SEO Tools

Mar 6th

These are SEO Tools that I use and recommend to others. Most of these SEO tools are free. Warning on SEO Tools:
Many SEO tool vendors sell software which has been outdated and rendered useless by improving search technology. Worse yet, some of these people intentionally lie to get you to buy their software, even if it will get your site banned from the search engines.

Some of them will tell you that keyword density is the key to seo. That's a lie. Some of them will tell you that trading links off topic and lots of low quality link trades are all you need to rank in Google. That typically don't work well either.

Before buying any SEO software check to see if similar or better free software is available here or here.

Keyword Suggestion Tools:

  • Keyword research review - I prettymuch review most of the best keyword research / keyword suggestion software on the market. Most of the tools worth using are free. My two favorite tools are listed below

  • Google Keyword Tool - shows 12 month trending data. Can offer keyword suggestions based on page content or a word you enter.
  • SEO Book keyword research tool - driven off of Yahoo!'s keyword research tool, it makes it easy to cross reference the various keyword research techniques. It is a bit feature rich, but if you like lots of data you will love this tool. You can give it a test drive by searching in the box below:

Keyword Suggestions for:



Expand Your Keyword List:

Formating Your Keyword List for Google AdWords:
Formatting can be done inside AdWords. Google is also beta testing desktop software for managing your AdWords account. The keyword list generator above also makes it easy to set matching types on your keywords when you generate your keyword list.

Google AdWords also has a function called dynamic keyword insertion which inserts search queries into your AdWords ad copy.

Keyword Density Analysis:
Generally aiming for a keyword density is a waste of time for the following reasons:

  • each engine and query type is unique. there is no such thing as a universal perfect keyword density.

  • getting people to like your content and link to it is more important than what algorithms think of it
    • link popularity is weighted more heavily than page copy for competitive queries (I have even ranked pages that did not exist)

    • and readable useful to human pages are important to conversion
  • most pages made with bots in mind read like they are meant to be read by bots
  • this article covers keyword density from a more scientific standpoint, stating why it is useless

Having said all of that, if you want to look at keyword density here is a free keyword density analyzer.

Keyword Rank Checking Tools:
Digital Point Keyword Ranking Monitor - (free) Offers a quick way to check the backlinks and keyword rankings of a site on Google, Yahoo!, and MSN. Takes a bit to set up, but provides free graphs of ranking vs time and works within the Google terms of service.

Link Analysis Tools:

  • Hub Finder - free open source tool looks for co-occuring backlinks. If you read about hubs and authorities (and why they are important) you will find this tool exceptionally useful.

  • Link Harvester - free open source tool looks at unique linking domains, .edu & .gov backlinks, unique C block IP addresses. Tool has CVS export option. Both Link Harvester and Hub Finder work with the Yahoo! TOS.
  • Back Link Analyzer - like OptiLink and SEO Elite, but free. It is downloadable software that does anchor text analysis on links.
  • I would recommend sticking away from link exchange hubs. Typically the easier it is for the average person to get a link the less value it has. Many people using link exchange networks employ underwaged third world workers to make automated sites they know will eventually get banned.

Other Tools:

If you have a cool SEO tool you would like me to review just leave a comment below or send me an email :)

Published: March 6, 2006

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Comments

October 20, 2006 - 10:11am

Thanks for such honest views on SEO. It's truly refreshing.

John Stephesnon
October 1, 2004 - 10:22pm

aaron,

hi, just wanted to say that you provided a great service to me by saving me allot of time tring to figure out the world of seo. You book has it all and I cant wait to apply magic to my site. I know my site [ www.littleKidsCloset.com ] has good potential. In general it has a good interface and product base. But these two alone will never acomplish anything. Im missing one, mabey two, components that are required for my business to be sucessful. Content, and Seo. Well, I just bought one of them, and the rest just takes a little more work. Thanks for writing the 'Seo Book' :)

-cheers

November 21, 2006 - 3:44pm

I particularly liked the idea of Keyword Density. It is actually a myth to have in the mind of SEO's. AS you have mentioned there is no particular density which can be considered as best.

Kevin Reid
August 22, 2005 - 9:53pm

Aaron,

On your latest (OK, it has been four months) email - you mentioned that you thought Wordtracker has become too simplistic for keyword research due to its emphasis placed on KEI. What keyword research tool would you recommend that maintains just as current database?

Kevin Reid

March 28, 2006 - 7:50pm

As an update to my last comment on the page, my favorite keyword tools are the new Google Keyword Tool and my keyword research tool.

September 30, 2005 - 7:56pm

Hi Kevin
I don't think WordTracker is too simplistic. I think that KEI is. You can't really tell how competitive a termspace is without taking a peak at it.

WordTracker is still my favorite keyword research tool. Somewhat recently I reviewed a bunch of keyword research tools.

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