I Tried Out the 8 Best Free Headline Analyzers — Here Are My Results

Writing a headline can be harder than writing a 1,500-word article. But that’s no excuse for writing bad ones, especially when help is so easy to come by.

Like email subject line testers, headline analyzers can help you get more clicks by using algorithms to assess factors like SEO, word count, and sentiment (is it positive, negative, or neutral?).

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There are a lot of headline analyzers out there, and as someone familiar with the overwhelm of too many options, I knew I needed to narrow down the field.

After polling co-workers, combing subreddits, and running some quick tests, I landed on eight analyzers that merited in-depth testing.

Table of Contents

If you want some perspective on the thorough, thoughtful logic behind my thorough, thoughtful rating criteria, keep reading — but if you want to get right to the good stuff, I won’t take it personally.

Jump straight to my top five headline analyzers or to the final rankings.

How I Tested

To make this a fair fight, I tested the same three headlines in each tool.

I used two winning headlines from an annual contest sponsored by ACES: The Society for Editing, one in the PR and marketing category and one from the national media organization category.

The third headline is for the article you’re reading right now.

  • Are You Pumping Up Or Pooping Out? The Perils of Exercising Too Much
  • Welcome to the office, Gen Z. You’re the only one here.
  • I Tried Out the 8 Best Free Headline Analyzers — Here Are My Results

My Expectations of Free Headline Analyzers

  • It should provide specific areas for improvement.
  • Suggestions should hold up to common sense.
  • Any numbers, measurements, or graphs should be sufficiently explained.
  • It should be easy to use and interact with.

Rating Scale

Although most tools provide one or more scores, like an “overall headline score” or an “SEO score,” I haven’t included them here. Without knowing exactly how those scores are calculated, they have limited usefulness in side-by-side comparisons.

That said, none of my five favorites had scores that strayed too far from one another. All the tools gave middling scores to the two award-winning headlines and a much higher score to this piece’s headline.

In other words: All of these headline analyzers will be most useful if search engine optimization (SEO) is your top priority.

But there’s still a few tools on this list with features that can help just about any headline writer.

To find the best of these free headline analyzers, I used a scale of 🤖 (1 robot) to 🤖🤖🤖🤖🤖 (5 robots), with one being the worst and five being the best, for each of the following criteria:

Interface: Was it intuitive and easy to understand? Were there too many pop-up ads or a prohibitive number of captchas?

Usefulness: Does the tool give specific advice, alternate headline suggestions, and/or other data? Do its suggestions hold up to common sense? Does it have any features that distinguish it from the competition?

YGWYPF: You get what you pay for. My YGWYPF score assesses the trade-offs: Do you have to provide an email address? Is there a daily limit? Are all the good features locked behind a paid upgrade?

I nixed three tools right off the bat:

1. Capitalize My Title had an eye-bleeding number of banner ads, pop-up ads, and auto-playing video ads. All five of my recommendations have similar features with a more humane number of ads.
Capitalize My Title has too many ads
2. Emotional Marketing Value’s headline analyzer is a one-trick pony. It assigns a percentage to your emotional marketing value score, but it gives very little context to what that number means.

In the biggest flub of all my tests, it identified “Are You Pumping Up Or Pooping Out? The Perils of Exercising Too Much” as being “predominantly spiritual.”

Your headline carries words that have a predominantly spiritual appeal.

3. I had high hopes for Sharethrough after reading some reviews, but it just didn’t pass the sniff test.

It insisted that “pooping” was an expletive and flat-out refused to analyze that headline.

You used an expletive in your headline. While cursing may get you clicks, it won’t reflect well on your brand. Try again.

Its boilerplate list of suggestions include “Try adding a celebrity” and “Talk about the body,” specifically “eye, ear, mouth, face, feet.”

That may be useful advice if you’re writing about an A-lister’s ears, but otherwise, hard pass.

Honorable Mention: HubSpot’s Free AI Headline Generator

We have to toot our own horn: Although not a headline analyzer per se, our AI headline generator is pretty darn good. It gives you options for headlines and section titles based on a short description and keywords that you provide.

Since it’s not a one-to-one comparison with the rest of the tools, I couldn’t give it my three headlines to analyze, so I’m abstaining from scoring it.

Interface: A clean, intuitive design guides you through a couple screens where you can select the type of content you’re publishing, what writing style you prefer, and what you want your audience to know.

If this is your first time using the Campaign Assistant, there’s a gentle learning curve.

YGWYPF: It does require you to sign up for a free HubSpot account, but you get a lot in return.

HubSpot’s free AI headline generator suggests “Discover the Top Free Headline Analyzers” as a title for this post.

Usefulness: The suggested headlines were genuinely some of the best compared to headline analyzers that include alternate headlines.

I gave it a little information about the article you’re reading right now, and one of its title suggestions was “Discover the Top Free Headline Analyzers.”

I ran a couple tests, and one suggested “Free but Not Flawless” for the You Get What You Pay For sections.

What we like: Being able to go deeper than simply analyzing a headline.

It also has a few content types to choose from — a rare feature among headline analyzers — like Google Search ads, landing pages, and marketing emails.

Best for: Marketers who want to efficiently generate ideas and who need more than just headlines.

1. AIO SEO (12/15)

Interface: 🤖🤖🤖🤖🤖 (5 robots) Ads are non-intrusive, and the site is easy to use.

YGWYPF: 🤖🤖🤖 (3 robots) AIO SEO doesn’t require your email address and it doesn’t restrict any features.

What it does have is photo captchas — not every visit, but it happened enough that I’m deducting two 🤖.  

Usefulness: 🤖🤖🤖🤖 (4 robots) A perfectly serviceable offering, AIO SEO scores the usual factors like common and uncommon words, emotional words, power words, and sentiment.

It also gives a target range for each factor, which is more helpful than just a score.

AIO SEO’s headline analyzer results for “Welcome to the office, Gen Z. You’re the only one here.”

What we like: One distinguishing feature is that AIO SEO flags the beginning and ending words of your headline, noting that most readers only look at the first and last three words before deciding whether to click.

Best for: People with a high threshold for photo captchas and want a straightforward, easy-to-use service.

2. Coschedule’s Headline Studio (10/15)

Interface: 🤖🤖🤖 (3 robots) A little busy and crowded, which isn’t obstructive for sighted users, but it was harder to navigate with a screen reader. Ads are non-intrusive and kept to a minimum.

Usefulness: 🤖🤖🤖🤖🤖 (5 robots) Headline Studio has by far the most features of any headline analyzer I tested, and its suggestions were specific and actionable, like “move your topic or keyword to the first or last three words of your headline.”

There’s also an AI chatbot with even more specific analyses as well as suggestions for alternate headlines.

Headline Studio was the only one that could analyze headlines based on content type or platform, like blog headlines, email subjects, or Instagram captions.

Headline Studio’s colorful results were the most feature-rich and in-depth, but were harder to navigate with a screen reader.

YGWYPF: 🤖🤖 (2 robots) Headline Studio earned my lowest YGWYPF score for its steep trade-offs.

Free accounts get only 10 credits a month, and the average user goes through two to four credits per piece of content. Because you have to set up a free account, you’ll find yourself on an email list.

What we like: The ability to analyze based on content type is a real winner. Also, Headline Studio saves your analyses — so even though I used up my 10 credits pretty quickly, I could go back and read the full analyses of previous headlines.

Best for: Occasional users, because you’ll zip through those 10 credits with just two or three pieces of content.

Headline Studio could also be useful for content creators writing social media headlines.

But if you publish frequent written content, you can get many of the same features elsewhere with fewer restrictions.

3. Easy Peasy AI (12/15)

Interface: 🤖🤖🤖🤖 (4 robots) Although it was the simplest of the bunch, Easy Peasy AI’s interface really worked for me, and it was the quickest to navigate with a screen reader.

Instead of colorful graphs and unexplained percentages, Easy Peasy provides a numbered list of the basics: Word count, emotional impact, use of numbers, word choice, and use of superlatives.

YGWYPF: 🤖🤖🤖🤖 (4 robots) It limits you to three analyses a day, which is pretty reasonable as far as free tools go.

Ads are appropriately sized and not intrusive. To get more than three analyses or to enable “cutting-edge AI technology for superior performance and more accurate results,” you’ll need a paid upgrade.

Usefulness: 🤖🤖🤖🤖 (4 robots) Easy Peasy gave me four specific suggestions for improvement and five alternative headlines.

But I’m deducting one 🤖for how far some of the alternate headlines strayed from their original meaning.

One of the alternates for “Welcome to the office, Gen Z. You’re the only one here.” was “Embrace the Office, Gen Z: Your Time to Shine.”

Easy Peasy AI’s results are text only, and include alternate headline suggestions.

What we like: Frankly, not having a number assigned to each score makes it easier to digest and apply the suggestions.

It also has more specificity than other tools, making it a solid choice for writers who want to get into the nuts and bolts of great headlines.

Best for: People who want to learn how to write better headlines and can work within the three-a-day limit. Also good for people who prefer text over graphics.

4. IsItWP (14/15)

IsItWP displays its results in a grid format that nearly fits on a single screen.

Interface: 🤖🤖🤖🤖🤖 (5 robots) Results are displayed in a grid-like format, which is easy on the eyes and easy to understand.

Usefulness: 🤖🤖🤖🤖 (4 robots) IsItWP covers the basics, like word count, emotional words, and power words.

Minus one 🤖for not explaining the scores: It noted that 18% of the words in one headline were common, but instead of providing a goal, it told me to use “more common words.”

YGWYPF: 🤖🤖🤖🤖🤖 (5 robots) There’s no restrictions, and the lone pop-up ad didn’t detract from the experience.

What we like: The interface stood out among its competitors — I liked seeing all the results at once with minimal scrolling.

Best for: People with higher-volume needs and want a clean, simple tool for quick headline checks.

5. MonsterInsights (13/15)

Interface: 🤖🤖🤖🤖🤖 (5 robots) Nice, clean, and easy to read and use. Ads are very non-intrusive.

MonsterInsights suggests improvements for a headline.

Usefulness: 🤖🤖🤖 (3 robots) MonsterInsights’ features don’t stand out from the crowd, but it doesn’t have any major flaws, either.

Although you have to do quite a lot of scrolling to read the entire analysis, there’s a neat summary at the end.

YGWYPF: 🤖🤖🤖🤖🤖 (5 robots) No major trade-offs in terms of limited credits or other restrictions, and it doesn’t require an email address.

What we like: It suggested using more emotional, uncommon, and power words, and it gave me goals in each category.

For instance, one headline scored 38% in the common words category, and it suggested 20 – 30% to get more clicks.

Best for: Writers who need a gut check or guidance making minor tweaks.

How to Pick the Best Headline Analyzer for You

    • The overall winner was IsItWP, for its simple graphics, the ability to see the entire analysis on a single page, and solid, if unfrilly, headline-analyzing features.
  • If you need a daily headline analyzer for gut checks or quick tweaks, you won’t go wrong with my middle-of-the-packers, AIO SEO and MonsterInsights.
  • If you use a screen reader or otherwise prefer text over graphics, go with Easy Peasy AI.
  • If you want deeper analyses, alternate headlines, or more ways of learning to write good headlines, use Coschedule’s Headline Studio (for infrequent use) or Easy Peasy AI (for frequent use).
  • It earned the lowest score overall, but its usefulness score stood a robot head above the rest. So if you want a feature-rich headline analyzer for infrequent use, I recommend Coschedule’s Headline Studio.
  • Although I abstained from giving our own tool a score, HubSpot’s Free AI Headline Generator is the best bet for marketers who are looking for something more in-depth than a simple headline analysis.

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