The 5 best SEO tools in 2023

seo tools 2023

And we’re off! 2023 is no longer knocking at the door, but has barged in! Happy new year, smiles all around. But now it’s time for business! This is the perfect time to start leveling up your tooling-game. The SEO landscape has been developing steady over the last year, and with it the different tools that are available to us. From crawlers and keyword research tools, to fully fledged organic marketing suits. Time to level yourself up to meet the market standard, and hopefully even leave them biting your dust!

1. Old faithful: Google Search Console

There is one tool that never disappoints: Google Search Console. This trusty ol’ rustbucket of a tool has been with us for years, and is still one that keeps on coming back at the top of all tooling lists. Why? Simply because is supplies you with muchneeded knowledge of your (potential) audience and how they find their way around the biggest search engine on the market. As mentioned before, this tool isn’t the shiniest new kid on the block, but it does exactly what you need it to. I personally use this tool for: 

  • Keyword exploration and research 
  • Discovering search intent in relation to our website 
  • Exploring different markets Finding gaps in our SEO strategy & link building approach 
  • Checking indexability of webpages 

Pros

  • Search Console is a Google-owned tool, and doesn’t rely upon any third party data, guaranteeing the highest data-accuracy of this entire list 
  • Quite easy to use, with a clear user interface @December 8, 2022 11:49 AM
  • The 5 best SEO tools in 2023 2 Free to use(!)

Cons

  • Limited to your own data 
  • Difficult to find new keywords outside of your current scope
  • Not a lot of different tools

2. Your SEO pocketknife: Screaming frog

Screaming frog is one of the more advanced tools in this list. Just because you need to learn your way around the tool and the data it provides, before you’re going to get any real value from it. It does have some cons, but we’ll get to that in a minute. First, let’s talk about what we use Screaming Frog for: 

  • Technical SEO scans 
  • Content optimization checks
  •  Internal link profile check-ups

Pros

  • Lots of specific data from site scans 
  • Not limited to your own site, scan any website you want 
  • Perfect for pinpointing your website’s low-hanging fruit

Cons

  • Not very user-friendly, dev money sure hasn’t gone into the design
  • Lots of data, but no handles to help you use and understand it
  • Paid tool, though it’s just a one-time-purchase license

3. Your main research tool: Ahrefs/SEMrush

Yes, I know, two tools. Quite the plot twist, but calm yourself, everything will be fine. I find, personally, that these tools are near-interchangable. At Seeders, we use both as well. I mainly use Ahrefs, but to each their own! These search-tool-behemoths are probably the two most well-know players on the SEO tool market. I use them for: 

  • Expanding our web of focus keywords 
  • Tracking placements and back links from our Digital PR campaigns 
  • As an easy way to keep track of our linking domains, on page level and site-wide 
  • Creating competitive (keyword) analysis
  •  Local market behavior & keyword research

Pros

  • The perfect tool for keyword research 
  • Lots of different functionalities

Cons

  • Vast tools: there is literally no way to know all functionalities of these tools by heart (if you do, shoot me a message, I’ve got a job lined up for you!) 
  • Paid tools, with a hefty monthly membership fee

4. Comparison is the thief of joy… but is still quite
useful: Moz (Pro)

Right, it’s a well-known secret that I love authority marketing. Be it link building, digital pr or SEO as a whole, it’s the solid foundation that your site is going to need to rank even remotely well. Moz is the perfect tool to compare what you’re doing with what your competitors are. Moz is your friend when it comes to: 

  • Getting to know your link profile on page- as well as site-level 
  • Discovering the gaps between your link profile and those of your direct competition 
  • Diving into your off-site linking domains 
  • Exploring your internal linking profile

Pros

  • Huge free knowledge library
  • Lots of free value content on their blog 
  • Great for very specific analysis-based work
  • Easy to learn, entry-level interface (if not, I refer to pro no.1)

Cons

  • The useful version of this tool is paid, yet another monthly subscription
  • Knowing what the data means and how you should interpret it, is still a hurdle you’ll have to take

5. Looking for some inspiration? Let’s get to it:
Answer the Public

Sometimes you just need a proverbial shove in the right direction. To get some fresh content ideas as well as getting to know your audience a little bit better every day. Answer the Public is the perfect way to explore new topics and discover some new longtail focus phrases and themes. In addition to this tool, I’d recommend using Google’s SERP feature ‘people also ask’ to lead you to the core needs of your audience. I’d suggest using them in tandem! These work great for: 

  • Long-tail keyword, phrase, and theme research 
  • Gathering different content ideas, grouping them by intent 
  • Getting out of a creative slump(!)

Pros

  • Free tools!
  • The perfect tools to get inspired again
    Out of the box
  • Easy to learn, entry-level interface (if not, I refer to pro no.1)

Cons

  • Answer the Public limits your free monthly searches
  • No concrete numbers or data to work with

Wrapping up

Now this wouldn’t be a list of marketing tools if I didn’t wrap up by saying there are many more great tools (let alone browser extensions!!). These are some that I personally couldn’t live without. Got any recommendations for me? Don’t be a stranger! Please do shoot me an email, or a Tweet!

Niels Krikke
Connect!
Latest posts by Niels Krikke (see all)