What is a great, free tool for SEO research? Part Two
We hope you have had enough time to digest all of the information we have given you so far about the usefulness of Aaron Wall’s SEOBook SEO Toolbar. There is a lot more to learn, so please read on!
Here is the toolbar. You should reference it every time we discuss a new tool so that you can familiarize yourself with what each symbol means:
The machine-like circle in between the two Y’s and the MJSEO is the SEOmoz domain link analysis. It looks like this when you click on it:
This tool will tell you all about the page’s authority, the domain’s authority, the root domains with links to the URL that you are analyzing, and the total links. What’s more, this tool shows you the top 5 on a list of what domains link to the page you are looking at. For example, this tool tells me that Facebook.com, with a domain authority of 100, has 4,569,387 linking root domains pointed towards seobook.com.
Next up is the MJ SEO button. Here, for SEObook.com, we see it says “10M.” What does this mean? Well, this is the Majestic Site Explorer, and it tell us here that this is how many Majestic SEO pages link to the root domain. Essentially this button gives you information about the domain you are visiting, including how many domains refer to this one, and how many external backlinks this domain has. Check it out:
As you can see, this tool even tells you about what kinds of domains refer back to the one you are analyzing, whether they be educational, governmental, etc.
Remember, this SEO Toolbar is very useful for analyzing the sites of your competitors to reverse engineer your own SEO strategy.
The Blekko tool, which is the lowercase b in the burgundy box with a question mark next to it in the SEO Toolbar at the top of this blog post, is another tool for analyzing the site you are looking at. It gives you information about the hosting site, the inbound links, duplicate content, and crawl statistics:
These images speak for themselves. This tool provides a ton of information about the seobook.com (or whatever site you are looking to analyze) domain and host.
Here, we not only have information about inbound links, but we also have geographically separated data about these links. Like, we know that when we’re looking in terms of states, 20% of inbound links to seobook.com come from California. So, when you’re working on building your competitive site, you know you have to optimize (maybe do keyword research for related keywords that might appeal to those on the West Coast) in such a way that grabs the attention of Californians so that you can redirect some of those inbound links to your site.
Next, we have the “Dir” drop down button. This one is pretty self-explanatory. It gives you the DMOZ references, Yahoo directory references, as well as a couple of others for the site you are looking at.
Here, we can see seobook.com has 2 DMOZ references and 11 Yahoo directory listings. It also has 13 references on Best of the Web (botw.com). Google loves the DMOZ directory because it is a human-edited directory, which means your site (if it is approved) is user-friendly. It’s free to register your site, but can be difficult and take a great deal of time (but it is worth it!) but when you get it, it means that the directory believes your site adds value to an industry. This listing is very important for SEO purposes because it indicates your credibility and is one of the biggest trust factors when Google measures their algorithm and decides who to rank where. The other directories here, including Yahoo, Best of the Web and Business.com are also favorites of Google. Some of these directories are paid, and Google uses them because an investment in a listing indicates dedication to the site’s performance. Remember: Google sees you investing in your website AND directories as a vote of confidence. You should get these three directory listings if you can.
Next is your Archive org site age (where it says the date) – the older the site the better, because if you are around awhile (as it looks like SEObook.com has been-since Oct. 2003), Google feels you are a committed authority that plans to stick around.
When you click on the date that shows up in the toolbar, you are taken to a site that shows how many times the site you are looking at has been crawled by Google since its creation. Pretty cool, right?
Next, the circle icon is compete.com, which shows you very thorough analytics for the site you are looking at, with information about how many unique visitors it has, etc.
Basically, compete.com indicates how much traffic comes in month-to-month to the site. On the above toolbar, it indicates that the website receives 32,000 visits.
The next (and first fiery) icon that we see is the SEM Rush traffic. This is a report about the domain you are viewing:
This tool allows you to view a lot of important things about the site you are viewing, including who the site’s competitors are in organic search, what the site’s organic keywords are and more.
And we have almost come to the end of the Toolbar! The last two important tools:
With the Search Engine Ranking Checker you can enter a domain and see if the site ranks for keywords on Google, Bing! and Yahoo. When you do this, you don’t actually have to be looking at the site you are assessing. Also, you can look up as many keywords as you want, and can then export the results into a report.
You can use the SEO XRay (which actually looks like an X-Ray on the toolbar!) to assess on-page factors like title tags, meta-keywords and and meta-descriptions. You can also see how many internal links the site has.
That brings us to the end of our two part series about one of our favorite, free SEO research tools. We hope you have learned enough about the Toolbar to start using and begin reverse engineering competing sites to improve your own site’s SEO. Remember to look out for our upcoming E-Book to read more about our proven SEO strategies!