SEMrush Review: Is it Worth it in 2021?

Blog Marketing by Yiming Xuzhou | @siliconvalbread

Updated July 23, 2021

semrush review is it worth it?



What is SEMrush?

SEMrush is an award-winning all-in-one SEO, content marketing, competitive analysis, and keyword research tool built for any type of business.


It is widely considered to be one of the strongest search engine marketing SaaS tools you can find online in 2021. It is currently being used by companies like Quora, Tesla, HP, eBay, and much more.


With millions of professionals using it daily, what exactly can your business gain from using SEMrush?


More importantly, is SEMrush worth purchasing in 2021?


Keep reading this review to find out.


Hint: Get the free trial first!

As you can see, SEMrush is priced very high as a premium service. At about 100 dollars a month, using SEMrush with all its paid features is a big investment. If you work for a small business or startup, I would highly recommend trialing every one of SEMrush’s features first to decide if it is worth purchasing. 


This way, you can test the product for 7 days and see for yourself if the tools are worth keeping or not. Make sure to cancel your membership before the trial expires if you do not want to pay the subscription price. 


Now let’s review the exact features that SEMrush offers with its SEO and SEM toolkit.


-> 1. SEO Tools

SEMrush’s greatest strength may be its vast toolkit of SEO tools. Marketing specialists and SEO analysts have been using and loving SEMrush’s versatile offering for years. For one thing, SEMrush has a comprehensive keyword and competitive analysis tool that provides better data than Google keyword planner, and other keyword research software like UberSuggest. 


SEMrush splits its SEO tools into 5 categories:

Competitive Research

Domain Overview provides an instant snapshot of a companies strengths and weaknesses with the click of a button. It includes traffic, backlinks, SEO performance, growth trends over time, and the keywords that the company benefits most from. 


Traffic Analytics gives even more direct statistics for any of your competitors. It tells you the number of visits their website receives, the number of unique visitors, pages/visits, avg. visit duration, bounce rate, and traffic rank. All of these stats can easily be compared to your WordPress dashboard’s stats (if you use MonsterInsights for example) so you can make changes accordingly. 


Organic Research is another great tool that acts as a more in-depth version of Google’s keyword planner. The difference is that it uses your competitor’s domain to see what exactly works best for them to rank on search engines. You can then strategize your behavior based on the results. This tool makes it easy to see how different websites are performing in terms of traffic and SEO, something that you can’t really see just from searching them up on Google for example. 


Keyword Gap is a planning tool that lets you analyze a group of competitors, choose the type of keyword to analyze, and find insights for how to rank above them.

Keyword Research

Keyword Overview provides a variety of statistics related to a search term. You can use this to see how competitive it would be to try to rank for certain keywords in terms of volume, difficulty, CPC (for ads), # of results, and global trends. This tool also gives you keyword ideas by providing variations of your word, questions related to your word (you could use these for blog titles), and related keywords that also receive a lot of searches. 


Keyword Magic Tool is one of my favorites because it provides a spreadsheet similar to UberSuggest and Google keyword planner. You can see the data visualized into readable categories that tell you how difficult it would be to rank a search result with specific keywords. 

Keyword Manager is a premium tool that lets you collect all the data you look up and export it into a CSV file so you can present the data to your team. 


Position Tracking lets you see the performance of your website at any time. You can see your daily rank tracking, analyze your site on multiple devices, and create reports to show your team. 


Site Audit: SEMrush’s site audit tool is very useful for checking on issues within your website that could cause a poor SEO score such as slow-loading content, SSL issues, crawling errors, missing headers, keyword overuse, and duplicate content. With many other site audit tools on the market, SEMrush still manages to be one of the best because of its reliability and accuracy. 


SEMrush also includes tools for link building, on-page & off-page SEO, and rank tracking. Each of these categories presents even more insights into your website, its performance within search engines, and how global trends are affecting your respective industry. Overall, SEMrush’s SEO tools are 5/5, They provide an incredible amount of information that is diverse and deeply specialized. 

-> 2. Advertising Tools

SEMrush also provides a lot of detailed support with your advertising campaigns. This is done with their advertising toolkit, which is specifically made to help your search ad campaigns, social media ads, and display ads. 


Once again, you are given competitive research tools that uncover your competition’s main strategies. This time, the research pertains to their advertising strategies, budgets, and keywords. These are insights you cannot get from Google’s Adwords or other search engine marketing tools. 

Advertising Keywords

Keyword Gap is one of my favorite tools again because it lets you analyze great keywords while comparing it with your competitor’s strategies. By putting all this information in one place, it becomes very easy to strategize your own plan to advertise your website and position yourself above the competition. 

keyword gap

In addition to this, the advertising dashboard gives you essentially all the same tools as the SEO toolkit, but pertained to advertising. We love this because it lets us plan our advertising goals with the same amount of depth and precision as our SEO goals. It also gives us valuable insights to see what works as we are running the campaign itself. 


Position Tracking is a tool we love because we can see how our Ad is ranking compared to competitors. We wouldn’t be able to see this from Google Adword’s dashboard unless we tried searching for our ads manually. 

-> 3. Social Media Marketing Tools

SEMrush‘s social media toolkit gives you 4 tools to manage your social media accounts and analyze their effectiveness. If you use multiple social media accounts for your business, SEMrush allows you to create and schedule posts (so you aren’t always on your phone) and monitor the performance of your competitor’s social media. 


You can also create ads within the social media toolkit too. (beta) 


If you want to see other software tools that also let you manage multiple social media accounts (for a cheaper price than SEMrush), check out my article here


However, if you are planning on upgrading to SEMrush’s pro subscription, I would recommend sticking with their social media toolkit and dropping your other social managing software since SEMrush has a superior version. 


One thing I love about their offering is how you can boost your posts while viewing your competition. That way, you always know exactly how to gain an edge or position your offering differently.

-> 4. Content Marketing Tools

Another feature I love about SEMrush is the content marketing toolkit.


I promise I’m not just saying this. SEMrush has the best software for managing every step in your content marketing plan. How?


SEMrush lays out every segment of your content marketing strategy with a different tool. 


1. Topic Research

Topic research lets you search a general topic, discover relevant subtopics, and find popular headlines associated with the topic. It also shows you questions people are asking, the trend of the topic, and different channels to use for your content.

2. Create a Plan

In this segment, you can mark dates on a dedicated calendar where you are planning on releasing your content (whether that is a blog post, article, social media, email, etc.). You can share this calendar with your team members, assign topics for writers, and notify them at any time. 

3. Write an Article

SEMrush gives you the tools to optimize your written content to show up in search engines as well. Based on your selected keywords, SEMrush will give you recommended additional keywords to enrich your text with. You will also get recommendations for titles like H1 tags and meta descriptions. 


Personally, I like using SEMrush’s “writing assistant” tool because it gives you instant feedback on a full-length article.


As you can see here, I was using the writing assistant to write an article for my SaaS education startup. The article ultimately got posted across the web on various sites affiliated with Fox, NBC, and ABC. 


-> 5. Competitive Research

Next, we have competitive research. Yes, SEMrush has another toolkit specifically designed to gain all the knowledge of your competition. This section does include some of the same tools we found earlier, but everything is segmented nicely into a competitive toolkit. The bonus of this toolkit is the ability to look at the big picture.


With the traffic analytics tool, you can look at over 200 different competitors in your market at once. That way, you can see all the market share leaders in your industry and analyze them against each other in an effective manner. 


The market explorer tool expands on this by letting you either create a list of competitors or look at an industry as a whole. By simply typing in one domain name of a large competitor in your market, you can immediately see the market demographics, social media preferences, and many more insights on how to reach your target audience. 


If you didn’t realize, this information is potentially crucial for how you strategize your marketing plan. 


The ability to know exactly who is being targeted most effectively by your competitors is essential to your overall market research.

THE BOTTOM LINE: Why is SEMrush worth it?

In summary, you can see that SEMrush has a whole lot of tools to offer. 


And all of them provide you with some sort of value that is very difficult to get elsewhere at the same level of depth.


The truth is, SEMrush’s $100 a month asking price makes sense for a handful of reasons. 

Why buy SEMrush?

1. Using SEMrush means you can cancel subscriptions elsewhere.

If you have a premium membership for something like MOZ, Ubersuggest, or other keyword analysis tools, you can cancel these and convert to SEMrush for a service that will probably provide you with more insights. Additionally, if you are using a social media managing software like Hootsuite or Buffer, you could also cancel this to use SEMrush. I think you see where I am going with this. 


SEMrush offers a plethora of tools that you purchase in one package instead of purchasing 5 simultaneous packages from 5 different software companies. 

2. SEMrush lets you understand your competition and market at a deeper level.

If you are in the process of doing market research for an emerging business (if so you should look at these 5 things to do after getting an idea for a startup), then SEMrush still provides you with great value. All the best market research tools are provided in SEMrush’s all-in-one package so you can validate your market to a degree with a single software purchase. Additionally, SEMrush will help you see what audience to target and how best to reach them–which is incredibly valuable information.

3. You can use SEMrush for free (1 week trial! No risks or strings attached)

Again, by signing up for SEMrush’s free trial here you can take a look at all the tools and have an entire week of use, ABSOLUTELY FREE. This would be a great opportunity to do some rigorous research if you are starting a new company. You can also analyze all your competitors instantly, save the data for later, and optimize your search engine performance after. There is so much value you can take advantage of during the trial that it only makes sense to sign up as soon as possible. 


So why haven’t you started using SEMrush yet?


Bonus: Read 6 easy steps to doing SEO for your small business.


Disclaimer: Silicon Valley Bread is reader supported. This means any purchase you make from the links provided will give us a portion of commission of the sale. This money will be spent on revitalizing the website and crafting better content for you, the readers. 

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