In any line of work, you’ll be needing a special set of tools to help you do what you need to do. As search engine optimization (SEO) marketers, you’re probably one of the most fortunate professionals in this regard considering that you have not just a handful, but a whole gamut of tools to help you manage all of your SEO tasks.
However, since there is no single tool that can offer an all-in-one solution in addressing the most common challenges in SEO, you may end up using a variety of tools all at the same time. And if you’re paying for each of these, the total cost may be way over your budget.
Luckily, there are also free SEO tools that can help you get the job done. You only need to find the right ones for your specific goals. You might find a couple or more of the tools in this list, perfect for your SEO campaigns.
Keywords are the lifeblood of organic search, making keyword research the first essential step in SEO. These free tools need to be part of your keyword strategy.
With most searchers using Google as their default search engine, it makes perfect sense that Google Keyword Planner is the tool you should be using to identify keywords based on several parameters. For example, it can give you valuable insights about how popular a keyword is—that is, whether your target keywords or phrases have a low, medium, or high monthly search volume.
This tool will also tell you which keywords are being targeted by your competitors, and even suggest terms that aren’t included in your list.
The fact that Keywordtool builds on Google Autocomplete’s feature makes it one of the more popular tools for keyword research. What Keywordtool does is to generate up to 20 variations of your search term, which is twice what Google Autocomplete offers.
This tool also lets you generate long-tail keywords by adding letters and numbers at the start and at the end of your search term to help you come up with an extensive list of keyword suggestions.
Best of all, you can launch this tool right away since you don’t need to create an account to use it.
SEMrush is a handy tool for when you want to track your SEO ranking for certain keywords. With its Position Tracking tool, you can enter up to 10 keywords and see how your domain performs with those keywords. SEMrush’s tracking tool also helps you track the daily rankings of your competitors, which is another reason why you need to use SEMrush in your keyword analytics.
As a free user, you’ll also find the Keyword Magic Tool quite nifty. This feature lets you enter a keyword and then returns with a list of tens of thousands of suggested keywords. You can then save the list in your keyword research history, and you can just pull it up anytime for future use.
Answer the Public (ATP) answers the need for a basic keyword research tool for a newly built site. What makes ATP unique from other free tools is that it gives you a multitude of keyword ideas using its own method instead of just relying on Google’s Keyword Planner.
ATP’s approach involves finding search terms that people use on forums, blogs, and social media, and then including them into interrogative phrases using the Five Ws (who-where-what-when-why) and How type of questioning. You’ll then arrive at hundreds of keyword combinations from a single search term.
What’s more, these question-based keywords can help you start thinking about optimizing for voice search queries that are more question and conversational-based.
Page Speed Tools
Since page speed is one of the factors that Google uses to rank websites, you’ll need these tools to make your pages load faster.
GT metrix has a wide range of features, making it one of the best options to help you analyze your website’s performance and find a fix for potential speed issues.
By using Gtmetrix, you’ll get graded reports regarding your page speed, page load time, page size, and number of page requests. The grades can then help you determine how your site is performing compared with other sites analyzed on GTmetrix. It will even test your site from different regions/browsers and give actionable recommendations for better site optimization.
As mentioned, Google’s algorithm pays special attention to the speed performance of websites as a ranking signal. Through Google’s very own PageSpeed Insights, you can learn how fast or how slow your pages load both on desktop and on mobile.
The tool will tell you if your page speed is slow, average, or fast. Based on your grade, it will then come up with additional information regarding the usability of your site as well as suggestions for improvement.
Just because something is free doesn’t mean it cannot stack up against other premium offerings. In the case of Dareboost, aside from analyzing your loading speed, it will also tell you which issues are causing a bottleneck and therefore you need to prioritize.
Whether your page contains an excessive amount of data or there’s a broken link from third-party sites, you’ll be able to catch any red flag with Dareboost. It also helps you keep track of your website performance against that of competitors by giving you a visual Website Speed Comparison Report.
Not all backlinks can contribute to a good ranking for your site, so make sure to check your linkbuilding history or strategy using a variety of SEO platforms.
Ahrefs’s Backlink Checker tool lets you see the top 100 backlinks to your website, along with other key information. These may include the number of times that your website got links from other sites and the corresponding URL Rating (UR) and Domain Rating (DR) of those sites.
Through this backlink index, you can keep track if there are backlinks that you need to get rid of, such as those that that violate SEO practices or those that are not related to your niche.
On the flip side, you can also Ahrefs to look for backlinking opportunities (from competitors and other relevant brands) since it lets you see which sites are linking to your competitors.
The Moz Link Explorer is a great SEO software to have for both your link building and link prospecting tasks as it gives you a complete overview of your inbound links, competitor backlinks, and broken links that you need to fix. When monitoring your inbound links with the Moz Link Explorer, you’ll be able to see the anchor text data that other domains are using to link to your site, allowing you to refine your content ideation down the line.
Speaking of content, you can also keep track of your top performing content to help you find more link building opportunities for your site.
This free link research tool is equally effective as other backlink analysis tools with its ability to check and analyze the backlinks of your website. It offers valuable backlinks data, such as your unique active backlinks from your total active backlinks, dofollow links, nofollow links, and the more harmful unnatural links that are pointing to your site, to mention a few.
OpenLinkProfiler.org is also the only free SEO tool that lets you download up to 100,000 backlinks, including the most recent backlinks you got from the past three months.
On-page Optimization Tools
On-page optimization describes the efforts you make to improve your search ranking. On-page optimization covers all the best SEO practices that you apply directly on your website pages, including the use of tags, keyword-based titles, engaging images, and the like. Use these free tools to enhance your on-page SEO techniques.
This tool gives you a complete on-page analysis that may be preventing your website from landing on the top of search engine results pages (SERPs). It scours your pages for missing tags, errors in formatting your headings and subheadings, deviation from ideal page size or weight, and other potential issues with the structure and content of your web page.
Aside from giving your web page an overall score, the SEO Web Page Analyzer will also indicate either a pass or fail assessment for each section or item analyzed on your site.
12. SERP Simulator
As the name suggests, SERP Simulator lets you view how SEO elements like meta title and description will show in the search results before your web page goes live. By generating a snippet, you’ll be able to see if the characters you used to describe your content fit within the limit or if there are truncation issues that you need to fix before publishing your web page.
13. Schema Creator
Since there’s a lot of online content out there, the Schema Creator wants to help your content stand out from the rest. Specifically, the Schema Creator lets you add structured data—which are some sort of identifiable features—that help Google and other search engines in classifying and finding your content.
By using Schema Creator, you can customize the types of information that you want to include in your content so that search engines will be able to show as much information as you want about your brand, product, service, or event to users.
14. Yoast SEO
The Yoast SEO platform has been around long enough to know which techniques can help optimize your blog posts. For one, when you enter your main keyword for a blog post, Yoast SEO will suggest the necessary tweaks to make your blog more attractive for search engines.
This tool will also look at the way you write your meta descriptions, tags, and slugs to make sure they comply with SEO principles, so you can focus on creating awesome content.
QuickSprout is the free website analyzer developed by marketing guru Neil Patel. This tool can check different aspects of SEO analysis, but in terms of on-page SEO, it also packs a lot of punch.
It’s very thorough in checking if there are web pages that have a low word count, duplicate meta descriptions, missing tags, and whatnot—all of which can negatively impact your online reputation with Google, Bing, etc. It can also check if your site has an excellent, good, fair, or poor loading speed, complete with a full breakdown of the issues found and how to fix them.
This tool offers a comprehensive report about the efficiency of your website based on different on-page elements. For example, it alerts you if your heading or title contains too many stop words, which are function words that give structure or meaning to your text but which may take up valuable space in certain platforms that allow limited use of characters.
SEOWorkers also promotes diligence in checking for other SEO details that you probably don’t give much attention to even though you definitely should, such as an error 404 in the HTTP header status code.
WooRank is a browser plugin type of tool that lets you analyze standard on-page SEO metrics, but with more data and insight on mobile optimization that very few web analytics tools in the free category care to cover.
18. Google Analytics
Of course, when it comes to website metrics, you cannot ignore what Google Analytics (GA) offers to help you succeed with your SEO efforts.
GA enables you to track all the important data from traffic sources to search volume and page load times. It can identify the behavior of your website visitors and check if they’re contributing to a high bounce rate on your site, which is a signal that there might be problems on your website design, structure, or content.
SEO Auditing Tools
An SEO audit is a critical process of analyzing whether your website qualifies for a positive user experience, and consequently, higher search ranking. The Screaming Frog SEO Spider lets you do an SEO audit for free.
This tool has the ability to crawl individual pages on your site to analyze all of its technical aspects, including broken links, redirects, and other errors on your script. It’s also used for assessing how enjoyable it is for users to navigate through a site using different types of devices or browsers.
The free version of the Screaming Frog SEO Spider likewise makes it possible for your webmaster to generate XML sitemaps or files, which Google uses as reference to discover the URLs for your site.
The Best Things in Life are Free
As cliché as the above sounds, having free SEO tools at your disposal means it’s not always necessary to spend large amounts of money when you can achieve the same positive results at no cost at all for your business.
Having SEO professionals who know how each of these tools work should also be part of your SEO strategy. You can trust SEO Company’s brilliant team of SEO professionals to help you choose the right tools and get your SEO game into full swing, while you watch us from the sidelines. We’d, of course, appreciate you cheering us on.
Want to know how you can add these tools in your SEO aresenal? Contact us today!