If you’ve only recently begun looking at how to optimize your website for the search engines, you may be feeling a little overwhelmed by all of the strategies and tools that are needed to achieve a higher ranking.
Worry not! This article will provide you with some of the best tools you need to get started, which i’ve broken down into different categories. I’ve also tried to include as many free SEO tools as possible.
Using the right keywords can really make a difference to your SEO. You must, must, must take the time to research your keywords, otherwise you run the risk of building an SEO campaign that won’t perform well.
Google Webmaster Tools
Google Webmaster Tools provides a wealth of information about your site. After you’ve verified your site you’ll be able to upload your sitemap, check for site errors, identify top search queries and much more. Recommended!
SEO Browser Toolbars
These toolbars are helpful because they generally provide information like PageRank, backlinks and other useful information for each web page you browse. Great for checking out your competition.
Website Rating SEO Tools
If you already have a website and would like to check its SEO effectiveness, there are a number of online tools that will analyze your site against specific criteria and produce a report and rating. You can also use these tools on your competition to see how you compare against them.
Website Grader is a great tool that provides an SEO effectiveness score and tests key elements, such as website traffic, meta data, social popularity, and other SEO related technical data. It will also provide advice on how your Web site can be improved.
It is important to remember that the number (and quality) of external links that point to your site are an important factor in achieving good rankings.
You need to be able to check how many websites link to your own site and what PageRank each of them have. A PageRank of 10 is the highest and rarest. You’re ideally looking for PR 3-4 and above, in order for your own site to be positively influenced.
SEO Pro’s Link Checker reports all backlinks to your site and the PageRank of each linking site. You have the ability to check the number of backlinks for all of the pages on your site, or just the homepage.
Domain Name Checking Tools
In addition to use the right keywords within the content of your website, it is also important to use your most important keyword(s) within your domain name itself.
Competitor Analytics Tools
While analytics tools, such as Google Analytics, are great for reporting on your own website traffic, you can’t access details about your competitors.
SEO tools such as Compete allow you to compare key traffic metrics against those of your competitors. Some data is free, while some is charged for.
Quantcast is also recommended, as it provides useful demographic information. By better understanding your visitors, you can update your content to create a better experience for them.
With both Compete and Quantcast you need to bear in mind that if your website is new or has low traffic, you may not be able to view any useful data. If this is the case, it may be worth checking out Alexa.
By using the SEO tools I’ve outlined above, in conjunction to providing regular, high-quality, optimized content on your website you are well on track to gaining a high ranking on the search engines.
If you have any of you own recommendations, please feel free to add them in the comments area below this article.
For more SubHub recommendations have a look in the SubHub Recommends section