SEO software is a significant investment for most businesses and for some SME’s, the price tag can even put it out of reach. So in today’s blog we are going to be looking at some freebie SEO software, which will hopefully give you some tools that you can use in your day-to-day business to help track your SEO, and understand what your competitors are doing.
First of all I am not trying to discredit paid for search tools, as I use them all the time. They are fantastic, they give great results. But the truth is, quite often they are just out of reach for a lot of SME’s. And for a lot of people who maybe don’t want to run the whole campaign, but do want to just keep an eye on what’s going on with their chosen SEO agency or with their website, these tools are perfect for that…. So, without further ado, let’s get straight onto it.
The first piece of software we’re going to look at is a site called Nibbler.
Nibbler is the free version of a piece of software called Silktide, which is a great piece of kit. We use it in-house here at Tree Frog Digital, it offers a friendly way of auditing peoples websites. It goes through the website doing around 45 different tests across the site, covering everything from spelling, social media and SEO.
What it does really well is, it gives a warts and all view of what’s going on with the website now, in a general way. This is really useful if you’ve had somebody come and tell you that your website is rubbish, and you need a new one. You can double check their data using this tool.
So let’s look at it in more detail. When you want to test a website, you can’t really get it wrong. Using the link https://nibbler.silktide.com/ there is just a simple text box with ‘test any website’ and the text box where you put your URL in and press go.
Now I must stress that with the free version, you can only run 3 website tests, which they don’t make very clear on the homepage. So just make sure your website is ready to go or you’re ready to run the test before you start playing with it, as you can soon start eating into those free credits. So, when your ready, put your website address in and press the test button. Now this will take a few minutes, you will see something like a progress bar as it goes along. Depending on what time and day this is, it can take anywhere from 30 seconds to about 5 minutes. Not forgetting of course, that if you have a really, really big website or any comments website, you can expect it to take a little bit longer.
When your scrollbar is finished, you will be taken to your report. It really is as simple as that! Now I’m not going to describe everything that’s on the screen because you’ll see that for yourself. What you will get is a snapshot of your website with a handy traffic light system to show what is good, bad and indifferent on your website.
You will also get an itemised list of all the different reports going down the right hand side.
It scores everything out of 100 which is fantastic and obviously 0 is not. It even handedly color codes everything, so it gives you an overall score for your site, which is kind of an accumulation of all the other tests. It gives you access ability, so this is how easy the site is to use for disabled users, or screen readers and other technology which integrates with your site and how user friendly the website is.
Other tests Include ones for the marketing and technology behind the website. It’s important to know the full version goes into loads more detail than the free version, but hey, it’s free!
Right let’s look at the next tool…. So the next tool is a little bit of a hybrid tool.. It’s a website called website seoptimer.com
This has various tools that you can use however some do link in with a premium piece of software called SEMrush, which many people would have heard of this. However SEMrush does have a free trial, which allows you to try 10 requests for free.
Once you log onto the website, www.seoptimer.com/ the first thing you will see is the domain Authority Checker. The domain Authority Checker tells you how much authority a website has got, but effectively how important Google sees it on the Internet. (Yes, SEO nerds, I know that’s not the main authority is but this is a basic blog. I’m giving a basic description deal with it right OK)
Once on the website, click on the domain authority tab. This allows you to put multiple websites in other parallel to compare against each is a great opportunity for you to put your competitors in their hit the check button and it will tell you how much authority your competitors website has got compared with your own.
They also have a keyword difficulty checker keyword position, Checker Backlink Checker. You name it, anything that you need.
Answer the public
The last tool I want to look at is a website called answerthepublic.com/. You may have heard of it.
It’s pretty much as hipster as a website can get!
When logging on you are greeted by a video background of a hipster guy telling you to get on with it, which is really funny and cute the first time, after you’ve used it 100 times or so it’s probably not as funny.
But anyway, the site is really useful to find themes for content based SEO campaigns.
Type in a theme, lets use “tax returns” as an example. It will display for you all of the different questions that people ask about their tax returns.
When you use the tool, it puts the results into a really cool circular diagram. Personally I’m a bit of a data nerd so I’m not really into that.
Fortunately, you can click a button and it gives you a CSV of the data as well, which is much more my style.
It will tell you what kind of questions that people are asking. It will give you ideas for content and also ideas for people’s intent, and all that lovely stuff. And, yes, there are limitations with that. Yes, there are probably better paid for tools out there, but for a free tool, it actually works really, really well, and is very impressive indeed.
My only criticism of public is that is can be death by data. Sometimes you get so much data back that it can take a little bit of time to troll through and find the stuff that you need. But in short, a very, very useful tool.