and how others structure their websites is a great place to start. But for long-term results, it’s worth investing in a paid SEO checker so you can see what works in the long run.
SEO success means making changes, tracking their results over time, and remembering that you will need to adapt your strategy once Google’s algorithms are updated again.