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Ranking the Best Paid Keyword Research Tools

If you want to succeed in SEO in 2017, having good keyword research tools is essential.

Over the last few years, there’s been a profusion of new keyword research tools as development in this area has picked up. Many enterprises use several tools, with features of one complementing the gaps in the other.

While this strategy works, there’s a problem – it can really complicate your technology stack.

How can you simplify and still get the best results? Check our list of the top seven tools around.

Keyword Research Tools: The 7 Best in 2017

7. Market Samurai

Market Samurai is the keyword analysis tool from Noble Samurai, which also offers software for video development called Content Samurai. Although it isn’t a big name out on the Web, it has a dedicated following thanks to its low price and good core features.

Market Samurai centralizes all the major keyword research tasks, including keyword suggestions from a seed, analyzing SEO competition, and finding relevant, aged domains. Its built-in filters allow you to home in the easiest and most profitable opportunities.

Unlike many of other options, however, Market Samurai draws a lot of its data directly from Google. That can lead to inconsistent performance and suggestions that aren’t leaps and bounds better than the free Google Keyword Planner.

Thus, despite its ease of use and strong fundamentals, it ranks at the bottom of our list.

Price: $149

6. Long Tail Pro

Long Tail Pro is specifically designed to help you find “long tail keywords” – keywords that represent plenty of interest and low competition. For bloggers and small enterprises wanting to focus on less-saturated keywords, this is a sound approach.

Long Tail Pro has its own approach to keyword scoring and metrics built on Majestic. It offers versatile insights into keyword profitability based on whether you’re working on an Adsense site, an Amazon affiliate site, or a site for your own product.

It is fully compatible with Google Ads – probably the most popular digital advertising platform – and allows you to sort, export, and save ideas for later. Since it goes a step further in helping you find the right foundation for your SEO and inbound marketing, it edges out the rest with a respectable #6 showing.

Price: Starting at $25/mo

5. Wordtracker

As we move toward the middle of the list, we hit Wordtracker – an entry most SEO experts have heard about at one time or another. Thousands of people around the world are truly “ride or die” for this tool, since it prides itself on keyword suggestions Keyword Planner misses.

Wordtracker is a powerful package that not only works well, but can also save you money on your SEO toolkit. This is because it offers customized keyword results for Google, YouTube, and Amazon from a single dashboard. It also provides full visibility into SEO competition.

Users love how Wordtracker blows the lid off Keyword Planner results by offering actual (not grouped) keywords and actual (not banded) results. Because it grants easy insights into your related and lateral keywords, it can serve well as an “all-in-one” research solution.

Price: Starting at $27/mo

4. SpyFu

When it comes to competitive research, SpyFu is one of the originals. It focuses on giving you a complete picture of what your competitors are doing – and even helps you identify those rivals by scouring the SEO and paid traffic activity on dozens of adjacent websites.

Even trying out its free online analysis goes a long way toward showing you what it can do. SpyFu lets you see the competitive landscape from every angle, building your content and linkbuilding strategy on the weak points in others’ armor. This accelerates the whole process.

Not a bad choice – a classic, even – but perhaps no longer the best in keyword research tools.

Price: Starting at $33/mo

3. Ahrefs

Ahrefs Keywords Explorer is what fans of the big data choose. Its keyword database is the biggest on the market - 5.1 billion for 200+ countries (2 billion for the US alone). That’s how you can discover all the sweet spots in your niche. And clickstream data processing will keep them accurate in terms of Search Volume, Clicks, and other metrics.

No more guesswork on how many visitors each keyword can bring. Check out the estimates of Clicks and Clicks Per Search in the Ahrefs dashboard. These are Ahrefs’ exclusive metrics and are essential for picking keywords with a high traffic potential.

Site Explorer is a go-to tool when you want to sneak a peek at your competitors’ sensitive data. It reveals anything from what keywords work for them to how much they pay for PPC campaigns. Compare their keyword data with yours in Content Gap to see what you’re missing out on. And don’t forget to set email alerts to track keywords competitors rank for on desktop and mobile devices.

Ahrefs goes beyond when it comes to backlinking. The health of your link portfolio will be clearer than ever, as you can see how many pages, IPs, and subnets refer to a page and what the TLD breakdown is. Crawling 6 billion Web pages a day, Ahrefs simply has more data.

Price: Starting at $99/mo

2. SEMrush

SEMrush has grown into a leading name in keyword research tools in a relatively short time thanks to widespread adoption by bloggers and entrepreneurs. That doesn’t mean that larger enterprises can’t benefit, however – far from it.

SEMrush offers a collection of features for organic SEO, paid search, social media, and Web content that hang well together. One might even say it straddles the line between pure keyword research tools and a full-scale marketing strategy platform.

With its ability to perform a complete technical SEO audit on your site with a click of a button, it will really get you off to the right start quickly. You can derive hundreds of valuable semantic keywords at the start of your project while tracking your results and competitors throughout.

Its ability to get you up and running fast, combined with insight into the total inbound marketing ecosystem, sets SEMrush apart. While it doesn’t have the sheer depth of data offered by Ahrefs, it will give you greater agility and versatility so you can do more with your SEO campaigns.

Price: Starting at $99.95/mo

1. MozPro

MozPro stands out from the pack because its award-winning team developed many of the SEO metrics that other brands can only simulate. It gives you the deepest and most accurate insights available on your keywords and organic SEO because it was forged by world-class experts.

What MozPro sacrifices in terms of a fleshed-out feature ecosystem with social media, content, and the kitchen sink, it makes up for with uncanny accuracy on core SEO issues, including keyword research. Its approach to SEO analysis means less "reporting,” more actionable insights.

MozPro outpaces the others in two important areas: Local keyword rankings and mobile search. These are both growing into indispensable parts of keyword research and SEO strategy, and the MozPro suite comes with features to help you make your SERPs position even more secure.

The great community around MozPro is one of its top selling points. The product is constantly evolving to take advantage of the latest industry information and user insights. You can learn a lot from Moz, and working with MozPro will keep you in the loop.

Price: Starting at $99/mo or $79/mo if you choose to pay annually.

That’s the BluLeadz take for now – who knows how things will look in 2018?

Did your favorite tool make the list? Want to add something? Sound off below.

Keyword Research Tip Sheet

Rob Steffens

Rob Steffens

I am the Director of Sales & Marketing here at Bluleadz. I'm a recent newlywed who enjoys spending time with my wife vegging out and binging our favorite shows or getting some exercise on the Racquetball court.