Get Free Quote

BACK TO BASICS: Get to Know the SEO Tools You Shouldn't Live Without

by , June 20, 2012

Audience: SEO

Estimated Reading Time: 6 minutes


  • New and battle-tested SEO tools bring data intelligence to your strategy.
  • The Keyword Report, released this year, offers insights into keyword competitiveness and search activity.
  • Visual analysis of raw keyword rankings across search engines can be generated by the Domain Ranking Report.

Many of our readers here at the SEO Newsletter are also avid users of our tools in the SEOToolSet®. Even if you’re a die-hard user, you may not have noticed improvements we’ve made or new features we’ve added since you started using the tools. This is one of the reasons we’ve added developer notes to our newsletter on a monthly basis. But there’s also some great ways to use our tools that maybe aren’t so apparent, so in this Back to Basics article, we’d like to get you reacquainted with some of the features in a few of our favorite tools in the SEOToolSet: the Single Page Analyzer, the Domain Ranking Report and the Keyword Report.

The Single Page Analyzer

The Single Page Analyzer is chock-full of data for individual Web pages. The purpose of this report is to analyze word and phrase usage on a page to make improvements to on-page optimization.

This tool can be found in the dashboard under Analyze > Page Analyzer > Single Page Analyzer.

Features we love:

    -Link information report.
    -Word metrics.
    -Cloak checker.

Let’s dive into those a bit more to see how they can assist you in your everyday SEO efforts.

(Note: All screen shots in this post are from our demo account If you’ve ever taken a Bruce Clay SEOToolSet Training course, you know exactly what we’re talking about!)

Link Information Report

Understanding your inbound and outbound links has always been important in protecting your site and your valuable SEO efforts. Recent trends stemming from Google’s algorithm updates show that managing link portfolios are once again at top of mind for SEOs.

The Link Information Report lists all the links found on a single Web page, including checking all outbound links for things like broken links, redirects and other errors. If the user experience on your website is important to your business (and Google thinks it is, too), then it’s essential to ensure users have a continuous, uninterrupted experience on your site.

Link Information Report

You want to make sure that you still endorse all those links you’ve placed on your site to outside sources. So this tool is helpful in maintaining the integrity of your site and the user experience.

Word Metrics

The way you write your content can impact user experience. People read on the Web differently than they do in other mediums. Attention spans are shorter online, therefore scanning instead of reading word for word is the norm.

This is where the Word Metrics report comes in handy. Once you’ve written your quality content, run it through this report to find out how easy it is to read based on grading scores.

The word metrics report looks at:

  • Syllable count. If your content has a lot of words with a lot of syllables, it can slow the reading process significantly.
  • Word per sentence. Think about breaking those longer sentences into two separate thoughts. This will be much easier on the online reader.
  • Readability and grade level. Newspapers – once the mainstream consumption of information – were written at a fifth grade level to appeal to the masses. Lessons can be learned from that medium. Err on the side of readability versus how educated you believe the audience is.
Word Metrics

Cloak Checker

Cloaking is the act of presenting something different to the user than what is presented to the search engine. This is considered to be a deceptive SEO tactic, yet many sites participate in it. Oftentimes, site owners or managers aren’t even aware the site is considered to be cloaking. This can happen when multiple people have touched the site over the years, or the site itself is very large and difficult to manage.

The SEOToolSet approaches cloak checks a little different than other cloak checkers. Traditionally, cloak checkers will act as the various Web browsers to test a page for cloaking; so it will act as Mozilla Firefox, then Google Chrome, then Internet Explorer and so on.

Cloak Checker

The cloak checker will look at the length of the content on the page and examine discrepancies across the browsers. Usually, if the page shows a different amount of content across browsers, the cloak checker believes the page is participating in cloaking. But this can lead to false positives in things like small A/B Tests, small content changes or anything else that may not be considered cloaking.

SEOToolSet’s Cloak Check parses individual parts of a page and compares them across browsers. This gives more insight into the information on a page, thus giving fewer false positives. This saves you the time and energy you would have invested in trying to uncover the reasons behind a positive cloaking report, when in actuality, everything was fine.

Domain Ranking Report

The Domain Ranking Report summarizes the search engine rankings across the various search engines for keywords and domains. The report shows “raw” rankings, free from biases like personalization to the user and location of the user. In an environment where search engines are continuously looking for ways to personalize the searcher’s experience, this tool is a handy for tracking the real rankings of your site.

You can find this report in the dashboard under Reports > Domain Ranking Report.

Features we love:

  • Keyword ranking distribution chart.
  • Comparison report.

Keyword Ranking Distribution

The ranking distribution chart for keywords is a helpful snapshot of your site’s rankings across search engines for the keywords you’re monitoring in the SEOToolSet. Many site owners and marketers have ranking goals, with the first page being the most important.

The visualization, powered by our friends at Visual Mining, shows you what percentage of your keywords is ranking and in what position across search engines they’re in. Selecting individual search engines to the left of the chart will show data for that search engine only.

Selecting the “total” row shows aggregated data across all the search engines you’ve selected to monitor.

Keyword Ranking Dist

This report is also helpful in determining if your keyword set is successful for your site. If you’re not ranked for most of your key terms, and you're well into your SEO project, you may want to consider revising your keyword strategy.

Comparison Report

This report allows you to compare date selections for the keyword ranking distribution chart. You can see how your rankings have fluctuated over time for the keyword sets you’re monitoring.

Percentage Ranking by Dates

To view this report, on the Domain Ranking Report page, designate dates for the report under “report to view” and “report to compare” drop-down menus.

Compare Dates for Ranking

Keyword Report

The SEOToolSet has long had Traffic Checker and Suggested Keywords reporting, but the Keyword Report in particular is fairly new, launched just this year. This information drills down into your keywords, giving additional data to help you make wise decisions.

The benefit of this new reporting is that it aggregates information for all your keywords in one place, versus the Traffic Checker, which just looks at individual keywords. Plus, there’s more metrics to look at as well.

You can access this report through the dashboard at Keywords > Keywords.

Features we love:

  • Competitive score.
  • Keyword link.
  • Best category.

Competitive Score

Choosing keywords is a bit of an art and science. The goal is to find the most targeted keywords that have just the right balance of search activity versus competition. The “Competitive Score” on the Keywords Report is based off a mathematical equation that takes into account many of the metrics compiled for a given keyword or keyword phrase compared to the other keywords in your project.

It then assigns that keyword a competitiveness score on a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being the most competitive. You can sort scores by clicking the top of the column.

Keywords Report Competitive Score

Keyword Link

Not all of your keywords in a project may be ranking, but it’s helpful to know which keywords are. The “Keyword Link” in the Keyword Report shows up when one of the keywords in your set is ranked in the SERP.

Keywords Report Keyword Link

The embedded link takes you to the Ranking Report by Keyword tool, so that you can further analyze things like:

  • Which URLs are ranking for that keyword or keyword phrase.
  • What position they are ranking in which search engine.

This link and report can help uncover Web pages you may not have known are ranking for those keywords.

Best Category

The “Best Category” column in the Keyword Report collects information from the search engines as to what they believe the keyword is about. When you select the top of the Best Category column, it will group related keywords together. This is very helpful for site owners who have hundreds of keywords, and are looking for direction on their site’s content development strategy.

Keywords Report Best Category

It can also help you identify keywords that perhaps don’t have the same meaning to the search engine as you might think they do. For example, if you have ambiguous keywords such as “apple,” search engines like Google will categorize this term based on the best information it has about that query – either a fruit or a technology company.

If you’re a subscriber to our SEO tools already, we encourage you to explore these features if you haven’t already. If you’d like to try our tools for 30 days free, sign up here with code NLB2B in the “promotion code” field. This sets you up with our "Pro" edition, valued at more than $200 per month. You can cancel at any time.

You can try out free versions of many SEOToolSet tools throughout our step-by-step SEO Tutorial. For more information on the full version tools, or to compare subscriptions and features, visit our SEO tools page.


For permission to reprint or reuse any materials, please contact us. To learn more about our authors, please visit the Bruce Clay Authors page. Copyright © 2012 Bruce Clay, Inc.