Semrush Review: Everything You Need to Know (2024)

Posted on January 19, 2024 by Leave a Comment

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Semrush Review: Everything You Need to Know (2024)
Blog / Marketing / Semrush Review: Everything You Need to Know (2024)

In the hyper-competitive and highly volatile world of SEO and content marketing, having the right tools at your disposal can make all the difference. No wonder there’s a digital marketing tool for every imaginable use case. Then there’s Semrush. It attempts to do the seemingly impossible, to bring all of a digital marketer’s essential tools into one place.

In this Semrush review, we’ll examine which tools they’ve assembled and how they’re integrated. We’ll conclude with the pros and cons of Semrush, competitor comparisons, and our recommendation.

What is Semrush?

screenshot of semrush home page

Semrush is a feature-rich suite of tools that manages all aspects of online visibility. It has all the tools needed for SEO, content marketing, competitor analysis, social media, and ads in one spot. It helps gather all necessary data to make intelligent decisions, find opportunities, set goals, and monitor progress against competitors.

What makes Semrush unique?

Semrush stands out from its competitors because of its holistic approach. With all digital marketing tools in one interface, online marketing becomes more straightforward and efficient. Semrush has tools for market research, strategy, planning, content production, advertising, and measuring results. All of which work together seamlessly.

Semrush User Experience

Users usually have a highly beneficial experience with Semrush. They praise its user-friendly interface, easy navigation, and abundant tools and features.

The platform’s extensive functionality enables users to manage all aspects of digital marketing from a single dashboard. Semrush’s data-driven insights empower users to make informed decisions, strategize effectively, and easily track performance. Many users like the educational resources from Semrush, too. These resources help them understand digital marketing better and use the platform more effectively.

However, beginners may need time to familiarize themselves with all the features before getting the most out of them. In the end, though, most users agree that Semrush is a solid and flexible digital marketing tool. One that improves online visibility and business results.

My Experience Using Semrush as a Professional Digital Marketer

As the former editor of the Elegant Themes blog, I have personally used Semrush for years. I’ve found it to be an indispensable tool.

While the platform has expanded over the years, it began as an SEO platform. As a result, its SEO-related tools are industry-leading. It makes it easy to identify keywords and topics you want to rank for, especially in highly competitive niches like WordPress. It also makes it possible to expand into related topics successfully.

The learning curve was steep but not steeper than I expected. If you want to do something challenging and complex, you should expect your tools to be sophisticated and require training. Our team learned to use Semrush through their free resources, blog posts by others, and exploration of the tool itself. The results have been well worth it.

Semrush Key Features

The Semrush platform is extensive. Providing an overview in a single post without it getting too long isn’t easy. That’s why I’ll discuss the most beneficial features instead of explaining every tool.

Keyword Research

screenshot of semrush's keyword overview tool

Semrush offers a robust set of comprehensive keyword research tools and metrics to enhance your keyword strategy.

  • The Keyword Overview tool (pictured above) shows a keyword’s search volume, number of results, trend data, and more.
  • The Keyword Difficulty tool assesses how hard it would be to rank higher than competitors for a top keyword.
  • The Keyword Gap tool allows you to compare your keywords with your competitors’. The Organic Research tool provides insights into your competitors’ organic search rankings.
  • The Keyword Magic tool creates many keyword suggestions and studies their details to help improve SEO strategies.

screenshot of semrush's keyword magic tool

Here, the Keyword Magic Tool analyzes the keyword “movies.” In seconds, it generated a list of millions of related keywords and variations you can sort, filter, and explore until you find the best ones for your project.

For these reasons, Semrush is one of the top keyword research tools out there.

Site Audit

screenshot of semrush's site audit tool

The Site Audit feature is an incredibly powerful tool that checks your website for common SEO issues and provides instant insights into its overall health.

First, it performs an exhaustive scan of all the pages on your website. It identifies errors, warnings, and notices that could affect your site’s search engine performance. As it goes, it assigns priority to issues that need immediate attention and offers practical suggestions for improvement. Finally, it provides an overall site health score, which you can improve by addressing the issues flagged.

screenshot of semrush's site audit errors report

I especially like how the audit indicates the error, why it occurred, and how to fix it. This contextual information is extremely helpful and makes it easier to delegate specific fixes. Semrush displays a lot of useful information like this throughout all its tools.

Learn how to conduct an SEO site audit.

Competitor Analysis

screenshot of semrush's domain overview

Semrush provides a wide array of tools that empower users to understand their competition’s strategies better. It offers insights into competitors’ keyword analytics, backlinks, ads, and more. This makes it easy to spot their strengths and weaknesses.

These tools automatically monitor changes in your competitors’ online visibility, track their website’s organic and paid search traffic, and allow you to compare multiple competitors simultaneously. By providing actionable data, you can identify growth opportunities and improve digital marketing strategies.

screenshot of semrush's backlink analytics feature

For example, you can see all aspects of a competitor’s backlink profile when using Backlink Analytics. You’ll see what’s working for them and what’s not, duplicating their successes while avoiding their mistakes.

Rank Tracking

screenshot of semrush's position tracker tool

Semrush allows users to monitor and analyze their website’s search engine rankings for chosen keywords. The tool provides up-to-date information on the visibility of your website, the success of your SEO and PPC efforts, and how well your website is doing on search engines in different locations.

screenshot of semrush's competitor discovery tab under position tracking

And, of course, it shows how your site ranks compared to competitors and gives suggestions for outperforming them.

On-Page SEO

screenshot of semrush's on-page seo checker tool

The On-Page SEO Checker is a comprehensive tool that provides actionable recommendations, helping users optimize individual web pages. It performs a detailed analysis of all SEO factors, including content length, keyword usage, meta tags, and internal linking.

screenshot of semrush's on page seo checker's benchmark tab

It then generates ideas based on top competitors’ pages. This makes it easy to compare your content with the best in the industry.

Content Marketing and AI Tools

screenshot of semrush's topic research feature

Semrush’s Content Marketing Toolkit is a suite of tools designed to streamline every aspect of a content marketing campaign. It uses artificial intelligence (AI) to help you create SEO content much faster, making it one of the best AI SEO tools for website owners.

  • The SEO Writing Assistant optimizes your content for search engines with the help of AI. It provides immediate suggestions for improving your SEO score, readability, and tone of voice.
  • The Topic Research tool generates ideas for fresh, engaging content based on trending topics, questions, and related searches.
  • The Post Tracking tool monitors your content’s performance across various metrics.
  • The Content Audit feature reviews your website’s content, assessing its quality and performance.

This toolkit is a one-stop solution for creating, optimizing, and analyzing content. All while ensuring it resonates with your audience and performs well on search engines.

screenshot of semrush's seo writing assistant tool

In the screenshot above, I’ve used the “import text from URL” feature of the SEO Writing Assistant. It’s populated the content area with a published post from my blog. It has given me a wide range of suggested improvements that I can use to update that post for better performance.

Reporting and Analytics

screenshot of semrush's traffic analytics

Semrush’s reporting and analytics features offer powerful insights into your digital marketing efforts, providing comprehensive, customizable reports that track performance across various metrics.

  • You can analyze competitor activity and market trends with organic and advertising research tools.
  • With the Backlink Analytics tool, you can monitor and analyze your and your rivals’ backlink profiles.
  • The Traffic Analytics tool gives a detailed overview of your website’s audience, behavior, and engagement.
  • The Position Tracking Tool updates your website’s SERP rankings for targeted keywords daily.
  • The My Reports tool lets you create detailed, visually appealing reports in seconds. Reports that can be scheduled and sent automatically, ensuring you (and your clients!) are always up-to-date.

screenshot of semrush's my reports area

Other Semrush Tools & Resources

Aside from the key features that draw the most attention from prospective users, Semrush has many other tools and features worth mentioning. Depending on the plan you choose when signing up, some of these tools will either require an upgrade or a paid add-on to use.

Local SEO Tools

screenshot of semrush's listing management feature

Semrush’s Local SEO tools help websites improve their visibility in local search results through specialized features.

These tools include Listing Management, which synchronizes and manages your business’s online presence across top local directories, ensuring consistent and accurate data. Additionally, the Local Rank Tracker monitors your website’s local search performance.

Combined with the rest of the great tools in Semrush, it’s everything you need to dominate the local search results.

Check our Local SEO guide for more.

Advertising Tools

screenshot of semrush's advertising research tool

Semrush’s Advertising Tools help manage and optimize online ad campaigns across various platforms. It includes features like analyzing competition, researching keywords, creating ads, tracking, and providing detailed reports to maximize ROI.

Social Media Tools

screenshot of semrush's social media tools

Semrush’s Social Media Toolkit offers tools to streamline the social media management process. The toolkit assists users in creating and sharing engaging content on multiple social media platforms. These platforms include Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and Google My Business. Semrush also analyzes competitors’ social audiences, activity, and engagement on those platforms. Because it shares features similar to the best social media tools, you can save money with this built into the platform.

The Social Inbox, a new feature currently in beta, is worth highlighting here. It monitors incoming messages across all supported platforms, providing quick response capabilities and a centralized view of comments and direct messages. This is a real “force multiplier” for small teams.

.Trends

screenshot of semrush's market research tool

The .Trends feature is a powerful tool for comprehensive competitive intelligence. It provides valuable insights into competitors’ website traffic, user behavior, market share, content, and ad strategies. It then provides actionable insights to improve your own business.

Marketing Agency Solutions

screenshot of semrush's agency solutions

Semrush’s Agency Solutions are purpose-built tools and features to support digital agencies managing multiple clients. The suite includes the Client Manager, a centralized dashboard to manage all client projects and deliverables. The Agency Growth Kit helps agencies get new clients and show their value to existing ones. Finally, the Semrush API allows seamless integration with your existing business systems.

Educational Resources

screenshot of semrush's blog

Semrush offers a wealth of educational resources for anyone interested in mastering SEO and expanding their skillset. Their Academy provides free online digital marketing courses with certification options. The Semrush blog features insightful articles on various digital marketing strategies. The Knowledge Base (Help Center) is a resource for users to learn about different aspects of digital marketing.

Semrush also hosts informative webinars with industry experts. And finally, the Local Marketing Hub offers specialized resources for local SEO and online presence optimization.

Extra Tools

Semrush’s “Extra Tools” are Semrush-owned and operated SaaS solutions that complement Semrush’s core product.

Content Marketplace

Semrush’s Content Marketplace is a platform where users can order custom, SEO-friendly content from professional writers.

Ecommerce Booster

Semrush’s Ecommerce Booster tool helps online retailers optimize their e-commerce platforms, enhance product visibility, track competitors, and improve overall business performance.

Prowly

Semrush’s Prowly tool is a PR and Media Relations tool. It helps businesses create engaging press releases, manage contacts, and track communication efforts.

Kompyte

Semrush’s Kompyte tool is a competitive intelligence platform. It empowers teams to make informed decisions for sustainable growth by automating research and providing customizable dashboards.

SplitSignal

Semrush’s SplitSignal tool is an A/B testing instrument for SEO professionals and website owners. It empowers them to conduct SEO experiments, analyze performance changes, and make data-driven decisions to improve organic traffic.

Semrush Pricing

Semrush’s pricing is geared towards businesses who use their platform as an essential part of their operations. The pricing tiers begin at a rate for freelancers and startups and then progress to custom enterprise options.

Pro plan: At $99.95 per month, this is the most affordable plan, ideal for freelancers, startups, and in-house marketers on a tighter budget. It includes basic features such as keyword and competitor analysis, site audit, on-page SEO checker, position tracking of 500 keywords, and 3 projects.

Guru plan: Priced at $199.95 per month, this plan is tailored for small and growing companies. It includes all Pro features, content marketing tools, branded reports, historical data, extended limits, position tracking of 1,500 keywords, and 15 projects.

Business plan: At $399.95 per month, this plan is perfect for agencies, e-commerce projects, and businesses with an extensive web presence. It includes all the features of Guru, along with white-label reports, API access, extended limits and sharing options, Google Data Studio integration, position tracking of 5,000 keywords, and 40 projects.

Enterprise plan: This custom solution is designed for large businesses with unique marketing needs. It includes custom keyword databases, custom limits, unlimited crawling of large websites, and on-site training, with pricing available upon request.

Among the bottom three tiers of pricing, considerations such as the number of projects, number of keywords, and API access will dictate which plan most folks end up going with.

Semrush Pros and Cons

In this article, we’ve discussed many details, even though we’ve summarized a lot. To further simplify things, I’ve compiled a list of pros and cons below.

Pros

  • Robust SEO Capabilities: Semrush has created industry-leading SEO tools for every essential task. Tools for keyword research, backlink analysis, site auditing, position tracking, on-page SEO, and more.
  • Effective Advertising Tools: Semrush helps users improve online ad campaigns, analyze competition, and research keywords across various platforms.
  • Powerful Social Media Toolkit: Semrush facilitates social media management by offering features for content creation, sharing, scheduling, tracking, and analysis across multiple social platforms.
  • Comprehensive Competitive Intelligence: The .Trends feature provides valuable insights into user and competitor website traffic, user behavior, market share, content, and ad strategies.
  • Agency Solutions: Semrush’s tools aid digital agencies in managing multiple client portfolios with ease while demonstrating their value.
  • Educational Resources: Semrush helps users improve their digital marketing skills by providing a wealth of free educational resources.
  • Extra Tools: Semrush offers additional SaaS solutions that complement its core product—tools like Content Marketplace, E-commerce Booster, Prowly, Kompyte, and SplitSignal.

Cons

  • Limited Number of Projects: With basic plans, the number of projects you can manage simultaneously is limited. This may restrict users from managing multiple websites or client portfolios.
  • Complex User Interface: The vast array of tools and features can make the user interface feel overwhelming. This is particularly true for beginners who are new to digital marketing.
  • Learning Curve: Understanding and using all the platform’s features takes time and effort because it is comprehensive.
  • Expensive Pricing Plans: Semrush’s most advanced features are only available in the higher-priced plans.
  • Slow Report Generation: Users have reported slow report generation times during peak usage hours, which can impact productivity.
  • Limited Social Media Platforms: The social media toolkit currently supports Facebook, Instagram, X, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Google My Business. The absence of others like Snapchat and TikTok might be a drawback for some users.
  • Restricted API Access: Semrush restricts API access to its higher-tier plans. This limits the ability of lower-tier users to integrate Semrush with other tools and systems their business uses.

Semrush Alternatives

While it’s true that Semrush is a best-in-class tool, the alternatives below are also highly recommended. Some folks may find that their needs are more limited than the number of tools they’d be paying for with Semrush. Or, they may want a tool that focuses only on a specific aspect of digital marketing. In any event, these are some Semrush alternatives worth considering.

SE Ranking

screenshot of se rankings website

SE Ranking shines in terms of affordability and simplicity—an ideal choice for small businesses or those new to SEO. However, while its feature set is broad, it does not offer the same depth of functionality found in Semrush.

BrightLocal

screenshot of BrightLocal website

BrightLocal and Semrush are powerful SEO tools that serve slightly different needs. Specializing in local SEO, BrightLocal is an ideal choice for businesses wanting to enhance their local online visibility. Features like its local search audit, citation builder, local search grid, and reputation manager help companies bring a laser focus to establishing their local presence. On the other hand, Semrush offers a broader range of SEO tools, including keyword research, site audits, and competitor analysis, making it ideal for comprehensive digital marketing campaigns.

SEObility

screenshot of SEObility website

SEObility and Semrush are comprehensive SEO tools with their own strengths. Praised for its website optimization features, SEObility primarily intends to check your site thoroughly for improvement opportunities. It also has a slightly higher rating on the popular software review and comparison site G2, with 4.6/5 stars from 233 reviews. On the other hand, Semrush is highly rated for its broad range of features, like keyword research and competitor analysis. It has a rating of 4.5/5 stars from 1,876 reviews on G2. The choice between the two often depends on specific user needs and preferences–including, perhaps especially, price point.

Ahrefs

screenshot of ahrefs website

One of the primary alternatives to Semrush is Ahrefs, which is renowned for its backlink analysis capabilities. Users might choose Ahrefs over Semrush if they prioritize link building and require extensive backlink data. Ahrefs also has a more straightforward interface that is often easier for beginners to navigate.

Moz Pro

screenshot of moz pro website

Semrush and Moz Pro provide various digital marketing tools to boost online visibility. People know Semrush for its all-inclusive features, while Moz Pro excels in local SEO. This makes Moz Pro a solid choice for businesses focusing on improving local market presence.

SpyFu

screenshot of spyfu website

In the world of SEO tools, Spyfu is a formidable contender. While Semrush is more comprehensive, SpyFu focuses on competition spying and keyword insights. For marketers with a narrower focus, it may be the better tool.

Serpstat

screenshot of serpstat website

Serpstat is great at keyword research and SEO analysis. However, when comparing the user interface, educational resources, and overall suite of tools and features, Semrush often comes out on top. While both platforms have robust SERP features, choosing between Semrush and Serpstat typically comes to budget.

SEO Powersuite

screenshot of so powersuite website

SEO PowerSuite is a desktop application offering an all-in-one SEO toolkit. It includes keyword research, backlink analysis, rank tracking, and on-page SEO auditing capabilities. The choice between Semrush and SEO PowerSuite often comes down to the specific needs and preferences of the user, such as the preference for a web vs desktop tool, the need for ongoing learning resources, or budget constraints.

Semrush Review: The Verdict

Semrush stands out as an incredibly comprehensive and versatile digital marketing platform. It excels because of its extensive range of tools, user-friendly interface, and robust educational resources. It’s an excellent fit for anyone doing a wide variety of marketing tasks–especially teams.

The most commonly cited critique of Semrush is its complexity and steep learning curve. However, given the complex nature of the work itself and the high-quality educational materials provided, that may be a moot point to serious marketing professionals.

Another common critique (or at least downside) often associated with Semrush is its price point. Again, anyone taking full advantage of this platform to service multiple clients should have no problem affording it. On the other hand, website owners who may be just as serious but have less marketing experience may want to be more careful, ensuring that the value they’re getting is worth the price.

Ultimately, those who need and can afford it would be hard-pressed to find a better digital marketing solution than Semrush.

For anyone still wishing to conduct more research, check out our posts covering the Best SEO Tools for Organic Traffic Growth, the Best AI SEO Tools, and the Best Free SEO Tools. WordPress users will also want to check out the best WordPress SEO plugins and the best SEO WordPress themes available today.

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