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My Honest Review Of SEMrush (Read Before Buying)

Last updated

by

Daniel Wade

 / 

May 20, 2021

If you are a content marketer, SEMrush is the best SEO tool option. In this hands-on SEMrush review, we will outline what it is and why it is the best SEO tool for you.

SEMrush is a powerful suite of marketing tools and online analytics for digital marketers and SEOs. Its assortment of features makes it the perfect tool for the modern digital marketer. SEMrush is the best-in-class SEO tool for design, tracking, and managing SEO campaigns.

SEMrush is undeniably one of the most influential and prevalent SEO tools in the market. Unlike other companies, SEMrush doesn't just track keywords and rank; it tracks every action that a person takes on the site, including clicks, visits, form submissions, video plays, etc. It can help you see what people are interested in from a marketing perspective. But do you really need it?

This post contains practical solutions and industry expert recommendations to help you make an informed investment solution and reap more from this tool. This guide contains useful, verified, and actionable information gathered from credible sources, including the manufacturer's site. Are you ready to learn more about this great SEO tool and what it offers to your business? Let's go into our detailed review of SEMrush.

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Table of contents

What Is SEMrush?

If you are on the lookout for a cost-effective way to make your website search engine friendly, there is no better option than SEMrush. The service gives you access to a host of features, including keyword research, traffic estimator, and competitor analysis.

This is the best tool for tracking your progress and comparing it to that of your competitors. You get to know what keywords are being used by your competitors and who is using them better than you. But what is SEMrush?

SEMrush is a powerful and flexible suite of marketing tools that enables you to manage all aspects of your advertising campaigns. Key features include Competitive intelligence, keyword research, organic and paid search research, keyword rank tracking, site audits, and much more.

Similar Products: SpyFu, Moz Pro, KWFinder.com, AWR Cloud, DeepCrawl, and Ahrefs, among others.

SEMrush Specs And Features

SEMrush is a full-featured SEO/digital marketing research tool that provides helpful reports, including keyword trends, competitive analysis, competitor reports, conversion rate optimization, and more.

SEMrush represents an all-inclusive keyword and SEO analysis suite. This ideally means that the list of features on this platform is quite extensive. Yet, here are the most remarkable features:

SEMrush Specs

  • Domain Authority: Yes
  • Page Authority: Yes
  • Difficulty Scoring: Yes

SEMrush Features

SEMrush Features are crucial for any Search Engine Optimization tools. SEMrush is a full-featured search engine marketing tool that allows companies and businesses to maximize their potential by utilizing the power of Search Engine Optimization. SEMrush Features make it easy for businesses to market their products or services to their targeted customers.

SEMrush is one of the most effective ways to get top rankings for your business pages. By maximizing the full power of SEMrush Features, you can achieve top ratings in search engines and get the visibility you deserve.

Backlink And Keyword Tracking

One of the most powerful features of SEMrush is its powerful keyword and backlink tracking. Backlinks and keyword research tools within SEMrush allow you to find out what your competitors are doing to promote themselves. This helpful tool will help you decipher what you can do to improve your search rankings.

Site Explorer

With over 70 million searches conducted every month, it's important to rank well. SEMrush offers an excellent tracking system that will help you improve your search rankings. Its Site Explorer feature allows you to see how your competition is doing.

You can identify key phrases and ideas that will complement your product or service. Also, you can learn which keywords are helping you build your lists and which keywords are costing you money.

Site Monitor

One of the best features of SEMrush that lets you customize your campaigns is Site Monitor. Site Monitor displays all activity on your site, including total impressions, number of pages, most popular tags, highest ranking keywords, and links.

By closely monitoring your site's performance, you can quickly discover why it's not getting the traffic and visitors you desire. By comparing your site against the statistics displayed in Site Monitor, you can pinpoint problem areas so you can begin to address them. It's an invaluable tool for optimizing your content marketing.

Keyword Research Tool

Another powerful feature of SEMrush is its keyword research tools. Keyword research is one of the most important aspects of SEO (Search Engine Optimization). SEMrush allows you to choose keywords that best describe your products or services so that you can build pages around those keywords.

You can also choose to include keywords from your competitor's campaigns in your own. These keywords will not only increase your page rank but will also help your site climb higher in the search engine rankings. The best part is, this feature is free!

Integrated Social Media Checklist

The integrated Social Media Checklist feature provides vital information about our competitors and other sites we may be interested in. It allows us to compare keywords, competitive analysis data, organic search data, and more. Best of all, it's completely free.

This powerful feature is another reason why SEMrush is our top choice for optimizing websites. It helps us find key phrases and link our pages to those that are highly relevant.

Keyword Gap Detection

A final powerful feature of SEMrush is its keyword gap detection tool. This tool allows us to see how many times the particular keyword showed up on individual pages, and it gives us an idea of its competition.

It also allows us to compare our page and how it ranks with other pages that contain the keyword. We can see how we are performing and where we need to improve. Like the other features of SEMrush, keyword gap detection is free.

SEMrush also offers two other highly effective features that help maximize the power of SEMrush and give us more bang for our buck.

The site audit tool offers a step-by-step breakdown of your current SEO efforts and recommends changes that can increase your page rank and organic traffic. The site dashboard allows us to monitor our efforts and search rankings in real-time.

Keyword Research Analytics Tool

Typically, the unique search bar above this tool's interface can be set for virtually any metric, and to search keywords, you choose the Keyword Overview. It allows you to run queries on all your keywords, and you will discover that it is packed with multiple charts, interactive data visualizations, and charts.

With this tool, you can, for instance, enjoy a wonderful breakdown of paid vs. organic searches or even cost per click breakdowns revealing how much paid results would usually cost in different nations. Even so, SEMrush doesn't allow you to filter search results by virtual or specific cities, although it does come with the remarkable option of filtering by nation.

Also, SEMrush offers a remarkable filter option for toggling between mobile and desktop search traffic. While mobile is taking a major share of fast-growing search traffic, this is the only tool that breaks traffic in this manner.

In recent times though, the manufacturer has diversified its mobile-specific database spanning from the USA to 16 new (international) databases, majorly for firms in Europe.

Enhanced SERP And Traffic Breakdowns

SEMrush now offers improved SERP and traffic breakdowns. As you will discover, its Positions Report, in particular, populates the specific keywords that your competition lost. This helps you to discover opportunities to boost your domain and the keywords that are new for the competitors. Also, you can track changes using the Positions Changes Report.

If you want to perform better comparisons, the SEMrush Company established a Domain vs. Domain Tool that enables you to view all keywords your completion is ranking for, which you aren't ranking yet.

Position Tracking Tool

SEMrush's enhanced Position Tracking feature comprises smart filters that enable you to identify those target keywords that trigger varying SERP features. Also, you can learn which of these SERP features you have already earned and those occupied by your competitors.

Ideally, this tool recognizes the pages that boast the highest possibility of SERP results ranking, not to mention a bonus for unique hyper local SEO targeting.

Essentially, you can have multi targeting campaigns which track various devices or locations simultaneously, outlined by city, at a given project. Moreover, SEMrush's Trello interrogation facilitates you to create a Trello task and dispense work to team members.

Ad-Hoc Keyword Search Feature

SEMrush facilitates a good option underneath the traffic breakdown called the Ad Hoc Keyword Search option. This tool provides both related phrase-match keywords and the keywords, ideally a Google AdWords factor for related keyword disparities. Each of these breakdowns is accessible from the left hand navigation.

Down the traffic breakdown is SEMrush's ad hoc keyword search. SEMrush records both the keywords that are related and the phrase match keywords, which is a Google AdWords parameter for the close variations on a keyword. All of these breakdowns are also present from the left hand nav.

These boxes only comprise of CPU and search volume, so it was not until I clicked "view the full report" that I established the difficulty scores I was searching for to identify the related keywords that are most worth targeting for the optimization.

However, one shortcoming associated with the tool's Ad-hoc keyword research feature is that it lacks list management and keyword organization. Also, you cannot save your keyword searches

to use later.

Export Manager Feature

SEMrush also comes with a remarkable Export Manager option, found above any table in the tool's analytics reports. This option allows you to export keywords (word by word) as opposed to using Excel or CSV.

While this is a great enhancement, it still mandates that you perform keyword management in an independent application instead of in-built functionality within the SEMrush tool.

Projects Feature

Even so, this SEMrush tool offers you comprehensive organization functionality and in-built reporting, especially so through the fantastic Projects Option. When you click on the distinctive Projects feature tab (situated on the left side of the tool), you will see a detailed dashboard integrating all domain info on a site inclusive of your current 'health score.'

This data is based on the position tracking data, used to rank various keywords, crawling info, and perhaps the most essential option in the SEMrush tool called SEO Ideas.

For an SEO tool, its capacity to offer users proactive optimization suggestions and suggestions is quite essential. With the SEO Ideas feature, you can enter all the keywords you want to test and integrate them with particular landing pages on the website you want to improve in these given search results.

On performing a breakdown which will take to one or two minutes, this new SEMrush tool will present you multiple ideas classified in multiple categories mainly:

  • Content and Semantic Ideas (keyword suggestions and on-page content)
  • Technical SEO Ideas
  • Strategy Ideas (recommended highly ranked web pages with room to develop)
  • Backlink Ideas

Also, SEMrush interacts well with Google Search Console and Google Analytics and helps you pull particular landing pages from each of these sources.

Keyword Magic

This tool also comes with a new and enhanced tool known as Keyword Magic. This tool produces about 3 million ideas for all keywords found on the seed keyword you are specifically targeting. Your keywords are spontaneously classified into subgroups and groups (centered on the presence of other words inside the keywords).

You can send these keywords into the Keyword Analyzer, although not classified into campaigns and custom lists. This tool also helps you target Google Featured Snippets for particular keywords.

On-Page Optimization

With SEMrush, you will also discover superior SEO Ideas featuring much more on-page optimization recommendations. SEMrush has already incorporated Google Search Console, although now with SEO Ideas, you can enjoy its filters to determine the highest value web pages for optimization founded on impressions, CTR (click-through rates), and several other metrics.

On choosing the pages you're looking to work on, this tool will list these pages based on the ease of implementing all the vital alterations and the subsequent traffic you ultimately stand to gain.

Unlike the traditional SEMrush operations where the tool offered ideas without perspective, this improved tool enacts these recommendations to your web pages and matches them to your competitions' pages.

When you use a typical user with no prior SEO experience, such a tool is immensely useful. SEMrush's SEO Ideas is undeniably the most resourceful recommendation feature.

Custom PDF Report Builder

Lastly, SEMrush also comes with a remarkable drag and drop (custom) PDF report builder. As you use it to create your new report, you will discover that this tool allows you to design and formatting templates to add headings, page breaks, and columns and then produce keyword and domain analytics results or metrics into the layout.

Reports Feature

Reports are ideally among the most advanced areas of the SEMrush tool. The manufacturer has added several additional capabilities and new reports. For instance, the Pages Report pinpoints the top-performing pages of your competitors and performs a complete subdomain keyword evaluation with rankings for unique URL by URL reports and keywords.

The Traffic Analytics reports identify the channels (direct traffic, social traffic, search traffic, and referral tracking) your competition is spending on and generate traffic from, established on third-party provider info and clickstream.

Simple, Easy To Use Dashboard (Better User Experience)

Unsurprisingly, the SEMrush dashboard is quite straightforward. At first glance, you will see a Domains Analytics snapshot displaying a brief breakdown of all current keywords and traffic originating from paid and organic sources. Just underneath, you will find widgets for every facet highlighting your most current SEO project.

Ideally, when you first interact with SEMrush, you will have access to multiple setup tools such as backlink auditing, position tracking, brand monitoring, and periodic suite audit.

Although similar tools such as Ahrefs and Moz also usually integrate with various social media sources in addition to conducting mention tracking and brand monitoring, SEMrush represents a unique tool that can double as a distinctive social listening platform.

Reasons Why You Should Use SEMRUSH

So, do you really need to use SEMrush? Of course, you do! Among the major benefits of having this type of software is that there are close to no chances that you will run out of features to boost your venture. During the first month, you could be analyzing your competition, and the next, you might check out something different. Here are other reasons why it's the best so far;

It Evaluates Your Webpage

Before beginning on competitive analysis, it is vital to explore how your website is performing in different fields. The three crucial things you need to know about your webpage are;

  • Best organic keywords
  • A complete figure of backlinks
  • Organic search points

SEMrush is handy in gathering all the essential details, and it will achieve this within minutes. Their Domain comprehensive report offers you an overview of how your site and competitions` sites are operating.

Simply key in your domain name in the search panel and click on "Domain overview," and hit the search key. The detailed report will provide you with a general analysis of how your webpage is performing in areas like traffic from paid and organic search, paid keywords, organic keywords, backlinks, and so much more!

Next, go to the sidebar menu on "Organic research" to access information on your webpage`s organic keywords, organic point changes, and total traffic.

To access your backlinks information, go to "Backlinks." On this panel, you will view the website`s backlink profile, kinds of backlinks, the total number of referring domains, and a fragmented percentage of no-follow and follow links.

For all this, you can export the reports into a CSV or Excel file for later reference. If you`re a beginner using SEMrush, it would be best if you started with this step before using more advanced features like point tracking and site audit.

Distinguish Your Organic Competitors

Distinguishing your organic contenders is among the critical elements of leading search results. The main objective here is to understand what the competition is doing and do it better than them.

To distinguish these competitors, key in your domain name in the SEMrush search panel, and choose "Organic research" from the menu and click the search button. To get more information about your competitors, visit the "competitors" tab from the Organic search results.

The first thing you will see is the Competitive Locating Map, which is a visual depiction of your page`s ranking within the industry. Besides, you will see some bubbles in various locations based on organic traffic and organic keywords on the map.

If your website has multiple keywords, it is positioned more to the right side of the map. Likewise, web pages that receive increased organic traffic will be positioned higher on the map. When you click on any bubble, you can view their organic traffic and keywords.

Once you scroll down, you will see the organic competitors list. The number of competitors is relatively intimidating. However, these are metric you need to pay close attention to;

  • SEO Keywords
  • Common keywords
  • Competition level

These metrics will disclose your closest contenders, and these are the pages you need to outdo in search engines

Keyword Research

Regardless of having a wide array of features, and more than 40 tools to boost digital marketing for you, SEMrush is mostly known for its keyword research competency. There are three major keyword search features in its toolkit, and every tool has a different purpose;

  • Topic research feature – This is utilized to create a detailed list of new topics for your next publication.
  • Keyword overview – Utilized to produce a brief summary of your organic keywords` periodic search volume, keyword complexity, and vital keyword metrics.
  • Keyword magic feature – This last tool is handy in creating multiple unique keyword ideas for your target keywords

To begin the Keyword research procedure, key in the seed keywords in the search panel. SEMrush will automatically generate a general report for these keywords, with all the essential keyword metrics and several keyword alternatives based on the seed keywords.

Keep an eye on search volume, trend graph, and keyword difficulty. To see more keyword alternatives for your target keywords, go to the "View all" bar. This will give you access to the Keyword Magic feature, which allows you to utilize advanced sorting options to limit the number of keywords for your next post.

Fix Errors And Perform A Website Audit

The tool helps you perform an indicative check of your page to pinpoint and fix the most disturbing SEO and technical problems on your page. To perform a site audit, go to "Add new Project," type the details, and choose "Setup Site Audit." Choose your preferred number of pages, skip the other steps and select "Start Site Audit."

This might take several minutes based on the selected number of pages. When the audit is done, SEMrush will project a report that will display the inclusive SEO health of your website in percentage and show any issues and warnings that may be harming your SEO.

The issues highlighted in red are the most problematic for your website, and they need to begin being fixed immediately.

On-Page SEO Manager

This tool is usually underrated; its major role is to show the specific weakness of your page and

offer you actionable recommendations.

With this tool, you can swiftly check and see if your content abides by all the off-page and on-page SEO requirements such as the quality and relevance of your content, credibility of the backlinks, Meta description, and H1 and H2 tags.

SEMrush Pricing And Plans

In your decision on whether or not you should invest in SEMrush, it is easy to initially shrug off paying a minimum monthly fee of $100 per month. Nonetheless, SEMrush comes with fantastic features that you simply cannot get from any other tool. What's more, all these features are built to improve your returns.

SEMrush Pricing and Plans are what separate it from the other SEO companies offering their free trial services. The free trial service is provided only for a limited period, and after that, you have to pay for their services whether you like it or not. On the other hand, SEMrush offers its first-time customers a full money-back guarantee.

If you find out that you don't like their services, you can request your money back within 60 days of purchase. You will then have an opportunity to try another SEO Company's service without worrying about incurring additional costs.

SEMrush has been in the SEO industry for quite some time already, and they know their competition very well. That is why they offer a free trial service for their first customers. There is no need to worry about being taken advantage of by competitors since all their plans are free.

There is even a free video course that teaches you everything that you need to know about keyword analysis, website optimization, and so much more.

If you go with SEMrush, you won't have to worry about wondering whether or not you have chosen the right plan because all of the plans are the same. What you can do now is test all three of their plans out one by one and see which one brings you the most traffic and the most profit.

Once you have found out which plan brings in the most profit, it is up to you to use the three best plans you want to use to promote your website.

That way, you won't be stuck with just one or two services, and you will have a wider choice of which company to work with when working with other companies. Once you have fully paid for your SEMrush Pro Account, you can use it again for a lifetime and have unlimited access to all of SEMrush's services.

Here's what to expect from the pricing plans:

  • Pro Plan ($99.95/month): suited for startups and smaller companies.
  • Guru Plan: ($199/month): suited for medium-sized businesses and agencies
  • Business Plan: ($399.95/month): designed for large businesses, agencies, as well as e-commerce tasks.
  • Enterprise – Custom pricing that's set when you configure your custom interface.

Note: the above represents the average monthly fees. However, you can enjoy a 16 % discount for your annual payment option. Moreover, SEMrush also offers a free trial to give you a glimpse of what to expect.

How Does SEMrush Compare With Other SEO Tools?

Google's website ranking system, Google PageRank, is the tool that powers SEMrush. Page Rank has several advantages over other free tools available for search engine optimization, and the advantages clearly outweigh the disadvantages.

The main advantages of PageRank are that it allows you to focus on core optimization functions rather than expanding your range of available tools or features.

It also allows you to concentrate on creating quality links instead of wasting time creating disjointed, illogical backlinks. And, at the same time, PageRank helps you become aware of the major trends in internet marketing, helping you understand the direction in which the market is moving.

But there are disadvantages too. PageRank is a freely available keyword research tool so that anyone can create their PageRank profile. This makes it easy for marketers to artificially boost their rankings, resulting in their sites appearing in search results for unqualified keywords.

Also, because this is a free tool, Google can display Page Rank inaccuracies, such as incorrect ‘latinization’ of names and numbers and incomplete addresses. Because of these disadvantages, many marketers have turned to alternatives that offer more SEO value.

Google's free keyword tool, Backlink Analyzer, offers marketers similar advantages as SEMrush. Backlink Analyzer provides an extensive listing of the most popular websites on the internet, including information about their backlinks.

The site can also show the strength of each website's links, allowing you to determine how well-targeted your efforts are. Backlink Analyzer is considerably less comprehensive than SEMrush, and its lack of features means that it is not always as effective.

Search Engine Optimizer (SEO) is arguably the most widely used backlink tool, and it is the most comprehensive and widely used overall. Unlike the other tools mentioned above, SEO is offered in both a free version and a paid version. For the free version, marketers can utilize metatags and keyword density analysis for researching which keywords are the most profitable.

Free versions also do not offer any advanced features. In contrast, paid versions include a range of features, such as advanced keyword research, built-in site monitoring, and the ability to track backlinks across the entire web.

Another tool that some marketers prefer to use for exploring search engine rankings is Site Explorer. Site Explorer allows you to drill down through each web page of a site and view all of the associated pages' HTML code.

You can also view the source code of each page, which allows you to see exactly what the code is doing. While Site Explorer does offer more features than many other SEO tools, it lacks the variety of tools found in the other tools.

Some marketers might also want to use a keyword research tool that allows them to find competitive keywords. The Overture keyword analyzer is one of these tools. It allows you to find out the competition for a given keyword and how many searches are being done for that particular keyword.

This feature is especially helpful for PPC campaigns, which primarily search engine rankings rather than content. Knowing the competition for a given keyword allows you to determine whether or not your keyword is really a strong contender for that particular spot on the search engine rankings.

Finally, some marketers might also want to check into the SEMrush social media marketing tools. These tools allow you to research how much traffic you are receiving for specific keywords and then monitor the comments by other users about those keywords.

In essence, it gives you a look into how successful your website is becoming, based on information gained from your social media profiles. By monitoring the posts by other people, you can see what is working for your site, what is not and make adjustments on your website to improve your rankings in search engines.

In conclusion, these three main features of this product rank tracking, keyword research, and link building are really great tools for any internet marketing campaign. If you are interested in getting in on the web's top spot for search engine ranking, you need to be taking advantage of all the tracking and link-building options offered by SEMrush.

If you need more information about their services, their rankings, and their products, in particular, visit the company's website to see everything in action.

Pros

  • Great Backlink tracking.
  • All-inclusive domain analytics and keyword research tool.
  • Mobile/Desktop search breakdowns.
  • Useful Project-based SEO campaign structure
  • Proactive SEO and Keyword suggestions and recommendations.

Cons

  • Does not feature a keyword list management option

If you are on the lookout for a cost-effective way to make your website search engine friendly, there is no better option than SEMrush. After you begin to use SEMrush, you will easily identify why this SEO tool is a favorite option for many influencers and industry experts.

The service gives you access to a host of features, including keyword research, traffic estimator, and competitor analysis.

This is the best tool for tracking your progress and comparing it to that of your competitors. You get to know what keywords are being used by your competitors and who is using them better than you. Here's to hoping you get the most out of SEMrush and optimize your website!

About THE AUTHOR

Daniel Wade

Daniel Wade

After working for multiple digital advertising agencies and managing hundreds of client accounts, spending millions of dollars via Google Ads, Facebook Ads, Native Ads and Direct Media Buying, I took things out on my own and started SparrowBoost. Now, my tight-knit team and I continue to get smarter and more efficient for our strong client base.

Learn more about SparrowBoost