Directly competing against large enterprises seem impossible for small businesses especially due to the former’s larger teams, vast resources, and expensive SEO tools. Fortunately, there are numerous inexpensive and even free tools and resources that small businesses can take advantage of.
In this guide, we’ll discuss what SEO tools are and how they can contribute to the success of a small business. We’ll also provide a list of paid and free tools that you can use to develop your own SEO strategy.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) tools are programs, plugins, or software that are designed to help website owners, digital marketers, and SEO practitioners improve the visibility and search ranking of a website.
These tools are usually browser-based, and they can help analyse the traffic and performance of a site. In addition, they can identify areas that can be optimised and also keep track of the results optimisation campaigns.
As mentioned earlier, the goal of SEO is to improve a website’s visibility and search ranking. This means that this optimisation process can benefit businesses in a number of ways. For instance, with better rankings, a small business’ website can increase its traffic by attracting more potential customers, which can also have a direct effect on its online sales and performance.
In addition, through various on-page and off-page SEO efforts, such as optimising a site’s content and structure, adding elements such as titles and meta tags, link building, and setting up a Google My Business account, the online visibility of a website will significantly grow. Its improved visibility can then allow it to compete against larger competitors in the industry.
Due to the importance of SEO for businesses and brands, various tools have been created. Although all of these are designed to optimise the performance and visibility of sites, not all of them are created equal.
Below is a comprehensive list showing 10 of the best paid and free SEO tools that you can use to optimise your business’ website.
Google Analytics is a free analytical tool developed by Google. It’s designed to provide insights regarding a website’s demographics and traffic. This allows site owners to view the site’s most popular pages and which ones need improvement.
Through Google Analytics, you’ll be able to keep track of various metrics, such as where your visitors are coming from, the types of browsers and devices they’re using, their geographic location, and how long they stay on your site. You can then use the collected information to improve various aspects of your site.
Another free tool offered by Google is the Google Search Console. This provides small businesses with a wealth of information and insights that can facilitate the improvement of a site’s performance and visibility in Google’s search results. It provides helpful data such as how often your site appears in the search results, what keywords users are typing in to find your site, and how they are interacting with your on-page content.
Additionally, Google Search Console has tools that you can use to diagnose and address problems related to your site’s visibility. It also provides suggestions on how to improve a site’s structure and content.
Google Business Profile is a free tool that allows business owners to manage their online presence. It lets them create a free local citation that includes basic information about their business, such as its name, phone number, and address. In addition to Google search results, businesses can also appear in Google Maps through a Google Business Profile listing.
This platform also allows business owners to interact with their customers by posting updates, answering questions, and responding to reviews.
This free tool works by evaluating the performance of web pages and provides suggestions on how to improve them. It measures the page load speed and gives helpful feedback on how to optimise certain factors to make it faster.
This is a vital aspect for websites since a slow loading time can negatively affect a site’s performance. Pages that don’t load quickly can cause site visitors to leave. Also, Google penalises slow websites. In other words, optimising a site’s loading speed can boost its rankings, improve its online presence, and attract more visitors and potential customers.
Google Trends is a free web service from Google that shows the performance of keywords. It can also keep track of the popularity of topics over a certain period and compare it with the popularity of other topics.
For small businesses, Google Trends can help provide them with an idea of how often their company or brand is being searched online. This information allows them to create strategies regarding the allocation of their marketing resources.
Ahrefs is a paid service that offers users a variety of tools that they can use to research and analyse their competitors. It works by using crawlers to collect data and create reports on keyword research, backlinks, and website traffic. Business owners can then use this data to study their competition, find new customers, and improve their site’s SEO performance.
Ahrefs is priced at around $99 to $999 USD per month, depending on the package.
Keywords Everywhere is a free browser extension that helps research and track a website’s ranking on different search engines. Additionally, it gives helpful information on the estimated cost-per-click, competition, and traffic of the keywords that you’re targeting.
You’ll also be able to see how often the keywords are being searched using this tool. This data can then be used to create or improve your online marketing strategies.
With the help of Screaming Frog, small business owners can identify technical problems with their site that can affect their search engine rankings. It can also carry out an SEO audit to find errors and warnings, as well as provide information on a site’s SEO performance.
Although Answer the Public is a paid SEO software that costs $99 USD a month, it also has a free version. This software relies on Google autocomplete to generate long-tail queries that are based on questions that people are asking online.
Through this software, small businesses can get a clear idea of the topics that their target customers are interested in. They can then use this information to improve their content strategies.
Yoast is a paid WordPress Plugin ($299 a year) that also has a free trial version. It’s designed to help site owners optimise the content of their site for search engines. It accomplishes this by providing feedback on how well a post is optimised. It also gives suggestions on how on-page SEO can be further improved.
In addition, Yoast can guide business owners on how they can improve the content and structure of their websites. It also helps them make sure that the sites are performing efficiently in Google search results.
Through these SEO tools, small business owners can carry out effective optimisation campaigns to improve and maintain their website’s visibility and performance. However, one important thing that you need to remember is that SEO is an ongoing process.
This means that in addition to regularly updating your SEO strategies, you also have to be aware of the latest changes and trends in search engine algorithms in order to stay ahead of your competition.
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