A big part of SEO success is being able to read and interpret SEO data, and for most companies this data comes from Google Analytics. While Google Analytics is by far the most robust and popular tool out there to gather and review metrics from Google (it’s created by Google after all), there are other tools out there that can help you gain even more insights.
Believe it or not, it’s actually a good idea to gather data from more than one tool because different tools take different things into account when coming up with their numbers. This then gives you the ability to cross-reference your data and come up with even more accurate conclusions. A few of these tools include:
This is actually a premium tool that you can try free for 30 days and is one of the most popular out there. It comes from Raven Tools so you know it’s excellent quality and has great customer service, and all you have to do to get started is plug in your URL and then wait for results. It offers crawl comparisons between desktop and mobile and different browsers, image data to help make sure your images are optimized, and other metadata issues. All of this data is harder to find when using Google Analytics, so this is the perfect supplement.
This wouldn’t be a complete list without WooRank. This one focuses on SEO and offers tons of free reports including not only what you need to improve, but how you can improve it. You’ll get a checklist of suggestions, SEO best practice reminders, and notes about your usability, mobile, and structure. There really isn’t anything this tool doesn’t account for—it even let’s you check your social media and local presence, which isn’t widely used on Google Analytics.
This is one tool that focuses on SEO, but also puts just as big a focus on things like your blogging strategy, social media, lead generation, and of course mobile. The tool has been around since 2007 and has been kept updated every since, so you know that they’re focusing on the most relevant and up to date SEO metrics. The tool will generate a score between 1-100 for you to let you know where you need work. Security is also a component of this tool, which is something that Google Analytics still has yet to master. This may not be directly related to SEO, but it could be if you get hacked!
Another very popular option, this is a tool that makes it easy to get SEO data as well as competitor data. While Google Analytics does have this information, they use 45 individual checks in 6 different categories, so the data you get will be slightly different than what you see on Google Analytics. You’ll get a summary, a score, and advice on how to make improvements. One cool thing that this tool also offers is schema.org microdata and other semantic web considerations. This is definitely something that is unique to this tool.
This isn’t a popular option, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t have some great data to offer. This is completely free, so unlike the others where the premium version is worth the money, here you’ll the best data analysis right away. It breaks up results into seven categories including HTML Header, body content, internal and external links, additional files (robots.tx and XML sitemap), social media signals, http headers, and domain and service information such as IP address and name servers.
This is one of the more expensive options on the list at $160/ year for the premium version. This tool focuses very heavily on SEO and SEO only and is highly recommended for large websites with hundreds and thousands of pages. It is pretty advanced and doesn’t have the same easy design as some of the other tools, but it is still easy to navigate. You can also export any data into an excel file so that you can slice and date your numbers any way you wish.
So this was a tool that I learned first from this article and found that it offers some unique information. It covers all of your basic SEO points including domain strength, social media counts, technical SEO, navigation, etc., but it also puts a focus on image SEO. Similarly to SEO Website Auditor mentioned above, Varvy will rate the strength of the images on your website by analyzing the alt text. Again, this is something Google Analytics is still missing.
In the end, keep in mind that you don’t need to use all of the tools mentioned above. Try just using one or two in addition to your Google Analytics, and if you need to add on another tool when you’re doing a detailed SEO audit. Once you’ve given them a try, let us know which tools you use and which you like the best in the comment section below.