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The most important SEO tools at a glance
If you want to be successful online, you won’t get far without the magic phrase: SEO (Search Engine Optimization). Without adequate tools, it is difficult to predict which SEO strategies are the most successful and which increase your website’s ranking in Google’s search results. It’s equally hard to know which weaknesses are standing in the way of a good search engine ranking. SEO tools are therefore an important instrument for every webmaster since they help you understand your website better.
SEO tools: the most important features
Without concrete data, SEO and marketing specialists can only rely on their gut feeling, which is not always so reliable. SEO tools offer essential and reliable information for search engine optimization that covers many different areas.
The most important SEO tool features at a glance:
- Keyword monitoring: enables the webmaster to see how the website is ranking for relevant keywords on a daily basis and to keep an overview of the ranking development over time.
- Keyword research: helps with researching and prioritizing relevant search phrases.
- Backlink profile analysis: provides an overview of all current links to the website and how high their quality is.
- Site structure analysis: helps with the analysis of the current site structure and the creation of a site map, for Google, for example.
- Live rank checker: enables website data to be requested live in order to keep track of how successful a viral campaign has been regarding visitor numbers.
- Performance analysis: enables an exact analysis of all relevant website metrics such as loading speed.
- Internal link analysis: checks all internal links and delivers, amongst other things, a list of the link structure
SEO tools: The 3 most important categories
Every website owner has individual goals and therefore focuses on different SEO areas. This explains why there is a huge range of different SEO tools on offer. Some of them enable deep analysis of individual areas and others cover all standard SEO features. The range extends from very specialized tools to complete all-round options. They can be divided into three categories:
- Off page tools: with off page tools the focus lies on classic off page topics such as backlinks as a core SEO discipline. Recommended tools are Ahrefs, LinkResearchTools and Majestic.
- On page tools: these tools focus on page analysis and topics like content quality, meta descriptions, headings and more. These sites offer detailed analyses on on page optimization Internet Marketing Ninja and SEO SiteCheckup.
- All-in-one options: these tools offer insight into both content areas: on page as well as off page. They serve as a complete option for analysis and support with topics like link building and other features. Additional information on the more well-known options can be found in the next section.
Online tools for website and SEO analysis
In the next part, you will be introduced to the most well-known all-in-one SEO tools, their basic functions, and their price ranges. Just know that there is not just one SEO tool that will fulfil all your needs and that different areas need different tools.
The SISTRIX Toolbox belongs to the most well-known SEO analysis tools and is an integral part of online marketing. Many large agencies rely on the tool, and the so-called SISTRIX visibility index has since become one of the main performance indicators with which the agencies rate their domains. The indicator describes the visibility of a domain in Google’s search results. The higher the value, the more users can be expected to visit the site via Google. In April 2014 a visibility index for smartphones was created.
It is now possible to carry out an exact analysis of one’s own site as well as an in-depth analysis of a competitor’s site thanks to the very extensive keyword database. The Toolbox is made up of six modules which can be booked and used depending on your needs. Users can create their own service package from SEO, Universal Search, Backlinks, SEM, Social and Optimization areas.
The invoice for the SISTRIX Toolbox is sent out monthly for each chosen module. One module, including the Social-Option, costs around 100€/$110 per month. You can also take advantage of all six modules for just a little over 400€/$430 per month. There is the option of trying out the free trial for fourteen days. Besides the SISTRIX Toolbox there are also some free tools such as SISTRIX Smart, which provides small businesses or bloggers with a quick SEO analysis without any cost. The SISTRIX Toolbar is like an ‘SEO toolbox’ for Chrome and Firefox and shows important information at a glance. This includes visibility progress, the quantity of keywords, links and social signals of a website.
The SEO Tool Searchmetrics Suite also makes an extensive SEO analysis possible. This includes a precise analysis of different components like keywords, page rank, campaign performance and the analysis of direct competition. Searchmetrics scores well with its user interface and individually configurable reports and alerts. The tool is quite pricey and is therefore less suitable for SEO hobbyists and small sites. There are reasonable options available for medium to large-sized companies and professional marketers depending on which packet (Basic, Premium, Ultimate) they choose.
Searchmetrics offers different versions of the tool: Basic, Premium and Ultimate. The Basic version starts at 389€/$424 per month, and for the Ultimate version you can find yourself forking out 1,325€/$1445.
The All-In-One-Marketing Suite by XOVI is built similarly to the aforementioned tools. It is essentially a light version of Searchmetrics or SISTRIX that does not relate to the range of features, but rather to the size of the database. The XOVI Suite tool focuses on on-page optimization and also covers other essential SEO task fields including SEM extensions and social media analysis. The provider defines the target group themselves which could be agencies, in-house companies or online shops.
You can first take advantage of XOVI’s free 14-day trial, then opt for the Pro version of the tool (99€/$107 per month), the Business version (149€/$160 per month), or the Enterprise version (499€/$540 per month). Depending on the duration of the membership, you could end up saving 20% on the total price.
Seolytics is a simple and effective tool for visibility analysis, keyword monitoring and competitor analysis. Seolytics offers a free Starter version and is therefore favored by SEO beginners that want to optimize their own website.
Seolytics’s Starter version (suitable for a single domain) is free, but the Pro version costs 99€/$107 a month and the Elite version 339€/$370 a month. There is also the No Limit version that can be individually configured depending on the user’s needs. The price is dependent on the configurations.
Discrepancies in the visibility chart
If you consult different tools in order to track a site’s visibility information, you will notice obvious discrepancies in the data. This is due to the different keyword sets. The SISTRIX tool calculates the visibility index weekly on the basis of 250,000 keywords or keyword combinations. This means that the selection and quantity of keywords for a program like Searchmetrics will differ from that of XOVI and therefore different results will materialize.
The visibility charts, which fluctuate from tool to tool, should not unsettle you since they are generally only conclusive to a certain extent. What is most important is how the site performs for the relevant keywords. The ranking for individual keywords can vary, but these fluctuations are usually small. None of these aforementioned programs give 100% accurate information, but the ranking graphs are less about individual figures and more about rough trends that can be observed.
If you plan to check your keyword rankings on a daily basis then most of these tools are not ideal anyway since they usually update their databases weekly. Use an alternative such as SEMrush to observe daily changes and act accordingly.