For SEO to be successful, you need to understand your competitors.
And for that, you need the proper tools. But which?
Read on to find out our top 20 picks for the best SEO tools for competitor analysis.
Best Overall Tool
Best Overall Tool
SpyFu lives up to its name. This software tells you everything you want to know about your competitors, seeing through their strategies like X-ray goggles.
- Google Ads they’ve bought
- All the different ad variations they’ve tried
- Their organic rank history
- All the places their domain shows up on Google
SpyFu is like having someone on the inside of all your rival firms. It exposes their marketing formulas, telling you what works and what doesn’t.
You can then follow in their footsteps or learn from their mistakes. It’s a marketer’s dream.
Best SEO Suite Tools
Best SEO Suite Tools
SEMRush is an online marketing platform with tools offering several capabilities. Users can:
- Increase organic traffic using advanced SEO tools, such as SEO audits
- View the backlink profile of any domain
- Create SEO-friendly content and get advice on how to adjust it using real-time metrics
- Research competitors’ marketing strategies and emulate them
- Discover the best channels for marketing to leads and learn which rivals are using
- Analyze the performance of their posts
SEMRush is a do-it-all tool for firms looking to improve their SEO performance across the board. SEO agencies often use it to help their clients get to the top of search engine results pages (SERPs). But given how non-technical it is, regular firms can use it, too. This wide-ranging scope makes SEMRush one of the best overall packages of SEO tools for competitor analysis.
iSpionage is another powerful competitor SEO insights tool. The software lets you analyze your rivals, measure PPC and keyword effectiveness, and get insight into their landing page strategies. Critically, the tool shows you how much rivals spend every month and their advertisers, such as Google, 1and1.com, etc.
iSpionage also presents lists of the most profitable keywords. The “keyword effectiveness index” makes it easy to find words that offer the most bang for the buck to your campaigns.
If you are struggling to develop your keyword strategy, iSpionage saves all those your competitors are using. You can see which they are ranking for and how they impact organic traffic levels. Then, if you notice any promising patterns in the data, you can use them for your own site and content.
Ahrefs is an SEO suite for keyword research, link building, and competitor analysis. The tool is famous for its ease of use and extensive support.
While individuals and companies can use Ahrefs, it is mainly targeted at digital marketing agencies. The service’s chief goal is to help clients (usually businesses) rank their pages higher on search engines.
Users rely on Ahrefs to analyze competitor websites’ link profiles and keyword rankings. They can also use it to find rival content that performed well in the past on particular topics to emulate it.
Ahrefs has developed its offerings significantly over the years. At first, it was a simple backlink tool. However, it now offers a host of other services, including in-house marketers who do marketing campaigns for their clients.
Similar to Ahrefs and SEMRush, Moz is a suite of SEO tools. The developers designed it to be a one-stop shop for anyone looking to market a business.
Moz began as a keyword research tool in 2004. Since then, it has developed its keyword explorer significantly. The latest iteration provides in-depth information on the value, volume, difficulty, and click-through rate of each keyword.
Moz also offers site audits. These let you fix your site quickly if there are SEO errors, detect broken links, fix missing title tags, and so on.
Finally, you can use the tool to perform backlink analysis. Moz makes it easy to cut the number of spammy links and increase the quality of your backlink profile.
SERPStat is a relatively new entrant to the SEO competitor analysis space and offers many features you can easily find on the other platforms. Described as a “growth hacking tool,” it has some prestigious clients, including Deloitte and Shopify.
The good news is that many of SERPStat services are free to use. But if you want to access premium features, you’ll need to pay a subscription.
SERPStat is popular among in-house SEO teams and digital marketing agencies. Nearly 800,000 professionals currently use it, thanks to its advanced UI and real-time SEO metric tracking.
SERPStat’s support is extensive. The developers offer manuals and use cases showing users how to get an edge on their competitors. And customers are free to ask questions any time they like about how to exploit all the tool’s features.
SimilarWeb makes it easy to find out how other domains are attracting traffic. Using simple charts, it shows inflows across all channels, including display ads, search, referrals, social media, and direct, giving you valuable data on where rivals are being most successful.
It also shows you which keywords are best for generating organic traffic. This way, you can prioritize those that work and forget the rest. You can also see which competitor sites are ranking for keywords and why.
SimilarWeb breaks down its services into categories, making it easy to find the features you need. Take its suite of ecommerce services. These let you optimize products, improve brand performance and enhance the customer journey. It also offers dedicated services that digital marketing agencies can use on behalf of their clients. Professionals can get help with SEO, PPC, competitive analysis and more.
SE Ranking is another all-in-one tool designed to enhance competitive analysis. The application gives you full visibility over your rivals’ paid and organic marketing strategies. More than 600,000 clients and enterprises currently use the platform.
SE Ranking gives you an abundance of tools to boost SEO rankings. These include its white label service, a professional SEO service that utilizes SE Ranking technology, and its page changes monitoring, which notifies you if competitors make changes to their site.
Many firms use SE Ranking to develop comprehensive marketing plans. The app’s helpful SEO checklist and website analysis transform rank-improving content generation into a process.
Marcus Tober founded Searchmetrics in 2005, a tool that started out as a purebred competitive analysis engine.
Today, Searchmetrics targets enterprise-level businesses. It is a sophisticated solution that lets firms identify promising opportunities to increase their revenue. Firms can drive growth strategically by increasing organic search and leveraging search engine information, regardless of how complex their online operations are.
What sets Searchmetrics apart, though, is its client onboarding. New sign-ups get dedicated help from a client success manager who shows them how to use the tool effectively, and direct access to the firm’s help center. On top of this, numerous videos, webinars and podcasts provide additional guidance.
Bright Edge is a high-end SEO platform for large firms. It gears its features towards spying on competitors and getting an edge over them. What’s nice is how it actively shows you which keywords are helping them gain rank so you can copy them.
Bright Edge has some novel features, too. One tool, for instance, shows you a list of competitors you didn’t know you had. When activated, you’ll get regular alerts telling you when another domain is following your strategy.
Another tool lets you examine competitor’s SEO campaigns in extraordinary detail. With this, you can uncover their link strategies and find out which pages attract the most traffic.
Whitespark offers specialized local SEO software. All of their products are geared towards local SEO, with the standout being their Local Rank Tracker.
With a focus on local citation listings, local rankings, and Google Maps (formerly Google Places), Local Rank Tracker allows users to focus on specific local results. This cuts down on the noise and ensures they only receive relevant data for their local clientele.
Comparing your rankings with genuine local competitors allows you to step up your competitor SEO tracking via their competitor research tool. No time is wasted on companies outside your scope and location.
WebCEO is an advanced SEO tool that provides a suite of features that quickly give you an edge over your rivals. The service makes it easy to get new SEO leads every day.
Users have more than 23 pro-level SEO software tools to choose from. These let them do everything from disavowing negative links to conducting social media analysis and competitor research.
What’s nice about WebCEO is its team element. Administrators can delegate management access to the company account, restricting who can access what.
Agencies find it helpful, too. Attractive pre-built SEO reports help clients feel like they are getting good value for money while minimizing work for agents.
WebCEO also has an automatic in-built warning system for search engine page results. If a page suddenly drops in search rankings, users will receive a notification so they can take immediate action.
Morning Score is another do-it-all SEO tool for competitor analysis. It’s one of the most intuitive on the market, making it accessible to most non-technical firms.
Using the tool for competitor analysis is straightforward. Simply enter competitor websites and see their keywords and links.
The tool’s most innovative feature is its ability to calculate the profitability of your SEO projects. For instance, it shows you how much money you can expect to make from increasing your rank from, say, 7 to 2. Novel, indeed.
You can also use the tool to check your website’s SEO health at any time. Identify broken links, discover which pages are underperforming and get instructions on how to fix whatever needs fixing.
Best Backlink Tracking Tools
Best Backlink Tracking Tools
Rank Signals is, first and foremost, a backlink tool, showing you where your competitors get their links.
Rank Signals’ simplicity is what makes it popular. Just enter your competitor’s URL into the search bar to instantly view a list of backlinks to the page.
For firms, this kind of insight is helpful. If they don’t know how their rivals are doing SEO, they can’t follow them.
The tool also offers helpful analysis to help you delve more deeply into backlink results. For instance, Rank Signals shows you both the number of backlinks, their strength, and social shares.
Rank Signals has generated more than $300 million in revenue for SaaS, enterprise and ecommerce clients since launch. The average user, it says, can expect 1,200% return on investment. Not bad.
Monitor Backlinks is another backlink tracker that gives users with X-ray vision into their rivals’ SEO strategies. You can use the tool to reverse engineer your rival’s keyword strategies, see what they are doing right and emulate them.
You can also use the service to fight negative SEO. The tool lets you quickly disavow bad or broken links before Google’s algorithm has a chance to catch up. If competitors try to sabotage your reputation, you can rapidly undo the damage before it impacts your ranking.
Additional tools let you recover valuable lost links. For example, if a site accidentally removes a valuable link you worked hard for, Monitor Backlinks will immediately alert you. You can then ask the site in question to reinstate it.
Majestic is a link-building toolset and a backlink checker that provides insights into your rivals’ link profile. Like other link building tools, it shows you how many links a site has, where they come from, and what category they fall into. But you also get helpful tools that make it easier to visualize your backlink profile for better understanding.
Trust Flow is a particularly helpful metric the site uses. This feature gives you rapid insight into the quality of links to the site. Other metrics include Citation Flow which shows the quantity of links, and Visibility flow which tracks high-quality editorial links. Just be wary of the user interface; it’s a little old-fashioned.
Lastly, we have SEO SpyGlass, a valuable tool from the Link-Assistant SEO PowerSuite. This software makes it easy to characterize your competitor’s backlink profile and see how they are succeeding.
Like other tools in this list, SEO SpyGlass makes it easy to reverse engineer your competitors’ links. It also explores the top ten Google rankers for the best link opportunities to help you improve your domain authority. Further tools let you clean your site and avoid falling foul of rules in Google’s Panda and Penguin updates.
SEO SpyGlass’s standout feature is the sheer number of SEO backlink factors in its reports. Access more than fifty, including domain reputation, social signals, and anchor texts.
Best Social Network Tracking Tools
Best Social Network Tracking Tools
BuzzSumo is not an SEO tool in the traditional sense. Rather, it is a social network tracking tool that helps you find the most shared content on the web.
Using the tool is straightforward. Start by typing your target keyword into the search bar and then hit “Go.” Then wait for BuzzSumo to return the most popular content on the internet related to it. You can view Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Reddit engagement, plus things like the number of links to the page.
Each result has an “Evergreen Score.” This statistic measures the SEO longevity of a page. The logic is simple. Transient news stories only yield SEO benefits for a short period so they will score lower, while generic blog posts tend to generate organic traffic for longer, helping them score higher.
Gaining SEO insights is important. But, arguably, developing an understanding of how your audience views you online is even more critical.
That’s precisely where Brand24 comes in handy. This tool alerts you whenever someone mentions keywords relating to your firm across the web, including social media. If it detects any conversations about your products or brands, it will immediately send you a notification. You can then take action to avert brand damage.
Using Brand24 is simple. Start by typing the keywords you want to track into the project bar and then add any additional excluded keywords.
Once you do that, you will be able to see how people perceive your brand. You can then:
- Adjust your tone of voice to communicate better with your audience
- See how your voice compares to your competitors’
- Gain insights based on how audiences react to rival products
Brand24 has a free 14-day trial period. You must pay a subscription after that.
Best Keyword Ranking Tools
Best Keyword Ranking Tools
FATRANK from FatJoe is a free SEO rank checker available on both desktop and mobile. The tool’s main selling point is its simplicity. Just add the websites you want to track and relevant keywords and see where they each rank on Google.
What’s nice about FATRANK is that it lets you see where you rank across more than 58 different countries. You get insights into page performance across all major global markets.
The tool also lets you download CSV reports. These put results into a spreadsheet format for reference and analysis.
Ubersuggest is the ultimate tool for spying on your rivals. It shows you their top keywords, where their backlinks come from and their most popular pages. Armed with this information, you can strategically adjust your campaigns for maximum impact.
Like some others in this list, the tool works intuitively. Start by typing in the URL that you’d like to spy on in the search bar and click “search.” Then, select the option that you want to analyze from the side bar.
Clicking “keywords,” for example, will give you a list of top keywords by volume that the URL ranks for. Metrics include the position of the page, the number of visits that it gets for a particular keyword, and the degree of competition.
Likewise, clicking “Top Pages” will show you your rival’s most popular pages, and “overview” will give you a general overview of their performance.
Now that you’ve got the fundamentals of tracking your competitors, it’s time to get out there and outcompete and outrank them! When it comes to SEO, competitor research tools are vital in giving you the upper hand in the SERPs. After all, “knowledge is power” and all that jazz.
Got any killer tools for competitor analysis that we missed? Pop us a message and let us know!