When starting anything in life, it is important to have a strong foundation first. The same goes for websites and SEO strategies, as well. On-page SEO is one of the first steps required to be done right in order to start increasing your website’s organic traffic.
There are several things that matter when it comes to on-page SEO:
- Page speed
- Title tags
- Meta description tags
- Duplicate content
- Image alt tags and optimization
- Number of header tags on the page
- Broken links check
Doing all of this on your own can be quite difficult and forgetting something is not uncommon. Like in other jobs, it’s hard to do things the right way without the right knowledge, but there are tools to make everything easier.
Thankfully, there are tools to help you with your on-page SEO, too. In this article, we will go through some of the free ones that can help you with your SEO tasks. Tools that require either a sign in or are limited to only a certain number of uses have been excluded because I don’t consider them ‘free’.
The first thing you need to figure out before you start anything is the right keyword. Choosing the right keyword is crucial and as such, performing thorough research is required.
Keywords everywhere is a browser extension for Chrome and Firefox. It provides information about the search volume, cost per click (CPC), and competition data of a certain keyword. Additionally, it suggests similar keywords in the ‘people also search for’ section.
This option is quite useful if you are looking for related keywords or want to learn more about what your customers are searching for. The ‘people also search for’ keywords and the related keywords provide the same valuable information as the main keyword: search volume, CPC and competition data.
The tool is very simple and easy to install and operate. It also comes with an option to favorite a keyword and form list that you can export in Excel, CSV or in PDF file formats.
There are also websites that provide a similar service.
Ubersuggest is a website that offers the same functions, but it can only search for certain countries. It also provides a website inspection showing an estimated number of visits and number of domains linking to it.
On their front page, they mention that using their service, you are able to look at your competitors’ SEO and marketing strategies, which is clever and useful advice. You can learn a lot by watching your competition, especially if you’re new in the business.
Using Ubbersuggest, you can also find out what pages of your competitor are getting high ranks and learn what kind of content is relevant at the moment, so you can write about it.
They also offer keyword suggestions and you can learn more about them through volume, competition and seasonal trends. Additionally, Ubbersuggest can generate a list of keywords based on what people are searching for.
Answer the public
The function of this site is to provide you with keyword suggestions of search terms, with data collected from Bing and Google. It provides customer insight as it shows you what people search for, in a cloud fashion. The question section is perfect for generating long-tail keywords.
After you type your keyword into their search bar, a large circle will appear. In the center will be your keyword and all around it will be questions that people ask frequently that contain said a keyword.
They also offer search comparisons of your keyword, so you can see what people are comparing it with, for example, web design vs web development. Additionally, they also provide you with an alphabetical list, with words from A-Z that people search for along with your keyword.
Site speed – an important on-page SEO factor
When your website or blog is ready then it’s important to optimize its load speed. Google does rank websites that load fast much better, which is what we are looking for when doing on-page SEO. It’s also crucial for mobile-first indexing, as when browsing the internet on a mobile phone you tend to use your mobile data.
This is probably the best free tool for testing your website loading speed. It provides an accurate representation of a person that comes to your site for the first time.
Pagespeed insights (Lighthouse)
This is a tool for testing loading speeds is provided by Google. It is not as descriptive as GTmetrix, but it provides the same function. You can also use it in Google Chrome by accessing developer tools, pressing F12 on the keyboard and going to audits on the menu bar. What should be mentioned is that this tool can also provide an SEO score.
It’s up to the user which tool they want to use for their on-site SEO audit. GTmetrix is easier and provides a detailed description of what you can change to improve load times while Pagespeed might seem more trustworthy as it is provided by Google. In my opinion, both tools are good and provide information on what needs to be improved.
Screaming Frog – possibly the best on-page SEO tool
The tiniest of things can affect the ranking, and even though it might be not by a lot, they shouldn’t be overlooked. Finding these mistakes is often very hard. The Screaming Frog is a powerful program that can be downloaded for free and it offers an easy solution to this problem. It can perform a deep scan and show you exactly where your mistakes are.
It is packed with features that can help you in every aspect. There are many things Screaming Frog can do, and some are:
- find broken links and bad redirects
- discover duplicate content
- generate XML sitemaps
- analyze page titles and meta description
As you can see it covers most of the on-page SEO and is in our opinion one of the best free on-page analysis tools. The free version is limited to only 500 pages, and if you have a bigger website you should consider buying the full version. It’s not easy to understand and use if you’re a newcomer, but spending time to learn in it will prove to be useful in the future and make your website mistake-free.
SEO site checkup
On this website, you can get a detailed analysis of all things related to SEO. Some of the main features that are needed to rank are omitted and require a purchase of the full version. For instance, you can’t check for broken links and backlinks to your website on the free version.
What you can do, however, is to learn a lot about your website. It shows you if the lengths of your meta title and description are fitting, the most common keywords you used, whether you used your keywords in your meta title and description if you have any headings, a robots.txt, and a sitemap file, whether your webpage is SEO friendly or not.
On-Page SEO tools – Conclusion
On-page SEO is absolutely crucial when it comes to websites. Only having good content is not enough and everything that you post must be formatted in a proper way. If you want Google to rank your website on the front page and near the top, it must be fully optimized, including keywords, titles, and images.
Thankfully, there are numerous browser extensions, programs, and websites that can help you determine and build your on-page SEO. For keywords, I would recommend using Keywords Everywhere, Ubersuggest and Answer the public. Regarding website speed, you can use GTmetrix, Pagespeed Insights (Lighthouse), SEO site checkup, and maybe most importantly, Screaming Frog.
Whichever you choose to use will help you learn something new and fix a mistake, so what are you waiting for? Optimize your on-page SEO and get better rankings on search engines today!