SEO tools can give valuable insights and data into a website’s performance and optimisation, thereby allowing for improvements or remedying of issues that might negatively affect its search engine ranking.
Whilst some SEO tools are free, most are subscription based in order to utilise them to their full effect. The exception to this rule are two free tools from Google: Google Search Console and Google Analytics, which give data on search performance and web traffic respectively.
Third party SEO tools provide data, recommendations, reporting and alerts on a whole host of facets and elements of a website’s performance. Some are built to analyse a very specific element but many offer a suite of analytics and naturally overlap with other tools when it comes to functionality.
SEO specialists will tend to have a suite of tools that they will use and their choices are often down to personal preferences and the nature of their business model. For example some SEOs might prefer tools that have powerful reporting functionality for clients, whilst for others this may be less important (they may use a separate or inhouse reporting tool for example).
What SEO Tools Look At
As mentioned, most SEO tools will have more than one function or way of analysing data, even if this is the same data. Broadly speaking though the functionality of any SEO tool will cover one or more of the following areas:
- On-Page SEO
- Website health
- Competitor research
- Code generation
- Mobile SEO
Depending on which SEO tool is used, insights can be offered ranging from whether traffic to the target website has dropped notably, whether the website has any HTML errors, the number of links to a website and how powerful those links are, and which keywords the site is ranking for. Therefore, digital marketers looking to use an SEO tool will consider which metric/s (or other criteria) they wish to focus on before selecting their tools.
Notably, SEO tools also give valuable insight into competitor websites that may be ranking higher than the website in question. This kind of information allows SEOs to craft strategies based around what the competition is doing, but also to ascertain how much investment / work is required to get ahead of the pack.
Popular SEO Tools
The following list is by no means exclusive but gives some idea of some of the popular SEO tools available.
Answer the Public
Bing Webmaster Tools
Google Ads Keyword Planner
Google Page Speed Insights
Google Rich Results Test
Google Search Console
JSON-LD Schema Generator For SEO
Search Analytics for Sheets