search marketing

Five Free Tools for SEO

Written by Kurt Steinbrueck

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free-stampSearch marketing is one of the best forms of marketing today.  Unlike just about any other form of marketing, search marketing has the ability to provide you with an ever increasing amount of free traffic to your website.  With this in mind, I want to encourage you to start actively marketing your website in the search engines if you aren’t already doing so, or step up your game if you’ve already done some search marketing.

Here are 5 free tools you can use to get the SEO ball rolling for your website:

1. Search Spider Simulator:
The first step to SEO is making sure the search engines can read your site.  Many people think search engines can see everything we can see when we view a page, but that’s not the case.  There are many things, such as images, videos and Flash, that search engines cannot see.  There are also some things, like META tags, alt tags, and title tags, that search engines can see and we may not.  The SEOchat spider simulator shows you what text search engines are able to see.

2. Keyword Popularity Research:
When you choose what keywords you want to target, you want to make sure those keywords will actually bring in traffic.  Brainstorming is great, but you need to check your “gut feeling” against actual search estimates.  Using the Google Keyword Tool will show you which keywords are getting searched for and which are not.  Keep in mind these are only estimates, but they are estimates based on Google search data.

3. Keyword Competition Research:
Just as important as making sure the keywords you target get traffic, you also need to see if your website actually has a chance to rank well for keywords.  To do that, you want to look at your web page’s stats and compare them to the websites that currently rank well for the keyword you are thinking of targeting.  SEOquake is an add-on for the Firefox browser.  Once installed, you will be able to see stats like Page Rank, number of backlinks, site age, Alexa ranking, and much more which can give you an idea of the competition you face.

4. Keyword Density:
Once you have chosen the keywords you are going to target you will want to use those keywords on your web pages.  One of the tricks to good SEO is making sure you have the proper keyword density.  Keyword density is basically how much you use a particular word or phrase in relation to the rest of the content of a page.  You want to make sure you use your target keywords enough while not using them too much.  The SEOchat keyword density checker helps you do that.

5. Web Page Analyzer:
There are several places on a web page that you will want to use your target keywords.  Some of these page elements are the Title tag, headers, anchor text, and the text content itself.  The Escape Web Page Analyzer breaks down the various elements of the web page so you can see if you are using your keywords where you want to be using them.

There are certainly many other tools out there that you could use for SEO, but these five tools should get you started…and you can’t complain about the cost.  So, now it’s up to you.

Let us know what you think about these tools.  Are there other tools you use that you would recommend?

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About the author

Kurt Steinbrueck

Kurt Steinbrueck is the Director of Marketing Services with OurChurch.Com. He also serves on the leadership of Family of Christ Lutheran Church in Tampa, FL. You can find him on Google+ as .


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