I am going to show you four free SEO checker tools that don’t suck. I have tested over 20 of them, so you don’t have to. I actually used one of these SEO tools just the other day for an enterprise client of ours to identify a nasty canonicalization issue they had going on. I am pretty confident that you probably haven’t heard of some of these tools– let’s dive in and check them out.
We need a website to test these tools on, so I am at Blues City Deli here in St. Louis, it is a bit of a sandwich institution locally.
- Moz Local
This brings us to our first tool – Moz Local. I have put Blues City Deli into Moz Local. This is a paid tool, but they have this free version that you can use, and it is pretty comprehensive. Overall, Blues City Deli is in good shape. You can see they have a 78% score, they are looking pretty good.
You will notice a few of these listings are incomplete. You can click on these and most of them will take you directly to the website to fill out your listings, and what you are doing is filling out NAP, name, address, phone number. That is a big thing for local businesses. You want a consistent name, address, and phone number in all the different networks and directories, and you want as many of these citations as possible.
Moz is highlighting where you have it right and where you are missing some of these, and you can click right through. You do not have to get the paid tool or anything to do that, it will send you right to them. Also, it shows you where some of your data is incomplete– either these are missing or if you have an opportunity to add five more photos and a bunch more categories as well.
The key is to make sure that your NAP is correct. If you had an address 2438 McNear, but they forgot Avenue, you want to clean that up. You can do it all manually, and this tool will help you point out the issues. Alternatively, you can use the paid version and they will help you clean that up in a more automated fashion.
2. SEO Toolbox
Tool number two is the SEO toolbox from seositecheckup.com, you get 1 free test per day, or you can sign up and get 15 free tests. I already used my free test inadvertently, so I just signed up, took like three seconds. Now I have 15 sites that I can analyze, like 15 free credits.
You will notice right away that they have highlighted the meta description is missing. While meta description is not a direct ranking factor, it can be an indirect one. What I mean by that is Google will typically make up a description if you don’t have one there. I want you to control that message because you need to match your description to search intent and induce the click, make people click through at a higher rate. While it is not a direct factor, it is indirectly influencing if someone clicks through to your result on the search. In that sense, it is highly important.
You will notice a lot of these tools go into keyword usage and things like that. That is a little bit tricky until you set it up perfectly because it may think that a keyword is important that is not. You have to take some of these results with a grain of salt.
Let’s look at some of the rest of these. For example, site map– they are saying, “Okay. You’re lacking a site map.” I like that it is clickable and tells you what to do, which is very helpful. I also like that it is testing the amount of objects on a page (how many requests are happening).
You can see here they have tons of scripts. We talked about that on the last video on WordPress optimization, how to get those scripts down and minified and combined CSS to one file instead of 10 or 20. That is what is slowing down their server. Also, it looks at the mobile snapshots, very comprehensive.
Seoptimer, and I think that stands for Search Engine Optimer. If I’m butchering it, feel free to correct me in the comments. I have run the same site, Blues City Deli, and what I like about this one is to my knowledge, I have tried multiple times and I have never had it stop me and ask me to, “Hey, you only get one.”
I really like this visual chart, which shows the page speed info, server response, scripts, and total page size. The visualization is nice– showing you the danger zone, a warning, what they consider good and where you land.
As you can see, they are all picking up very similar things, the meta description is an issue. If we go click on the mobile icon, we can see how the mobile rendering looks. We can look again– look at where these errors are coming up over, and over, and over. It’s load time, page speed, things like that. These tools are all picking up on that.
These are the four free SEO checker tools that are great for a quick hit– “Hey, what’s going on with these sites?” before I might take into a paid tool and do a deep site scan and really get into the technicals. This allows me to do a very fast SEO analysis and come away with a pretty good idea of the direction we need to go when we are looking at auditing some of these technical issues.
Let me know down in the comments which of these tools you find the most useful, or connect with me on Twitter.