Free Keyword Ranking Tools That Don’t Suck
Most free keyword ranking tools have severe limitations. The majority of free tools you find online are broke, outdated, or barely alive on life-support.
Grabbing keyword rankings at a bulk level is technologically challenging because Google isn’t a fan of automated scripts scraping it’s results. Beyond a few keywords at a time, updating large amounts of keywords is challenging without the use of proxies.
I’ve found only two decent truly free tools that offer rankings results. Both have pros and cons.
1. Google Webmaster Tools Rank Data
Google has begun to show more and more data in Webmaster Tools and recently changed how they display rank data to be more accurate in my opinion. It’s still not great, but it is free and gives you a good sense of where you are at for keywords you already rank for. It doesn’t help tracking keywords you are aspiring to rank for, but hey, it’s free. Login to GWT here.
2. SEObook’s Firefox Plugin
Aaron Wall’s plugin for firefox is great for quickly checking a handful of keywords. It does require registering for a SEObook account, which is free. Get it here.
Why no better free options?
Google unlike Bing doesn’t offer a API to grab search results. They used to years ago, but nowadays the only way to get keyword rankings is to scrape them manually using a plugin like the SEObook one, rely on GWT data which is wonky, or pay for a software program to do rank tracking for you.
There are plenty of downloadable software programs out there that will run queries locally on your computer, they all have pros/cons. I know some SEOs that will run multiple proxies with this software and have it done in a few hours (they are tracking thousands of keywords).
For sites that only want to check rankings occasionally, you can get by on these free options.
Did I miss any free keyword ranking tools? (again, they must NOT suck)