Search engine optimization (SEO) is a never-ending quest to find the strategies that work best in terms of getting free traffic from Google, Bing and Yahoo!. Fortunately, there are a number of free tools that are easy to use which can help you in your quest. Here are some suggestions.

Google Keyword Planner

This is your best starting point for researching keywords to use in your content on your site. Choose the ones which are the most popular and produce content related to each one in order to try to boost traffic.

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Keyword Tool

This site will give you around 700 keyword ideas based on a single keyword, listed alphabetically. These could be great opportunities provided you cross-check with the Google tool above to check search volume.

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Google PageSpeed Insights

This tool allows you to check the speed and usability of your site on multiple devices. Google in particular gives SEO credit to sites that load quickly.

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Google Analytics

This is a complete website statistics and search insights tool that no online business should do without. It is very robust and can take some time to learn, but the effort will be worth it based on all you can learn about your site visitors.

Google Webmaster Tools and Bing Webmaster Tools

Both of these tools give you constant website analysis, alerts, and error reports. Use them to help you fix bugs in your site, update your site maps, and more. Again, they will take some time to learn and master, but they are invaluable because they are like a glimpse into how these two search engines really see your site.

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QuickSprout Website Analyzer

This is another handy tool that can help analyze your website and see how well you are doing in terms of optimization, speed, keywords, social media, links, and more.

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SERPs Rank Checker

See where your site ranks for certain terms with this handy tool. Check in two ways: put in your keyword and website and see what you rank, or just add the keyword to check search volume.

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XML Sitemaps

A sitemap talks to the search engines to give them a road map to your site. When you update it, it can also ping them to tell them there is something new and interesting to see. If you are using WordPress, install the Google XML site map plugin. If you have an HTML-based site, use XML sitemaps. When you have created the sitemap, be sure to upload it in your Google Webmaster Tools dashboard.

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Google Trends

Trends can help you get to the top of the search engines if you blog about the latest topics. Google will reward you for recency and might even give you a spot in Google News as well.

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Open Site Explorer

The goal these days is high-quality links, not thousands of junk links. The free edition of Open Site Explorer offers link analysis, including the best links, and which of your pages has the most links.

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Schema Creator

Snippets and schema are a way to identify and display certain types of content, such as video, recipes and reviews. If you are blogging with WordPress, install the All in One Rich Snippets plugin. If you have an HTML-based site, use Schema Creator.

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Moz Local Listing Score

Are you running a local business? Your SEO efforts will be a little different. The Moz tool will aggregate data from more than 15 different sources, including Google, Facebook, and Foursquare, to score your SEO efforts. Act on the suggestions they give for improvement, and track and test your results.

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Use these tools to help manage and speed up your SEO work.

Tools to Help Manage and Speed Up Your SEO Work
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