Feeling overwhelmed while researching the best digital marketing tools?
We have all been there, researching for countless hours, trying to compare the dozens of SEO tools, and feeling even more lost than at the beginning of our research.
Therefore, we wanted to step up and help other marketing agencies & in-house marketers. After our quest, we have consolidated the top 5 SEO tools that will help you conquer your digital marketing strategy and elevate your SEO performance.
Our Top SEO Tool List
According to our analysis, these are the top 5 SEO tools in the 2021 market. For all SEO tools we have included a scenario where they could be beneficial to you. It is important to clarify that they are not ranked and arranged in a particular order.
Spyfu is a search analysis tool that offers SEO research, PPC research, keyword research, SERP checker, and domain overviews. One of the most loved features is Spyfu Kombat. In the blog Kombat Overview (Shared Keywords) by Sidra Condron, Kombat is described as “easy to start and nearly fool-proof to understand”.
According to Spyfu’s website, PC Mag has awarded Spyfu with the “editors’ choice” badge and has also been categorized by G2crowd as part of the “Top 50 Products for Marketing 2020”.
By adding this tool into your kit, you will be able to search any domain and find out everyplace the domain shows up on Google. As listed on Spyfu’s website, by doing so you will be able to see “every keyword they’ve bought on Adwords, every organic rank, and every ad variation in the last 14 years.” Furthermore, you will be able to learn how to connect with these domains, find online and traditional leads methods such as social media, email, phone, and address.
How to best use Spyfu
Spyfu Kombat can be especially handy when doing keyword research. For example, you have a client who would like to find out what keywords their competitors are ranking for to generate keyword ideas for new content. Moreover, your client has a PPC campaign already running and is wondering if there is room for improvement.
When utilizing Spyfu Kombat, all you need is to do is to input your client’s domain and compare it against their competitor’s domain. By doing this, you will be able to find out what keywords your client is not ranking for that their competitors are in both organic and paid searches. After obtaining this information, your client can generate new content that will target those better performing keywords.
In terms of the PPC campaign that they are looking for optimizations, Spyfu Kombat can help you determine wasteful keywords to drop and update them with new ones that will outperform the previous keywords. In short, you’ll become the best digital marketer spy in the industry.
*This image was taken in October 2020. We recommend checking Spyfu’s pricing page for the most updated information. According to this page, if you decide this tool isn’t for you, there is a 30-day money-back guarantee.
SEMRush is an all-inclusive suite that will help optimize your marketing workflow. It covers SEO, advertising, social media, content, competitive research, and reporting.
According to SEMRush’s website, “SEMrush is recognized as the best SEO suite according to US Search Awards 2019, MENA Search Awards 2019, and SEMY Awards 2019. It is also the best digital tool, according to Interactive Marketing Awards 2019.”
Some of their 6,000,000 users are eBay, Philips, HP, Quora, and many others. Quite an impressive list. It is fair to say that SEMRush is one of the most popular and purchased tools in the industry.
How to best use SEMRush
When clients ask you to generate a backlink audit, SEMRush is your best option. With this tool, you can generate a comprehensive backlink report from your client’s competitors and let you compare your client’s backlinks to up to 5 domains. Moreover, it can help you discover backlink opportunities and clean your client’s link profile.
If you would like to learn more about the benefits of link building, make sure to read our blog “Research Tips to Gain SEO Friendly Links” by DeltaV Digital Partner, Keith Vera.
*This image was taken in October 2020. We recommend checking the SEMRush pricing page for the most updated information. According to this page, there is a 7-day free trial.
3. MOZ Pro
According to MOZ Pro’s website, Moz Pro is considered “the proven, all-in-one SEO toolset” that will provide you with SEO solutions for every need that will help you achieve success. A shortened list of Moz Pro’s features are site audits, rank tracking audits, site crawls, backlink analysis, keyword research, and more. Upon signing up to MOZ Pro, every plan includes a full access to MozBar(SEO toolbar for Chrome), track keywords on multiple search engines, SEO insights, one-on-one walkthrough, and 24-hour online support.
Some of the companies that have successfully used Moz Pro are Otter, Razorfish, Zillow, and many more. Jason Nurmi, the marketing manager at Zillow mentions in Moz Pro’s website that this tool has given his team the necessary data to justify projects and strategies. Moreover, it has helped them track the ROI of their efforts.
How to best use MOZ Pro
When assigned to fix your client’s common technical SEO issues give MOZ Pro a chance. When using MOZ Pro to create a site crawl and audit, it will help you find those technical SEO issues and also show you how to fix them.
For example, MOZ Pro will monitor broken redirects and missing title tags. Lastly, it will also assist you by prioritizing the issues to make sure you tackle those who need your immediate assistance.
Moz Pro’s Pricing
*This image was taken in October 2020. We recommend checking the MOZ Pro for the most updated information. According to this page, there is a free 30-day trial.
As described in the Ahrefs website, this tool is an “all-in-one SEO toolset” where you can optimize your website, analyze your competitors, study your customers’ searches, analyze your industry’s top-performing content, and track your ranking progress. Something important to mention is that Ahrefs offers free learning material that anyone can access without spending the $7.00 on trial. Upon making your decision whether Ahrefs is the right tool for you, you can sign up for the 7-day trial.
How to best use Ahrefs
Let’s say you are prepping for your company’s new blog, but have no clue on what to write about that will perform. With Ahref’s content explorer, you can discover the best content that exists in your industry by pulling competitive content research that will help you determine which content your blog should be about that will outperform your competitors’ content.
As shown in the image from Ahref’s website, all you need to do is type your general idea on the tool’s search bar and it will show you a list of pages that have content around your general idea. In addition to finding low competition topics and link building prospects.
*This image was taken in October 2020. We recommend checking the Ahrefs pricing page for the most updated information. According to to his page, there is a 7-day trial for $7.00
5. Google Keyword Planner
The Google Keyword Planner tool is a great resource for building a robust and strong keyword list that will substantially set your PPC campaign off to a good start. In overall terms, we can all agree that the Google Ads suite is the leading tool in PPC and SEO, but for the purpose of this blog, we chose to focus on Google Keyword Planner. According to the Google Keyword Planner’s website, “by using the Google Ads Keyword Tool, you can search for keyword and ad group ideas, see how a list of keywords might perform, and even combine keyword lists to create new ones.”
You will have four options to choose when using this tool. You could search for new keywords by typing a phrase, website, or category to generate new ideas. You could also combine two separate lists that you input to create new keyword combinations. Additionally, it can show you the historical trending and search volume data of keywords. Lastly, it can provide you with a click and cost performance forecast by giving you performance projections for your keywords’ lists based on bids average and your budget.
If you’d like to learn more about utilizing Google Keyword Planner, we invite you to check out “How to Use Google Keyword Planner in 2020” by Brian Dean.
How to best use Google Keyword Planner:
As you are setting up a new PPC campaign in Google Ads for a client that has never run one in the past, you will find this tool beneficial. Like mentioned earlier, to start your keyword inspiration, input your client’s website address into the tool, and it will provide you with a keyword list. On the results, you will be able to custom filter or organize your keywords by different parameters, such as average searches or competition. On top of that, you can add a term that you think could be a potential keyword, and it will also provide you with stats for that specific term.
Another way to use this tool is shown in the image below taken from Google Ads Help. Instead of utilizing your client’s domain, you could also type a general idea. As shown below, in this case the word used was “boots”. In the results we can see the list of keywords this tool generated including the average number of searches for each keyword and competition level.
Google Keyword Planner Pricing
Google Keyword Planner is a free tool that you can access by creating a Google Ads account.
If you would like to learn more about Google prices, we invite you to read “The 10 Hidden Costs of Google Ads” by DeltaV Digital Sr. Digital Strategist, Carter Poore.
Feeling confident with our top 5 SEO tool list?
Overall, all of these tools are very similar in terms of what they can offer to you. Although not completely alike, we can see there is a general offer of an “all-in-one” SEO tool with individual offerings. From Spyfu “spying” on your client’s competitor’s website to Google Keyword Planner, giving you keyword inspiration, we can all agree that all these tools are phenomenal aids.
When researching for our top SEO tools, it was very surprising to find out that according to Search Engine Journal there are over 100 SEO tools in 2020. Therefore, it comes to your user experience and what you can benefit from. If you would like to find out more about them we invite you to read The 109 Best SEO Tools That Are Totally Free by Jon Clark.
At the end of the day, it comes to what fits your budget and your digital marketing needs. It will be interesting to compare our research results to those of next year. Ultimately, we are in an ever-evolving industry where today’s popular tools might become obsolete. If you think we forgot to mention your favorite tool, please comment below.