AGENCY TOOLS WE USE
Cognitive SEO Review
If you haven’t heard about it before, CognitiveSEO is a Search Engine Optimization suite that offers a variety of tools for improving website performance. The software designers promise to help achieve higher rankings.
When it comes to SEO, I’ve often found good old-fashioned A/B testing research works best for me: That’s why I was cynical about using CognitiveSEO- but was I wrong to be?
To help you understand whether you should use the tool or not, I’ve compiled what I feel is a comprehensive CognitiveSEO review.
(And here’s an early spoiler- it really can- I’ll give more details within the next chapter)
I urge you to check it out for yourselves so you can make up your own minds.
I believe in testing everything thoroughly before trusting information written online. There are so many conflicting articles, it’s easy to take just one and make a mistake.
To me, it doesn’t make a difference whether written by an influencer, agency or a so-called authority. I want an honest summary based on results rather than highlighting features that offer no help for your goals.
This review of the CognitiveSEO tool relies solely on my experience with the application.
CognitiveSEO Review – Overview
The CognitiveSEO features are designed for all types of users, whether established businesses or those just starting out.
It’s useful for medium and large companies, consultants, professionals and agencies, however, webmasters will benefit from many of its features.
CognitiveSeo is an in-depth tool with reams of data that may appear intimidating with your first experience.
As you delve deeper within the tool, you’ll discover charts and hidden gems that make the whole experience begin to feel more intuitive.
Here’s one of the typical pages you’ll come across;
CognitiveSEO is actually a toolset marketed as “the only SEO tool you’ll ever need”.
However, while it’s true the tools cover almost everything in terms of SEO needs, there is always room for improvement and additions.
The tool offers:
- site auditing,
- link analysis,
- keyword exploration,
- content optimisation,
- rank tracking,
- and a site explorer tool,
- Also provides a free Google Updates tracker.
CognitiveSEO Review – Keyword Tool and Content Optimizer
I’ll start by saying this is one of my favourite tools.
I hinted previously that I gained more traffic by improving my content with help from just one of the tools- Content Optimizer.
Content Optimizer assists with keyword research and houses an online editor that analyses your content offering suggestions on which keywords you should use in order to rank more highly within the top search engines.
A word of warning here…
Search engine optimisation doesn’t happen overnight; It takes time to bloom.
I found that over a six-to-nine month period using the content optimization tool, numerous pages developed and ranked to the first pages of Google.
To me, this threw a spanner into the widely accepted notion that it’s all but impossible to get more traffic without building backlinks. It can be achieved with the right content strategy and the right tools.
I’ve never had the luxury of limitless budgets.
Being overworked at times (and a little disorganised if I’m honest) necessitated my need for a time and labour-saving tool for obtaining the broader metrics or topics and keywords that help others rank more highly.
When I came across CognitiveSEO it took a little digging to interpret the results as the software was so new.
Below you can see a screenshot of one of my optimised articles within the tool.
CognitiveSEO’s research tools allowed me to see correlated topics and missing keywords that enable the content to shine.
I’m not a natural writer. I rely on others to help me edit my thoughts as many e-commerce consultants do. Sometimes, my thoughts are not always that easy to convey, so this tool was and still is, an immense help.
Here are some of the results I got using this tool.
While I appreciate results can be easily manipulated, these graphs illustrate this type of content is not reliant upon seasonal wins or easy pickings.
Everyone can test it for themselves- there’s no catch.
CognitiveSeo is a simple and intuitive tool yet it has a lot of functionality.
Once you have a keyword in mind you want to rank more highly for, you begin your analysis.
Here is just some of the information you’ll be presented with;
- search Intent (I rank this first as I think it’s highly important)
- content and links difficulty (what type of content and how many links you’ll need to rank more highly for that keyword)
- the keywords & type of content your competitors used to rank in top positions
- in-depth ranking analysis
- relevant keyword research info (search volume and the search trend of the keyword, cost per click, relevancy, topic, etc)
This is a really cool tool and it works well and brings real-time results.
Content marketers will find this really helpful for their writing.
The only caveat for me is the limited report count for the keyword tool to make it the complete answer.
Typically you would want to amend, then test each time, but the tool limits the amount you are allowed to do that within your payment plan.
Ideally, I’d like some reporting functionality on this tool and the possibility to optimise a piece of content for several keywords at the same time but again this isn’t yet included.
Having said that, I still highly recommend this marketing tool for most users.
Cognitive SEO – Site Audit
The latest additions to the tool suite are the Site Audit tools.
These show a promise to resolving a lot of other website issues.
Add your company website to the analysis and the tool will crawl it, highlighting problems your website might have.
Here are some of the website issues cognitiveSEO will identify:
- Broken backlinks and link auditing problems
- Duplicate content
- Mixed content
- Malware threats
- Missing or incorrect hreflang tags
- Website speed & loading time issues
- Lack of, or incorrect AMP implementation
- HTTP status code implementation issues
- Missing description and broken images
- Missing anchor text links and other related issues
- Canonical tag issues
- XML Sitemap issues and many more
I like the Site audit as it doesn’t just extract the issues but it categorises and then prioritises them in order of importance. ( As a small company time is super precious)
For example, the tool proved helpful when Google announced that it will block mixed content.
From the reports, I could easily see which pages contained mixed content and fix them for my clients.
There is a comprehensive array of metrics you can study to correlate to your website’s performance.
I must confess that I didn’t use the CognitiveSEO’s Site Audit to its full potential, yet it proves to be reliable time and again with understandable data, even when technical problems are not easily interpreted.
CognitiveSEO Review – Link Analysis
The backlink analysis might be one of the strongest (and I believe the most popular) tools from CognitiveSEO.
Almost all the data and charts that you can think of in terms of links can be found within the tool; you can filter, compare, import, export, anything you want.
This next section is rather “geeky” in that there are some technical charts.
I’m sure that link savvies will love the tool, yet people not so familiar with inBound backlinks metrics might find this a bit difficult.
For those that do find this bit challenging, there are videos to help ( though not enough if you ask me!).
The unnatural links detection is a dream to work with (especially when it comes to the Google Penguin Penalty). I use it for my clients and every time it has proven helpful in making deep and smart cleans of the bad connections.
The tool automatically creates a Google disavow file and allows previous disavows to be imported.
For websites attacked by a negative SEO campaign or having a history of bad SEO link building in the past, it’s especially helpful to find out what type of links they have and remove the spam saving us from algorithm changes a little.
Here are some of the uses for the inBound Links analysis:
- Notification when you receive new backlinks- or lose one
- Eradication of spam links
- The ability to perform link building
- Find new link opportunities by doing competitive analysis research.
- Gain insights for the link building strategies of any site
- Perform side-by-side link profiles analysis.
For those that don’t have the time to constantly check the tool, there’s a choice to create email notifications and have an email report (daily, weekly or as it happens) for more effective management.
Overall, the inbound link analysis is super in-depth for any backlinks reviews.
The only downside I see is that I feel the learning curve to use the tool properly is pretty steep.
Cognitive SEO Review – Rank Tracker
The Rank Tracking module helps monitor keywords that matter most to your business. It’s easier to use than the inBound link analysis but you get what you need: mobile & local tracking on all countries and cities, on Google, Yahoo and Bing, at the frequency you choose (weekly and daily).
This tool links nicely with the Keyword Tool (the first tool I reviewed).
I use it for international company projects either to include keywords for the UK or a whole host of other countries.
You can add the same keyword for multiple countries, languages, devices and search engines. For each, you’ll see the ranking position, volume and the changes within the ranks over time.
Cognitive SEO – Useful features for SEO Agencies and SEO Consultants
CognitiveSEO is designed to be used by digital marketing agencies and consultants too as a complete solution.
Some features that agencies will find useful are:
- The white label setup facility
- Shareable SEO Dashboard for clients with rank tracking
- Marketing Reports with a variety of metrics
- Multi-users support for team members (and clients)
- SEO API integrations
CognitiveSEO Review – Pros and Cons
Here is my overview of this versatile tool.
- All-inclusive search engine optimisation tools suite
- Content Optimization Tool is AMAZING!
- Site Crawl audit tool has good UI and very efficient
- Keeps your link profile clean using unnatural link risk algorithms
- Negative attack protection and Penalty Recovery
- Private 1-to-1 live demos & training
- Customisable pricing
- Month to month payment / no long-term contract required
- The price is slightly expensive – Starts at $129/mo (my ROI with them is at least 5x every month though so I don’t mind)
- Its depth and complexity of data. Parts of the tool are a bit harder to understand at first and require a couple of weeks to get used to.
- The rank tracker can’t compare multiple sites ( I’m sure the product will include this at some point as its needed against competitors).
CognitiveSEO Review – My Final Verdict
In summary, I highly recommend the CognitiveSEO tool.
I especially find the Content Optimizer & Keyword Tool, the Site Audit and the Backlink Analysis useful. I believe that these sections are well designed and reliable.
Once you’ll apply the recommendations via the tool you’ll see ranking improvements relatively quickly.
As previously explained. whoever uses the tool on a daily basis needs to have at least a rudimentary understanding of digital marketing concepts.
Before you make a final decision, go for the free trial offered one on the site.
I didn’t see its full potential at first and I was sceptical of its value.
Don’t do the same.
Take your time and test it to the fullest of your ability and don’t be afraid to ask questions from their digital marketing team. The support team is helpful, and offer a private onboard training: this in itself helped me make a decision I’m very happy with.
If you use the tools correctly, I’d estimate that you’ll see a positive impact on your rankings and sales within the first two months.
Sure, there are a few things I would like to see added but if I would use one phrase to summarise cognitiveSEO it would be:
“Powerful SEO tools for Content and Links – Recommended A++”
This tool is ideal for any business that wants higher rankings on Google.