Whether you’re starting your first blog or not making money, you need to be smart about where you spend your money. You don’t want your blog to become an expensive hobby. Free SEO tools help you make progress on growing your blog without busting your budget. You can make progress on growing your blog by prioritizing where you can save money.
Free SEO Tools for Keyword Research
Keyword selection for your blog posts is a key component to your content strategy and SEO planning. The long tail keywords you choose need to be ones that someone will actually try searching on and that you can actually rank on (i.e. competition).
Google Auto Complete
The first place to start identifying keywords people use on Google is Google itself. When you start typing into the search field on Google, it tries to guess what you’re typing. Google is also trying to provide suggestions based on what you are entering. Your potential readers have the same experience of receiving suggestions from Google for their searches.
Google Suggested Searches
We usually click on the first few options on the search results. Have you scrolled to the bottom of the page? On the bottom of the first page of your Google results is a “Searches related to…” section with alternate keyword suggestions to the one you typed. This section gives hints at related or alternative keywords that Google thinks are related to your search.
Google Suggested Searches is another insight into the actual keyword combinations your potential readers are trying on Google.
Google Auto Complete and Search Suggestions give you hints about actual search terms people are using, but it doesn’t tell you how often these searches are done. Keywords Everywhere is a browser plugin that puts the search frequency, AdWords pricing and Ad Word competition right in line for the keywords it has on file.
Keywords Everywhere is one of my favorite free SEO tools I use in combination with Google search results to create my free keyword research strategy. The convenience makes it simple. You can export the options list, write them down, or take screenshots to help you build your list for later.
You can still go into Google Keywords Planner in Google Adwords, but it’s a little harder to use and completely separate from the regular search screens.
Ubersuggest by Neil Patel
Ubersuggest by Neil Patel is in interesting newer keyword research tool. It gives you search keywords with estimated traffic volume along with suggested related keywords. You can also do competitive research using Ubersuggest by checking out the keywords assigned to another domain.
Ubersuggest also calculates how easy or hard a keyword would be to rank for. Do you own research to confirm the recommendation. Don’t take the difficulty calculation at face value. Automated calculations don’t take into account all the factors that affect rankings such as search intent and how well the search results actually cover the topic.
And one more thing to keep in mind with Ubersuggest is that all the data for newer blogs may not be available. Google Search Console will help fill the gap when you’re doing analysis on your own blog.
Google Search Console in Google Webmasters Tools
Google Search Console in Google Webmasters Tools has a few interesting features including Search Analytics. This gives you insight into your blog’s search performance directly from the Google. The combination of impressions, position, and clicks gives you an idea of how Google views your site.
This also gives you ideas on keywords to optimize your content for, or potentially hints of new, focused content to create.
Tip: While in the Google Search Console and looking at the Search Analytics, change the view to “Pages” and then click on one of your pages. This will tell you which keywords are associated to a specific page, allowing you to better optimize for the keywords.
And Another Tip: If you have Keywords Everywhere installed, you’ll also see the search volume and competition for those keywords. This will help you determine if it’s a keyword you want to research further for optimization.
Moz Free SEO Tools
Moz started as a SEO blog back in 2004 and has since grown to be an exert in SEO and creates SEO tools. Sign up for a Moz account to get access to their free SEO tools available if you sign up for a free account. Two interesting free Moz tools include:
Keyword Explorer allows you 10 searches a month. In the report for each search, you receive competition, related keyword suggestions, and search result insights.
Link Explorer also allows for 10 search a month. It returns a report on a specific site or URL, in terms of Moz calculated Domain Authority (DA) and Page Authority (PA) that will be important when you start trying to increase backlinks to your blog.
You can also install the MozBar for added insights on pages and search results.
What other free SEO Tools do you use?
Over to you. What other free SEO tools have helped you get started and make progress with your blog? Or are there other tools you’ve heard about and don’t understand. Drop your comments below!