Three Essential (and Free) SEO Tools

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The category under which this blog appears is “Content is King”. Given the shifting sands of Google’s page ranking algorithms, this is one of the few truisms to which most SEO bloggers would agree. Write good, informative and snappy content, and you should expect an improvement in your search engine results over time.

There are many, many SEO tools to help you track your progress towards better page rankings and help you diagnose any problems blocking your advance. I’d like to look at three today. They are all good and are all  free.

Search Engine Reports .Net

There are actually two tools available from this one site. The first, Instant Search Engine Rankings Report, allows you to enter a domain name and a bunch of keywords. It then reports the Google and Bing page rankings of the domain for each keyword. It’s a lot easier than browsing through search results to find your domain. And it can be a good diagnostic of trouble.

As an example, I have been monitoring the attempt of my brave little website to climb the Google ranking for keyword “free lance writer”, and have watched in awe as its moved from nowhere to the low 20’s. Then one day, it disappeared. I finally figured out what I had done (basically I destroyed some link juice with a reciprocal link), and took steps to correct it. A day later, all was right with the world again. The Rankings Report was crucial in quickly alerting me to a problem that might have gone unnoticed for some time.

The second tool at the same site is a Plagiarism Checker. You can paste in text or enter either a URL or a text file name. Set the sensitivity to minimum and press the Create Report button. This tool certainly will point out if someone is ripping off your content, but its way too oversensitive. Whereas Copyscape (which is not free) looks at four-word segments, Plagiarism Checker looks like it goes down to single words (screening out trivial ones, of course). But you can quickly scan down the report – if there be theft afoot, you’ll know it.


An important aspect of SEO is backlinking. A backlink from an authoritative website to your site can help improve your Page Rank. Authoritative sites are sites that already have a high Page Rank. Ideally, you would like links from sites with Page Ranks of five or higher. To find out what sites are linked to yours, you can use Free Backlink Checker. Type in a URL and receive a ton of valuable statistics, including:

  • backlinks
  • domains (broken down by .com, .net. and .org)
  • Google PageRank
  • Rank
  • Rank

It then lists each link, by domain. The list itself is linked, so you can inspect any individual backlink by clicking on it. This tool is great for monitoring your link profile. It will also check your website for duplicate IP addresses, both Class C and subnet.

If you are in a competitive market, you can use Free Backlink Checker to see your competitors’ backlinks, and perhaps come up with some ideas for adding to yours. For instance, if a competitor has a linked comment on a high-ranked forum, you could follow suit and perhaps add a valuable backlink to your profile.

I’m told that Domain-Pop.Com is working on enhancing and extending its tools – I will alert readers as this occurs.

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Copyright 2011 Eric Bank, Freelance Writer

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