SEMrush is one of the best SEO tools on the market. But is it worth the money? Let’s take a look at some SEMrush reviews to find out…
|90%||PC – "SEMrush is a well-balanced SEO optimization platform with strong tooling across domain monitoring, keyword research, and crawling. It's not a perfect tool, but genuinely innovative features like SEO Ideas can give your business a serious edge."||[maxbutton id="17"]|
|100%||ShoutMeLoud – "I tried using many tools in the process (including Mangools, Ahrefs, SEMrush, and a few more). While all of them worked well, I liked SEMrush the best because of its great features and how it allowed me to get all of my SEO work done in one place."|| |
|96%||99Signals – "Once you start using SEMrush, it’s easy to see why it’s trusted by so many industry experts and influencers. The team behind SEMrush constantly introduces new and exciting ways to do keyword research and competition analysis, making it one of the most premium tools in the SEO software industry."|| |
SEMrush Review – Features Overview
SEMrush is an all-in-one solution for your entire SEO workflow. From backlinks to content analysis, SEMrush does it all. This is why it is one of the most widely used search engine optimization tools on the planet right now, next to Ahrefs and Majestic.
SEMrush has a few unique attributes, however, that set it apart from the crowd. The most notable of which are its keyword generating tools and its SEO Template feature, which gives you exact quotas for keyword density and backlinks, as well as LSIs, for any new post you’re planning.
Like any good software, SEMrush is in a constant state of evolution with new features and abilities appearing on an almost weekly basis. There are three packages available with SEMrush: 1) Pro Plan ($99.95 per month), 2) Guru Plan ($199.95 per month), and 3) Business Plan ($399.95 per month).
The difference between the plans, as you can see below, is to do with the sizes of projects each tier handles. The Pro Plan gets you up to five projects and tracks 1000 keywords, making it an ideal choice for anyone that has a couple of sites.
If you’re running SEO for multiple sites, however, and need to track more keywords, the Guru and Business Plan are better bets, as they have larger coverage for keywords and the number of projects they can track. If you’re monitoring multiple sites or you’re an SEO inside a publishing house, Business or Guru will likely be your best options, as you will be able to monitor all of your brands in one place.
SEMRush Pricing Tier Break-Down
- SEMrush Pro Plan – Best For Freelancers & Start-Ups. Includes 28 advanced tools; Up To 5 Projects; Track 500 Keywords; 100,000 Pages Crawled Per Month
- SEMrush Guru Plan – Perfect For SMBs, Includes: Branded Reports, Historical Data, Extended Limits; Up To 50 Projects; 1500 Keywords Tracked; 300,000 Pages Crawled Per Month
- SEMrush Business Plan – Ideal For Big Business, Includes: White Label Reports, API Access, Extended Limits, Google Data Studio Integration; Up To 200 Projects; 5000 Keywords Tracked; 1000000 Pages Crawled Per Month
SEMRush Features Overview
Regardless of what package you sign up for, SEMRush gives you access to all the following features. Let’s take a more detailed look at each core feature, so you can get a better idea about what SEMrush can do for you.
SEO Audits are crucial, as they help find any issues with your site. And these issues can range from 404 errors to broken-links and zombie content (out-dated posts that don’t serve any purpose). Ideally, you should be doing SEO audits of your site every six months; doing this will ensure your site’s hygiene is always top-notch.
You can perform SEO audits manually, of course, but with SEMrush, you can get them down automatically with the click of a button. Once SEMrush has crawled your site, it will highlight any issues or problems that are affecting your site and need fixing.
Once you’ve done this, your site’s health will improve and you could see some gains in rankings too. Why? Because things like 404s and too much zombie content can (and do) hamper your rankings in SERP. Therefore, regular SEO audits are crucial. And with SEMrush, the entire process can be completely automated.
On-Page SEO Checker
On-page SEO is key if you want to rank your content. Doing solid on-page SEO is a bit of an art form that can take years of practice. But with SEMrush’s On-Page SEO Checker, again, the software does all the heavy lifting for you.
Once your account is set up, simply navigate to the On-Page SEO Checker menu. Next, run a campaign. SEMRush will then take a look at your site’s pages and pull ideas about how to improve the on-page SEO of your posts. SEMrush breaks suggestions down into the following categories: Strategy Ideas, Backlink Ideas, Technical SEO Ideas, User Experience Ideas, SERP Features, Semantic Ideas, and Content Ideas.
For instance, say one of your posts is stuck on page two of Google. You’ve tried multiple things, but it won’t budge. With On-Page SEO Checker, you will likely see exactly what’s wrong with the page and why it won’t progress onto page one of Google. Follow the suggestions to the letter, then re-fetch the article in Google Search Console and watch for movement in SERP.
I use this tool ALL THE TIME when updating older posts; it shows me exactly what I need to do to make them more competitive and get them ranking higher in Google. Best of all, it saves all your suggestions, so if you have a content team, simply send them the report and get them to update all the posts accordingly. You’d be very surprised at just how much traffic updated, older posts can bring in once they’re re-optimized with better on-page SEO.
Position Tracking, as the name suggests, lets you quickly view all of your keywords’ positions in Google in one place. Once you’ve added your trackable keywords – either by CSV or directly plugging Google Analytics into SEMrush – you will then be able to see how they’re performing on a daily basis.
SEMrush shows you improvements and declines, which are done using red down arrows and green up arrows. With this feature you can quickly see which keywords are performing and which aren’t; once you have this data, you can then quickly make decisions about what to do next.
For even quicker stats, you can add Position Tracking to your SEMrush Dashboard and it will show you exactly what’s happened during the last 24 hours as soon as you open the tool. It’s A LOT quicker than checking Google Search Console and it is visually easier to understand than a Google Analytics report.
Social Media Tracker
SEMrush’s Social Media Tracker keeps track of all your social media accounts, showing growth and dips in followers, as well as likes and shares, for all major social media platforms, including Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.
If you’re active on social media, this feature is a great tool for keeping abreast of all the ups and downs happening on your accounts. It’s easy to view and you can download reports that can be quickly shared with your team.
Social Media Poster
Another aspect of SEMrush’s social media suite is the ability to post updates to your social channels from inside SEMrush. You can also use SEMrush’s scheduler to plot social posts, based on your most popular times for engagement, weeks and months into the future.
For anyone that takes social media seriously, this tool is invaluable. You can schedule and plan social posts and updates months in advance. This saves you a ton of time and effectively automates all of your social media communications. For instance, you can spend a few hours doing this and not have to think about social media for the rest of the month.
Backlinks are the holy grail of SEO. The more backlinks you have from quality sources, the higher your site’s authority is in Google’s eyes. And high authority sites consistently rank better than sites with low authority, which is why SEOs are so obsessed with quality backlinks.
Inside SEMrush, you have one of the best backlink audit tools on the planet. Once you’ve hooked up SEMrush to Google Search Console, you can run full audits on every single backlink pointing to your site. This gives a complete overview of your entire backlink profile.
Why do backlink audits? Simple: because you can – and probably do – have some spammy, nasty links that you don’t want pointing at your site. Google says spammy links don’t hurt your SEO, but it is definitely worth keeping an eye on them because a lot of what Google says has to be taken with a grain of salt.
Once you have performed your backlink audit and SEMrush has isolated any toxic backlinks, you can then go through them and manually remove and/or disavow them. You can do all of this inside SEMrush; all you have to do is click a few buttons and the toxic links will be disavowed.
Post Tracking is a feature you’ll find inside Content Analyzer and how it works is really simple. For instance, say you’ve commissioned a bunch of new content from a new content producer and you want to track how they’re doing over a period of a few weeks.
With Post Tracking, you can do this simply by adding the URLs of the posts into Post Tracking. Go into Content Audit and select the option to create a New Group. Next, add the URLs you want to track to the group and SEMrush will begin monitoring and tracking them.
You can review the posts on a daily basis. SEMrush will generate daily reports for the group you created, so you can keep track of movements and any issues. This tool is great for monitoring your site’s most important pages, as you can quickly see how they’re doing and whether or not any changes need to be made.
You can create as many Groups as you like too. So you could have one for money pages, one for new content, and one for all of your latest reviews. Whatever you decide to monitor, the process of setting up groups inside Post Tracking is a cinch. It’s also one of the most useful tools on offer inside SEMrush.
Having the ability to perform bulk audits of your site’s content is a huge deal that can really help in your SEO efforts. The Content Audit tool inside SEMrush is great for doing all kinds of audits on your site. You can specify what types of content you want to audit simply by choosing different sub-folders from your site’s sitemap.
This specificity means you can, for example, audit your older posts to find out whether or not you should update or delete them. It takes the guesswork out of doing content audits by providing you with all the data you need to make a call on whether or not you should 410 it or update it.
Another example: Say you have a site with thousands of old news posts on it. These types of posts are normally time-sensitive, so, a few years after they’ve been published, they’re no longer relevant. With the Content Audit tool, you can analyze these old posts, find the ones that are valuable, i.e. they have backlinks, and make a call on what to do with them.
To get specific about what content you want to be analysed, you simply set up metrics like Publication Date Older Than Six Months or Three Years, for instance, and SEMRush will pull in everything that is older than this for you to analyze. You can also use it to find thin content – posts with less than 200 words – and avoid getting yourself slapped with a Google Panda penalty.
Organic Traffic Insights
Back in the day, you could see exactly what keywords and phrases were driving traffic to your site. However, for the past few years, Google has been blocking this – and that makes life for SEOs hard. With SEMrush’s Organic Traffic Insights, you can see exactly what keywords and search terms are driving traffic to your site.
Not only that, but you get a detailed overview of each keyword and the volume of traffic is pulls in. How does it work? Simple: it merges your Google Analytics and Search Console data, something you CANNOT do with Google products alone. This process gives you a vastly superior overview of what’s driving traffic to your site and means you no longer have to waste hours of your life consolidating keyword reports inside spreadsheets.
PPC Keyword Tool
If you do PPC advertising, SEMrush has a tool that lets you quickly see how much it will cost to run any ad for any keyword. Simply enter your keyword and let SEMrush do the rest.
Once it’s processed, SEMrush will tell you everything you need to know about how much it would cost to run a particular campaign, as well as the likely impact it would have with respect to overall traffic and clicks.
If you do a lot of PPC campaigns, this tool is invaluable. It’s easier to use than Google Adwords and it’s great for planning campaigns that you want to run, as it gives you a detailed breakdown of costs, volume, and impressions for any keyword you enter.
If you want to know exactly what your competitors are ranking for, and how they’re doing it, you need SEMrush’s Organic Research in your life. How it works is simple: you add a keyword, see who’s ranking for it, and then check to see how they’re doing it.
The Organic Research tool gives you a detailed overview of the exact keywords and phrases your competition is using. You can then benchmark your posts against your competitors to find holes in your on-page SEO.
Once SEMrush has pulled all the data, it will give you suggestions on how to better compete with your competition. These suggestions might be adding in more text, updating certain keywords, or securing backlinks from certain websites to boost the ranking of your content.
If you’re new to SEO, this tool is awesome. It details exactly why your content isn’t ranking, what to do about it, and how your competitors’ are building their posts for maximum rankings inside Google.
Keyword Research & Keyword Magic Tool
Finding keywords can be tricky. There are plenty of tools to do it available online, but none compare to SEMrush’s dedicated Keyword Tools suite which lets you not only find all the keywords your competition is using, but also how valuable those keywords are in terms of volume.
SEMrush also gives you a difficulty score, so you know which battles to pick. On top of this, you can simply enter a keyword into the tool, say, iPhone, for example, and it will list thousands of keyword options based on this term.
You can then filter results by volume, difficulty or even switch it over to questions mode, where SEMrush generates question keywords based on the keyword you entered – e.g. “what are the best iPhone colors”.
From here you can plan a huge amount of content based on the results pulled from SEMrush’s Keyword Magic Tool. And the best part? You can choose to ONLY go after keywords that you know you can rank for, saving you time and money in the process.
SEMrush’s keyword planning tool is one of the best in the business, covering off everything you need to build up huge lists of potential content ideas. You can then save these ideas, either as a CSV or Google Sheets document, and share them with your team.
If you’re managing a legacy site, or one that’s been around for a good few years, keeping an eye on your backlink profile is key. All sites need a constant flow of solid, high-authority backlinks pointing to them. This tells Google your content is fresh, useful, and liked by people – and that will help you rank better in search.
SEMrush’s backlink tool gives you access to your site’s complete backlink profile on one page. Inside, you can see all of your new backlinks, all the backlinks you lost and the sites that are actually linking to your site and how they’re doing it (image, exact match, nofollow).
Backlinks Analytics gives you a simple overview of your site’s backlink health, taking into account toxic backlinks from low-quality sources. You can also find gaps in your backlink profile by comparing your domain to a competitor’s (you can compare up to five domains at present).
From here, you can implement outreach and try and steal your competitor’s backlinks by asking sites that are linking to them to link to you instead. Just make sure your content is better, more detailed, and worthy of the link. You have to impress them enough to convince to switch the link to you, so make sure your content is 10X better than your competitor’s.
SEO Content Template
SEO Content Template is one of SEMrush’s best features. If you’re new to SEO or unsure about how to write a proper SEO-focussed post, SEO Content Template will quickly become your new best friend, as it will tell you EXACTLY what your post needs to rank.
All you have to do is enter the keyword your post is about – say, Best iPhone, for instance – and the SEO Content Template will pull in information from the current top 10 articles on Google, detailing the exact keywords and LSIs you need to use, as well as things like backlinks required to rank and the approximate length of the text.
SEO Content Template also gives you a readability score (out of 100). Once you have all this information, you just have to implement it inside your post, publish it, and watch what happens. If you do a good job and your site has good authority, you should land on page two or three of Google. From here, you can then start working on backlinks to boost its position to page one.
Google issues algorithm updates about once a month. Every now and then it drops a CORE update. Core updates like the recent MEDIC update usually send shock-waves through the SEO community, as they can tank a site overnight. For this reason, it is wise to always follow Google’s best practices when performing SEO.
If you’re doing anything dodgy – or Black Hat – Google will probably find out and your site will get punished the next time a big Google search update drops. The MEDIC update was enormous in scope and toppled many big sites. Google updates are like earth-quakes in SERP, shifting things and sometimes destroying entire sites.
Thankfully, SEMrush has a tool for monitoring Google algorithm updates. It’s called Sensor and it tracks volatility inside Google. When things are volatile, it usually means an update has happened. The SEMrush sensor runs from 0 to 10 – 10 being the most volatile. If you see a dramatic rise or fall in your traffic, SEMrush’s Sensor is the best and quickest way to see if it was down to a Google update.
80% of SEO is content. And finding new content ideas is how you grow your traffic and presence in Google. If you’re new, or your site is young, one of the easiest ways to quickly grow your traffic is by copying what your competitors are doing. And to do this you need Gap Analysis.
Within Gap Analysis, you can compare your site to up to five of your nearest competitors. Once you run the report, Gap Analysis will show you what keywords and phrases your competitors are ranking for that you currently are not. If you don’t have certain keywords that are driving a lot of traffic to a competitor site, it’s a good idea to add these keywords into your content strategy.
This tool is invaluable for finding holes in your content marketing strategy. It’s simple to run and it pulls out a ton of data that you can then use to plan your next big content cycle. Ideally, you want to find keywords that your competitor has but you don’t, and to do this simply add your site and competitor’s, then select the option to show ONLY keywords your competitor has that you don’t.
From here, you can then begin building a focussed content strategy that will yield massive results very quickly. It takes the guesswork out of building out new content, as you’re using keywords that are already generating significant amounts of traffic for your competition. All you have to do is make sure your content is superior and then, with a bit of time and some backlinks, you will be able to outrank them.
SEMrush Review Verdict – Is It Worth It?
I think SEMrush is perhaps the best SEO tool on the market right now. You get all of the above features, and a load more, on all plans and this makes SEMrush one of the best value (and most useful) SEO tools on the planet right now.
You have options for those on small budgets and companies with no budget restrictions. If you’re a blogger or own a single site, the basic SEMRush Pro package will be more than enough for your needs. If you’re a larger agency or a publishing house, you’ll want the Business Plan, as it gives you more of everything as well as things like API access and branded white papers.
The main takeaway here, however, is utility: SEMrush is a game-changer for SEO. It takes out all the legwork, points you in the exact right direction for all your SEO, and it also monitors every single metric about your site that matters – from backlinks to organic traffic. And best of all it does it all in one place, so you can do all your SEO work from a single window in your browser.
If you run a blog or site, SEMrush is a must-have tool. With it, you will not only be able to improve the performance of your site, but also spot holes in your strategies, issues with your site, and also spy on all of your competitors. The software is simple to use, even for those with no experience of things like this, and it will save you hours of work by highlighting exactly where you need to focus your attention for maximum gains in Google.
Bottom line? If you own or run a site, you cannot afford not to be using SEMrush.
Richard Goodwin has been working as a tech journalist for over 10 years. He is the editor and owner of KnowYourMobile.