Is SEO Dead?
The importance of Search Engine Optimization is now being questioned by online marketers. While some believe SEO is awaiting its impending death, others say it will still go a long way. McRoberts, CEO of VUDU Marketing recently said in an Interview to Forbes:
“I’d really encourage people to think of SEO differently. SEO is far from dead, but it’s changed so drastically that people really need to learn to think of it as less of a marketing tactic, and more of a branding play.”
Whether you are just starting up or you have been in the market for a long time, the idea of leveraging your business via SEO will never cease to exist as long as search engines are there! The catch is, how well you can adopt the fast-paced changes of Google, combine this organic channel with Search Engine Marketing and win the race.
Google has and is still releasing updates continuously. The aim is to help users find exact results to their queries. However, these updates now require SEO professionals to come out of their comfort zones and learn new techniques to stay on top.
“Search engine optimisation (SEO) was always a flawed concept.”
“…Google search may display only 13% organic results; ‘the rest is ads and junk’.”
“Recommendations from friends count for more than a search engine algorithm will ever achieve.”
~ “SEO is Dead. Long live Social media”; thegaurdian, online UK News Portal
While plenty of marketers are saying that SEO is dead or will soon cease to exist, but in my opinion, SEO has evolved in the way it works. That doesn’t mean it is dead! If you remain firm on providing a valuable service or product with a good user experience, there’s nothing that can stop you from taking the world! Rather than saying that SEO is dead, I’d say Google has become smarter over the decade and has started giving value to a lot of factors other than content and links. It has become smart enough to analyze your CSS and JS Files, along with social signals.
Here in this post, I am going to give you the complete list of 40+ Awesome SEO analysis tools, which I use to analyze the overall performance of a website/ domain. All these are important Optimization Analysis Tools which will give a lot of information on how good a website is and what are the opportunity gaps. These tools are helpful in checking website structure, quality of code, errors, performance of the website, device compatibility, broken links and many more factors which might be impacting end users.
In this series of post for Digital Marketing Agencies, I have compiled a list of must-have marketing tools for digital marketing agencies and a list of must-have social media tools for modern marketing agencies.
Honestly, if you still think Search Engines relies only on Content and links a website has, then these tools might not be helpful to you.
The List of 40 Awesome SEO Analysis Tools:
This list widely has 4 different types of tools, which fall under- desktop app, website, a browser extension, and mobile app. Some of them are paid and some are available for free of cost.
1. Screaming Frog – Free
Top on the list and favourite for everyone, this desktop tool is to run a full crawl of a website, to generate a sitemap, check errors in the sitemap and checking HTTP status codes for all the urls. Screaming Frog is definitely one of the best tools developed ever.
2. Moz Crawl Test – Paid
The very well-known tool in the SEO community and known for its ‘all in one’ feature, with this tool you can get crawl reports, website health, keyword ranking reports, optimize keywords and much more. Moz is available with a 90 days free trial from Lean Starter Pack from Eric Ries.
3. Site Condor – Free
Sitecondor is another tool which you can use to crawl up to 400 pages of a website for free and after that, you will have to go for a paid version. Adding more to this tool, you will get structured data from a website, and can also visualize the navigational structure of a website. Moreover, Sitecondor also has WordPress plugin which can help you in getting to SEO dashboard from WordPress Panel only.
4. SEO Site Checkup – Free
SEO site checkup is one of the all-time best free tools which gives a great overview of SEO issues of a website. With this tool, you can easily check to see if IP redirects to a domain, server, security and associated browser issues.
5. Microsoft IIS SEO Toolkit – Free
This tool comes straight from Microsft and can be downloaded on your PC. You can use this IIS tool to get a detailed overview of all the important technical aspects of website right from PC software.
6. SERPmetrics Flux – Paid
Have you ever wondered how the search engine rankings are fluctuating across the globe? You can get to know all the up and downs from this user-friendly chart from SERPmetrics Flux graph.
7. Raven Tool’s Research Central – Paid
Raven is another great tool after Moz, where you can easily View authority, ranking, keyword, social and link metrics for a website. Raven tools are also important for Search Marketing Professionals.
8. Mozbar – Free
When you are on a website in a browser and want to view page tags like title, description, anchors, Hx, image, alt text, etc, then Moz is the best to have for Google Chrome and Mozilla Browsers. Not only this information, but you can also view canonical tag along with nofollow links on a page.
— Olly Johnson (@OttaOJ) November 7, 2014
9. BuzzStream Extractor – Free
For individual analysis of a page, Mozbar works great and for bulk analysis, Screaming Frog is a great option. But what about the analysis urls which you would like to do on the fly? For this, we have an online tool from BuzzStream which give details on Title, Meta Description, Meta Keywords from an input set of urls.
10. PageRank extension – Free
Although, Page Ranks doesn’t carry a lot of value these days, still, this PageRank extension for Google Chrome is quite useful, as they provide you information on cached pages, global rankings, indexed pages, onpage security and a lot more important data for analysis.
11. List – The Sitemap Generator – Free
Sitemaps are quite important for the search engines and the file used should be standard. You can find list of all the sitemap generator tools from the above link. The Sitemap Generator tools include server-side scripts, system applications, online websites and CMS based tool for generating right set of sitemap file.
12. XML Sitemap Validator – Free
In case you want to validate whether the existing sitemap file is valid or not, you can use this online Sitemap Validator tool, which will help you in highlighting the errors in sitemap file.
13. Geo Sitemap Generator – Free
When you are optimizing a website for local City, Geo Sitemaps are very important. You can start generating the file from here and put this generated file on root directory of the website or the relative page directory of the website. If you are on WordPress, then you can easily use Yoast Local SEO plugin for these sitemaps.
14. W3C Markup Validation Service – Free
Validation and measure of code standard are important for the user experience on different browsers, W3C Markup Validation Tool is quite helpful and can be used easily. You can use this tool to validate the code on a single page and can buy pro subscription for multiple pages and website.
15. Moz Local – Paid
Above I said about the local sitemap generation, and now for the local SEO information to work, it should be submitted to the relevant websites for the purpose of discovery. Moz Local submits your data to local aggregates, first tire, and second tire listings. This service from Moz is paid and can be availed for a single website at $84 per year.
16. Distilled Video Sitemap Generator – Free
If your page has a video which you have generated and want to get it indexed properly in search engines then I would say following Distilled Video Sitemap Guide, can get you plenty of information. The Sitemap Generator Sheet has all the information where you can input your details about the video and get the .xml file format from the sheet. You can use the sitemap for the video hosted anywhere on Viddler, Vimeo, Vzaar Wistia or YouTube. If you are using WordPress, then Yoast Video SEO Plugin can help you the best.
— Herbert Ripka (@HerbRipka) August 6, 2014
17. Yext – Paid for applying Fixes
Yext is one stop tool to find the discrepancies associated with the business across the internet and using this tool you can easily find the information which appears on a large variety of websites/ portals. Then you can fix them following the steps mentioned on the website. Finally, you will have to make payment for the services which you avail from Yext.
18. Authority Labs – Paid
Ranking for keywords in the search engine is quite important, and if your business is completely dependent on search engine traffic then, I would say, a daily report on keyword ranking is very important. For this purpose, you can use authority labs which is available for 30 Days for free and then you have to pay $49 to track 250 Keywords per month. Yes, this feature is also present in the paid account of Moz, SEMrush, Hittail, but this provides weekly keyword ranking report.
19. SeoBook’s rank checker – Free
This is a completely free alternative for Authority Labs and Moz Rank tracking software. You can download this and use as Firefox Extension on a system. You can manually track the ranks for keyword for specific domain name.
20. Advanced Web Ranking – Paid
This is a paid tool which has both versions, cloud, and desktop, available. Depending on the requirement you can purchase them. Cloud version is available at $49 per month which will track 2000 keywords and desktop version is available for a lifetime. Comparing with other paid alternatives, I feel, AWR is available at competitive price.
21. Search Latte – Free
For checking ranks of a particular keyword on Google in different geography you would have to switch between proxies, which is quite difficult process itself and takes a lot of time. Here, to rescue, we have Searchlatte, which can help in searching different keywords in different geography and language. This free tool generates Google Url and can be used to analyse the ranking in SERP.
22. SEO SERP for Chrome – Free
If you are a fan of Google Chrome and want to have a quick look through the ranking of particular keywords for particular list of websites, you can easily use this Chrome Extension. With one click you can get SERP report inside browser.
23. URI Valet – Free
Checking HTTP headers for the web pages are very important. Sometimes, you might get server issue error codes or redirect codes which in turn impacts the user experience and search engine ranking. Now you can use URI Valet for checking the status codes one by one in detail for the suspected page.
24. Live HTTP Headers for Firefox – Free
For checking header response codes easily you can use Mozilla Firefox extension. This extension can be easily installed and you can view live HTTP header status inside the extension pop-up.
25. SeoTools Excel plugin – Free
In case you want to do a detail analysis of the Urls in Microsoft Excel file, then SEOtools excel plugin is at your help. After installing this plugin locally into Excel you can easily check the http header requests for urls in bulk, along with a facility to pull any data from Google Analytics and SEO Majestic.
26. SEO Book – Free
Sometimes you may require to check the http status for a list of urls online. SEO Book created this interesting tool, which you can use on the fly to check the status code for list of urls. Using this tool you can also switch the user agents.
27. Google Pagespeed Score – Free
28. GTmetrix – Free
GTmetrix is second on this list for measuring optimization of website and webpage. It gives the score from best of both the worlds, the pagespeed score and YSlow grade. Both the grading system gives comprehensive detail on website optimization and further scope of enhancement. This tool also gives you Timeline with waterfall model to show how the resources are loading on a particular page which is under test. Further, I use this tool because on signup it also gives us ability to test the webpage from a location-based test server.
29. WebPageTest – Free
When it comes to testing a webpage for the requirement of generating very minute details, then webpagetest result is very useful. With this free tool, you can select for a location-specific server, speed, browser, threads and many more options which might be a condition originating for a particular user. So, Webpagetest serves a complete detail based testing tool, which can be used to measure the loading times, see the content breakdown in detail, the domains and resource times.
30. Google Page Speed Insight Tools – Free
Above, I mentioned the Google Pagespeed Score, which can be viewed on Google Developers website, but, here we have a dedicated tool from Google which can be installed directly inside Google Chrome. For a developer, this tool makes the job of optimization easy. On the fly from inside the Chrome browser, the developer can easily keep a check on modifications required.
31. Robots.txt Checker – Free
For a search engine, robots.txt file is very important and you must be aware that the search bots first look into the robots.txt file and according to given directives they follow the patterns and crawl different area of the website. Sometimes, logical issues might appear into the .txt file and hamper the crawling of a website. Using this online tool, you just need to input the url for which you want to check the .txt file, and further validation will be taken care of by the tool.
32. Bot Browser – Free
33. Google’s Rich Snippets Testing Tool – Free
For last few years, the search engines have started to follow the rich snippets. These snippets enable the search bots to easily crawl a website and at the same time, these snippets also enable the website user to navigate the website easily. All the snippets are implemented technically and it may be possible that an error can appear. Use this Rich Snippets Testing tool from Google Webmasters to test, fix and finally deploy the right code of snippet.
34. Schema.org – Free
Schema is a great way to markup the HTML pages and which can be easily recognized by the search engine bots. You can use Schema for a wide range of websites and products like books, movie, review, local business. You can also use them for highlighting image, video objects. After you are done with marking the objects on html, you can use above Snippets Testing tool from Google to verify them.
35. Structured Data Markup Helper – Free
In case you have not used Schema markup tools from above, you can also use this visual markup tool from Google and start tagging the objects on web pages. Initially, you will have to start training the tool with some sample pages and then the crawler will start indexing those markup tags. This is a great visual tool which can be used when the pages on a website have similarity.
36. Ontolo’s SERP Dominator – Free & Paid
When we are analyzing the keywords and finding the kind of websites which are ranking for the searched keyword, we need to look for the factors which are influencing for ranking. With this SERP Dominator tool, you can easily analyze the 100 search results for a particular keyword. Under the free account, using this tool, you can create up to 25 reports. Paid accounts are also available starting $47 per month.
37. Ontolo’s Extract Unique Hostname – Free
When the listed URLs are huge and you need to extract the hostname of the url lists at once, then this free Ontolo hostname extractor is most useful and can be used in a single click to get the desired hostnames.
38. Ontolo’s Rank Landscape Reports – Free & Paid
This is another wonderful tool from Ontotlo which can be used for analysis of top search results with respect to different parameters that might be influencing them in the search result. To use this tool you will have to signup for a free account, then select keyword, get report according to Metric Target, Metric Average, Pagerank, Moz Authority, Moz Trust, Backlink Counter, Backlink IP, Content- Length, Content Age, Content Keyword Count, Content Keyword Density, along the number of keywords searched results appearing in SERP.
For me, it is a great time-saving tool that helps me to generate a brief report on time frame required for ranking a particular keyword in SERP. This particular tool also helps as a decision-making tool for the effort required in content development and marketing.
39. BROWSEO – Free
Above I mentioned about Bot Browser which can be used to see how a webpage appears to a bot crawler. Now having this Browseo tool, you can get detail on how a website looks to a crawler bot and what are all the things found in the back of the source code. This analysis tool also gives suggestion on the links, headings and the number of characters to be used, along with how the webpage appears into the search engine.
40. STAT Search Analytics – Free
This is another tool, besides Alexa and Similarweb where you can find best performing website in a defined set of categories. This website tracks 11 different website categories, Business, Classifieds, Cooking, Education, Entertainment / Celebrity, Health, Music, News, Social Media, Technology, Travel, tracking along more than 75,000 keywords. For each website, you can easily see top performing traffic drivers and demographics of the audience who are browsing these websites.
Other than these tools, there are plenty of small website analysis tools what I have used to get the work done quickly. Some of them include Site Link Analyzer – SEO Chat, hreflang Tag Generator, Website Malware Scanning Tool.
Hope by now it is clear why I said earlier that these tools would have no value if the SEO is dead. When you will go through the above list again, you will find these tools trend more towards finding the issues and opportunity where you can serve your end user in a better way.