In analytics, you don’t want to leave any stone unturned. You want to analyze data from every angle in order to determine the best approach going forward.
Last month SEMrush hosted an hour-long chat session where they asked various SEOs from different backgrounds about the tools they use at work. There were a wide range of answers and SEMrush concluded that all the tools could be sorted into at least one of five categories. (Many tools overlapped into two or more categories.)
These categories were:
- Task managers and scheduling tools (Google)
- Tools for analytics (Moz and Google Analytics)
- Tools for data research (Screaming Frog)
- Social media/content tools (BuzzSumo)
- Tools for creating visuals (Excel)
It should be a goal for all SEOs to employ at least one tool from each category above so as to analyze their data with as much information as possible at their side. Are you utilizing a tool from each category?
If not, here are some suggestions you may want to consider using:
Google – Task Managers and Scheduling Tools
Not exclusively an SEO thing, but being organized and able to function properly is a key for any company. With Gmail, Google calendar, Google docs, and Google sheets (to name a few), Google offers the tools needed to operate in the business world.
Moz and Google Analytics – Tools for Analytics
Screaming Frog – Tools for Data Research
Manually checking every page on a site for problems would consume a lot of time. Fortunately, there is an SEO tool that makes this process quick and easy. Screaming Frog is an SEO spider that crawls sites and collects data for each page on a given website. It will let you know which pages have errors; redirects; URI issues; duplicate meta titles, meta descriptions,H1, and H2; missing meta titles, meta descriptions,H1, H2, and alt text; and more. Not only does it simplify the audit process, but Screaming Frog also makes it easier to research competing sites.
BuzzSumo – Social Media/Content Tools
How much is a topic being shared? Who is sharing it? Which social media platform is sharing it the most? Where can I find someone to interview for a piece I’m working on? The answer to all these questions is BuzzSumo. But how does this relate to SEO? Well, if a client is producing content that no one is sharing or looking for, then it is going to be difficult for them to get traffic. Additionally, BuzzSumo makes it easy to find “influencers” in a field to talk to, interview, and/or share content with, which can help with link building. BuzzSumo is a valuable tool to teach to content writers.
Excel – Tools for Creating Visuals
Microsoft Excel is not rocket science, but it is a basic digital skill that is practically required to learn for most businesses. Not only can it handle large amounts of data, but it can also turn that data into nearly any visual with a few clicks. Scatter plots. Bar graphs. Pie charts. Heat maps! We all know the importance of visuals and why they go hand-in-hand with analytics. Visuals are just as important to SEO, which is why Excel makes a great tool.
Of course, these are not the only tools that make up each category. Please comment below with which tools you use for SEO.