By Matt Bertram

By Matt Bertram

Matt Bertram, is the lead digital strategist at EWR Digital. He is the co-host of the Best SEO Podcast: Unknown Secrets of Internet Marketing. Currently writes for Search Engine Journal, Forbes and Entrepreneur.

SEO is a daunting yet rewarding feat. For the best results you need to  perform keyword research, analyze data, and monitor your performance and rankings, and much more. For the best results, SEO tools help you save time while allowing you to tap into comprehensive results and data that you can use to bolster your SEO strategy.

Small businesses, in particular, can benefit from using these SEO tools as these allow them to stay competitive and relevant. SEO tools can help you efficiently conduct keyword research for content marketing, optimize your website, improve your backlink profile, perform competitor analysis, automate processes, access organized data, and track your KPIs. While not all tools are created equal, these are some of the top 5 tools that we like to use, and continue to reap the benefits from.

Our Top 5 SEO Tools 


Ahrefs is a powerful all-in-one SEO tool that lets you audit and optimize your website, perform competitor analysis, explore keywords, and monitor your rankings. It’s a tool that’s designed for anyone who wants to improve their SEO and grow their search traffic, whether you’re a blogger or running an eCommerce business. 

The core features of Ahrefs are designed to help improve your ranking in the SERPs and bring more traffic to your website. For example, the Site Audit feature crawls all your website’s pages for technical and on-page SEO issues to give you an in-depth analysis. Plus, you can even crawl mobile websites using Ahrefs Site Audit feature. Want to find the right keywords that your customers are actually searching for? The Keyword Explorer feature gives you access to a regularly-updated database with over 7 billion keywords. You also get advanced SEO metrics that include return rate, clicks per search, and the percentage of paid clicks. 

Aside from the core tools, it also offers free SEO tools, including a Backlink Checker, Keyword Generator, and a SERP Toolbar.

SE Ranking

SE Ranking is a robust SEO analysis and ranking tool that offers accurate, real-time keyword rank tracking, SEO/PPC competitive research, extensive website audit, and backlink checking and monitoring. It also lets you tap into the power of SEO for social media management, as well as create your own branded SEO service through its white-label features. Best of all, SE Ranking’s white-label features are already included in its pricing plan, so you won’t have to worry about additional costs. It’s an easy to use platform to use, and top agencies, businesses and freelancers have been using it for years with great success.


If you want to leverage data and use the results for growth, then SPYFu might be a good option for you. With SPYFu, you get access to tools for SEO, PPC, competitor research, projects, and scheduled reports. It also offers features specifically designed to improve your SEO, such as rank tracking, SERP analysis, keyword research, and backlinks builder. 

SPYFu does all these using its expansive database, which spans 7 billion results across more than 100 million domains. 

For example, if you want to complete SEO competitor research, SPYFu lets you monitor your competitor’s SEO keywords and check their backlinks by keywords. SPYfu can also assist with additional marketing strategies with its add on for social outreach backlinks.

SEO Quake

If you need an easily accessible tool with instant results, download SEOQuake for free. It’s an SEO toolbox that lets you conduct real-time on-page SEO audits and examine internal and external links using only your browser. 

With SEOQuake, you get a SEObar for quick access to an SEO summary of a page, as well as a compact SEO dashboard. Using SEOQuake, you can also conduct a detailed keyword analysis for your website. Plus, it lets you export and print your data. 

Aside from being a free download, it works with popular browsers, including Chrome, Firefox, and Opera.

Screaming Frog

Screaming Frog is an SEO spider tool that crawls your website to find broken links, checks for duplicate content, and generates XML sitemaps, helping you improve your on-site SEO. Aside from website crawls, it provides real-time analytic results. 

It offers two pricing options: paid and free. With the former, you can only crawl up to 500 URLs, while the latter lets you crawl an unlimited number of URLs. While its free version is already a powerful SEO tool, you may want to consider going for the paid version given its sheer array of additional features, which include Google Analytics integration, crawl configuration, and spelling and grammar checks, among other features.

Choosing the Right SEO Tool for Your Needs

Finding the right SEO tool for your business can be tricky. Here are some tips to help ease your search:

  • Determine the type of SEO tool you need. There are several types of SEO tools, such as keyword tools, crawlers, and link building tools. Each of these comes with different features and functionalities. If you want to focus on keyword research, then opting for a keyword tool makes sense. However, if you want to improve your backlink profile, perform keyword research, and crawl your website for issues, then you may want to look for an all-in-one SEO tool.
  • Consider its features. Some SEO tools come with a ton of features, some of which may be unnecessary for your SEO goals. Make sure that when choosing an SEO tool, you look at its basic functionality first. Ideally, it should be able to track rankings, integrate with PPC tools, conduct on-page audits, perform keyword research, and conduct competitor analysis.
  • Consider your budget. A good SEO tool can be costly. So, it’d be wise to assess your needs to see what you want to get from an SEO tool. If you only want access to basic features, then you may be able to save money. Also, there are service providers that offer free plans, or trial versions, so you may want to check those options out first before buying the plan outright.  Note that with some of these free plans, you can only access a very limited number of features. 

What SEO tool are you using? How is it helping you to achieve your business needs? Or are you in the process of finding one? Let us help you grow your business through effective SEO strategies. Start a conversation with us and schedule a consultation today.