Today’s post is going to be the first of our “list of tools” posts, today’s, specifically targeting the very best SEO tools on the market. At Stryde, we use a ton of these tools to not only help us be more efficient when taking care of our clients, but we use them to help improve the quality of our work and create a better customer experience.
In this post we are going to cover three different areas, keyword research, SEO analysis, and link building. Let’s jump in.
Keyword Research Tools
Google Analytics – If you have a history in Analytics, it can be a fantastic tool to gather new keyword opportunities for an SEO campaign. You can review your keyword traffic from the search engines as well as site search queries to understand what keywords your visitors are using to find you that you might not be optimized for.
Google AdWords Keyword Tool – One of the oldest keyword research tools out there, the Google AdWords Keyword Tool allows you to search for keywords and be delivered dozens of related search queries that you can optimize your website for.
Bing Keyword Tool (Bing Webmaster Tools) – Very similar to the Google AdWords Keyword Tool, you can login to your Bing Webmaster Tools account and see keyword demand and related keywords from Bing’s index.
Soovle – Soovle is a fun keyword research tool that allows you to enter a keyword and see related keywords across many different sites including Google, Yahoo, Bing, Amazon, and YouTube.
Google Trends – Google Trends isn’t necessarily a keyword discovery tool, but a tool to use after you have your keywords, to understand if the demand is growing or shrinking over a period of time.
SEO Analysis Tools
Ahrefs – Ahrefs, in my opinion, is one of the best off-page analysis tools you can find on the market. Ahrefs can be used to understand both linking and social trends over time, both for your website and your competitors.
Raven Site Auditor – Raven’s new website crawler is one of the finest SEO analysis tools on the market. Just set it and forget it and it will provide you with a thorough review of your website and what needs to be fixed.
Google Webmaster Tools – Google Webmaster Tools helps you understand EXACTLY how Google views your website and if there are any problems wit it.
Bing Webmaster Tools – Bing Webmaster Tools helps you understand EXACTLY how Bing views your website and if there are any problems with it.
FireBug – I told myself I wan’t going to include any browser add-ons in this post, but FireBug is the exception. FireBug is used to take a deeper look at elements of a web page to understand how they were coded and to uncover any issues with the code.
Internet Marketing Ninjas Header Checker – Header checkers are used see which response code your web server is returning for a requested URL. This is very handy when trying to understand redirects 404 errors.
Copyscape – In short, Copyscape is a plagiarism checker. Use it to identify if your website content has been scraped and used externally or if your writers and bloggers are stealing content externally to add to your website.
Link Building Tools
TalkWalker – TalkWalker is a fabulous replacement to Google Alerts and allows you to monitor the web for mentions of your brand or your competitors brand names. This helps uncover linking opportunities where sites mentioned your brand but didn’t provide a link as well as keeping tabs on websites that mention your competitors so you can go out and build relationships with them as well.
BuzzStream – BuzzStream is a great tool to not only manage your link building activities, but to help you manage your prospecting and outreach activities as well. Check out this post I wrote about BuzzStream last week.
Citation Labs – Citation Labs is an up and coming, but powerful tool set created by Garrett French. With his tools you can easily identify broken link opportunities and do hard core prospecting that can be dumped into BuzzStream for management.
MyBlogGuest – MyBlogGuest is a great resource to uncover guest blogging opportunities. As I mentioned in a post last week, you need to be careful about taking any opportunity from them, but you can find some real gems in there.
BloggerLinkUp – BloggerLinkUp is a weekly email newsletter put together by Cathy Stucker that puts guest blogging opportunities right into your inbox. As with MyBlogGuest, there’s a lot of garbage in there, but you can find some great opportunities as well.
Zemanta – Zemanta is an awesome tool to help get your images and your content linked to from other blogs running their plugin.
Removem – A different kind of link tool that is becoming more popular is a link removal tool. Removem is just that! If you’ve been building crappy links to your site and have gotten an unnatural link notice, you’ll want to find a tool like Removem to make link removal easier and more scalable.
Google + Advanced Search Queries – Advanced search queries are a great way to uncover linking opportunities and here’s a nice post by Rand at Moz that gives you a ton of these queries to start using today.
So there you go… some tools you’re probably familiar with and some you might not be. Do you have any other SEO tools you’d like to add to the list? If so, please feel free to add in the comments below.