SEMRush (formerly QuickSprout) (#19)
Everyone advertising online needs to learn about sites similar to their site. This is so you can figure out how to out-do your competition in search rankings (SEO) and keyword advertising (pay-per-click).
In a crowded marketplace, it’s often the case that short, 1-to-3 word keywords are already heavily associated with high ranking websites.
Three little keywords like “little black purse” that drive a ton of traffic to people selling purses. Very few except the ones who have been in the marketplace for a long time will be able to be at the top of Google.
But how do you understand where there are opportunities to be had in what people are searching for?
Enter QuickSprout, a tool to “let your competitors do the work for you.”
QuickSprout appears to have been purchased and rebranded as SEMRUSH. However, the original Quicksprout landing page greets you with this deceptive search box. (Warning: the search doesn’t actually work; you can type anything or nothing in this box and click ‘Start now’ and the website still takes you to the long-scroll landing page you see below.)
Then, before you are required to sign up for the free trial with a credit card, you are greeted with a good dose of marketing ideology and schmooze by being led through several pages of high-octane ad-buying theory. I’ll just leave it here for you to read for yourself.
Today we’ll research the keywords “pet supplies” to see what people are searching for related to their pets.
From here we can see people are searching for pet supplies plus, pet supplies, pet supplies near me, pet supplies plus coupon, pet supplies store, etc. (No surprises there.)
In the Keyword Manager, we can create a list. (Let’s call it “pet supplies”)
It is empty by default:
We then add keywords to this list to create a composite view.
Let’s take a quick look at the Keyword Gap Analysis tool. Here I want to look at the clothing brand Uniqlo versus four competitors: H&M, DemandWare.com, FastRetailing.com, and Express.
The keyword analyizer shows is a visual Venn diagram of the overlap between these brands.
If my brand were lacking in significant keyword traffic as compared to the others, this tool would tell me what keyword gaps I have in my traffic (where I could be more competative).
SEO Writing Assistant
SEMRUSH also includes an SEO tool to analyze my text. When I give it the text of this article, it scores me with a 5.9 out of 10, giving me advice that the text is too short, it is missing a headline (it is not actually), and that I should add the keywords ‘digital marketing,’ ‘search results,’ and ‘search engines.’
There’s a ton of more features too: cost-per-click views, saved reports, site auditing, backlink auditing, and social media auditing.
Semrush is a powerful tool if used in the right way: it can let you slice and dice your SEO and ad spend to gain insight into where you can have a strategic edge.