SEO, Excel and Chicago Crime Scenes

A number of interesting Excel plugins have popped up lately. In this post I will present a couple of tools and a few examples of what you could use them for.


SEO Tools for Excel is a powerful Excel plugin you can use for SEO and Growth Hacks (smart marketing tricks for creating growth with a minimal budget, often by programming). As an example you can find out which backlinks you have to your website (links pointing to your website form other pages) and rank them based on credibility. It might be worth your while to check up the ones with the lowest credibility and make sure they are removed in order to avoid the links lowering your own Google ranking. Niels Bosma, who are developing SEO Tools for Excel, have also connected it with the recently released Google Search Console.


An American competitor to SEO Tools for Excel is Blockspring, who has a lot of integrated services and connections to various APIs. As an example please check out the video below which show how easy it is to connect to an open API containing information about crimes conducted in Chicago. They then use Google Maps API to create a heat map showing Chicago crimes over time. In addition they also get information about what the crime scene looked like using yet another API for image recognition.



Both these tools are in many ways very powerful but there is a catch – not all the APIs out there are available for free. The Blockspring example is only viable for the city of Chicago, no other cities are available in the database. And you should not underestimate the time it takes to learn these tools. It’s a charming and very flexible tool but at the same time it would have been interesting to add a UX- and design-layer to create a more user friendly tool.