While in some situations, SEO Powersuite can surely be a alternative for SEMrush, in other cases, it can’t.
In this short SEO Powersuite vs SEMrush review, I’ll describe the most important differences between both tools and cover some real-world scenarios to help you choose the right platform for you business.
Note: I won’t list the obvious SEO Powersuite vs SEMrush comparison that you’ll find in most reviews. Instead, I’ll cover the key differences and similarities, and list what I believe is important to know when choosing between the two platforms.
1. Features – SEO Powersuite vs SEMrush
In terms of features, the main differences are:
- SEMrush offers a wider range of features. Some of SEMrush’s features are more focused on competitive analysis, market research, and content research. This makes SEMrush more suitable for online entrepreneurs and full-service digital marketing agencies.
Some features that you’ll find only in SEMrush, and not in SEO Powersuite are:
- Traffic analysis reports. Provides estimations of any web page’s amount of desktop or mobile traffic, with a click of a button.
- Advertising and PPC research. Easily analyze the advertising budgets, copy, targeted keywords, and landing pages of your competitors.
- Content Marketing Toolkit. Helps you manage your content creation workflow. SEMrush provides tools for topic research (find content ideas, headlines, and content gaps) as well as mapping your content plan to a sharable calendar.
- SEO Quake extension. A popular browser plugin that shows you data inside your Google search results (keyword difficulty, link, backlink analysis, etc.) as well as an on-page diagnosis for any web page you visit.
- SEMrush Sensor. Google SERP volatility tracker, which allows you to quickly assess changes in the search results for your industry, as well as quickly identify potential Google algorithm updates.
- SEO Powersuite tools are mostly focused on SEO. It’s possible to use SEO Powersuite’s tools for niche research and get some great insights. However, most tools are very geared toward search engine optimization. SEO Powersuite is a great choice for individual website owners and small businesses, that are primarily focused on generating search engine traffic.
Some important features you’ll only get in SEO Powersuite are:
- Unlimited keyword tracking and monitoring. Where SEMrush’s cheapest plan allows you to track and monitor 500 keywords, you can use SEO Powersuite’s Rank Tracker application to track as many keywords as you like.
- Unlimited website auditing. SEO Powersuite’s Website Auditor application allows you to crawl an unlimited number of domains and pages and provides you with great recommendations to improve optimization. SEMrush allows the crawling of 100.000 pages in the cheapest pricing plan.
2. Cloud-based (SEMrush) vs Desktop Applications (SEO Powersuite)
SEO Powersuite is a bundle downloadable bundle of tools. SEMrush is a cloud-based service. Both models have their advantages and disadvantages.
Some of the differences that result from this are:
- Log in from anywhere. It should be obvious, but a cloud service, allows you to log into your account from any location, and use the service. To use SEO Powersuite need to have a computer or laptop at your disposal that has the tools installed.
- Speed. Jumping into your workflow quickly can be important. With a cloud-based service like SEMrush, you open a browser window and start doing keyword or niche research in a matter of seconds. SEO Powersuite is a little slower. The application needs to start up and it can take some time for the reports to populate.
- Data Storage and System Memory usage. SEO Powersuite’s applications save files to your hard drive. These files use some of your storage, but this isn’t a big deal. What I like less is the memory and CPU load as a result of the applications. Depending on what you’re doing, SEO Powersuite can at times slow your system down.
3. Data Sources
Professional grade SEO tools and research platforms use different methods to calculate the data that’s shown in their reports. Common methods are examining live (search engine results page) data and historical data.
Besides the methods mentioned above, SEMrush and SEO Powersuite calculate their metric data in different ways:
- SEMrush Machine learning. SEMrush uses machine learning algorithms to improve data quality. It’s common for SEO platforms to not disclose the exact ways they are using to improve their data quality. For example, I assume they could be comparing live data with trending data continuously, to make more accurate predictions about metrics like search volume, keyword difficulty, and so on.
- Third-party data. SEMrush also includes third-party data in its data stream. Again, they are not disclosing the exact sources, but I do know that data stream diversification can be beneficial for the improving accuracy of the data. Then again, it would also depend on the quality of the algorithms the data stream is fed to.
- Data from your website. SEO Powersuite uses data from Google Keyword Planner, Google Search Console, and Google Analytics – which are installed for your website. The data is fed to the SEO Powersuite reports through an API connection. This type of data reflects the focus on SEO, instead of content or market research.
- Crawler data. Both SEMrush and SEO Powersuite use their crawler to collect backlink data.
Note: to learn more about data sources have a look at Where does SEMrush get their data from?
Takeaway: SEMrush uses more data sources and provides richer data reporting. This comes in handy when you need to dig deeper into the niche. SEO Powersuite provides fantastic data for SEO activities.
4. Data Quality
Assessing data quality is not easy. I’ve found that no SEO platform is 100% accurate and the data can be off in many cases (as far as I can tell). So, this section covers data quality, based on ‘theory’ and ‘real-world observation’. These opinions are my own, and others may have different ones.
Below are some important facts and observations about data quality:
- Search Volumes. SEO Powersuite gets its data from either Google Keyword Planner directly, or from the Powersuite index. SEMrush’s keyword magic tool shows search volumes that are calculated from Google Keyword Planner in combination with click stream data. In theory, SEMrush’s search volumes should be more accurate.
- Keyword Difficulty. SEMrush claim to have the best keyword difficulty metric. But so do other SEO tools. After reading about SEMrush’s keyword difficulty metric and comparing both, I can say that SEMrush has a slight edge. However, I’ve also come across niches, where SEO Powersuite was more accurate.
- Backlink Audits. Both SEO Powersuite’s SEO Spyglass application as well as SEMrush feed a large database with backlink data. SEO Powersuite claim to find new backlinks quicker than any other backlink auditing software. In theory, this means they should be ahead of all other backlink checkers. On the other hand, their database a a little smaller than SEMrush’s.
Takeaway: All things taken into account, data quality is difficult to assess. In theory, SEMrush should have richer and more accurate data. This is because of machine learning and more diverse data streams that are fed to the algorithm. However, accuracy is subjective in many cases, as in my experience it also depends on your niche.
5. Pricing – SEO Powersuite vs SEMrush
This is the ‘elephant in the room’. SEMrush pricing starts at $99,95 / month, while SEO Powersuite will set you back $299,00 / year, for the cheapest plan. SEMrush having to maintain a cloud infrastructure, offering multiple data sources, as well as many more tools is the reason for this pricing difference.
- SEO Powersuite Free edition. SEO Powersuite offers a free edition, that you can use forever. However, it’s not very usable, because you can’t save any files, which means you start over each time you start the applications up. The free edition is limited in other ways as well.
- SEMrush Free account. SEMrush also provides a free account. Like SEO Powersuite, the free account won’t do much for you, because you only get a few (I believe 5) search actions a day. Doing keyword research, content marketing or niche research on a free account is out of the question.
- SEMrush Full Trial. The SEMrush Free 7-day trial enables you to use all of SEMrush’s features completely for free for 7 full days. To activate your trial, you’ll need to provide a credit card number. However, nothing will be deducted from your card. After the trial has ended you will automatically be put on the cheapest plan. If you don’t want to do this, you can cancel the process from within the dashboard. The free trial option enables you to get to know the full power of the platform at no additional cost.
Conclusion – SEO Powersuite vs SEMrush
As you might have noticed. There are no ‘winners’ or ‘losers’ in this review. Both tools are great, but I recommend using them in different situations.
Both platforms have common features for keyword research, keyword position monitoring, backlink and website auditing, and so on. SEMrush has a more features and is much more suitable for doing competitive analysis If you’re a website owner or individual who’s mostly doing SEO activities, SEO Powersuite is a great choice. For all other users, including marketing agencies and larger organization, I would recommend SEMrush.
SEMrush is (much) faster to use. If you’re an online entrepreneur or a digital marketing agency who need a broader range of tools, that are not only SEO focused, SEM SEMrush is the better choice.
Note: If you’re still clear about which tool is best for your situation, shoot me an email – maybe I can help you out.
Another option is to download the free version of SEO Powersuite, while at the same time using this free SEMrush trial. Comparing the two platforms is the best way to know which one is best suitable for your business situation.