This article was originally published at Startup Cafe Digital’s blog on June 5, 2017.
Investing in an SEO tool is a crucial step for an early-stage startup if you’d like your business to feature prominently in search engine result pages (SERPs).
This is because of 2 main reasons:
- Limited budget to invest in PPC ads: Most startups operate on a shoestring budget. As such, they can’t really afford to invest in PPC ads, especially if they are in a competitive niche.
- Limited resources: Most startups do not have dedicated resources to manage SEO.
In this scenario, you have two options – outsource your SEO to a digital agency (like Startup Cafe Digital 😀) or go solo and invest in a reliable SEO tool and put your SEO campaigns in semi-autopilot mode.
In this article, we have selected our top 5 SEO tools which are really worth investing in.
Please note we’ll not be taking into account free SEO tools such as those offered by Google – Search Console, Analytics, Page insights, etc. and will feature only those tools that require some bit of investment.
So without further ado, here’s a list of 5 best SEO tools that your startup should seriously consider investing in.
Top 5 SEO Tools for Startups
Launched in 2013, Serpstat is a relatively new player in the SEO market.
Serpstat allows you to do organic keyword tracking, spy on your competitor’s keywords, perform SEO site audits, PPC analysis, backlink analysis, and much more.
If you’re on a limited budget, but you need a good, reliable SEO tool which can help you find trending keywords in your niche and see what strategies your competitors are using, go with Serpstat.
To learn more about Serpstat, check out this comprehensive review.
Price: Starts from $19/month
(Use discount code 99signals to get 10% off on all plans)
There are very few tools in the market which can match Ahrefs when it comes to backlink analysis. Ahrefs presents the most accurate link profile of your website and your competitors’ website.
Link building is an important and perhaps the most challenging aspect of SEO. If you’re serious about building authority links for your startup, you need a tool like Ahrefs by your site.
In addition to backlink analysis, you can also use Ahrefs to track your position on Google and other search engines for keywords you want to rank for. The upgraded version of keyword research tool on Ahrefs (called Keyword Explorer 2.0) is a powerful feature that allows you to obtain tons of keyword ideas to create new content for your website.
Price: Starts from $99/month
Bonus: See how Ahrefs compares with SEMrush, Moz, and SpyFu on key features
SEMrush is an all-in-one SEO and PPC tool which can help you do keyword research, competitors’ research, backlink analysis, PPC analysis, and much more.
It’s considered the swiss army knife of SEO tools of keyword research and competition analysis by marketing influencers. With SEMrush, you’ll be able to perform site audits to fix SEO errors on your website, track your rankings in SERPs for top keywords, unearth new keyword opportunities, and see what strategies your competitors are using to rank in search engines.
It’s a must-have tool for startups who operate in a competitive niche. If you had budget to invest in just one SEO tool, then this should be it.
For a detailed review of SEMrush, check out this post.
Price: Starts from $99.95/month
Get 1 Month Free Access to SEMrush Pro
#4 Ninja Outreach
Blogger outreach is one of the best techniques you can use right now to fetch high-quality, contextual backlinks for your site.
There are many outreach tools that you can try, but none come closer to Ninja Outreach in terms of features and research functionalities.
Apart from outreach, you can use Ninja Outreach to do any of the following:
- Lead generation
- Link building
- Collecting contact information (you can also use their Chrome extension for this)
- Content promotion
- Twitter and Instagram prospecting
- Finding guest posts
If you’re serious about doing outreach for your site, then Ninja Outreach is a tool you must have in your SEO toolkit.
Price: Starts from $69/month
Get 14-day Free Access to Ninja Outreach
Started by Rand Fishkin back in 2004, Moz is one of the most popular SEO tools in the market. Moz’s keyword ranking tool helps you keep a track of fluctuations in search rankings and its site audit feature helps you identify SEO errors and fix them instantly.
You could also install MozBar, a chrome extension, and check your competitors’ domain authority, page authority, and backlink profile.
Price: Starts from $99/month
Bonus: See a detailed comparison between Moz and SEMrush to help you decide which SEO tool is worth investing in
The SEO tools listed below are not as great as the ones featured above, but they still do the job and have a good reputation among SEOs.
- SpyFu (starts from $33/month) – Use it to spy on your competitors and find new keyword and backlink opportunities
- MajesticSEO (starts from $79/month) – Use it for backlink analysis. Cheaper alternative to Ahrefs, but not as accurate.
- Raven Tools (starts from $99/month) – All in SEO tool. Use it to perform site audits, keyword research, and backlink research.
- Mailshake (starts from $9/month) – Previously called ContentMarketer.io, Mailshake is an outreach tool loaded with features and some really useful outreach templates. It’s a cheaper alternative to Ninja Outreach.
So these are some of the top SEO tools which we would recommend to startups who are really serious about boosting their search rankings quickly. Yes, a few of these tools are expensive, but once you start using these tools and see the difference in your search positions, it’s easy to see why they are priced so high, and recommend by so many.
So which are your favorite SEO tools? Do you think you use a tool which is better than the ones listed in the article? Please share your thoughts in the comments section. We’d love to hear from you.
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Just thought I would let you know. I have been going through several of your posts today, I think they are absolutely awesome. So very insightful. Busy setting up my first ecommerce site now and your material is really helping me find the way
From me… a HUGE thanks for your good work
Hi David – Thanks for your kind words. Glad you found the articles on my blog useful. I wish you all the best in your new business endeavor.