It seems like everyday there are new tools available for SEO to make life easier and much more productive for those of us in this profession. But recently there have been some great new additions to the SEO arsenal that merit a mention. Here are some innovative tools worth checking out.
Link building can be quite a time commitment—this is an understatement I know, but it is no doubt true. This can eat up chunks of your time that could be better spent on other tasks. So, Ontolo helps determine good links for your site. Basically, Ontolo takes the keywords that you are trying to get ranked on as well as the links that you are trying to acquire, and compiles a list of 10,000 to 15,000 links per month that are worth linking to. Also, Ontolo crawls each link and compiles third party information such as Page Rank and SEOmoz data, making this data easy to search and compile. In addition, Ontolo offers many different variables to search for, from as simple as a keyword or keywords, to as specific as certain Page Ranks to filter by and length of domain name. In a nutshell, Ontolo compiles thousands of possible links and then allows you to easily search or organize these links according to your preference. And, as of today (12-22), they are offering a free two week trial.
This tool, when plugged into your Twitter account, tracks all the links that you and your friends Tweet about. In a sense, this is much like Delicious in that you can tag certain Tweets of your own or those of your friends, and can search based on keywords (or any other search criteria) to see what is being talked about on Twitter. How does this apply to SEO, you may ask? Well, based on the topics that have been Tweeted about recently or in the past, you can determine what would make good link bait to get others backlink to your site. You can even target individuals by their Tweets, going as far back in the past as you want. This could help you get that influential person to link to your page, ultimately helping your SEO efforts.
Alternative to Trunk.ly—TwapperKeeper
If you don’t like cumbersome web apps and would prefer to compile data into Excel, TwapperKeeper is the program to use. Basically it has all the benefits of Trunk.ly, but also allows you to make customized reports based on the Tweets of your Twitter universe and export them to Excel for easy sorting. Its all about preference between these two, so if you prefer Excel, take a look at TwapperKeeper.
To start, LDA (or Latent Dirichlet Allocation) is a learning algorithm for clustering words into defined topics, and then these topics into related documents. Basically, its one of the theories about how Google finds relevant web pages. That brief explanation aside, the LDA Content Optimizer is a valuable site assessment tool that analyzes your SEOmoz LDA score. To use it, you put in a keyword and url that you want to improve. This tool then spiders the page and analyzes how relevant your page is to the keyword. Then, it analyzes the top ten pages on the Google SERP and Wikipedia that are related to your term, and finds any words that are commonly occurring in all of those Wikipedia and Google pages. When it is done with this analysis (usually after around five minutes or so) it will tell you the common words among the top ten pages in Wikipedia and Google that you aren’t accounting for in your page. And finally, it will tell you the percentage increase to your LDA score that adding these keywords will give you.
This tool is currently in the beta phase, but watch for it coming out soon. This SEO tool allows you to make “categories” of like keywords, and then through linking with Google Analytics shows you search volume and rankings for these keywords as well as the potential opportunities for both these preexisting keywords and some that you haven’t considered. Also, you can filter your results based on what page of the SERPs you want to appear on. For instance, you can search for similar keywords to “shoes” and then filter your results to show what keywords are likely to land you on page two of the results. In addition, the pricing options with this tool are customizable, split into three levels, from small company projects all the way to ten thousand keyword projects for large companies. And, since this is currently in the beta testing stage, the only way for this product to go is up, as they are currently taking suggestions from users to make the experience more user friendly.
To generalize, most of these tools are new and innovative ways to assimilate and sort the tremendous amounts of data that we as SEOs have to deal with, taking out much of the time wasted simply compiling and processing information. Also, they all offer insights into new opportunities to expand and ultimately help increase a site’s rank in the SERPs. Hopefully, with these new and inventive SEO tools, you can more accurately address the needs of your clients, and help to get them the results that they need.
Bryan is an Assistant Account Executive at Hanapin Marketing, a search engine marketing firm focused on generating results through PPC and SEO.