Search Engine Optimisation or SEO is one of the key things that every blogger must know when they start.
But, learning SEO is a bit tricky these days with Google constantly updating their algorithm.
There are millions of videos, articles and posts explaining what SEO is and How you can “literally rank on Google”!
And most of the “SEO experts” use one tool or the other for explaining!
But are they worth it? and should you buy them?
No, SEO tools are not at all worth the money you invest. Because they are inaccurate and rather expensive. The data provided by almost every other SEO tool today are all imprecise. Moreover, these tools are on the expensive side and will cost you a significant amount of money every month.
However, some of these tools do help. They can make some tasks (like rank tracking) easier and faster. But, you can easily live without all of these tools too.
In fact, I do use some free tools which I will discuss later.
What Are SEO Tools?
SEO tools are programs or web applications that basically help you optimise your website for search engines. There are hundreds and thousands of tools out there, each having different features.
Some famous SEO Tools are SEMrush, Ahrefs, LongTail Pro, etc. These tools provide features such as keyword research/analysis, competition analysis, rank tracking, backlinks checker, traffic analysis and a lot of other features.
Cons of Using SEO Tools
Most internet marketers or bloggers promote the use of these tools. However, they aren’t necessary.
I am not saying they are scam or they are not useful tools. In fact, they are good. The only thing is they are not “crucial” tools that every internet marketer or blogger need.
You can use these tools, but, you shouldn’t over expect anything and think that you will be an “SEO expert” and rank on Google very easily.
So, Some reasons why I don’t recommend SEO tools are:-
1. They Are Inaccurate
From the experience I have, they are pretty inaccurate. The numbers are not at all correct.
Let’s say you want to know the search volume for a particular keyword. The numbers that they show are all wide of the mark.
All the tools that I used had this exact same problem. They show that these keywords get little to no traffic on Google. But, in reality, they are so wrong.
Here is a real-life example so that you know what I am talking about, I rank No.1 for the keyword “Easy Fiverr Gigs”.
Now, the data shown on the Google Search console is authentic and shows you how many impressions and clicks that I got. (Search is shown in month of December)
Since I rank No.1, the impressions can quite be equal to the number of searches. Here I have received 250 Impressions which means almost 250 searches in that month.
But when this number is compared with a paid tool like SEMrush, it’s insanely different. it just shows that you will receive just 10 searches per month.
This is a huge problem!
Bloggers might think that a keyword like the above one might not be worth the time to write because of these wrong numbers shown by these SEO tools.
But, in reality, it does get quite a lot of traffic.
This can cause bloggers to skip some keyword which might potentially have higher search volume.
Now, the next question that might come to your mind would be “How do I properly do keyword research?”, Right?
It’s okay, I got you covered. The technique that I use, is simply the best. I got this from a youtube channel called Income School.
It’s better if I don’t explain and spoil things up. Let the experts speak themselves. Take a look at the video below.
P.S – If you are a blogger or an internet marketer, you should subscribe to Income School. They are the best teachers in this space.
Related – Income School Project 24 Review
2. They are Expensive
All SEO tools are expensive. They do not provide the value that they tend to claim. So, It’s not at worth your money.
Here are some pricing information for your reference
SEMrush – starts at $99.95 per month.
Ahrefs – starts at $99 per month.
Alexa – starts at $149 per month.
LongTail Pro – starts at $37 per month.
Seriously, spending such a huge amount of money on these tools is absolute stupidity.
Instead, you could spend this money on outsourcing content so that you can add to your blog. That way, you can build your traffic gradually.
Pros of Using SEO Tools
As for me, I do not find any of these tools to be worth the money.
Maybe, they do save time by tracking broken links, performing site audits etc. But all of that can also be done manually and doesn’t need a $100 tool to do that.
Free SEO Tools that You Can Use Instead
There are some mentionable free SEO tools that you can use. I won’t recommend relying on these tools for everything. Just take it as a reference.
Some free SEO Tools are:-
1. Google Search Console
No other 3rd Party tool can come close to this because Google is the developer behind this tool.
Besides just checking your keyword’s rank, you can also check your backlinks, SEO errors, security issues, crawl errors, AMP errors, etc.
2. Google Analytics
This is another awesome tool from Google. It tracks and reports website traffic. You get almost every information about the visitors on your website such their location, device that they use, which all links they clicked, their source of entry and much more.
3. Keyword Planner
This is another tool developed by Google for Adwords. It can be used to find the search volume of keywords.
Here also, the numbers that they say varies and is not precise. But, if you just want a rough estimate of the number of searches, this can be a useful tool for you.
Ubersugesst is like the free version of some of the tools like SEMrush, Ahrefs but with not that many features.
This tool was developed by a successful internet marketer, Neil Patel.
Here again, we can see the inaccuracy in data provided to us. So, as I said, for rough estimates you can surely use this.
Apart from the keyword tool, it also has other features such as Backlink checker, site audit, top keywords of each website, etc.
I included this in this list only because it’s completely free to use otherwise it has its own weaknesses
This is a chrome extension that Moz created. It’s helpful for finding authority websites in your niche.
Suppose you’re trying to rank for a keyword and you search on Google. Some of the results might be from higher authority website that you might not know of.
So, this tool shows you the DA (Domain Authority) and PA (Page Authority) of a particular website. The higher the authority, harder will it for you to outrank that particular website.
Related – 12 Free Blogging Tools for Beginners
Conclusion – Are they worth the money?
No. Especially for beginners, it would be a stupid decision for investing in these paid SEO tools.
They tend to be inaccurate for the most part of it.
As I said before, it’s better to invest this money for outsourcing content that you can include in your blog or else you could also buy a proper blogging course like the Project 24 from Income School or the Wealthy Affiliate.
I know a lot of people are going to disagree with the opinion that I have given down in this post. If you are one of them, please comment down below, I will see what I can do.
Thanks for reading.