Any SEO tool company would present the tool as the only solution to SEO dominance. Are your tool purchases driven by a FOMO or a real need for growth? At what stage in your SEO journey should you invest in an SEO tool? What are the must-have features?
Are the best of SEO tools lists driven by an affiliate objective, contributor posts like this or do they add real value?
When it comes to investing in SEO tools, folks have varied views. Google’s own suite including Search Console, GMB Dashboard, Google Adwords keyword planner, and Analytics give you enough data already.
Do you really have to invest one more tool for your Local SEO?
When I talked to SEO folks while writing this article, I came across some interesting reasons why people invest in a local SEO tool.
SEO Tool brings discipline in your approach
While putting efforts to improve local ranking, it’s important to ensure that the efforts are in the right direction. The SEO Tool should bring your attention to tasks that matter the most. It should reduce your effort in low-value items that have no direct impact on the search engine ranking.
SEO tool monitors competitor move
This is the biggest selling point for any local SEO tool. SEO tools can help you understand who your real content competitor is and where you can collaborate and grow together. But once everyone invests in a tool, it’s not a competitive advantage anymore.
SEO Tool reveals low hanging fruits
Everyone is after low-hanging fruits or easy wins. A good SEO tool can help you discover the high potential keywords or topics opportunities that are untapped by your competitors. This gives you a first-mover advantage or an edge over your nearest competitors
SEO Tools help you track your progress
You can track your progress easily with the tool. The reports help you give attention to things that matter the most to your business.
What features are most important/must-have? Make or break?
I have compiled the list of features that people marked as most important or must have
- Reporting dashboard
- Local Citation management and tracking
- Competitor analysis
- Keyword research
- Link opportunities
Depending on the feature/benefits we can put the SEO tools into the following categories
|Google’s suite||SEO Suite with Local features included||Specifically designed for Local SEO Dominance||Tools for a specific Purpose|
|Google Analytics||SEMRush Listing||Whitespark||Growth Bar ( local keyword research)|
|Google Search Console||Moz Local||Brightlocal||GeoRanker (tracks the ranking of websites by multiple locations)|
|GMB App and Dashboard||Ahrefs||Local falcon||Merkle (Schema-friendly Local Business Listings)|
|Google Adwords keyword planner||Synup||GatherUp (Collecting Reviews)|
What factors are important while investing in an SEO tool?
It is vital to pick the right SEO tool that fulfills your organization’s needs. A proper SEO strategy is crucial for your site’s ranking, and tools make your SEO journey easier. You may be in a dilemma to choose the right tool from a dizzying number of SEO tools.
Suitability of the tool
Do you know your business goal before selecting an SEO tool? If you are starting a local business then a tool like Brightlocal, SEOFalcon should be part of your arsenal, it would help you setup your local SEO and citations real quick. On the other hand if your focus is regular SEO, you need to invest in a tool that is broader, suggests improvements on areas such as content, link opportunities, etc. SEO tools like Semrush, Moz, or Ahrefs would be more suitable.
Know the requirements
The tool that you select should satisfy all that particular needs and demands. If you are working for a client, you should understand their exact requirements and select the exact tool to fulfill the objectives.
Know your process
Keyword research, link building, backlink tracking, competitor analysis, and regular site audits are the common process of Search Engine Optimization. Your selected tool should perform the above-mentioned processes at a minimum.
Most of the tools are compatible with any device and easy to use. Even though you can check the compatibility of the tool in your device. An excellent tool will be easy to handle and improve the user experience.
What are the top 5 recommended tools for Local SEO?
This list is based on the recommendations from local SEO business owners. If you need a comprehensive comparison of various SEO tools, refer to this spreadsheet below
The below order is random and does not indicate a specific ranking.
When we talked about SEO tools, Brightlocal had the most recommendations. It’s important because it helps me track my local rankings, see my competitors’ rankings, monitor my reviews and social media activity, and a lot more. Overall, it’s a precious tool for my Local SEO campaign.” says Will, founder of Bike Smarts
He also answers the question how he chose this tool; I think one of the must-haves for an SEO tool is to see what your rankings are and where your pages rank on various search engines. I like to see page-specific data, which is why this feature is crucial to my Local SEO campaign. My selection process has been that I looked for a tool that was easy to use and available via desktop, web, and mobile app.
CodyCandee of Bounce luggage store speaks about another local seo tool called Growthbar: Currently, I am seeing a great deal of success and adjustability in the use of Growthbar. It is extremely affordable and simple to use. It has specialized tools for local authority and keyword searches. However, its most useful feature is its domain authority tracking, which allows you to see how you are doing against your competitors.
Growthbar’s flexibility has allowed me to better understand the metrics of local SEO. In addition, it’s simple layout makes the data collection easy to understand, and thus much less complex to design a strategy around. If simplicity and to the point information is what you are looking for, Growthbar is an excellent choice.
Synup is an all-in-one SEO service tool that helps track business performance over different platforms. It reviews the sites and tracks the search engine performance and various directories. It also provides a detailed analysis of web ranking and traffic.
Gavin Johnson founder of EV Cable Shop and one of power users of Synup is quite excited about the features of this tool. Its an all-in-one SEO service tool Your listings are synchronized across numerous search engines, apps, and directories.. The data can be integrated into other websites in seconds and in real time, just like YEXT. Your listing is crawled by over 200 local search engines and any inconsistencies are flagged and alerted to you. In addition, you can keep tabs on your keyword ranks, traffic, and the success of your competitors, among other things. When a customer leaves a review, you’ll be alerted and able to respond to it right away thanks to its review management capabilities.
Gerrid Smith owns a local business for Property Tax Loans in Texas, and he is enthusiastic about the capabilities of Merkle. “It is best for Schema-friendly Local Business Listings: Your site’s pages will be better understood by search engines, allowing you to rank higher and more relevantly. Because it sounds complicated (because it used to necessitate design expertise), small firms typically ignore it. Because of this, individuals who use a local business schema improve their local search rankings. You may take use of schema markup and construct structured data with tools like Merkle. To my delight, Merkle’s free SEO tool allows you to select the markup type you require from a drop-down list. It creates all the code you need for each page automatically”.
If you want to effectively track your local competition, get new reviews, build local reputation and good citations on a consistent basis then Whitespark is a really good choice for you. It’s a robust tool and comes at very attractive pricing. You can review existing citations, remove duplicates, identify new citation opportunities and submit your listing right from the Whitespark dashboard. If you are a new user, the initial learning curve is slow, but once you figure it out, it’s a breeze.
Using Google’s suite of tools for local SEO
If you are a small business running at a shoestring budget and do not want to invest in a third party tool for local SEO. Google my business profile can prove really handy for you. You can manage your reviews, interact with customer, manage your local listing for every location, respond to your customer’s messages, share updates with your customer using GMB app and web.
Which Tool are you using for your local SEO? How much role does a tool play in your SEO efforts? Share in comments below. Do you need help with your local SEO, book a free 30 minutes consultation with me today.