Whether you are preparing to redesign your website, creating new advertisements, or wondering how to improve the quality and quantity of its traffic and leads, an SEO audit with some of our SEO tool recommendations is the best way to understand your SEO’s true effectiveness.
You’ll be able to tell what pages are performing well — bringing in the most engaged visitors — and pinpoint problem areas that you can address to boost performance even more.
SEO is the process of growing your online presence, and getting your site to rank higher on pages in search engines like Google. This generates more organic traffic to your site when people search for information you can provide since your website appears at the top.
This method of internet marketing is useful since most online users today search for products or services using search engines. If you increase your page rank on search engines, you’ll automatically start getting more attention, and hopefully, more sales.
Since many small businesses don’t have large amounts of capital to invest in costly digital marketing campaigns, SEO is a great option since it’s cheap as well as highly effective when done right.
An SEO audit using these tools, can mean different things to different people. Here at Keyhole Marketing, we have found there is no one tool on the market that provides the complete picture, so we developed an SEO strategy centered around regular, quality content and ethical SEO auditing and management designed to improve your visibility without getting penalized.
Through our process of SEO strategy, we work with some powerful SEO tools to find the right combination of data points needed to perform an analysis. Some of the tools we had already used for a while, with others discovered while looking for more efficient ways to serve our client’s SEO needs. Either way, it can be difficult to choose from such a wide field of SEO applications, both paid and free.
Fortunately, these tools are readily available to anyone online, and are almost all web-based applications, many with pricing models. Each one can help you understand a piece of the inner workings of your website, but to figure out what’s going on, you need to find the right combination for your needs.
When analyzing any website’s SEO, we recommend the following seven areas for SEO evaluation:
Depending on your market, business model, and goals, you may focus on one aspect more than others. However, we have found that leaving any one area out entirely can lead to a significant gap in your understanding of your website’s performance. On that note, we have the following recommendations below to aid you in your SEO quest.
Again, selecting the best SEO tools can be challenging, but if we had to pick the SEO audit tools that we could not live without, we’d choose the following because of the quality of data they provide. No one tool is perfect, but each is great in gaining the level of understanding we need to monitor SEO for our clients.
Marketing SEO tools like SEMRush tend to be fan favorites in the SEO community as experts love that they let you easily assess your rankings and identify changes with new ranking opportunities.
SEMrush is best for evaluating a website’s domain history, including keyword rankings and estimated organic traffic, which is then layered on top of known Google algorithm updates. This allows you to see how certain updates may have affected your visibility in search engines. SEMrush also allows you to not only perform in-depth site audits, but also track and compare progress so you can evaluate how changes to your site improve its performance over time.
You can use SEMrush’s SEO competitor analysis tool to see what tactics other businesses in your space are using and then leverage them on your own site. SEMrush also has local SEO features that are ideal for businesses that serve specific geographic areas.
Ahrefs is one of the most recommended SEO tools online and is considered only second to Google when it comes to being the largest website crawlers.
This is an all-in-one SEO suite designed to help you assess your website’s current rankings, identify opportunities, and monitor progress along the way. This suite has a site audit tool for analyzing your domain, a site explorer to give you a glimpse of your competitors, and a keyword research tool to learn about audience behavior.
With Ahrefs, you can also use the content explorer to understand why top-ranking content performs so well. You can use the rank tracker to see what’s changed and make sure your tactics are having the desired effect.
Moz keeps popping up as one of the best SEO tools that experts actually use. Many rave about how Moz was always up to date despite Google’s regular algorithm changes while others like how Moz’s chat portal allows them to get an insightful response to every question asked.
This site includes a full suite of SEO tools so you can research keywords, build links, and keep an eye on competitors. The platform’s Domain Analysis and Page Analysis rankings help you ensure your domain and pages are as authoritative as possible, while the keyword explorer helps you find opportunities and assess difficulty.
With Moz, you can also audit your site to find issues that may affect your ranking abilities. This platform offers suggestions for improving your content and building useful backlinks.
This is a desktop-based software and the industry standard when it comes to website crawling. This tool offers a thorough analysis of SEO elements with a page-by-page review being top of the class, and the level of detail provided is especially helpful for identifying opportunities to improve on-page optimization.
It is also incredibly fast! Screaming Frog gives you insights way faster than most SEO tools online while also informing you of duplicate content, errors to fix, bad redirections, and improvement areas for link building.
This is the best big-picture overview of your website pages in terms of indexation issues, organic performance metrics (impressions, clicks, click-through-rate), and sitemap issues. Other tools may be better for deep-dives into specific issues, but GSC gives you insight into overall patterns and opportunities and, best of all, comes straight from Google itself.
All you need to do is verify your website by adding a code to your website or going through Google Analytics and submitting your sitemap for indexing. Although you don’t need a Search Console account to appear in Google’s search results, you can control what gets indexed and how your website is represented with this account. As an SEO checker tool, Search Console can help you understand how Google and its users view your website and allow you to optimize. It’s especially useful for new websites as it lets site owners submit web pages for search indexing.
There are many other tools out there that are both paid and free but the 5 listed above are our favorites when it comes to their quality and variance in features that support us in our efforts as we serve our client’s SEO strategy. Even though these tools provide incredible insights, you’re still going to have to put in the work to get the results you want. That means producing content that’s SEO optimized, rewriting descriptions, using correct tags on pictures, optimizing headers, and taking what you’ve learned from these SEO tools.
As always, Keyhole Marketing is here to support you in your efforts as you seek to improve your search rankings and become easy to find online. If you want to chat more, we’d love to grab a coffee or beer. Contact us today!