52 Tools And Counting: Mostly Free SEO Tools – I Actually Use

There are actually a couple lists of tools on this page.  Check them out and come back for more in the future.  What you wont find in this list is a tool that has asked or paid or communicated with me concerning the list.  This is an honest collection of what I want to keep links too.  If you want to be on the list feel free to maybe comment?  If I find it useful and use it I’ll add a link.  Otherwise maybe someone else will like it from your comment link and they can make there own list. 🙂

seo tool

seo tool

Over 50 SEO Tools, Mostly Free

As I go through my SEO day I type the same addresses over and over to get to a collection of useful tools.  So I decide to post them as links once and for all, for my own benefit but also for others who may come here for a backlink indexer but find there isn’t one … but there is a list that includes one of the best.

A quick highlight of some of the tools and how I plan to build on this simple list.  First, I’ll address the second thing I noted…I plan to build the list out from its initial 52 to hopefully a hundred with the promise I’m not just adding crap tools or duplicate tools over and over.  Now as a highlight of some of the best tools on this list I’ll put some details in the coming weeks in a section below the list. There is also another mini list that includes tools for text and html below the main list.

More Tools – Text and HTML Free Tools

I’ve turned 40 today so I figured I’d make a top 40 list of tools and guides. The first one I’ll note I didn’t use for Web Design, I just used it to make a choice for me.

Generate Random Choice – When you’re on the fence and need some decision help.

Random Word Generator – Brainstorming

Adwords And Titles

Capitalize the First letter of Each Word In A Sentence

Free Photoshop Like Web Tool

Pixlr

Site Speed

Compress HTML Code

Uncompress HTML Code

CSS Minifier

Merge CSS OR JS Files

Testing

CSS HTML JavaScript With Output Test Environment

Fast Web Design

Hexadecimal Color Picker

JavaScript Popup Maker

HTML List Generator

Convert URLs to HTML Links

CSS

CSS Beautifier

HTML Modifiers

HTML Formatter

Convert line breaks to paragraphs

Remove Duplicate Lines

CSV

CSV to XML Converter

Text Format And Order Modifiers

Alphabetical Order Tool

Remove Line Breaks from Text

Date And Time

Epoch Timestamp To Date

Time zone list – HTML select snippet

Keyword Tools: A Quick List For PPC And SEO

Keywords And Finding Topics That Your Client’s Is Interested In

is a tool offered by a company that provides 12 free searches.  I’m not super sold on its grand ability, it took the phrase IT Managed Services and tied into it “movie star planet”, “management definition” and “managed service provider”, among others.  My concern is that management definition as a keyword is of no use or value to an IT Managed Services company.  The next two terms are so broad all the industries out there will be searching similar words and your chances of paying for a false positive skyrocket.

With 12 free searches its also limited to be of little use after the first or second visit.

keyword tracker

So we have one tool on this site that can also help create variations of keywords.  You simply fill out the quadrants, let the code execute and collected the newly minted keywords.

Unlike other free alternatives, this keyword suggestion tool does not limit its functions nor does it lock all the good stuff behind a paywall. Right from the start, you have unlimited access to all of its features at no extra cost. This tool is, without a doubt, absolutely free.

Started in 2003 it is one of the longest standing SEO sites.  The site is likely a great start for beginners, it offers free accounts and tools to those with an account.

Id love to tell ya an in depth endorsement or word of caution so I’ll share my caution.  Their monthly price easily exceeds the threshold of most Adwords campaign total budget.  At its present price point you’d have to be dedicated to Adwords.  It is about $300 a month.  The free trial was for 14 days and it comes out with suggestions weekly.  So you have to stay on top of the date or you can miss out on vital optimization tips before you have the time to review them.

The Keyword Tool provides guest users 10 free keyword searches upfront, then one free keyword search per day onwards.

The Niche Finder Tool allows you to discover niches of particular core keywords. Much like the Keyword Tool, you also get 10 free niche searches, then one free niche search per day onwards.

The Keyword Generator Tool provides keyword suggestions for your paid and organic search campaigns. What is more impressive is that, even though this is a free tool, it returns thousands of accurate data that is pulled from a constantly updated database consisting of more than 1 trillion search queries from diverse sources.

KeywordTool.io helps you find out what people are looking for. It generates around 750 suggestions for every keyword.

It’s a handy tool for marketers and SEO consultants as it give out keyword suggestions based on  your primary keyword you entered. KeywordTool.io is helping people with their struggles and informing them about what keywords to target in their next ad campaign.

Search for any domain and see every place they’ve shown up on Google: every keyword they’ve bought on Adwords, every organic rank, and every ad variation in the last 12 years.

Learn how to connect with these domains, too. Find online and traditional leads methods — social media, email, phone, and address — you can’t find anywhere else.  Starts at about $39/month.

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Keyword Tools: List Of SEO/PPC Tools

Keywords And Finding Topics That Your Client’s Is Interested In

is a tool offered by a company that provides 12 free searches.  I’m not super sold on its grand ability, it took the phrase IT Managed Services and tied into it “movie star planet”, “management definition” and “managed service provider”, among others.  My concern is that management definition as a keyword is of no use or value to an IT Managed Services company.  The next two terms are so broad all the industries out there will be searching similar words and your chances of paying for a false positive skyrocket.

With 12 free searches its also limited to be of little use after the first or second visit.

keyword tracker

So we have one tool on this site that can also help create variations of keywords.  You simply fill out the quadrants, let the code execute and collected the newly minted keywords.

Unlike other free alternatives, this keyword suggestion tool does not limit its functions nor does it lock all the good stuff behind a paywall. Right from the start, you have unlimited access to all of its features at no extra cost. This tool is, without a doubt, absolutely free.

Started in 2003 it is one of the longest standing SEO sites.  The site is likely a great start for beginners, it offers free accounts and tools to those with an account.

Id love to tell ya an in depth endorsement or word of caution so I’ll share my caution.  Their monthly price easily exceeds the threshold of most Adwords campaign total budget.  At its present price point you’d have to be dedicated to Adwords.  It is about $300 a month.  The free trial was for 14 days and it comes out with suggestions weekly.  So you have to stay on top of the date or you can miss out on vital optimization tips before you have the time to review them.

The Keyword Tool provides guest users 10 free keyword searches upfront, then one free keyword search per day onwards.

The Niche Finder Tool allows you to discover niches of particular core keywords. Much like the Keyword Tool, you also get 10 free niche searches, then one free niche search per day onwards.

The Keyword Generator Tool provides keyword suggestions for your paid and organic search campaigns. What is more impressive is that, even though this is a free tool, it returns thousands of accurate data that is pulled from a constantly updated database consisting of more than 1 trillion search queries from diverse sources.

KeywordTool.io helps you find out what people are looking for. It generates around 750 suggestions for every keyword.

It’s a handy tool for marketers and SEO consultants as it give out keyword suggestions based on  your primary keyword you entered. KeywordTool.io is helping people with their struggles and informing them about what keywords to target in their next ad campaign.

Search for any domain and see every place they’ve shown up on Google: every keyword they’ve bought on Adwords, every organic rank, and every ad variation in the last 12 years.

Learn how to connect with these domains, too. Find online and traditional leads methods — social media, email, phone, and address — you can’t find anywhere else.  Starts at about $39/month.

What Would Google Cloud Need To Do To Catch Up To AWS And Azure?

Matt Leffler
Matt Leffler, I host another complete web stack on GCP

Ease of use is one thing. I have clients that can benefit from cloud based solutions. They may have a typical hosting account with some name brand hosts but for various reasons I find myself getting annoyed and deciding I’m moving them to the cloud.

I move them to Google Cloud Platform but only temporarily because I know that when I leave them (I’m just a freelancer) they’ll be lost. If they decide they want to be in the cloud every single time I then move them to AWS. Why did I pick Google to begin with? Only one reason…the credit. That credit allows me to move them without them feeling pressured but when they make the decision to stick with the cloud they leave Google.

Why Is Google Cloud Not Where I Leave Them?

  1. Ever try to have a server on GCP with more than one IP address? – It is next to impossible compared with the ease of associating multiple IPs to an AWS server. Beyond the technical limitations of GCP they also don’t allow more than one IP address per zone. So I would have to use a load balancer if I wanted more than one server in the same zone. That second layer of steps exceeds the clients interest.
  2. Often they have WHM / cPanel servers and they require 2 IP addresses for the two required name servers. Google Cloud … I have to make the WHM with one IP then run off to another zone and make a second server thats DNS only but still meets the minimum requirements of cPanel….then I have to make a DNS cluster tieing the two together and I have found these clusters to be very tricky…often somehow falling apart and needing to be put back together. The client in the end just wanted one server. I can do that in about 2 hours total on AWS without additional servers.
  3. Restrictions – So lets say I make a GCP WordPress micro server. I let people signup and require them to respond to an email from the server. NO ONE ever responds to the email…well, its because GCP by default blocks all SMTP ports. So, if I want something as simple as email I have to go setup a mail relay through another service and guess how many clients eyes glaze over at this point? All.
  4. Too much reliance on Cloud SDK over simply putting it in the website. Again back to clients being able to use this after I leave them, if they cant do it in the web interface they cant do it. Too often the instructions in the help reference Cloud SDK and thats the end. If a client requires a full time cloud specialist because Google relies on Cloud SDK too much then I can’t leave an everyday client with them.
  5. Ever tried to SFTP into a server? AWS I pick an SSH key that Ive already added from previous servers and then in my SFTP client I add my connection settings and select the .pem file and I’m in. Google cloud there are just way more steps and issues. Here is a fun example … go to google and type “Google Cloud SSH” and see what Google suggests you are searching for…Google Cloud SSH Key, Google Cloud SSH Not Working, Google Cloud SSH Permissions, Google Cloud SSH Timeout …. that says volumes. Permission denied is basically the expected search from Google if you type a simple thing you will have to be able to do.

So those are my thoughts…its overly complex and drops the ball in an area that only a few people in most companies IT departments can understand.


I added this into UltimateSEO.org because it IS an SEO thing.  The speed and loading of your site has a big effect on your ranking.  I have improved a sites ranking from the average keyword in the 40s to the 20s by simply putting them on their own server.  Who wouldn’t want their keywords jumping like that and for about $30 a month.

UltimateSEO: Make An Impact

What Is Domain Authority Why Should I Care?

Domain Authority is in my opinion the single greatest indicator of a sites ability to compete organically for search traffic.  It is a great question and its simply complex.  Keep in mind Domain Authority or DA as we shall refer to it pretty much here on is the single best number to predict ranking ability and we know that the top 3 positions consume over half of all searches so it can be directly attached to traffic.

A few disclaimers: Domain Authority is not a Google creation it is from Moz.com and it is their educated guess at how Google see’s your authority.  But it is not Google’s so remember that.  Secondly I am going to go over this in a higher level and use some half truths for simplicity.  If you want the whole truth just read the articles or Google the topics discussed for greater detail.  Finally, most of what I will show you are other people’s guesses as to what goes into Moz’s Domain Authority which again is a guess about Google’s metric on a site.  Google doesn’t tell us exactly and they shouldn’t, Moz doesn’t tell us either because they want you to pay for it.  Moz isn’t the only one guessing, a lot of folks guess and some include Majestic’s Citation Factor and Trust FactorSEOProfiler has it’s LIS.  For simplicity and since I’m the one running this show we’ll focus for now on Domain Authority by Moz.

Now it’s a simple number from 1 to 100 but it isn’t like a ladder with even steps, as you climb the steps get bigger and it takes more to gain a level.  So from DA 1 lets say you gain 5 backlinks and two are from sites that have a decent DA 40 and Moz bumps your score up to a DA 3.  If you gain 5 more links to your site and they also have similar metrics as the last bunch you might assume you’re set to have a DA 6, but you get surprised when it is reported as a 4.  Another set of 5 and it stays a 4.  DA levels are harder to improve the higher you get your site.

What Determines Domain Authority?

Links?

Domain authority is the best metric because it provides us with a single number but its based on some rather key and diverse factors.  Yes, it is backlinks but its so much more than that…but it is largely backlinks or incoming links from other domains.  These serve as citations, they’re references from other entities that acknowledge publicly that this site they are link too, yours is authoritative.  Coupled with “anchor text” or the words that make up a link that aren’t the address they can define a site.  More on that towards the end.  This is anchor text it has a link but the anchor text serves as the vanity description of the content at the other end of the link.  The link comes from another site to yours and depending upon that site’s authority the link is more or less powerful than another.

domain-authorityWe’ll talk in greater depth about SEO Backlinks but for now let’s just understand that backlinks are votes from other sites.  Not all backlinks are created equal.  The more backlinks the more authority, and one vote per site.  So 800 links from another site you own are not worth 25 from 25 sites.

In the graphic to the left links are the blue AND red slices of the pie and together they make up 49%.  The next biggest element is SOCIAL MEDIA MENTIONS.  I do that in all caps because I’ve always included social media as an element of reports I offer in client proposals and I get told often they don’t care about all that.  I just sit back and scribble down that they don’t know what they don’t know yet.

Social Media Mentions

Sure you need an account and you need followers but to get those followers you need to post regularly.  Five or Six times randomly during the year isn’t regular.  Thats why so many people feel social media doesn’t matter because they were unable to tap into the great interest on Facebook in their widgets.   News flash no one is really going to be interested in your widget but you and a handful of individuals.  Thats why your messages need to have more than just “buy our widget.”  If you are a church for instance a weekly devotional or prayer list is better than telling people to come on Sunday week after week.  The biggest mistake is not including a link to your site in your post.  While there may be a link off of your profile page to your site your message can be repeated by others and each repeat or share is from their profile. It may mention you and likely link back to your profile but that is still one link to your site.  Include a link.

social media mention with link

Domain Age Matters And It Should

So you’re going out there and you found a domain name thats available and you want to outrank your competition in a month.  SEOs laugh out loud around the globe…Highly unlikely, it’s partly you lack street cred.  I’d love to rank number one in the keyword Louisville SEO but I don’t.  I’m the 89.8th result.  MatthewLeffler.com is 352 days old as I am writing this.  The top result for Louisville SEO is 9 years and 207 days old.  Indirectly they’ve got 9 years worth of content, returning traffic and backlinks than I have and so they are given a bonus for that longevity.  Partly to prevent searchers from getting a completely different result every time a new domain picks a keyword.   Its easier though as you age, the difference between 5 yrs and 9 years is trivial and the distance between 1 day and 1 year is a stretch.  Sometimes buying an existing domain thats relevant to your business will give you a way around this, but you’re at the mercy of what is for sale and like a foster kid you don’t know about it’s past.

Brand Search Volume

Nobody said SEO was fair

Sometimes in SEO it feels like you’re swimming with Joan Crawford.  This one I feel is a bit much … brand search volume is how often people are looking for you.  Well isn’t that impossible until they know about me and the reason they don’t know about me is because you have me on page 4?  Couldn’t brand search volume arguably be covered in social media mentions and backlinks?  We’ll now that we got those out of the way, nobody ever said life was fair, Tina.

I’ve decided that I’ll figure out a way to sneak a reference to a favorite movie of mine into every post from here on.

But I digress, so your brand search volume does make sense to be included because people searching for Coca Cola do not want to see Pepsi.  I’m from deep Coke territory and even Taco Bell has stopped asking if I want a Pepsi.  So has Google it appears.

Incidentally I would suspect that local plays into this heavily.  Google knows where the searches are coming from so they understand the foot print of your business.  Which is why Googling the best landscaper in town is different in each town.  Food for thought if you build a regional powerhouse and expand into a new city.

Domain Authority Case Study – Project No Wire Hangers

Sorry I wont make this all about that movie but we all know …. NO Wire Hangers.  For our purposes hangers are domains and they can be wire or wooden.  Depending on the hanger or domain your attempts to rank for a keyword will be affected, like the clothes you hang on them.  I’ll show you several domains stats that I have built completely alone over several months.  It hasn’t been a dedicated effort so these numbers could have been better but the effort has been the same.  Some are older than others some are the same age. We’ll dissect these domains and metrics extensively.

Matt’s Project Hangers

URL Moz DA Moz PA MozRank External Links
seandelahanty.com 29 / 100 27 / 100 2.70 112
cloud502.com 28 / 100 24 / 100 2.40 134
votelouisville.com 23 / 100 19 / 100 1.90 4
matthewleffler.com 23 / 100 23 / 100 2.30 112
data502.com 22 / 100 21 / 100 2.10 12
matt2.info 20 / 100 16 / 100 1.60 51
seandelahanty.org 18 / 100 19 / 100 1.90 36
forbrent.com 16 / 100 11 / 100 1.10 0
countyattorney.info 14 / 100 10 / 100 1.00 0
seodata.cloud 12 / 100 16 / 100 1.60 11
chriscoffman.rocks 8 / 100 6 / 100 0.60 4

Feel free to look into them and make some assumptions.  You may find tools that I have discussed previously useful in “auditing” the domains.  Much like a Sciencetologist audits a person with toys and wild claims so does your SEO and look we have just about as many acronyms.  Now go and let your Thetan figure out where the keywords were in the graph.  Spoiler … anchor text that you had no control over … officially.  Here is a further reading on the power of anchor text…in 2004 “Miserable Failure” was George W. Bush’s Whitehouse biography page and no one optimized it for that.

Miserable Failure

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