Surfer SEO is a software tool designed to use A, I. To help you write content that ranks well in Google search results. Content creators are always looking for ways to create better content more efficiently. The question is, will Surfer help you do that? What is Surfer SEO? An overview of its main features The Surfer SERP Analyzer The Content Editor The Auditor The Domain Planner Keyword Research Grow FlowSurfer SEO PricingSurfer Free Tools Does it work? A case studyMy evaluation of Surfer SEO alternatives SEOSurfer My goal is to be brief but exhaustive.
In the end, you should have a good idea if Surfer would be a useful tool to test. Do you have any specific questions? Try the FAQ section. This strategy is common in SEO. People often talk about word counts, for example, and try to approximate the number of words that the best-ranked pages have for a particular topic.
What Surfer can do is analyze a large number of parameters at once and analyze your content in the light of them, helping you identify areas that are likely to need improvement. The SERP analyzer is really the backbone of Surfer, since both the content editor and the auditor rely on the data examined by this tool. Those two are probably the most valuable parts of the platform (and it's no accident that they have monthly limits depending on the price level). Understanding the SERP analyzer first will make it much easier to understand what the other tools do.
So we'll start with this and give a detailed description of each of these 5 components in turn. This tool examines the first 48 results of your search term and gives you access to an enormous amount of data to help you discover what the main pages are doing to rank as well as they do. Here's a summary of what's available in each section. Since they work together, we will discuss them at the same time.
The filters offer you an incredible variety of data points that you can plot on the graph to see how they correlate (or not) with the ranking of a page. There is a small, handy icon to the right of each element, which shows you at a glance if the correlation is strong or weak. You can plot, for example, the number of words or instances of the main keyword. But there are many other things you can observe that you wouldn't normally consider, such as the part of the page content that is hidden and even the number of characters that appear in the h5 headings (see below).
All of this data isn't likely to be very useful; the connection between the words in the h5 headings and the classification doesn't seem like it should matter much. On the other hand, for those who like to leave no stone unturned in the search for an advantage with Google algorithms, here you will have all the data you could want. Dive deeper into what matters most for SEO. This is Surfer's overall assessment (out of 100) of the extent to which the page includes everything that the main pages should have.
Finally, dots give you the option to view a screenshot or an outline of a page. The search results section also has a series of tabs at the top that show useful information about the use of words from the first results. The last option, “common backlinks”, shows referring domains that link to more than one of the pages in the search results. This tool is designed to help you write content with the help of Surfer's AI, once you enter a target keyword.
Basically, it takes all the data we just saw in the SERP analyzer and uses it to give recommendations on how to create content that ranks well on Google. The workspace offers a standard text editor on the left and a set of guidance tools on the right. This is without a doubt the most useful section and the one that you are likely to use most often. At the top, it gives you an overall score that adjusts in real time as you make changes.
This is followed by a section that provides recommendations on counting certain structural elements (words, headings, paragraphs and images). Below is a list of terms that Surfer recommends that you find a way to incorporate them into your text. This tool is designed to help you create an outline for your article by examining the content of other top-level pages. You'll get suggestions for titles, headings, and questions that you can use.
This tab gives you a place where you can leave notes (either for yourself or for a writer if you're hiring someone else to produce content for you). It also includes links to the top 5 competitors for the focus keyword. This tool is used to examine and optimize content that you have already published on the web. The data behind the scenes is the same as in the content editor; only here it's presented in a different way.
You'll see a list of different sections, each of which gives you an evaluation of your content along with recommendations on what you can improve. The auditor provides you with a useful link to facilitate the exchange of content with others who may be collaborating with you. This tool is based on the idea that one way to classify difficult keywords is to create support pages that form a group of topics that link to a pillar page of that target keyword. Enter a keyword or topic and you'll get a set of groups of keywords that you can use to plan the material on each page.
It has some filters that allow you to sort the clusters according to factors such as the number of keywords in the cluster and their total search volume. This is a very basic keyword research tool. Enter your keyword and you'll only see the search volume. However, Surfer also shows you a list of similar keywords with a similarity score for each, which is a useful metric.
A recent addition to the Surfer toolset is Grow Flow, which is designed to provide you with weekly suggestions for improving SEO on your site. You'll also receive a weekly report that shows the progress you're making as you implement the suggested changes. It's a good resource both for generating optimization ideas and for tracking your progress with them. Like most similar tools, Surfer offers you 3 pricing levels (and a free basic account) and a discount for paying annually instead of monthly.
Keep in mind that the content planner, SERP analyzer, and keyword research tools are unlimited with any plan. Even if you don't have a Surfer account, you can access 3 tools that use Surfer technology. Does it really help? It's a little difficult to know for sure, since it's never a single variable when it comes to the ranking of your content on Google. Even so, I'll share an example that seems to suggest that Surfer's suggestions can be powerful.
In fact, I reviewed several contents with Surfer, but in most of them I made a lot of changes, including titles, URLs, and even the combination of materials. There are too many variables in cases like this to know what was due to Surfer and what was due to other factors. However, in the case of one item, the changes were quite minor. I simply updated the text to include more of the words that Surfer suggested should be there.
Even so, I added about 200 words, so, once again, we have another complicating factor: adding length. The most interesting thing is that many other keyword rankings also improved. In fact, the publication added 153 new classified keywords over the four months. Total monthly publication traffic? It went from 1,902 to 4,602, an increase of 142%.
Surfer SEO is a very useful tool, as long as you have realistic expectations about what it can and cannot do for you. What it excels at is providing you with a lot of really useful data about the main pages of a keyword and putting it in a format that is practical. The content editor and auditing tools give you very clear guidance on the changes you can make that are likely to improve the performance of your content. On the other hand, it's not going to create quality content for you.
I found the outline tool in the content editor quite disappointing. There are some suggested headings you could use, but a real person who is familiar with the topic (and with some writing skills) could offer better suggestions without much effort. I used to grade college students' essays. This would definitely be a failure for plagiarism.
For me, none of this surprises me. AI still can't write really good content. If you want high quality, you'll need a talented human writer. But what Surfer can do is help the writer to modify the language and structure of what he writes to give him the best possible chance of positioning himself well.
In short, Surfer is a useful tool that helps you apply competitors' research to make your writing as solid as possible. Surfer SEO is a tool that helps you write content that is more likely to rank by providing a practical guide based on the highest-ranked competitors for your target keywords. Surfer SEO does the heavy lifting for you and analyzes a mountain of data to show you the changes you can make that are most likely to pay off. A great user interface even makes it fun, as you make changes and see your score improve in real time.
Although this is the main function of Surfer SEO, the application includes other tools, such as a SERP analyzer and a content planner, to further help you in the quest to produce great content. Its SERP analyzer is also very useful for analyzing main pages more manually and reverse-engineering what works for others. However, it's important to be realistic about what you can and can't do. Surfer SEO can help you optimize great content to improve your positioning.
I wouldn't expect it to help much with mediocre content. Everyone who works on ranking content in search results knows that you have to pay attention to the competition. The pages that are currently at the top can provide you with valuable information about things like what people (and Google's algorithm) are actually looking for. Surfer's SEO is essentially a tool that performs this research for you instantly and turns it into a practical guide on how to improve your content to have a better chance of positioning yourself.
Surfer SEO gives you an objective score for your content based on your competition for a particular keyword. That means it will be different depending on what topic you're writing about and what the competition does. In general, your score will go to the green zone (which indicates that your content is good) sometime in the 70s. For some keywords, getting into the 80s or even the 90s isn't too difficult.
For more competitive keywords, getting a score in the 90s can take a lot of work. If you've used Surfer, I'd love to hear from you. What do you think of the tool? John Milliken is a writer and content strategist who helps companies build their web presence with better content. Keep an eye on your inbox for a welcome email and our main content.
Certified advanced Google Analytics user and Google Ads expert. Yes, Surfer also provides a reliable keyword extension for Surfer that you can install in your Chrome browser. Surfer SEO users now have access to 6 page optimization tools (formerly) and some complementary tools that you can use with Surfer SEO. The general approach that Surfer takes when using AI to help it optimize content in the light of the best-ranked pages is becoming increasingly popular.
While it's not necessarily part of the Surfer SEO suite of products, Surfer developed a Google Chrome extension that is a free keyword research tool. Surfer SEO has shared a public roadmap with its users on Trello, where you can see what is currently under development and what are Surfer SEO's future plans. Surfer's SEO keyword research feature is a great complement to the tool, but it's easy to see that Surfer's strengths lie in the SERP and content editor options. The SEO keyword space is very competitive, but if you're curious to know how Surfer SEO compares to other SEO tools, you can usually say with confidence that it's Surfer's SEO content editor that sets them apart.
Just like Yoast provides you with its green score indicators, Surfer will do the same, however, the difference is that Surfer compares your content with the content of hundreds of your closest competitors. Yes, Surfer SEO has recently introduced a free plan that helps you use Surfer SEO for FREE with limited features. .