SEO, or search engine optimization, is the process of making your website content more attractive to search engines like Google, Yahoo, or Bing. You’ve likely heard how effective an SEO strategy is. But why does it matter if a search engine finds your site attractive?
It makes your content more visible in search results, and potential customers can find you and your business more easily. Simply put, SEO is essential to connect target audiences with your brand and learn about your products or services.
That’s where SEO tools enter. These programs are designed to help you effectively reach your SEO goals with minimal stress. Read about nine of the best paid and free SEO tools below and discover how they can add value to your brand’s marketing toolkit and boost your site’s optimization!
Free SEO Tools You Need to Be Using
While some of the best SEO tools require payment, others are free for brands to use. Here are four high-quality SEO tools that will cost you nothing.
Google Search Console
Google Search Console is a free service that helps a brand or business monitor, maintain, and troubleshoot its website’s presence in Google search results.
The tool helps you measure your site’s traffic and performance, optimize your content by analyzing your site’s impressions and clicks, and understand how Google Search sees your web pages. Plus, Google Search Console users receive alerts via email when Google finds a technical issue with your website or content.
According to the Search Console website, this tool can be good for:
- Business owners: To become familiar with SEO basics and the features available in Google Search
- SEO specialists: To monitor web traffic, optimize rankings, and make informed decisions about your site’s search results appearances
- Website administrators: To monitor and resolve server errors, issues with site loading, and security problems
- Web developers: To monitor and resolve common markup issues
Google Analytics is another SEO tool brands and businesses can use free of charge.
The tool’s primary purpose is to measure traffic and engagement on your website. Google Analytics achieves this goal with three APIs:
- Admin API: To do things like provisioning and managing accounts
- Data API: To manage reports
- User Deletion API: To delete analytics data
In addition to data collection through the APIs, noteworthy Google Analytics features include built-in automation, reporting, an advertising workspace, exploration, and integrations.
According to the program’s website, Yoast SEO is among the most popular WordPress SEO plugins and boasts more than 13 million users!
There is a paid version of this tool, but the free version has plenty of helpful functions, too. Free functions include the ability to set page titles, write effective meta descriptions, set canonical URLs, and create breadcrumbs that help users easily navigate your website.
Yoast SEO’s other functions help analyze your paragraph structure so you can deliver better content, monitor keyword density, and clean up permalinks.
Yet another SEO tool from the minds at Google, PageSpeed Insights — PSI, for short — provides lab and field data about a webpage. Lab data is most useful for debugging site issues, while field data captures real-world user experience.
Having both categories of this information helps site owners get content out there and ensure it’s the best it can be.
Paid SEO Tools for Success in 2024
Now that you’ve been introduced to the no-cost programs above, it’s time to dive into the best-paid SEO tools. Use both their noteworthy features and pricing options to determine which would be most helpful for your brand.
These Ahref-exclusive traits include the ability to compare a website’s current and historical data, view your competitors’ top-performing pages, discover low-hanging keyword opportunities, and get internal linking suggestions. This helps users come up with content ideas based on keywords with high search volume and low difficulty.
Ahrefs offers users four plans with varying features.
- Lite: Lite provides essential data for smaller businesses and is $99 per month. Users get Keywords Explorer tools, Site Audit, Competitive Analysis, and more.
- Standard: The Standard package is $199 monthly and is recommended for freelance SEO marketing consultants. In addition to all the Lite features, subscribers get more Site Explorer tools, access mentions in Alerts, and more.
- Advanced: Ahrefs’s Advanced package costs $399 a month and includes enough tools and data for in-house marketing teams. An AI Content Grader is even in the works for Advanced subscribers. Advanced users also get Web Explorer tools, plus advanced Site Audit features.
- Enterprise: The Ahrefs Enterprise package has every feature of the three smaller, less expensive options, plus pay by invoice, access management, audit log, API, SSO, and directory listing options. As its name implies, this package is best suited for enterprise or agency use and is $999 per month.
Surfer SEO’s intent is to help its users write articles that read well and rank high on search engine results.
One of Surfer’s notable features is the Keyword Research Tool, which allows marketers and brand owners to form content plans around one primary keyword. The keyword tool also provides potential secondary keywords and references keyword difficulty.
There’s also the Surfer Content Editor, a powerful writing assistant that helps you cover your topic adequately and make it rank for at least one keyword. Surfer uses top-ranking pages and its own algorithms to generate a list of words and phrases you should include for SEO. All you have to do then is create content!
Like Ahrefs, there are four Surfer SEO plans to choose from.
- Start: Start is intended for individual and small team use. At just $59 per month, users can use the Content Editor to write up to 20 articles. You can also access the Keyword Research tool and invite two team members to use the platform.
- Scale: Scale is Surfer’s most popular tier, and it’s for mid-sized marketing teams. At $129 a month, users can write up to 100 articles.
- Scale AI: As its name implies, Surfer’s Scale AI tier is for people who want to use AI to take their marketing efforts to the next level. For $219 monthly, users can write and optimize up to 100 articles and generate up to 10 ready-to-rank AI articles.
- Enterprise: Surfer SEO at the Enterprise level is for large agencies. For $399 a month, big marketing teams can use the Content Editor to write and optimize a custom number of regular and ready-to-rank AI articles.
Many of the brands you’ve heard of or interact with daily — Procter & Gamble, Samsung, Amazon, and General Electric, to name a few — rely on Semrush to help them achieve their marketing goals. It offers more than 55 tools and reports available to users, so there are plenty of SEO tools to help business meet their optimization goals.
Potential Semrush users can choose one of three pricing plans.
- Pro: For a monthly rate of $129.95, a Semrush subscriber can work on five projects, track 500 keywords, and access 10,000 results per report. This tier is recommended for beginners and small teams.
- Guru: The Guru is Semrush’s middle package, designed for mid-sized businesses and agencies. A monthly payment of $249.95 lets you optimize 15 projects, track 1,500 keywords, and view 30,000 results per report.
- Business: The most comprehensive and expensive Semrush plan is the Business tier. Ringing up to $499.95 a month, this plan allows large companies to optimize 40 projects, track 5,000 keywords, and see 50,000 results per report.
The Frase platform describes itself as “your SEO content workflow on steroids.” Of course, there are no actual steroids involved. However, there are automated SEO content briefs, integration with Google Search Console, content scoring, an intuitive content editor, an outline builder, and more.
Frase offers options for everyone, from individuals to large companies.
- Solo: A Solo Frase subscription costs $14.99 monthly, and it includes one user seat and the ability to use the platform to write and optimize four articles.
- Basic: The Basic Frase package includes one user seat, plus the ability for users to write and optimize 30 articles a month. Subscriptions are priced at $44.99 a month.
- Team: Last but certainly not least on Frase’s list of packages is the Team offering. For $114.99 a month, this tier allows for three user seats and the ability to write and optimize unlimited articles.
Screaming Frog SEO Spider
According to its website, Screaming Frog SEO Spider is the leading website crawler for Windows, macOS, and Linux. Through this platform, you can audit, or crawl, websites to find broken links, analyze page titles and metadata, discover duplicate content, and more. The data collected here helps you make informed decisions as you optimize your content for search engines.
Screaming Frog SEO Spider licensing costs are:
- 1 to 4 licenses for $259 per license per year
- 5 to 9 licenses for $245 per license per year
- 10 to 19 licenses for $235 per license per year
- 20+ licenses for $225 per license per year
Work with Markitors to Boost Your Site’s Organic Traffic
The above free and paid SEO tools are tried and true options. But trying to find the best tools — or the best combination of tools — can be overwhelming, especially for business owners who have other important tasks they need to focus on.
SEO agencies like Markitors help small businesses outrank their competitors. To accomplish this, Markitors develops an SEO plan, builds a foundation for the business’s digital marketing efforts, and finds ways to bring the brand to life online. In short, they help you reach your SEO goals just as the SEO tools above do while saving time and money.
If you want to save time and money instead of testing out different SEO tools and trying to see what works, schedule a free consultation with Markitors, or take advantage of the platform’s free SEO audit tool today.