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Apr 19, 2023

Head-to-Head: Marketmuse vs Surfer SEO - Who Comes Out on Top

Priya Jamba, Content Marketer
Priya Jamba
Head-to-Head: Marketmuse vs Surfer SEO - Who Comes Out on Top


If you're looking for an SEO platform to help optimize your website's content, two of the options out there in the market are MarketMuse and Surfer SEO. Both offer features to help you improve your site's search engine rankings such as content analysis, keyword research, and competitor analysis. 

But which tool is right for you? In this blog, we'll closely look at the similarities and differences between MarketMuse and Surfer SEO to help you make an informed decision. 

We'll explore the key features of each tool, as well as their strengths and weaknesses, to help you determine which one is best suited to your specific needs. Let's get into it, shall we? 

Although Surfer SEO and Marketmuse have their own advantages, Scalenut outshines both of them. If you want to witness its effectiveness firsthand, you can sign up for a free 7-day trial today

What is MarketMuse? 

MarketMuse is a software that aids businesses in their strategy and optimization requirements. Its primary advantage is its capability to automate content creation and optimization tasks through AI.

It allows its users to devise a content strategy that is consistent with their targets and objectives. By leveraging natural language processing (NLP), it generates preliminary drafts of blog posts and content briefs that writers can use.

The platform's AI-powered insights equip companies with data-driven knowledge, which they can utilize to make informed decisions about their content and improve its performance.

MarketMuse Features

1. Content Brief Creation

Marketmuse leverages AI tech to help you create content briefs. The content brief suggests titles, subtitles, user intent,  related topics, inbound and outbound linking suggestions, and social listening capabilities.

2. Content Clusters Creation and Analysis

With MarketMuse, you can identify which topics to pursue based on their value and how difficult it will be for you to rank for them.

3. Content Evaluation 

MarketMuse offers an evaluation of your existing content. It provides you with insights into the topics you have covered, the quality of your pages, and optimization recommendations to enhance your content further. 

Moreover, MarketMuse can help you analyze your competitors' content quality on similar subjects, providing you with valuable information that can improve your content strategy.

4. Keyword Research

MarketMuse enables you to make objective keyword choices by connecting topics, keywords, and questions. 

Who Should Use Marketmuse? 

  • E-commerce companies
  • Content marketers
  • Marketing agencies
  • Content creators

Marketmuse Pros 

  • MarketMuse has an efficient content inventory management. 
  • MarketMuse offers a free trial to its users.

Marketmuse Cons

  • Some reviews suggest that the platform can be slow to respond at times. 
  • It doesn’t always provide accurate results.

MarketMuse Cost 

Marketmuse offers three subscription plans along with a 7-day free trial period. Here's an overview of Marketmuse pricing. 

  • Standard: At $149 per month, the Plus plan provides access for one user and one domain, with a limit of 100 queries monthly. It is ideal for individuals who post content regularly. 
  • Team: This plan provides unlimited queries and briefs to three users at $399 per month. It is ideal for agencies and small teams. 
  • Custom: This plan includes unlimited users and is ideal for large teams that handle a lot of content every day. 

What is Surfer SEO? 

Surfer is an on-page optimization tool that analyzes the top-ranking results in the search engine results page (SERP) for a given keyword and provides a roadmap for creating highly optimized content. 

By leveraging Surfer, you can access recommendations covering critical elements like content length, meta tags, titles, and pertinent user queries that relate to your target keyword.

This content optimization tool examines your content for over 500 ranking signals to boost your chances of achieving a higher rank in the SERP. Additionally, the platform is renowned for its intuitive user interface, which makes navigating and using the software user-friendly. 

Surfer SEO Features 

1. Content Planner 

Surfer SEO offers a solution to plan your content and optimize it for improved rankings and increased traffic. Through their in-depth SERP analysis, you gain valuable insights into your domain, industry, and niche, which can facilitate your content planning process.

2. Search Intent Detector 

Surfer's search intent detector is a tool that helps SEO professionals to ensure that their content addresses the intent behind the search query. Creating content on the right topic is not enough if it does not align with the search intent of the audience. 

By using Surfer's search intent detector, you can optimize your content to cater to the specific needs of your audience, making it more relevant and valuable.

3. Internal Link Suggestions 

With Surfer's advanced analysis tools, you can identify the best internal links to include in your content to build relevant topic clusters. 

Who Should Use Surfer SEO? 

  • SEO Professionals 
  • Agencies 
  • E-commerce Store Owners 
  • Content Writers
  • Bloggers

Surfer SEO Pros

  • It’s a user-friendly tool that both beginners and professionals can easily use. 
  • Performs quick content audits to save time.

Surfer SEO Cons

  • The tool often produces inaccurate results. 
  • There is no free trial available for this tool.

Surfer SEO Cost

SurferSEO offers different pricing plans ranging from $49 to $199 per month. Read on to learn about Surfer SEO pricing in detail. 

  • Basic: The basic plan is ideal for individuals wanting to build a single website and costs $49 a month.
  • Pro: The Pro plan is suitable for small startups with up to three team members and five websites, priced at $99 monthly.
  • Business: The Business plan is designed for larger companies and costs $199 per month, allowing up to ten team members to join the account.

Marketmuse vs Surfer SEO: In-Depth Feature Comparison

Now that you have a fair idea about both tools, let's move on to compare the two. 

Surfer SEO vs Marketmuse: Keyword Planning/ Keyword Suggestions 

Both Surfer SEO and Marketmuse provide relevant keywords for your content using SERP analysis. In practice, MarketMuse seems to excel in providing relevant keywords and insights. Unlike Surfer SEO which only provides CTC and search volume of keywords, Marketmuse also offers keyword difficulty scores to its users.  

Winner: Marketmuse

Surfer SEO vs Marketmuse: Content Cluster 

When it comes to creating content clusters, both tools are quite effective. Surfer SEO allows you to create a content brief for your cluster, which includes information on the target keyword, subtopics, and related keywords. It also provides you with a content score for each article in the cluster, which can help you identify areas where you need to improve.

Marketmuse, on the other hand, provides you with a content strategy that includes a list of related topics and keywords to include in your content cluster. It also provides you with a score for each article in the cluster, which reflects how well it matches the user intent for your target keyword.

Winner: It’s a tie. 

Surfer SEO vs Marketmuse: Content Monitoring 

MarketMuse provides SEO content audit tools that enable you to monitor the SEO performance of your posts consistently. With MarketMuse's inventory feature, you can keep track of your website's posts, including authority scores based on backlinks, content quality, and a personalized difficulty score.

On the other hand, Surfer lacks an inventory feature, but the platform offers an SEO audit tool that lets you analyze your previously published pages. This feature is particularly helpful in identifying which of your older posts require the most SEO assistance.

Winner: Both are unique in their own way. So, it depends upon your monitoring needs and requirements. 

Surfer SEO vs Marketmuse: User Interface 

Although MarketMuse's functionality has been acknowledged by reviewers, there have been critiques regarding the user experience, citing it as "clunky" and "slow." 

In particular, some search queries have been reported to take several minutes before showing any results. Conversely, Surfer comes with an easy-to-navigate interface you can get a hang of. 

Winner: Surfer SEO 

Marketmuse vs Surfer SEO: Which is Better? 

Both of these content planning and strategizing tools have their own unique features and benefits, depending on your specific needs.

MarketMuse stands out for its advanced keyword research and planning capabilities that help authors produce high-quality content with minimal effort. It provides a comprehensive blueprint that guides writers on the ideal structure and format to follow for better SEO performance. 

The software's keyword research tool is particularly powerful and provides a clear understanding of which terms to focus on to drive organic traffic to your website. Additionally, MarketMuse is known for producing fewer irrelevant or poorly written terms, resulting in content that is more accurate, valuable, and engaging to readers.

On the other hand, Surfer is an affordable option for agencies, SEOs, and content creators who are looking to enhance their keyword research and optimization process. 

The tool has an intuitive user interface that makes it easy for users to navigate. While it may not be as advanced as MarketMuse, Surfer's cost-effectiveness and simplicity make it an attractive option for smaller businesses or startups. 

All in all, both MarketMuse and Surfer are powerful software tools that can help you produce high-quality content that ranks well on search engines. 

MarketMuse is a more advanced option for those looking for a comprehensive blueprint to follow, while Surfer is an affordable and user-friendly option that may be more suitable for smaller businesses or those just starting with SEO. 

That said, there's a tool that offers you the features that both these software lack: Scalenut.

Scalenut: A Better Alternative 

Scalenut is an all-in-one AI-powered platform that empowers content marketers and SEO enthusiasts to take full command of their content life cycle to bring in organic traffic and build a sustainable brand. 

Scalenut streamlines the entire content lifecycle from content ideation to research and execution to optimization.

Read on to learn about the unique features of Scalenut that make it stand out. 

Scalenut Features 

1. Keyword Planner 

Scalenut's Keyword Planner is a powerful SEO tool designed to aid businesses and marketers in improving their online visibility. By analyzing popular search terms and keywords related to their products or services, users can optimize their content to boost search engine rankings. 

With this comprehensive tool, identifying relevant keywords has never been easier, making it an essential asset for any effective SEO strategy.

2. Cruise Mode - An SEO Blog Writer

Scalenut's Cruise Mode is an innovative AI technology that has completely revolutionized the way SEP-optimized content is created. With this cutting-edge tool, users can effortlessly generate a detailed long-form SEO blog in minutes. 

All that is required are a few essential inputs, and Cruise Mode takes care of the rest, producing first drafts that are informative, relevant and high-quality, surpassing all expectations.

3. Content Optimizer 

Scalenut's Content Optimizer is an effective tool for producing high-quality SEO content that appears prominently in search engine results pages (SERPs). This helps captivate your target audience and boost conversions.

4. Article Writer 

Besides, Scalenut's Article Writer tool offers a range of features to help you create high-quality articles quickly and easily. One of the key features is the top 30 URL research engine, which analyzes the most relevant information related to your topic. 

Additionally, it includes social listening capabilities and allows you to monitor social media for insights related to your topic. The tool provides citations and statistics to support your writing and add credibility to your article.

5. AI Templates

Scalenut provides a collection of over 40 AI-based templates that aid in creating persuasive marketing copy that captivates your target audience and motivates them to take action. 

These templates can be personalized to meet the unique requirements of your business and streamline the process of generating marketing content, saving you valuable time and resources.

Scalenut Pricing 

If you're interested in using Scalenut, you'll have the option to select one of three pricing plans that cater to different needs. Check out the plans below to find the one that suits you best.   

  • The Essential plan: This plan provides access to 100,000 AI words and 5 SEO reports for a cost of $19 per month, when billed annually. It's an efficient choice for individuals or hobbyists who require only basic features.
  • The Growth plan: The Growth plan, when opted for an annual plan, is priced at $39 per month and comes with unlimited AI words and 30 SEO reports. This plan is ideal for small businesses and entrepreneurs who require more advanced SEO features compared to the Individual plan. 
  • The Pro plan: The most extensive pricing plan Scalenut offers is the Pro plan, which begins at $74 per month, when you take the annual plan. It provides unlimited reports and a dedicated customer success manager to help users. It's the perfect choice for agencies and enterprises with complex needs. 

Furthermore, Scalenut provides a 7-day free trial period so you can try out the entire content suite before making a final decision based on which one works best for your SEO needs.

Priya Jamba
Content Marketer
ABout the AUTHOR
Priya Jamba
Content Marketer

Priya Jamba is a Content Marketer at Scalenut. She loves marketing technologies and believes that with the right combination of tools and creativity, every organization can build sustainable brands. She is on a mission to help marketing teams across the globe produce tangible results from their marketing campaigns. Currently, she is working along with the Product team to enhance the AI content quality through prompt engineering.

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