10 SEO Tools For Small Businesses

Victoria Kurichenko

written by

Victoria Kurichenko

posted on

October 16, 2022

SEO Tools For Small Business

If you google “SEO tools for small business,” you’ll see over 40 million results. 

Reviewing and finding the most suitable and affordable SEO software is a lot of work.

As a marketer, I use DIY SEO tools daily. Therefore, I am familiar with the various options available on the market. So, I googled “top SEO tools for small businesses” and stumbled upon multiple similar search results. 

Most pages are pretty long because authors list many tools without a decent review. 

I can’t recall how many times I’ve read shallow reviews starting with “This is the tool X; it can help you with Y, Z.” 

As a user, I can read the description of tools on their official websites. However, I expect honest reviews, success and failure stories, and personal opinions.

This article is exactly about it. 

As an SEO specialist and solopreneur, I share my exclusive list of the best SEO tools for business owners.

I use these tools daily to grow my website, help my clients acquire traffic from organic search results, and conduct keyword research and SEO analysis. 

This article is for you if you are looking for SEO tools for small businesses to help you create impactful results.

I’ve shared my best go-to options I’ve known and used for the past four years.

Is it worth doing SEO for small businesses?

Before jumping to the list of SEO tools for small business owners, I’d like to share a few thoughts on whether it’s worth doing SEO when you are just starting. 

You’ll find many different opinions about SEO for startups. Some say SEO takes time, but startups need clients now and don’t have time to wait for at least 6 months to see the first (hopefully) positive results. So, some startups and small businesses invest in PPC (pay-per-click) to gain instant results. Once they have a decent monthly income, they consider SEO. 

Others, however, allocate some resources to start SEO as soon as possible. They progress slowly but already have some results when other companies are just starting. 

It’s up to you to decide what’s best for your business.

I believe SEO is about having long-lasting results. 

If you don’t have enough capacity, it’s worth starting small and slow. Instead of developing an entire SEO strategy, you can focus on creating optimized content and publishing high-quality pieces on your website. 

Even one researched, optimized, and well-written content piece with the potential to reach top Google search results can bring you closer to achieving your business goals. 

I know it’s possible. 

I worked at companies where owners and CEOs used to write content for their blogs. 

I saw developers turned agency owners who learned SEO from scratch and tried to kick off an SEO direction themselves. 

I grew my website from 0 to 4,000 stable monthly traffic in one year with zero investment, working a few hours a week on it and having a full-time job. Here is the proof:

Self Made Millennials traffic growth
Self Made Millennials traffic growth

As a solopreneur, I would not have achieved these results had I picked any other traffic source.

SEO is not dead, and it’s worth doing it if you approach it with the right mindset. In other words, if you are ready to play long-term and create valuable content for your target audience. 

I did not mean to convince you that you should or should not do SEO. It’s purely my opinion based on four years of field knowledge and empirical evidence.

If you decide to do SEO, here are the top SEO tools for small businesses I recommend checking. 

10 SEO tools for small business

Google Search Console

This is one of the best SEO tools for small and established online business owners, which is free. 

Google Search Console is a web service created by Google that helps website owners measure and track their sites’ online performance.

GSC shows Search results report for my website

Once set and verified, Google Search Console gives an extensive overview of your website performance, including

  • How daily impressions change (drop or grow)
  • How daily traffic changes (increases or decreases)
  • Average CTR (click-through-rate)
  • Whether your website pages have any technical issues
  • Whether your website pages are indexed (if not, why)
  • Whether your website has mobile usability issues
  • If your website got any penalty from Google

The data is provided by Google itself. Therefore, it’s more accurate than anything else. I recommend setting up Google Search Console right after you create your website. It will help you track and understand many processes that happen to your website behind the scenes.

In particular, you’ll be able to see how long it takes for Googe to index new pages (usually two weeks) and whether your new web pages are indexed.

The “discovered not indexed” and “crawled not indexed” are common issues for new websites. If you experience any of these issues, check the Google Index Coverage report for more details. I also have an in-depth guide on how to do SEO for new websites that will help you avoid common SEO mistakes.

I recommend checking Google Search Console data daily, especially at the beginning. This way, you’ll be able to spot any issues right away and ensure smooth website growth.

Google Tag Manager

How many pieces of code did you have to add to your website to integrate other tools, like Google Analytics, Google Search Console, Gumroad, etc.? 

Did you manually paste the pieces of code to your website or ask a developer for help? 

Most site owners are unfamiliar with coding and can’t edit website pages independently. What to do in this case?

Google Tag Manager is a tool that can help you add any pieces of code to your website without opening a source code page. 

I intentionally included this tool in this article because not many site owners know about it and use it.

Google Tag Manager
Google Tag Manager account of Self Made Millennials

Perhaps, the first thing you can do when setting up GTM is add a Google Analytics tracking code to every page of your website via GTM.

Here is how to do it:

  1. Create a new variable with a unique tracking code from your Google Analytics account.
  2. Create a tag using a newly added variable.
  3. Create a trigger — an action that will fire a tag. In this particular case, a tag will be fired upon all page views. This way, your Google Analytics account will track users’ behavior and site navigation.

It’s just one occasion where Google Tag Manager can be helpful. However, this tool can do even more. You can learn more about Google Tag Manager here.

Ubersuggest

Ubersuggest is one of my favorite SEO tools for small businesses because it’s powerful and affordable. 

You get full access to Ubersuggest functionality for as little as $12 per month. However, many features are free, which is an excellent alternative for those with a limited budget. 

Once you add your website URL, target keywords, and competitors, Ubersuggest will generate SEO opportunities for your website, which are pretty helpful. You’ll get recommendations on which web pages have the potential to rank higher and what kind of new content you can create.

Ubersuggest SEO tool for small business

There are dedicated reports for a site audit, backlinks analysis, keyword research, and more. 

As an SEO writing expert, I focus on keyword research.

I am convinced that the right keywords can help your business grow, bring the target audience, and hit the Google front page faster. Therefore, I conduct extensive keyword research before writing any content piece. 

Ubbersugget has a dedicated keyword research tool to help analyze keyword potential. The volume per country is pretty accurate (I compared it to other tools), while the keyword difficult is not that accurate. 

Nevertheless, Ubersuggest can help you estimate your target keyword’s ranking and traffic potential and find semantically related keywords. 

Ubersuggest keyword analysis

Ahrefs

Ahrefs is one of the most popular SEO tools for small and big businesses available on the market.

Despite being a relatively young company (roughly 12 years), it already dominates the market of SEO tools. 

Back in 2015, when I had just started learning SEO, Ahrefs was the first tool that opened up the world of search engine optimization for me. 

Today, it’s my essential tool for keyword research and website performance analysis. Every article I create for my website, including this one, was just an idea once. Ahrefs helped me analyze the keyword potential and collect semantically-related keywords for content writing.

Ahrefs top SEO tool for small business

Thanks to Ahrefs and my SEO writing skills, I consistently create content that gets to the Google front page. So, this tool delivers on its promise. As an SEO specialist who heavily relies on Ahrefs keyword analysis, I can confirm their data is pretty accurate. 

Ahrefs have only one tiny drawback, the price. It is a pretty expensive tool. The cheapest version costs $99 per month. However, it does not include such valuable reports as broken backlinks, broken links, content gap, ranking data history, and more. 

If you want to test the full power of Ahrefs and use it to grow your business, it will cost you $199 per month for a standard plan and $399 for an advanced one. It’s a lot if you consistently keep the monthly subscription. 

As a solopreneur, I occasionally pay for Ahrefs and use their free Ahrefs Website Checker for webmasters.

Ahrefs Website Checker

Ahrefs Website Checker is a limited and free version of Ahrefs available for verified website owners. 

It helps you check your website’s domain rating, backlink acquisition, organic traffic growth, keywords your website ranks for, site audit with technical website issues, website top pages, and more. 

Ahrefs team says that Ahrefs Website Checker is “their answer to limitations of Google Search Console.

Ahrefs Website Checker SEO help for small business

I recommend trying this tool if you are a website owner on a budget. (You’ll thank me later.)

Once you register and verify your website (I did it via Google Search Console), you will access the dashboard with the primary website metrics and data.

Here is how it looks:

Ahrefs Website Checker dashboard

I included this screenshot on purpose.

It shows you all the reports available in the left sidebar and the essential charts, like traffic and keywords.

You’ll see the same reports for your website once you verify your domain ownership. 

As an owner of Self Made Millennials, I check the website performance, backlinks, top website pages, and DR growth daily, especially when I publish new pages.

Semrush

Semrush is an alternative to Ahrefs and another powerful marketing toolkit. Besides SEO, it is a handy tool for PPC managers, social media, and content marketers.

If you are looking for SEO software for small businesses, check Semrush. 

Its functionality is more extensive than the Ahrefs, while the price is relatively the same. The cheapest Pro plan costs $119.95 per month, while the Guru plan with extensive functionality is $229.95. 

I don’t pay for Semrush, to tell you the truth. I use its free version as an addition to Ahrefs Website Checker. 

Unlike Ahrefs, Semrush gives you roughly 10 free daily searches, which is often enough for me to do a quick research.

Semrush SEO software for small business

To The Web

Some things in SEO seem pretty straightforward and don’t require an explanation, like metadata. 

As an SEO writer, I paid the least attention to the metadata when explaining on-page optimization strategies to copywriters and business owners. I thought there were more essential things to focus on. Oh, I was so wrong!

The meta title and description are the first things users see on Google before opening your web page. 

You risk losing potential site visitors if they are poorly written, unoptimized, or not catchy. Therefore, I started using tools like To The Web to check how the meta titles and descriptions I create would look in search results. 

I highly recommend checking the top ranking search results when you craft metadata for your web page. Keep the following question in mind while writing a meta title “Would I click on this link if I saw it among other search results?” If the answer is no, keep brainstorming new versions.

To The Web best SEO tool for business owners

Coschedule Headline Analyzer

Coschedule headline analyzer is another powerful tool for creating enticing titles.

This tool will be helpful to those who don’t have experience in content writing but are eager to write articles that people will want to read.

It took me two years to learn how to write titles that stand out and resonate with my audience. I always examine competitors and add something exclusive to make my title unique, like numbers, years, type of content (case study, checklist, etc.), for whom, and who’s the author (marketing expert). 

The mastery of title writing comes in time. However, you can use many tools like Coschedule headline analyzer to create powerful titles. 

This SEO tool for small businesses is free, with affordable paid plans starting at $19 if billed monthly.  

The tool works the following way, you paste your headline and hit “Analyse.” Once the tool finishes the analysis, you’ll get an extensive report with a headline score from 0 to 100 and actionable headline improvement tips.

This article’s title got a 77 out of 100 score, but there are still things that can be improved, according to the Coschedule analyzer.

Coschedule Headline Analyzer

LSI Graph

LSI or latent semantic indexing keywords are terms that are related to your primary keyword. These terms help you create an in-depth content piece that holistically answers users’ questions and helps Google better understand what your content piece is about. 

Imagine you want to write an article about apples, where “apple” is the main keyword. Are you going to write about a company or a fruit? It’s hard to tell. However, if you include LSI keywords, like Palo Alto, Steve Jobs, and iPhone, then readers and Google will quickly get what you write about. 

Google favors long-form, helpful, and unique content. Therefore, you’ll need to collect related terms for content writing. 

LSI Graph is a paid tool that can help you collect and analyze semantically-related keywords. 

Here is an example of how it works from their website:

As shown in the screenshot above, the LSI graph has collected multiple keywords related to “plumbing service.” If you want to increase your chances of ranking high on Google, you’ll likely have to include some of these terms in your copy. 

As I mentioned earlier, this tool is paid. The basic plan costs $449 for lifetime usage.

MOZ Keyword Explorer

Relying on gut feeling when you create content for your website is the wrong strategy. You’ll never be confident whether your content will work. It might go viral and hit the Google front page, or it will flop, and no one will discover it on Google.

As an SEO writing specialist, I recommend starting your content creation process with keyword research. MOZ Keyword Explorer lets you analyze 10 queries per month for free. 

This is the best DIY SEO software if you run a small business with a tight budget. 

You’ll get keyword monthly volume estimates, keyword difficulty, organic CTR, and semantically-related keywords.

Comparing SEO software table

Besides writing brief reviews for SEO software for small businesses, I’ve also prepared a comparison table where you can quickly check the tools and see whether they are the right fit for you.

Tool Purpose Pricing Free trial
Google Search Console
Website’s search traffic, performance, and technical issues reporting tool.
Website’s search traffic, performance, and technical issues reporting tool. It’s a free tool.
X
Google Tag Manager
It is used to manage tags, such as measurement and marketing optimization of JavaScript tags on your website.
It’s a free tool.
X
Ubersuggest
Powerful SEO toolkit for keyword analysis.
It’s a free tool with paid plans starting at $12/m.
X
Ahrefs
All-in-one popular SEO tool.
Starts at $99/m.
No
Ahrefs Website Checker
A limited version of Ahrefs for site owners to track and analyze their website performance.
It’s a free tool.
X
Semrush
All-in-one popular marketing tool.
Starts at $119.95.
Yes, there is a 30-day free trial to test the tool. You can also make 10 searchers for free per day.
To The Web
A tool that helps to test the meta title and description.
It’s a free tool.
X
Coschedule Headline Analyzer
A tool that helps to write catchy and resonating titles.
It’s a free tool with paid plans starting at $129/m.
X
LSI Graph
A tool that helps research and analyze semantically-related keywords.
Starts at a $449 one-time payment for lifetime usage.
No
MOZ Keyword Explorer
Keyword analysis tool.
Starts at $179/m.
Yes, there is a 30-day free trial to test the tool. You can also make 10 searchers for free per month.

Costs of SEO for small businesses

Is it worth doing SEO for small business?” — I’ve heard this question many times from different business owners.

Some of them were concerned with the low SEO impact in the short term and were not ready to wait. While others wondered how much it costs to do SEO for small businesses

As an SEO specialist and solopreneur, I will try to answer this question for you.

First, it’s important to mention that costs will differ depending on who you work with, whether it is an agency or an individual contractor. 

According to Backlinko, the average monthly price of SEO services for small businesses is $497.16. 

The Backlinko study also revealed that SEO agencies get paid significantly more than freelancers. Agencies are 2x more likely to get paid $1k-$2k per month than freelancers, which mostly get paid in the $500-$1k per month range.

It’s pretty straightforward that agencies are more expensive than freelancers. When you hire an agency, you hire collective expertise. Even if you work with one SEO specialist, they can discuss your challenges in-house and develop strategies together with other experts. It’s pretty helpful if you need SEO help with challenging issues. 

On the other hand, freelancers will most likely charge less if they work individually and are not influencers. 

I think there is no significant difference between hiring a freelancer or an agency at the very beginning. A skilled freelancer can do an even better job than an agency. The most challenging task, though, is to find the right expert. 

I’ll give you a few tips on how to find the best SEO services for small businesses. An ideal SEO specialist should:

  • Have a portfolio of works or case studies
  • Be able to prove the impact of their work
  • Worked on a minimum of 2-3 different projects before
  • Worked in your niche

The last point is crucial. 

I highly recommend looking for experts who have previously worked in your niche. They will know exclusive insights from past experience and know what strategies work. These experts are worth paying for, even if they are a bit pricy. They will most likely help you achieve your business goals. 

Have you used any tools I mentioned in this article or do you have other favorites? Share in the comments. I am curious to read your thoughts.

Victoria Kurichenko

Hello there! 

My name is Victoria.
I am an SEO expert, Medium top writer, solopreneur, and the founder of Self Made Millennials. I help companies create optimized content and attract potential customers through organic search results. In addition, I share how content creators can monetize their writing skills.

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