Most people at small to mid-size companies don’t think too much about analytics and are happy to let Google Analytics do all their day to day reporting. We think Google Analytics is a great product but it shouldn’t be the only tool you use.
Below are some tools you can use to optimize your site for search, users and to get more insight into what traffic is being driven into your site.
1. SEM Rush
SEMRush is a marketing tool which I’ve been using for many, many years now. With so many features available and so many use cases, it’s a weapon in your armoury. It allows you to spy on the competition, compare and track your own keyword rankings, audit features and a lot more.
2. Microsoft Clarity
Microsoft Clarity is a heat mapping tool which is completely free to use and install. I’ve been using Clarity for about 2 years. It was launched by Microsoft on October 8th, 2020.
Clarity has been designed to complement web analytics products like Google Analytics, since both tools can be used side-by-side.
Want to know where people are linking to on your site? Look no further than Ahrefs. With its intuitive design and functionality, Ahrefs is one of my favourite tools to use. It’s quick, and snappy if you need to very speedily identify the performance of a domain, subfolder, and more.
What I like about Ahrefs is the comprehensiveness of its backlink profile checker. With this, you can identify new strategies with how other sites and publishers are linking to your website.
4. Google Search Console
I regularly go into Google Search Console to look at the Performance reports inside of GSC. GSC used to once upon a time be called Google Webmaster Tools, but in 2015 it was changed to Google Search Console.
The first party keyword data you get access to is great, and it allows you to understand things like your CTR, Impressions, and Average Position.
It also allows you to fix technical issues that Google has identified, whether that’s 4XX, 5XX, redirects and more.
5. Screaming Frog
Screaming Frog is one of my favourite technical SEO tools. It takes all the hard work out of manually looking through a site to look for common themes which end being somewhat detrimental to your business.
Whether it’s doing basic things such as title tags, meta descriptions, or heading audits, Screaming Frog is a tool you should learn to use for all the other aspects such as scraping via XPATH, or bulk uploading pages to identify specific issues.
6. Ayima Pulse & Redirect Path
I’m quite a big fan of Ayima and almost applied for a job in their London office as an SEO consultant. I like the fact that they are pretty serious when it comes to search. They’ve developed tools to help themselves and have also made these tools publicly available. I’ve been using the Ayima Redirect Path Chrome extension for a number of years now. It’s one of the tools that I’d say is essential if you work in SEO. It’s really easy to use and understand. I’ve been through site migrations for some very big websites and often I had found that 302 or 307 redirects had been used – even after we had checked the redirect paths through Screaming Frog – the status code had been changed at a later date for some reason or the other. Download it.
Ayima Pulse is a new tool that they have developed, which I think is brilliant. For those that don’t know, it’s a SERPs volatility checker. There are loads out there like MozCast, Algoroo, and SERPS.com. What, however, sets Ayima Pulse apart from those tools is the fact they have built in the option to check US and UK SERP volatility and you get to check if certain niches have seen any volatility or changes. You can also see if there have been changes for the top 100 websites in those niches. It also looks fucking amazing. Well done on the UX side of things. Only problem is that they seem to only show you the past 30 days, which is where Algoroo trumps Pulse.
We will continue to update this list with all the new tools we’ve used and are huge fans of, so keep an eye out. If you have any recommendations of what should be added, please comment below.