With so much technology available these days, researching which tools will be most effective for your SEO services can be a daunting task.
That’s why we’ve rounded up experts in the SEO industry and asked them all one question: What are your top 3 tools you use for SEO?
Their answer are listed below, as well as a breakdown of which tools were mentioned most by these experts.
Hopefully, this helps you make some decisions about what tools you’ll get the most use from.
Steve Slater – Toprankmarketing.com
SEMRush – This tool has always been fantastic and it’s only gotten better over the last year. They’ve added some really useful features that address technical SEO, on page SEO, keyword targeting, and so much more.
Majestic – Links still matter. The Majestic Site Explorer feature is worth the price of admission. I’ve uncovered so many link sculpting opportunities with that tool.
Screaming Frog – This tool has to be on any SEO tool round-up. It’s the technical SEO swiss army knife.
Nisha Pandey – Seotechyworld.com
I have been using SEO Wiz as one of my SEO tools for one of my sites. I do not rely on it entirely, but it simplifies things for me. The add-on takes care of the meta data for my pages. It does have a keyword analyzer, but this is where my second tool comes into the picture. I prefer to use Google Keyword Planner to keep up-to-date with keyword optimization for my pages.I use WordPress SEO by Yoast for a few of my sites. It offers lots of flexibility and there are many reasons why it is so widely used.
Andrew Parker – Branded3.com
Screaming Frog – I never leave home without it. Great for site audits and quick checks alike. Even better with V9 allowing for bigger crawls on a local machine.
Google Search Console – always been one of the best ways to diagnose site issues/spot opportunities and it is even better with the recent update.
SEMrush – great for performance analysis, competitor benchmarking, algorithm updates, content opportunities – does a bit of everything and does it well.
Alan Ng – Branded3.com
SEMRush – Best tool for Insights that isn’t overly enterprise priced
Keyword research and forecasting is the next area I’d focus on for search and for this
Keyword Planner – for its forecasting capabilities
SEOMonitor for its topic explorer – if you’ve not used this for keyword research definitely worth a try
Chris Dreyer – Rankings.io
We don’t stick to only three tools because data about SEO can be gleaned from a lot of different places but there are some reliable software programs we use on a regular basis for our client SEO work as well as for our own.Ahrefs: This has to be one of our most extensively used tools. We use it for backlink analysis, keyword research, competitor link comparison and other variations of link analysis. Of all the link analysis tools on the market, we like this one the best for two reasons. First is the level of detail you get when scanning a single domain or doing comparisons. You can literally learn everything there is to know related to links on a particular domain. The second is Ahrefs commitment to improvement. The link analysis and keyword research tools we see not do so well in the long run are the ones that do not innovate on a regular basis. Google Analytics: For tracking traffic volumes and referral traffic, Google Analytics is one of the best tools out there. It’s free, there is ample documentation and learning resources for it and it is extremely convenient. We use other Google tools like Search Console and AdWords so when we can simplify a client’s account by having software incorporated in the same account that is very helpful. SEMrush: Much of our work on keyword analysis and tracking is carried out in SEMrush. We rely heavily on the auditing and reporting tools to get our clients information on how their campaigns are performing. A big plus with SEMrush is the easy to use interface. It’s intuitive and easy on the eyes which goes a long way with software programs. It doesn’t matter how flexible or robust or advanced something is. If it’s hard to use, all that stuff goes out the window.We don’t stick to only three tools because data about SEO can be gleaned from a lot of different places but there are some reliable software programs we use on a regular basis for our client SEO work as well as for our own.
Ahrefs: This has to be one of our most extensively used tools. We use it for backlink analysis, keyword research, competitor link comparison and other variations of link analysis. Of all the link analysis tools on the market, we like this one the best for two reasons. First is the level of detail you get when scanning a single domain or doing comparisons. You can literally learn everything there is to know related to links on a particular domain. The second is Ahrefs commitment to improvement. The link analysis and keyword research tools we see not do so well, in the long run, are the ones that do not innovate on a regular basis.
Google Analytics: For tracking traffic volumes and referral traffic, Google Analytics is one of the best tools out there. It’s free, there is ample documentation and learning resources for it and it is extremely convenient. We use other Google tools like Search Console and AdWords so when we can simplify a client’s account by having software incorporated into the same account that is very helpful.
SEMrush: Much of our work on keyword analysis and tracking is carried out in SEMrush. We rely heavily on the auditing and reporting tools to get our clients information on how their campaigns are performing. A big plus with SEMrush is the easy to use interface. It’s intuitive and easy on the eyes which goes a long way with software programs. It doesn’t matter how flexible or robust or advanced something is. If it’s hard to use, all that stuff goes out the window.
Jason Acidre – kaiserthesage.com
I mainly use these tools for almost all the technical SEO audits/campaigns I run:
Ahrefs – for link development, content strategy, and keyword research
Google Search Console – for technical on-site auditing
Google Analytics – for tracking and finding more opportunities for optimization.
Nadav Dakner – Inboundjunction.com
I use Ubersuggest to generate more ideas for keywords should be going after. Ubersuggest shows me traffic and how hard a keyword would be to go after. It works great for PPC purposes and tracking what your competitors are doing as well. Google Analytics is an amazing tool that tracks my conversion rate per channel. This way I can focus on traffic that drives conversions instead of getting more visitors that just bounce away. Another tool that I use on a regular basis is Crazy Egg. It allows me to run A/B tests and improve my conversion rate without needing help from designers, developers or marketers.I use Ubersuggest to generate more ideas for keywords should be going after. Ubersuggest shows me traffic and how hard a keyword would be to go after. It works great for PPC purposes and tracking what your competitors are doing as well.
Google Analytics is an amazing tool that tracks my conversion rate per channel. This way I can focus on traffic that drives conversions instead of getting more visitors that just bounce away.
Another tool that I use on a regular basis is Crazy Egg. It allows me to run A/B tests and improve my conversion rate without needing help from designers, developers or marketers.
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Dennis Seymour – Leapfroggr.com
My tech stack specifically for SEO is super simple because I’d like to keep it simple that I don’t overwhelm my brain with too much.
Besides the usual Google Analytics and Google Search Console, which are definitely must haves for all of us, I mainly use Serpstat.com, Market Samurai, and Website Auditor.
SEMRush, Screaming Frog, Scrapebox and URL Profiler are also in my toolkit but I don’t bust them out as much as I did back in the day.
I’m currently testing KeywordHero which is pretty sweet, too.
David Leonhardt – Seo-writer.com
I’m not really a tool kind of person. I use Google Analytics, because that tells me about my traffic – what is working and what is not. But that’s not just about SEO; that’s about all sources of traffic. I see where traffic is coming from and where it is going.
I also use Google Search Console. That basically tells me what searches I am showing up in (basically telling me that all that traffic I see in Google Analytics is all fiction!). It gives me hints at where I could put more effort, but you can’t filter the data the way you can in Google Analytics.
Finally, I use Optimizilla. Well, not very often. But anytime I work with images on money pages, I use this tool to optimize image size, so that pages load faster.
Dave Schneider – Ninjaoutreach.com
We use Ahrefs for competitor link research, keyword research, basically every data piece we need to come up with our SEO strategy We use our tool, NinjaOutreach, to set up the outreach campaigns we need to execute on these strategies, such as link building campaigns, expert roundups, guest posting.
Then we use Google Analytics + Search Console to evaluate the results of these SEO campaigns.
Sean Si – Seo-hacker.com
We at SEO Hacker use some of the best SEO tools available, and it has provided us with quality results that leave our clients satisfied. If I have to think of the top 3 tools that our team uses it would have to be these:
SEMrush – There are few SEO tools that can match up to what SEMrush can do. It is perhaps one of the best technical SEO tool available, and our team is able to provide the most accurate and sound data thanks to this reliable tool. In fact, I even published a blog post detailing on some things that I like about SEMrush.
Ahrefs – Our content management and link building teams are always looking out for fresh and interesting topics that can help craft their articles, and Ahrefs is the best tool to look for the best sources available on the internet. It is also one of the tools that our link building team relies on whenever they check a client or competitor’s backlink profile. It is definitely the tool that we go to for our link building needs.
Accuranker – We make sure that we are able to track the progress of all of our clients without fail, and Accuranker provides us with live data that helps us see how well our keywords are performing. This tool helps us adjust our strategies on the fly, and keeps us on our toes.
Mani Karthik – Dailyseoblog.com
– Moz and
– Ahrefs.I think these days most tools offer the same kind of functionality and the difference is in scale and speed.
Sanket Patel – Blurbpoint.com
Ahrefs.com – If you want to defeat your competitor on search engine then Ahrefs is the right tool to identify and analyze backlinks to your site or competitor sites. It has one of the most comprehensive link databases.
SEMrush.com – This is a fantastic tool full of amazing features. I use it for backlink & keyword analysis, on-page audit and much more. The more time you spend on it the more useful functionality you will find to improve your website performance.
Screaming Frog Tool – If you’re in the technical SEO, this tool is perfect for you. The facility to quickly diagnose issues is what makes Screaming Frog tool so dominant! I use this tool to examine technical crawl errors, URL redirects, duplicate pages, title tags, meta descriptions, URL structure, and many more.
Nate Shivar – Shivarweb.com
My toolkit includes Ahrefs, Screaming Frog, and Google Search Console.
I use Ahrefs for content & promotion strategy. Their site, content & keyword explorers are second to none. I couldn’t do SEO without them. Screaming Frog is the must-have tool for technical SEO. It’s uses are limited only by your imagination. And of course, Search Console is the only place to get data directly from Google about your visibility in search.
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Fervil Tripoli – Fervilvon.com
This is tough but I beg to disagree that 3 will be enough. The top 3 tools I’d choose though:
Google Search Console – you will see how Google reads your site (indexed pages, duplicate pages, links to your site, ranking, and traffic)
Google Analytics – will give you every data of what’s happening on your site. With GA you can check traffic channels, user behaviors, site speed, and a lot more. Then you can form your own KPI for a particular SEO campaign
SEMrush – very useful for keyword research, competitor analysis, tracking multiple sites on ranking and performance (you vs. your competitors)
Bilal Ahmad – Techmaish.com
Robin Khokhar – Trickyenough.com
The Tools I use for SEO are:
Seo by Yoast: For the on Page SEO on my websites and blog.
Majestic SEO: It helps me to analyze the other website so that I can do better link building.
Copyscape: To check if the content is unique or not. I use before and after publishing the content.
Chris Makara – Chrismakara.com
My top 3 tools for SEO are Ahrefs, Google Analytics, and GTMetrix.
I look to Ahrefs for keyword info, backlink tracking, rankings tracking, link opportunities and more. It’s definitely my favorite SEO tool. There isn’t much I can’t do with it.
And when doing SEO, it’s important to pay attention to load times of the website. For this, I like to use GTMetrix to identify opportunities of improvement.
Finally, to monitor the real impact of SEO on a site I rely on Google Analytics to see organic traffic.
Richard Lowe Jr. – Thewritingking.com
I use Yoast SEO to ensure my website is optimized for SEO. Yoast has controls that allow me to run the structure of the site to make it rank better.
Speed is vital, and I’ve found PingDom.com provides the best free tool to ensure my site is performing well.
Finally, SEOsitecheckup.com lets me check my site to ensure it’s structurally up-to-snuff. By combining all these tools, I ensure my site and pages rank well in the search engines.
Willem Nout – 90digital.com
#1: Screaming Frog
Every technical SEO audit for me starts with Screaming Frog, but the things I use Screaming Frog for are endless. For any site migration or general health check of a website I highly recommend using Screaming Frog. A few crucial things that Screaming Frog does like no other:
Understanding page segmentation and content silo’s
Understanding interlinking structure, text-anchor use and crawl depth of pages
Discover redirect chains, broken links
Check meta directives like canonicals/noindex/nofollow
Identify duplicate pages
Identify images that are missing alt tags or are above certain file size
Identify broken outbound links
List goes on and on:)
# 2: Majestic
For link detox and backlink clean-ups AHREFs and Link Research Tools also come handy, but for basic off-site SEO work Majestic is the go-to tool. After PageRank was no longer a toolbar option the Trustflow / Citationflow that the Majestic Chrome extension offers to me is the next best thing for a clear impression of the strength of a domain or page.
Estimate link power or strength of a page/domain
Discover link opportunities
Identify link velocity, aggressive link building and possible negative SEO attacks
A go-to tool in the arsenal of any SEO agency. Can also be used for SEA research. Quickly get an impression of the current and past performance of a website, rankings and search volume of important keywords, difficulty and competitiveness of keywords or create a GAP analysis. Strong reporting features. Probably not that interesting for in-house SEO teams that thoroughly know their market, but for agencies a tool like SEMrush is an absolute must.
Varvy.com (Free tool)
Very quick test to run on an individual page to get a quick overview of possible issues concerning page speed, caching, mobile optimization, Googlebot access and SSL certificates for example. Use it as an overview and baseline to further investigate possible issues with tools that go into more detail. Especially handy for the webmaster that doesn’t have a large SEO team and would like to get an overview of possible technical SEO issues to look at.
You can very easily track how you’re doing for your target keywords. It’s less cluttered than other tools and you can easily see where you stand compared with your direct competitors. You can analyse rankings by keyword group and it’s easy to visualise how things evolve. And the customer support is great, which is a plus.
Harris Schachter – Optimizepri.me
SEMrush for keyword research and PPC analysis (and some light ranking data)
BuzzSumo for content marketing research and benchmarking
Site crawlers like Screaming Frog or my (and many others’) new favorite, SiteBulb
Joseph E. Gojo Cruz – Rankingelite.com
Ahrefs – I use this tool for spying on my competitors. There are a lot of link opportunities you can discover from successful websites in your industry that you can replicate to your website. For instance, a resources page, guest authorship opportunity and other high value pages that aren’t easy to discover by your average research.
SEMRush – I qualify the websites that I aim to target for link opportunities by checking the site’s organic traffic by country. When it comes to the capability of a website to rank in organic search, this tool is always at the top of my head.
YAMM- I always monitor my email campaigns. I validate if my emails were opened/deleted/seen or even responded through YAMM. This is a plugin you can install to Chrome and run via Google sheet. It can send 50 emails per day and you can always monitor the status of each of your emails.
Jitendra Surve – Italkcool.com
I never rely on building organic traffic, because power of branding is better than organic traffic. Most of my traffic comes from direct traffic from my loyal users. Does CoCa Cola, Apple needs organic traffic…? No, because they work hard on building their brands.
Coming to tools which I use. I never paid a penny for paid tools such as Semrush, Ahrefs etc.
1.Google Search Engine – If I want to find any long tail keywords or semantic keywords ideas. I would simply enter the keyword in google search box. For example: Type in keyword grammar tool and hit space and you will be shown the list of long tail keywords below. Once you hit the enter or search button, scroll down to bottom and it will show you related terms. All of them are long tail keywords.
2.Buffer – I use buffer free subscription for scheduling and posting updates from one place. It has limitations, but it makes your process automatic.
3.Canva – I used it for creating graphics for blog post and social media. It’s a free platform.
The tools we use depend mostly on what we’re trying to accomplish. We most frequently used service is seranking.com. It’s very convenient for position tracking and generating custom reports (and its backlink checking and monitoring tool is a nice bonus).
For more hands-on work we use semrush.com. This is where we do keyword research, analyze QArea’s competitors, and audit the company’s websites. It’s our own go-to tool, and we’ve noticed that our copywriters prefer it too.
And, of course, there’s good old ahrefs.com for backlink analysis. This can be done in Seranking, but Ahrefs has been around for as long as we can remember, so that’s what we’re most comfortable with.
All these services are well-rounded, multifunctional SEO tools. You could feasibly get by with just one service, but using all three side by side helps us work faster and complete research more accurately.
So those are tips from the experts in the industry! Below is a recap of the most popular tools mentioned in our list. We hope this has been helpful!
SEMRush: 13 mentions
Ahrefs: 11 mentions
Google Analytics: 7 mentions
Screaming Frog: 6 mentions
Google Search Console: 6 mentions
SEO by Yoast: 3 mentions
Majestic: 3 mentions
Google Keyword Planner: 2 mentions
Moz: 2 mentions