September 8, 2014
If you have experience with search engine optimization (SEO), you most likely recognize and use tools like Google Adwords, Google Webmaster Tools, Google Analytics, and-or Open Site Explorer. However, there are a multitude of effective tools available that you may not have heard about that can provide you with superior and unique insights and features. Making use of these tools can give you a major competitive advantage and make your life easier in terms of time and resource management.
Below I provide brief descriptions of eight tools that I find are underutilized by today’s online marketers. Although many of these tools have similar features, they all have unique qualities and are worth checking out if you want to boost your digital marketing and SEO strategies.
The Screaming Frog SEO Spider tool is a downloadable desktop app that will crawl your website and give you – in a list format – detailed reports on how your pages and links are performing compared to your competitors. It essentially acts as a search bot. One key benefit of the tool is that it simplifies broken link identification and repair. This tool is available for both Mac and Windows users. If you use the free version, there will be a limit on how many pages you can crawl.
This suite of more than 30 tools will help you manage most or all of your online marketing endeavors in one location. Raven allows you to run PPC campaigns, track your ROI, manage your social networks, check for broken links, and much more. A major strength of Raven lies in its reporting capabilities. The branded reports are easy to produce and they have a professional, organized appearance. These reports are great for a large office setting. Raven Tools offers an iPad application for the mobile marketer as well.
This tool is great for keyword competition analysis because it offers the clearest picture I’ve seen on the search engine rank potential of keywords. You can see who is ranking high on Google using specific keywords and you can easily know whether or not you can beat their rank. Market Samurai’s Keyword Tracker will filter results using only the words you provide and it will tell you how much traffic you should receive from the suggested keywords. In addition, you can use the tool to keep track of how your keywords are ranking in search results.
Adobe Analytics (formerly SiteCatalyist)
This marketing intelligence product is Adobe’s answer to Google Analytics. The tool is part of the Adobe online suite of marketing products and it helps you quickly view thorough insights about user behavior on your site. What makes Adobe Analytics unique is that it tracks the complete path of a user on your site and you can see which pages are the most popular. However, in terms of overall comparison, there is not much that Adobe Analytics offers in terms of success metrics that Google Analytics does not.
Have you developed a mobile application? Check out Countly if you would like to monitor what users are doing inside your app. Countly is an open source analytics application that tracks real-time data. You can customize your reports with your branding as well. Countly allows you 10 thousand free sessions per month and installation is free.
Another useful tool when it comes to competitive keyword analysis. SEM Rush will give you a clear idea of what keywords your competitors are using and how much success they are having. Having already witnessed the success or failure of each one, you can target the same or similar keywords. You can use it to analyze your own text as well and develop reports. SEM Rush has many other SEO-based features and there is a free version available.
This is a tool for comprehensive backlink analysis. Majestic SEO gives you unique insights on your backlinks that you may not find using other tools. This is because Majestic SEO revises its massive index throughout the day and so your information is completely up-to-date. The tool gives you detailed information on the quality of your backlinks in regards to SEO. However, using Majestic SEO may not be ideal for a single marketer. It is useful for those needing to analyze large data collections (for example: marketers analyzing backlinks for several clients).
Woorank has many features that can help you truly understand your place online. One notable feature is Woorank’s ability to compare your site to every site on the Internet in terms of the number of visits you get (for example: “You are the 10,000,000 most visited site online”). Woorank will tell you how popular you are on social media, your Google index ranking, and your page rank in search engines. The coolest aspect of Woorank is that it will recommend a personalized step-by-step complete marketing guide to improve your online standing.
Listed above are just some of many tools that can be used to enhance your marketing and SEO strategies. What tools do you use that you did not find on my list?
Marc Holt is a digital marketing specialist at DigitalParc, a Minneapolis-based online design and SEO company. Marc specializes in web marketing and SEO strategies.