The 9 Best Clearscope Alternatives in 2023

Last Updated on September 4, 2023 by Alex Birkett

I’m a massive Clearscope fanboy.

We use it at my agency. We’re power users, in fact.

However, it’s not in everyone’s budget range. And some companies have different needs when it comes to content optimization and on-page SEO writing.

In my case, I also run my personal blog and pay for all the software out of pocket. So when it came time to look into content optimization tools like Clearscope, I realized I wanted to try out other solutions that were more affordable.

So I’ve tested several at this point and wanted to make a list comparing the pros and cons of each and helping you decide on a Clearscope alternative that works for you.

First, a bit of a background on Clearscope so we can use that as a baseline from which to compare other content optimization tools.

What is Clearscope (and why do people love it)?

Clearscope is a content optimization software that helps you plan, write, and edit content to optimize your chances of ranking for a given keyword.

Say, for instance, that I want to rank for the keyword “content marketing metrics.” I simple plug that keyword into Clearscope, and it gives me an editor in which I can write my content.

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On the side, I can see a variety of recommended keywords, weighed by both importance and those that are missing from my blog post.

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As I write my piece, Clearscope analyzes it and compares my blog post with the top few pages of Google that rank for the same keyword. Then, it computes a score and gives me recommendations on how to improve it (these are based on keywords, keyword density and placement, readability, and other dimensions).

Basically, it helps you rank content, which is an obviously beneficial value proposition for anyone looking to max out the results of their content marketing strategy.

People love it because of its simplicity, its scoring model, and because of its, well, ROI – one can easily test this out by optimizing a bunch of historical content and seeing if rankings improve, and sure enough, it tends to happen.

So what about Clearscope competitors? Let’s dive in and see if anything comes close to the power, simplicity, and effectiveness of Clearscope.

The 9 Best Clearscope Alternatives

  1. Surfer SEO
  2. Frase
  3. MarketMuse
  4. SEMrush Content Assistant
  5. GrowthBar
  6. Dashword
  7. Topic
  8. Content Harmony
  9. SimilarContent

1. Surfer SEO

Surfer is far and away my favorite of the Clearscope alternatives.

First, it’s affordable. It starts at just $49/month, whereas Clearscope’s price starts at $170/mo.

Second, it integrates natively with Jasper, the AI copywriting software. I use this tool all the time to generate outlines and break me out of writer’s block. So the combination of the two is incredibly powerful.

Finally, it’s a damn good tool and I can see that it really works to rank my content. In fact, its content score component may be even more demanding than Clearscope’s, which may frustrate your freelance content writers, but it will likely make your content better in the end.

They’ve got a rich feature set. Of course, you have your content editor and keyword suggestions. They also have a content score feature that ranks your piece out of 100:

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This brings into account dimensions like word count, headings, images, and even includes where you include keywords (whether they’re in paragraphs or headers).

They also created AI generated content briefs for you and offer title and header suggestions:

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As you can see, I use Surfer SEO and I’m currently using it to optimize this very piece. I clearly recommend it (plus Jasper if you can afford the combo).

G2 Score: 4.8/5

Price: $49/mo – no free trial, but they have a money back guarantee

2. Frase

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Frase is an awesome content optimization and conversion tool.

It’s a bit broader in use case than Clearscope or even Surfer. Not only does it produce content briefs and help you optimize on-page SEO, but it offers content analytics and other features to help you measure and identify pages that may need a content refresh.

One cool thing about Frase is that they offer a ton of free SEO tools:

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This includes their version of an AI content generator (like Jasper or, an introduction generator, a paraphrasing tool, and much more.

Like the other tools on this list, Frase helps you figure out how long your content should be, what keywords you should include, how readable your post is, and how to optimize it.

They’re probably stronger on the side of generating content briefs, whereas I’d put Clearscope and Surfer a bit ahead when it comes to optimizing content that has already been written.

Anyway, I love Frase. It’s a great product and they’ve got a great team behind it. The best part? They’re even cheaper than Surfer, sitting at $44.99/mo for an introductory price.

G2 Score: 4.8/5

Price: starts at $44.99/mo – no free trial, but they have a 5 day money back guarantee

3. MarketMuse

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MarketMuse is the brand name that has been around the longest in this space and one of the most popular Clearscope alternatives. They’re also probably the most catered towards enterprise software companies.

They’re known for their AI content brief tool. As they describe it, their “patented AI collects and analyzes your content, prioritizes your best opportunities based on Authority and ROI, and builds industry-leading topic models.”

The focus on content briefs as a proactive approach, which Surfer, Frase, and Clearscope offer, but it’s not their core strength. This is the function that MarketMuse leans on most heavily, pitching to editors who are tired of spending all of their time tweaking content for SEO purposes.

With MarketMuse, you just get everything in the brief up front, and voila, you save hours on each piece when it comes to editing.

Of course, they’ve got features for historical optimization as well.

I’ve used MarketMuse the least on this list, but it’s got a great reputation in the SEO industry.

G2 Score: 4.6/5

Price: they have a free plan but it’s limited. Standard starts at $7,200/yr

4. Semrush Writing Assistant

Similar to Clearscope, Semrush’s content writing assistant helps you optimize on-page SEO for a blog post.

However, unlike Clearscope, this tool is free, and it’s also just one content optimization tool among Semrush’s entire suite of digital marketing and SEO tools.

I started using it when it was a Google Docs add-on. Now, it’s also part of the Semrush platform.

Overall new4

Like Clearscope, it gives you an overall score based on originality, readability, tone of voice, and SEO dimensions.

Check out this example for the keyword “Clearscope alternatives”

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It gives very simple SEO recommendations and writing recommendations for each dimension it uses to calculate the total score.

If you’re looking for a free content optimization tool, this is the one to go with. I also love Semrush’s entire suite of tools. This writing assistant isn’t going to be as powerful as other tools on this list, but it is useful and, of course, it’s free.

G2 Score: 4.6/5

Price: free

5. GrowthBar

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GrowthBar is a newer SEO tool, but I already love it.

They’ve got multiple features, ranging from keyword research to AI copywriting, making it a full suite of SEO tools.

Particularly as a Clearscope competitor, their AI content writing assistant, which uses OpenAI / GPT-3, is quite good.

In addition to helping you produce copy and content outlines, the tool helps you with:

  • Suggested keywords to use
  • Optimal length of the post
  • Optimal image count
  • Headline count
  • Internal and external link count
  • Flesch Reading Ease score

One thing that impresses me about GrowthBar is how frequently they add new and powerful features. They started out as a simple Chrome extension, and they’ve since added tons of functionality, including their content optimization and outline generator, as well as typical SEO features like a keyword research tool and search volume data.

Compared to other Clearscope alternatives, GrowthBar is much more feature rich.

G2 score: 4.9/5

Price: $48/mo when paid monthly (discounts for annual pricing). They also offer a free trial.

6. Dashword

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Dashword is a content optimization tool that primarily focuses on content planning and content briefs.

They’ve got a slew of free SEO tools, including a meta description generator, people also ask suggestions (for keyword research and related keywords), and a content optimization checker.

Best of all, you can try the tool out for free, no credit card or payment required.

Once you pick a topic or keyword, you’re presented with suggested outlines, as well as seeing the outlines of your competitors that are currently ranking for that keyword. This allows for great SEO intelligence and an ability to differentiate yours when producing the blog post.

Great tool, easy to use, and affordable. Includes content monitoring as well. It’s also much cheaper than other Clearscope alternatives.

G2 score: N/A

Price: $39/mo

7. Topic

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Topic is another content optimization and content planning tool that focuses mostly on generating smart content briefs.

It’s easy to use. Enter the focus keyword for your post and using the top 30 results in Google, the tool suggests what headings, questions, and keywords you should include.

Topic also has a Content Grader feature that helps you optimize your piece during and after it is written. This lets you quickly see what your draft is missing. I like to include this step in my editorial process for each article published and aim for an A+ content grade score.

Topic is a bit more expensive than other Clearscope alternatives, but not as pricey as Clearscope.

G2 score: 5/5

Price: $99 / month

8. Content Harmony

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Content Harmony is a platform that helps you build awesome content briefs and optimize your content with their AI-driven topic model.

Of the many alternatives to Clearscope, I believe this is one of the few that started out first as a content marketing & SEO agency.

They’ve got a strong feature set that helps you:

  • Analyze search intent.
  • Review overlapping keywords and entities that have to be included.
  • Study competitor document structure.
  • Build an outline that covers key questions readers have.
  • Cite & link to authoritative sources.
  • Identify visual content requirements.

And you get your first 10 briefs for $10, so it’s quite affordable.

The user interface is clean and easy to use, allowing you to expand from a target keyword and get a comprehensive content plan that saves you a ton of time on the research process as well as the content creation process.

G2 score: 4.8/5

Price: $99 per month for 12 content briefs and 50 search intent reports per month

9. SimilarContent

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Finally, we have SimilarContent. This tool helps you identify LSI keywords (the most common related keywords found in top google results), entities (anything that can appear on a web page’s SERP), and facts (facts that google knows before most people do).

This is a popular Clearscope alternative, with some 15k users.

It includes common features like calculating average word count, reverse engineering Google search results to offer suggested keywords, and giving you a content grade to help create quality content with relevant terms

It also includes AI copywriting technology to help speed up the time consuming aspect of writing a piece of content.

G2 score: 4.4/5

Price: $79 (One Time lifetime access)

Wrap up on the best Clearscope alternatives

Depending what specific features and data points you need, there are many options for the best Clearscope alternatives.

My personal favorite on this list and the one I’m using to write this is Surfer. But if you want features like AI copywriting, then perhaps a tool like GrowthBar or SimilarContent would be beneficial.

If you’re on a budget, Semrush’s content assistant is free and easy to use.

All of the tools on this list are solid (as is Clearscope). Hope you find this helpful in finding your Clearscope alternatives!

Alex Birkett

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