SEMRush (formerly QuickSprout) (#19)

Everyone advertising online needs to learn about sites similar to their site. This is so you can figure out how to out-do your competition in search rankings (SEO) and keyword advertising (pay-per-click).

In a crowded marketplace, it’s often the case that short, 1-to-3 word keywords are already heavily associated with high ranking websites.

Three little keywords like “little black purse” that drive a ton of traffic to people selling purses. Very few except the ones who have been in the marketplace for a long time will be able to be at the top of Google.

But how do you understand where there are opportunities to be had in what people are searching for?

Enter QuickSprout, a tool to “let your competitors do the work for you.”

QuickSprout appears to have been purchased and rebranded as SEMRUSH. However, the original Quicksprout landing page greets you with this deceptive search box. (Warning: the search doesn’t actually work; you can type anything or nothing in this box and click ‘Start now’ and the website still takes you to the long-scroll landing page you see below.)

Then, before you are required to sign up for the free trial with a credit card, you are greeted with a good dose of marketing ideology and schmooze by being led through several pages of high-octane ad-buying theory. I’ll just leave it here for you to read for yourself.

Today we’ll research the keywords “pet supplies” to see what people are searching for related to their pets.

From here we can see people are searching for pet supplies plus, pet supplies, pet supplies near me, pet supplies plus coupon, pet supplies store, etc. (No surprises there.)

In the Keyword Manager, we can create a list. (Let’s call it “pet supplies”)

It is empty by default:

We then add keywords to this list to create a composite view.

Gap Analysis

Let’s take a quick look at the Keyword Gap Analysis tool. Here I want to look at the clothing brand Uniqlo versus four competitors: H&M,,, and Express.

The keyword analyizer shows is a visual Venn diagram of the overlap between these brands.

If my brand were lacking in significant keyword traffic as compared to the others, this tool would tell me what keyword gaps I have in my traffic (where I could be more competative).

SEO Writing Assistant

SEMRUSH also includes an SEO tool to analyze my text. When I give it the text of this article, it scores me with a 5.9 out of 10, giving me advice that the text is too short, it is missing a headline (it is not actually), and that I should add the keywords ‘digital marketing,’ ‘search results,’ and ‘search engines.’

There’s a ton of more features too: cost-per-click views, saved reports, site auditing, backlink auditing, and social media auditing.

Semrush is a powerful tool if used in the right way: it can let you slice and dice your SEO and ad spend to gain insight into where you can have a strategic edge.


BuzzSumo (#13)

Another trend analysis tool for today that is focused on comparative social media analysis.

Today’s tool is and it is a fantastic tool for analyzing keywords and searches. BuzzSumo is like a search engine. However, it shows you timely content (that is, published with a date) related to your keywords. It also shows you how many people on different platforms are sharing the content.

Social View

Take a look at the BuzzSumo results for “content marketing.”

The top result is “How to Create 64 Pieces of Content Per Day” by current marketing and TikTok sensation Gary Vaynerchuk.

For this link hit from in Nov 2019, BuzzSumo tells me:

•  8000 people have engaged with it on Facebook (liked, shared or commented)

• this article got 14000+ Twitter shares,

• only 72 shares on Pinterest,

• how many people shared it on Reddit (0), and

• how many other links to this article were made across the internet (74).

Evergreen Score

Furthermore, it also shows an “Evergreen” score: This measures how much engagement it gets after 30 days in an ongoing way.

This is a measurement of how relevant it is in a long-term way, rather than temporarily relevant for a short duration.

As well, when searching for keywords, you can filter by language or country. This feature makes BuzzSumo an incredibly powerful tool for drilling into seeing who is publishing content related to your topic of interest.

This is just a small summary of a very powerful tool.

After that, other sections, like the “Discover” section, you can browse through trends (that is “buzz”) in a viewer that is more card-like. This view automatically updates in realtime!

All the Web

The content searcher lets you search by Web, YouTube, Facebook, or Backlinks.

The short pitch for BuzzSumo is:

When you want to get yourself into the conversation you need to see what people are saying. BuzzSumo is like a macro bird’s eye view into what is happening across social media channels and real-time content publishers (like blogs, media sites, etc) with sophisticated tools to let you discover trends and see what kinds of messages your market is receptive to.

It’s an invaluable tool for market research and has great potential for doing trend analysis and understanding social media.