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3 Reasons Why Voice Recognition Will Change Our Lives – ReadWrite



Amazon Alexa fail screenshot

The idea of talking to a machine a few decades ago would have belonged to the realm of science fiction, if not idiocy. And yet, after years of rigorous multidisciplinary research and development, here we are. A future where millions of users command and interact with a growing number of devices using nothing but their voice. All thanks to cutting-edge voice recognition technology.

3 Reasons Why Voice Recognition Will Change Our Lives

Voice recognition has seen a great deal of development in recent years. Smartphones and smart speakers housing AI-based virtual assistants have become a common sight in every household. I distinctly remember trying out the Google Assistant and Microsoft’s Cortana back in the day when they were initially rolled out.

Apart from a few oddly surprising but clearly pre-programmed jokes, the speech recognition itself was fairly inaccurate and frustrating. The conversations weren’t organic. One would have to speak with deliberation, adding long pauses and clear punctuations.

All in all, it was a gimmicky-looking feature at best. Enough to stimulate your typical tech nerd but nowhere even close to becoming an everyday technology.

Source: Twitter


Fast forward to today, and cutting-edge algorithms can beat any of us at language processing.

Add to that the program’s ability to draw from various sources and languages across the internet, and the conversation is really over. However, it is impossible to ignore the breathtaking rate at which language recognition has evolved in the past few decades.

And much like smartphones and the internet, voice recognition is quickly becoming an essential and indispensable part of our lives. Therefore, it might be worth investigating what a world populated with sophisticated voice recognition algorithms might look like; and how they’ll change our lives.

Voice Recognition can Trigger a Multi-Industry Disruption, Empowering SMBs and Tech Giants Alike

The most significant benefit of being able to talk to your devices is that it is much more convenient than using a computer or a smartphone. Given this advantage, we expect voice recognition to improve the communication between brands and customers in the coming future. This will allow for a greater degree of personalization and increased customer satisfaction.

And this is already happening. Google reports that around 58% of the people who own voice-activated speakers use them to create and manage shopping lists. And around 62% of the same are willing to buy products via their speaker.

Industries like e-commerce stand to benefit the most from such a transition. Especially when smart speakers can help with reducing buying resistance for the customers. In light of such positive trends, it is obvious that voice search is changing the way we shop.

But beyond just shopping, sectors like healthcare and education also benefit immensely from voice recognition technology. Alexa is helping out senior dementia patients, while Google Assistant can help enhance learning for young kids. These are just some select examples, but they indicate a growing trend most industries are catching up on.

How Voice Recognition will take over the consumer market

Apple, Google, and Amazon (along with a few other smaller players) have been relentlessly pouring millions into research and development for application and home-based virtual assistants. It’s no secret that voice will be a massive business opportunity for these giants, hence the aggressive competition.

We don’t know how Big Tech will monetize voice recognition, but their involvement will benefit the industry for sure. As tech companies continue to develop voice technology further, we can expect voice-based devices to get better over time. We’ll see a significant improvement in the pricing, functionality, and even accessibility of these devices. With the improvement curve being an exponential one, following the development curve closely.

Such rapid growth will likely sprout multiple opportunities for voice recognition, many even within previously untapped niches and industries. Smaller software and app development companies will be incentivized to build on the shoulders of these tech giants. They’ll develop their products and service based on the underlying voice recognition architecture built by bigger companies. Allowing for drastic improvements in areas like customer experience and usability for their products.

It’s a win-win for both. Smaller players get access to sophisticated voice recognition technology, something they couldn’t develop on their own. And larger players get an ever-increasing market share by opening up their technology. This will inevitably boost voice adoption and allow the technology to penetrate deeper within the consumer market.

To conclude, voice recognition will soon be empowering a growing number of industries. The estimated market size for voice recognition-based tech and devices is expected to reach around $27.16 Billion by 2026. With such promising figures and groundbreaking implications, voice recognition is sure to take over the consumer market in the coming years.


Rethinking our Privacy in the Age of Virtual Assistants

Voice recognition has a ton of potential. It can significantly enhance business operations, improve consumer-device interaction, and carry the machine-human relationship to a whole new level.

However, behind all the hype lies a glaring but ugly problem, most of us are too afraid to admit. I’m talking about privacy.

Around 50% of smart speaker users fear that voice technology places their privacy at risk. On one level, there is always the risk of cyber-attacks and data breaches. And brands are trying to address this by developing devices that do much of the voice recognition locally. This is to prevent any data from being transferred over to the cloud. But on a deeper level, we face the problem of accidentally installing corporate spyware right into our homes.

It’s no secret that tech companies are behind every bit of data and personal information we produce. While harvesting data to roll out personalized ads may not be unethical in itself, there is certainly a line that needs to be drawn here. To be clear, smart speakers aren’t recording your everyday conversations (yet). But they still need to be ‘awake’ looking out for the trigger words that wake them up.

Again, the problem here isn’t that amazon employees are listening to your dinner table conversations; but instead of ‘privacy expectation.’

What is Privacy Expectation?

Privacy expectations, in simple terms, is the level of privacy consumers can expect from companies while using their products and services.

And new technologies, especially something like smart speakers and virtual assistants, generally tend to lower down our privacy expectations. In other words, they make us comfortable with sharing a growing amount of data as we get familiar with the technology.

At the risk of sounding like a conspiracy theorist, I’m not arguing that voice recognition (in its current form at least) is a major threat to our privacy. In fact, most companies in the business are reasonably compliant to privacy laws; and whatever audio samples that companies do record are primarily used for training the algorithms.

But the problem here is that voice recognition is significantly different from other data-harvesting technologies because it shifts the privacy paradigm much further towards the companies and away from the consumers. For example, with social media, tech companies only had access to the data that users were willing to publish online.

While with something like smart speakers, if companies choose to track us in the future, the option of choosing the information we wish to share (and not share) is simply absent. We run the risk of opening our entire lives to algorithms that’ll scan every word we utter with the sole intent of getting us to buy a pair of socks or something.

A new Privacy Paradigm

Bear in mind, though, that this is entirely a hypothetical possibility. But the fact that corporations haven’t done it yet, isn’t sufficient evidence to believe that they won’t do it in the future. After all, Companies need to make money from the smart speakers they sell, especially when they are practically giving them away for free. And the way they’ll make up for it is by locking the users in their ecosystems and targeting them with voice-based ads.

With every breakthrough device/technology, consumers are willing to trade in a bit more of their information and privacy in exchange for a better experience and service. Voice technology takes it to a whole new level because the data we are talking about here isn’t digital but biometric. No other consumer technology in the past has opened up such large volumes of biometric data to algorithms, and the implications of doing so can go way beyond our wildest speculations.

Is this alarming? Yes. Does that mean that voice recognition will spell an end to our privacy? Most likely not. The takeaway here is that voice recognition will trigger a new conversation around privacy. Consumers will have to be ever more vigilant about who collects their data and how it is used. And businesses will have to be more transparent and consumer-centric with their privacy policy. Ultimately, wide-scale adoption of voice technology will certainly shift our current privacy paradigm.

How Voice Recognition Will Change Who We Are.

The interesting thing about conversing with a smart speaker is that it’s not the same as how we usually communicate. Everyday conversations are full of several subtleties like body language cues, facial expressions, and interpersonal chemistry—stuff that’s simply absent in a smart speaker.

More than that, smart speakers are designed to be ‘smart’; coupled with the internet, they are practically omniscient and considerably more engaging and entertaining than other humans. Is it plausible then that interacting with my amazon echo could change the way I communicate?

Could it inflate my expectations when it comes to conversations? Leaving me dissatisfied and thus, less interested in talking to other people. I know that sounds far-fetched, but if video games can change our brains and texting can change our language, why is it a stretch to assume that voice recognition can change how we communicate?

Voice-based virtual assistants are expected to do well in areas like education and even therapy. These are places that were traditionally thought to be the forte of humans. But it isn’t just the assistant’s universality that is fascinating here, but also its personality. Alexa isn’t just an assistant. It’s no longer just a tool, but with every patch and update, as its engineers strive to make its responses look more organic, Alexa slowly gains personhood.

That opens a brand new can of worms. We pass on a whole lot of power over to our assistants (and by extension, the companies that control them) the day we start treating them like people and not machines. And although that makes a great science-fiction plot, we must admit that such a future is much closer than it appears.

Voice recognition and AI

Consider the example of Replika. Replika is a chatbot app marketed as ‘the companion who cares.’ I discovered Replika from the Youtube comment section of a music video. It turns out when users expressed that they felt lonely, Replica recommended them a music video to make them feel better. And it seems like it worked. The comments section is teaming with warm messages and love letters directed to Replika as people express their gratitude towards the AI.

And Replika is just a chatbot, a good one I bet, but still a chatbot. Imagine then what fully flushed out voice assistants—programmed with a natural-sounding human voice and empathy—could do.

If virtual assistants and chatbots can promote music to their loyal users, they can just as easily promote products or ideas. Don’t get me wrong, It’s fine as long as our Personal AIs tell us silly jokes and offer trivial recommendations. But the fun quickly ends the day they start telling us what is true or who to vote for. Bear in mind that the distance between the two is alarmingly short and constantly shrinking. Again, if social media can impact our political views, why can’t voice assistants?

I admit these are some extreme examples. And I do not wish to indicate that the voice assistants are inherently bad or evil. My only claim here is that voice recognition can fundamentally change not just the digital-human interface but also our everyday lives.

As we get comfortable with using voice just as much as we use our screens, we might also end up getting comfortable with trusting algorithms just as much as we trust people. Voice recognition is the humanization of our machines at its finest.

In Conclusion

Voice recognition is an upcoming groundbreaking technology with far-reaching implications, especially in contrast with its initial use cases. And while it can be alarming to witness Tech giants racing for an oligopoly within the sector, the presence of reliable free and open-source voice recognition alternatives is certainly assuring.

In the coming years, we can expect voice-powered devices to improve our business as well as personal experiences. Having meaningful conversations with our computers will no longer be science fiction. Wide-scale voice adoption will compel us to think deeply about areas like privacy and the influence of technology on our lives.

It’s an exciting future full of ecstatic adventures and unexpected dangers. And although we may not know where voice recognition might take us, we can at least know for sure that it’ll change the world as we know it today.

Image Credit: jessica lewis; pexels; thank you!


The Future of Calendars: Predictions and Trends




We live in a world where online calendars are a part of our daily lives. No matter how diligently you use an online calendar, you’re still benefiting from it. For instance, you might be reminded to send a birthday card online, schedule events or business meetings, or block out your day.

It is important to realize that online calendars are still a relatively new productivity tool that is rapidly developing. As a matter of fact, your online calendar is becoming more of a personal assistant that will advise you on how to spend your time best. But, there is so much more than calendars are capable of in the future, such as the following predictions and trends.

Solving scheduling problems.

“So far, it looks like the reinvention of the calendar will happen in two phases,” notes David Pierce for Protocol. “First, users will get access to a new set of tools, integrated with Google and Outlook calendars but opening up lots of new features.”

After that, calendars will be turned into a standalone service if they prove successful. In the same way, Slack is to email, Zoom is to a desk phone, and Airtable is to Excel, all these companies hope to be to your Outlook calendar, he adds. “Time is money, all these calendar companies will argue to investors and customers, and we’ll save you both.”

“We’re only at the beginning of the first phase, though, and still attacking the first problem worth solving: scheduling. How about one solution? It’s as simple as speeding up the process.

Superhuman, for example, scans emails for dates like “next Friday” and lets users send invitations accordingly. Scheduling is, in essence, an email problem. As a result, it should be available as an email solution as well. In a similar vein, Vimcal, often referred to as “Superhuman for calendars,” is a new app that focuses on speed, and CEO John Li said most people want meeting creation to happen lightning fast.

Calendar is another option if you want to speed up the scheduling process. The Find a Time feature in Calendar allows you to schedule with others quickly. Using multiple calendar users, create events based on their availability and see when they are busy.

Chatbots will be able to organize your meetings.

Professional life has become quite complicated following the pandemic. For example, working remotely from home isn’t as straightforward as it seems. Many of us find it hard to keep up with the increasing demands on our time.

At the same time, the number of American employees working remotely is expected to increase to 36.2 million by 2025. So, we’re going to have to get used to these new working conditions. Thankfully, technology can save the day.

The majority of the time, work involves scheduling meetings and being on time. In order to make your life easier, you can use a chatbot to help you set up meetings. Chatbots can still be useful as an additional meeting planning tool, such as SharePoint calendars.

You can also schedule meetings using Messagely or TARS. It is also beneficial to manage teams remotely and track their time by using a time tracker. It is possible to balance work and life with the help of these chatbots.

Chatbots and software powered by artificial intelligence also show great promise for helping businesses become more productive and profitable. For example, a phone validator app checks the validity, type of line, network carrier, location, etc., of the line to improve productivity.

These chatbots can handle scheduling and organizing meetings while you focus on other important tasks.

Calendars will become even more intelligent.

Smart calendars or intelligent calendars collect every schedule or action to boost productivity and simplify management using intelligence or automation. Using an intelligent calendar will help you establish boundaries between your personal and professional life.

As well as blocking time, you can reduce the time spent on certain tasks manually. Your ideal workweek can be automatically scheduled and managed using a smart calendar. Besides scheduling tasks, you can use an intelligent calendar to increase efficiency and reduce human dependency.

It goes without saying that an intelligent calendar can enhance productivity and save you time. In an effort to streamline meetings, increase event aggregation, and reduce time wastage, intelligent calendars have become a necessity due to the following:

  • Notes can be jotted down in the calendar to help keep track of important information and deadlines.
  • Synchronize your personal and work calendars.
  • It is possible to get information from smart notes that will help you determine what actions to take.
  • Organizes all your meeting invitations
  • From the app, you can get relevant information about the weather, traffic, and drive times.

With Motion, for example, you can always know what to do next. It creates a day-by-day schedule based on meetings, giving you a minute-by-minute overview. Trevor AI is another AI calendar app that helps you organize your day by keeping track of your lists of tasks to do; this AI calendar app puts one task at a time so that you work more efficiently.

Furthermore, Calendar can provide smart suggestions on when, where, and who to invite when scheduling meetings. It’s not magic. With artificial intelligence and machine learning, Calendar can create a unique scheduling experience for you.

Finally, intelligent calendars can help you become less distracted and more productive.

If you block out 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. in your calendar for undisturbed work, quiet time is from 8:30 am to 11:30 am. Your calendar will automatically block out this time instead of creating a recurring event.

During this time, you may find your calendar automatically disables distractions like email and social media notifications. It’s possible that your calendar will determine when you’re most productive as well. As such, if you fade out every 50 minutes, you’ll be reminded to stretch and take a break.

And, that’s just scratching the surface. Considering that the size of the global artificial intelligence market was $136.55 billion in 2022 and is projected to increase by 37.3% from 2023 to 2030, calendars will continue to become more and more intelligent.

The AR calendar will bring your calendar to life.

It’s true that some companies have been using augmented reality (AR) to make plain old paper calendars more interactive for the past several years.

As an example, once you download an app, you just need to point your phone at a calendar image and tap the screen. Using AR, Tengo Interactive created an airport calendar that provided users with a behind-the-scenes view. Other companies have created wall calendars that utilize augmented reality to explain their entire product range.

By 2028, the AR market is expected to reach $97.76 billion. Due to this, augmented reality calendars and marketing opportunities will continue to expand rapidly.

By using this technology, you will be able to walk through a property in virtual reality. From there, you might be able to make an appointment with the realtor if you like what you see.

If you are planning a trip to the Grand Canyon, you could experience the destination before booking the trip. Or, you could view local restaurants, salons, or museums. You then have the option to make reservations or book tickets and have them automatically added to your calendar.

Use ChatGPT prompts to manage your time.

On November 30, 2022, ChatGPT was launched, which quickly sent the internet into a frenzy. Just one week after it was launched, OpenAI’s chatbot reached 1 million users. It also gained 57 million users in its first month and is supported by Microsoft’s $10 billion investment in Open AI.

Still not impressed? After two months of launch, ChatGPT reached 100 million monthly active users, making it the world’s fastest-growing consumer app. And some people have even dubbed it “the best AI chatbot ever released to the general public.”

As a result, it would be remiss of us not to mention ChatGPT. Furthermore, the app deserves its own section due to its popularity.

But, what link is there between ChatGPT and calendars?

In particular, Chat GPT can help you locate open times on your calendar for dental appointments or team meetings. In order to fix this problem, you might write a prompt telling it what your schedule looks like for the week and ask for a reorganization.

As well as scheduling meetings and appointments, ChatGPT can keep track of deadlines and deliverables for event managers. ChatGPT’s natural language processing feature enables event managers to input their requirements and view their schedules on a calendar.

Some of your chores will be taken care of by your calendar.

“Online calendars aren’t merely more useful than their paper peers,” writes Howie Jones in a previous Calendar post. “Today’s top calendar apps can recognize and prevent double-bookings.” Others can adjust meetings across time zones.

But, over the next decade or so, how much more will online calendars be capable of?

“While I wouldn’t hold out for magically tackling your chores for you, there are many more online calendars will be able to do by 2030,” Howie adds. You may see the following upgrades:

Book travel.

As your calendar continues to evolve, your reservations will be made for you. How? Several popular online calendar apps will integrate airlines and hotel services. From the same app, you can decide when and where you want to go.

Scan and plan.

Let’s say that you walk past a flyer or a billboard advertising a local event. Rather than scanning down the information, why not let your calendar app copy it down for you?

Suggest nearby events.

You can use your mobile device’s location tools to find out where you are. Your calendar app will then show you all events within a specified radius when you choose the day and hour. As long as it knows your preferences, it won’t suggest a roller coaster park if you hate them.

Tend to your home.

Google Home and Alexa will soon be able to connect with your online calendar, so you can schedule actions for each device connected to your smart home network.

Maintain your vehicle.

Changing your car’s oil and rotating its tires should be done every few thousand miles. Using your calendar app, you can keep track of your mechanic visits and schedule future appointments. With the help of an app like Google Maps, it will alert you when you have reached your mileage threshold. The app will suggest a highly-rated mechanic if your current mechanic is unsatisfactory.

Published First on Calendar. Read Here.

Featured Image Credit: Photo by Samson Katt; Pexels; Thank you!


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Top 10 Software Development Companies In Chicago 2023



Jigar Agrawal

Finding top software development companies in Chicago is never an easy choice. Chicago is a significant technology hub, and there are thousands of companies that have offices in this region. This makes choosing your partner difficult. But not from now. If you stick through the end of this article, you’ll know the software development companies you should approach whenever you need any services.

List of top 10 Software Development Companies in Chicago For 2023

1. eSparkBiz

eSparkBiz is a software development company with multiple decades of experience in serving international and local clients. The company has multiple offices around the globe and offers hiring models that are suitable for customers of all sizes.

It offers services like digital transformation, software development, web app development, mobile app development, AI/ML, Data Science, In-depth Analytics, IoT, and Blockchain development. This company is a one-stop solution for all your software needs, and you’ll get the best solutions from their experienced staff.

eSparkBiz also provides end-to-end product development and maintenance for startups. So, if you’ve got a great idea, give them a ring and get it transformed into a business with their expertise.

2. Forte Group

Forte Group is a large software development company from Chicago with 22 years of industry experience. The company has more than 900 software professionals working on different projects and technologies for their global clients.

The company provides product management, QA, Ecommerce Strategy, and enterprise software engineering services. Forte provides end-to-end product development and maintenance for customers around the world from its ten global office locations.

3. Highland

Highland is another company on this list with multiple decades of experience. It assists organizations in developing, designing, scaling, and customizing digital goods, experiences, and companies that benefit others. It has an extensive portfolio of projects, and till now, it has helped its clients launch over 350+ ground-breaking products.

The company provides innovative business solutions and helps companies with digital transformation and innovation needs.

4. Launchpad Lab

Launchpad lab is a team of digital product specialists who collaborate with you to change your company by using the relevant services, talents, and technology. The company provides a wide variety of services like web app development, mobile app development, UI/UX design, product strategy, and salesforce development.

If you want to work with the best and most futuristic technologies, the team at Launchpad lab will surely help you. Moreover, the company has already built and maintained futuristic solutions since 2012 for companies around the globe.

5. Vault Innovation

Vault innovation is a custom software development company that provides end-to-end software engineering services. It has helped numerous business owners launch their exciting digital products and leave competitors in the dust.

The company provides various development services like Technical architecture, Backend Development, Frontend development, QA testing, and project management too.

Vault innovation also provides flexible hiring models that help you leverage the best while keeping costs in control. Whether you are looking to build an entirely new product or enhance an existing product, Vault innovation has the skilled developers to turn your requests into features.

6. Neologic

Neologic was founded in 2008, and since then, it has provided multiple software development and engineering services to global clients. Its services include process consultation, product management, and software support and maintenance over and above the core development services.

It follows a three-step process for software development and helps clients globally. Neologic consultants start with deep research on your problems and understand the core needs. After that, they design the end-to-end solutions and chart out the plans, and begin developing software that helps your business.

7. Plego

Plego technologies is a software consulting company with multiple offices around the globe. It provides services like web development, eCommerce store development, AI/ML products, and many more things.

Plego has been in the software development business since 2002, and by now, it has worked with large corporations like Berkshire Hathaway, Apple, Samsung, Intel, etc.

The company offers multiple hiring models, so you can choose the one that provides maximum efficiency for your investments, and you can always change the hiring models as you advance.

8. Atomic Object

Atomic Object is a custom software development and consulting company for all your technical needs. It provides services like web development, mobile development, IoT software, Desktop applications, and Cloud migration too.

The company works with the latest technologies like Android, Swift, Azure, React, AWS, NodeJS, and many others as and when its clients require it.

9. Caxy Interactive

Caxy Interactive is one of the oldest and top software development companies in Chicago. It was established in 1999 and has been based in Chicago since then. The company provides services like web development, analytics, and design for global customers.

10. SimForm

SimForm is a unique digital engineering and solutions provider. The company provides services in four main sections such as product engineering, cloud, and DevOps engineering, Data engineering, and Quality engineering.

If you want to build exceptional products with an extensive team, SimForm is the way to go. It provides project management, design, development, performance testing, and app management services. SimForm started in 2010, and by now, it has helped clients of various levels right including startups, public companies, Fortune 500 companies, WHO, and NGOs too.


Whether you are looking for an experienced and reliable solution provider or you are looking for an innovative and experimental software development company, you have all the best options in this list. So clear your requirements, and head to any of these software development companies in Chicago to build the best technological products for your needs.

Featured Image Credit: Provided by the Author; Thank you!

Jigar Agrawal

Jigar Agarwal Digital Marketing Manager @eSparkBiz, Passionate about anything related to Digital Marketing. Wants to unlock the world of technology and Social Media where every day there is a chance of new possibility as well as innovation. He help every SaaS Development companies to improve their ROI.

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Best Moz Alternatives of 2023



SemRush and GritDaily

Every entrepreneur and small business owner needs to get SEO right if they want to be competitive in both the online and local markets in which they operate.

Making sure your website gets seen by the right people—your prospects—at the right time—when they’re ready to buy—is just the first-level challenge. You also need to make sure your site is optimized for local search traffic and ranking well organically to prospects who are in an earlier stage of the buyer’s journey.

To solve those business website challenges, many owners and entrepreneurs turn to reputable online SEO tools. For many years, Moz has been considered to be at the top of that list.

Moz and What It Can Do for Entrepreneurs

Moz Pro is a suite of SEO tools that includes keyword research, site audit, rank tracking, link building, and much more. One of the first SEO tools to hit the market, Moz Pro remains quite popular with businesses of all sizes.

However, some find Moz Pro to be prohibitively expensive, and many find its value—that is, what it offers in exchange for those high prices—to be less compelling than some of its competitors. While it does offer a free plan, that level provides access to limited features. Additionally, many users find the UI/UX (user interface/user experience) non-intuitive, with a steep learning curve.

These are just a few reasons why entrepreneurs might want to seek a different alternative to resolve their SEO challenges. In addition to tools offered by search engines, such as Google Search Console (a free tool that Google offers to help monitor site performance, indexing issues, and more), consider some of the Moz alternatives we’ve listed below.

1. Semrush

Semrush is a comprehensive suite of SEO tools that offers keyword research, competitor analysis, site audit, backlink analysis, and more. Like Moz, it will help you research and analyze keywords, including search volume, related keywords, and more.

Both sets of tools also help you choose keywords that are accessible and competitive, but SEMrush helps you assess how many links you’ll have to build in order to rank for that specific keyphrase. While Moz offers ranking data for results from Google, Bing, and Yahoo! Search engines, SEMrush only provides Google data.

SEMrush may also provide more help in the field of social media analysis with SM content optimization, management, and performance analysis tools. It offers a free trial, plus a free version with limited functionality as well as three paid plans.

Click here to try Semrush for free for 14 days.

2. Ahrefs

A popular SEO tool, Ahrefs offers keyword research, site audit, competitor analysis, backlink analysis, and more. Ahrefs lets you audit your own site for top keywords and performance, backlinks and anchor text, overall domain performance, and competitive domains.

Many users find the Ahrefs interface to be more simply designed and intuitive to navigate and use. It also provides robust domain data, including estimated domain traffic with the ability to view changes to a site’s performance over time.

Ahrefs will also show you keyword research data for ten search engines, not just Google. Like SEMrush, it lets you know how many backlinks you’ll need to build in order to rank well for selected keywords. Websites can use a free Webmaster tool’s version, or you can sign up for one of four paid plans.

3. Raven Tools

Raven Tools is a suite of SEO tools that includes site audit, keyword research, backlink analysis, rank tracking, and more. Users rank it especially highly for its keyword analysis and SERP (search engine results pages) rank tracking. Unlike some other alternatives on our list, it doesn’t offer a free version, but it does provide a free full-feature trial for seven days.

As part of its suite of tools, Raven Tools gives you access to SEO audits, on-page SEO analysis, SERP analytics, and page speed data. In addition, you can find tools for keyword tracking, backlinks tracking, and paid ad tools. With five paid plan levels from $50 to $480 a month, you can find the package that suits your business site’s needs.

4. Majestic SEO

Majestic SEO provides a backlink analysis tool that yields information on backlinks, anchor text, and referring domains. That’s the primary difference between Majestic and Moz. Whereas the latter site aims to provide a fully featured suite of SEO tools, Majestic is aimed at a narrower slice of the market. It does backlink analysis very well, however, including analysis of top incoming backlinks, tools to help you build more incoming links, comparison tools for your competitors’ domains, and other relevant metrics such as anchor texts and referring domains.

There are no free versions (and no free trial offers either, for that matter). Majestic SEO does offer three paid plans, which doesn’t provide as much choice as other sites we’ve profiled here. However, if you’re looking for help with your backlinks, it’s definitely one to consider.

5. Screaming Frog

Screaming Frog SEO Spider is a site crawler that helps you identify technical SEO issues on your site. It manually analyzes each page on your site for broken links, duplicate content, missing title tags, and much more. You can also connect it with your Google Analytics account to get the most out of the data your GA account generates for you.

Unlike many of the other Moz alternatives here, which operate on an SaaS web-based model, Screaming Frog is a desktop program for both PCs and Macs. It offers a free version and a single paid version that costs about $260 for a license that must be renewed yearly.

6. BrightLocal

BrightLocal provides a targeted set of tools that help you manage your local business listings, monitor customer reviews, and track your local search rankings. It’s a good choice if you’re looking primarily for local SEO and reputation management tools, with access to local SEO and Google business profile audit reports.

BrightLocal offers a two-week free trial with access to all features, as well as three paid levels to its all-in-one suite of tools. In addition, you can pay-as-you-go for access solely to its Citation Builder tools, starting at $2 per website, including submission to hundreds of sites, removing duplicate listings, and repairing errors in existing listings.

7. SpyFu

SpyFu is a competitive analysis tool that provides insights into your competitors’ SEO strategies, including their organic search rankings, paid search campaigns, and more. If you’re mostly in search of tools for competitor analysis, rank tracking, and domain comparison functionality, SpyFu is a good alternative to Moz Pro.

SpyFu offers both a free trial and a free version, as well as three paid versions that let you run customized monthly reports.

The Bottom Line

If you need a comprehensive set of SEO tools but Moz Pro is a little out of your price range, or more than what you need, there are lots of Moz alternatives you can choose from. Consider exactly what SEO needs your site is currently experiencing before you choose an alternative SEO tool to try. For example, if competitor analysis is more important to you, look at Ahrefs or SpyFu. If you’re more concerned about local SEO and SEM, consider BrightLocal.

Check for a trial period or a free plan in order to test out the interface and UX generally, since you’ll want to pick an option that feels intuitive to use and that you can navigate with relative ease. Make sure the plan you’re considering meets both your business needs and your budget. That’s the best way to make sure you’re using the right SEO tools for your business and website.

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