6 Free SEO Tools to Use Right Now
Search engine optimization (SEO) can be nebulous.
We get it. You learn one technique, then hear a totally different thing. And there is a shadow over search engine algorithms. We know, in essence, what Google does, but not the nitty-gritty formula of how it works.
Below, we present the top six free SEO tools our team loves to use. These tools not only help you improve what you already have, but also give you insight into your website browsers and other SEO opportunities available.
Let us know which tool is your favorite (or if there’s one we don’t mention that you can’t live without!).
Our Favorite Free SEO Tools
Full disclosure: this list has more than six tools. For the sake of brevity, I’ve explained some of the bigger tools and broken them out so you can see how you can use each part.
If you’re still cool with my “six tools” list, read on. If not, take a number for our complaint department.
1. Yoast SEO Plugin
With increasingly more websites built on WordPress, finding a reputable WordPress SEO plugin is a must. We get that not every website has the luxury of plugins, but if yours does, check out the Yoast SEO plugin.
You can use this plugin for free, but it does have a lot more features in its premium plan.
First off, the tool gives you a readability analysis. It measures how easy your post is to read (based on the Flesch reading ease test) as well as sentence length and type of voice.
The second section of the Yoast plugin looks at a whole lot of SEO factors, including:
- Keyword stats
- SEO title width
- Text length
- Alt text in images
- Meta description
Every person on our team knows to check the Yoast section for any landing page or blog post they make in WordPress.
Here’s where we get a little deeper and share a few SEO tools in one.
If you’ve dabbled in SEO for a while, you’ve probably heard the name Moz. It’s one of the leading SEO companies in the world. You can use most of its tools for free, but we definitely upgraded and pay for everything we can get from Moz.
The Moz site has a ton of features, including these free SEO tools:
You can try out the whole range of Moz products with a free 30-day trial, depending on what your business needs.
3. Blue Button Chrome Extension
If you work in Chrome, the Blue Button extension is very useful for checking live pages on any site, not just your own.
Blue Button is a free SEO tool to download, but our suggestion is to make a new Chrome person so the extension doesn’t slow down your everyday, non-SEO work while you’re browsing.
4. Google Products
If you’re familiar with Moz, you’re likely also familiar with Google. 🙃
Google is more than just a search engine. There’s a huge list of websites Google offers to help you find SEO opportunities:
- Google Analytics: Track and view metrics about what people are doing on your website.
- Google Tag Manager: Help track specific features of your website (so you can set up goals, for instance).
- Google Keyword Planner: Find the best keywords for your website, and see search volumes for your keywords.
- Google PageSpeed Insights: Check your website for slow load time, and look for opportunities to speed up your site.
- Google Trends: See the latest search trends for what people are Googling.
- Google Search Console: Discover issues on your site, mobile usability, search terms that show your website, and more. (Google Search Console was recently updated, and we wrote all about it!)
All of the Google sites above are free to use and can be used by anyone, no matter your SEO knowledge.
5. Character Count Tool
There are a lot of character count limits you need to think about in the SEO realm. These include page title, meta description, and text length.
While there are plenty of great character count tools out there, our personal favorite is this SEO character counter.
This tool offers so many more details than most character count websites. It counts unique words, characters, characters with or without white space, and estimated reading time, to name a few. It also shows a readability score based on the Dale-Chall formula. This formula is similar to the Yoast SEO Flesch reading ease score mentioned above.
6. Incognito Mode
This isn’t really a “tool,” but it may be the easiest SEO trick we know. If you need to search for something related to your work, go incognito.
Incognito mode is good not only for generating unbiased search results, but also for preventing you from being shown irrelevant remarketing ads.
When I work, almost all of my searches and website visits are done in an incognito window.
Before, my ad targeting was getting ridiculous because it wasn’t my real life; it was my work life. I was targeted with infinite car ads, health-issue ads, and, for some reason, ads in Spanish. (No habla español here.)
Enter incognito mode.
Do your work — and yourself — a favor by using an incognito or separate Chrome person for your work projects.
Reach New SEO Heights
No matter your level of SEO knowledge, the gripe we hear more than anything is “I just don’t have time to add another project to my plate.”
That’s where 9 Clouds can step in. Our team is trained in SEO best practices and uses all of the tools we mentioned above on a daily basis.
You can also download our SEO eBook, which arms you with the right tools so you can be confident in your SEO know-how.