Ahrefs is one of the most popular options when it comes to using digital marketing tools. You can review backlink profiles, complete website audits, action competitor analysis and much more. In more depth, the reason this is one of the best tools to use is simply that it offers qualitative feedback for organic search reports which is essential for SEO progression. With this and a long line of other features, it’s difficult to find a platform that can offer you more as well as reliable data. Google is arguably the only competitor that can offer you more accurate data but isn’t always the most reliable, and after Google, Ahrefs is the second-largest crawler online.
But Ahrefs isn’t everyone’s ‘go-to’ marketing tool as it can cost a hefty sum to use, plus it’s not the most user friendly for people new to the SEO industry. Here’s a look at 3 of the best alternatives to try with free and paid options as factors. All of the alternatives are trusted websites with individual functionalities that make them ideal choices to improve your website search rankings.
It’s also good to know about the alternatives as when working with white label SEO companies, you’ll find different marketing tools that will be used and may even improve your analysis.
Ubersuggest is known for being one of the best free SEO tools to use. With a wide range of easy to use features, this website ease’s both SEO professionals and business owners alike into its operating system.
Below are the key reasons for using Ubersuggest:
- Keyword Research
- Backlink Analysis
- SEO Reports and Audits
- Topic Research
While Ubersuggest is still a free option, you can now pay for additional features to further help your website’s performance. But for anyone just starting out, the free option is recommended as it will give you everything you need to start optimising your website.
In comparison to Ahrefs, Ubersuggest is a high-quality tool but it does lack some features, but in a price comparison, the latter is much more affordable. At just $29 Ubersuggest is around a third of the Ahrefs lowest priced package. To summarise, if you have a small budget or you’re working on a single website this is a great alternative, however, if you’re working on multiple websites or clients, you’ll find the paid version or Ahrefs will be a better choice.
SEMrush is a renowned platform that competes with Ahrefs in scale. Most would agree that this SEO tool is the closest to Ahrefs in terms of its features and user experience.
Key reasons to use SEMrush including the following:
- Traffic analysis (similar to what Google Analytics offers but all in one place)
- Backlink analysis
- Ability to track keyword rankings
- SEO website audits
- On-page optimisation analysis
- Plus much more in-depth website detail
When compared to Ahrefs it’s a very close call, both are similar in terms of features and pricing with less than $1 difference in their starting prices. So if you’re looking for the closest alternative, SEMrush would be the first choice, but if you’re wanting something different or affordable, it’s not the cheapest available.
With the bold claim on their website that Monitor Backlinks is “The best monitoring tool for backlinks and keywords, period” it’s certainly worth a try depending on what you want from your Ahrefs alternative.
While its app developments and user interface make this tool easy to use, it does lack a USP. Essentially it’s a combination of Moz and Majestic and pulls data from these platforms, so if you already have these, it might not give you new feedback to work from. Monitor Backlinks does add some extra features to try if your primary focus is building links.
Monitor Backlinks features include:
- Current Link Analysis
- Competitor Link Analysis
- Rank Tracker
- Updates in link changes
- Disavow Tool (A fast and efficient way to identify bad links and remove them).
For professional use, Monitor Backlinks has limited features in comparison to Ahrefs and could hinder your analysis if you’re dealing with a large website. For example, while Ahrefs can pull data from 10k of backlinks, Monitor Backlinks only does 4k. On the plus side, Monitor Backlinks starts from half the price of Ahrefs at less than $50. If you’re looking for a tool that specifically focuses on backlinks, this is a good reliable option, but be warned that it does lack some of the essentials such as organic traffic reports, domain comparisons and a keyword tool.
You can trial Backlink Monitor for free before you commit to it so it’s worth downloading to see if it suits your current SEO needs.
Whilst Moz Pro is a good tool for SEO, the features aren’t quite as advanced as its competitors, namely Ahrefs and SEMrush. The main problem is that it hasn’t been able to keep up with the innovative changes that are being made to the other tools, despite it having the basic tools. As a result of this, the larger agencies with bigger budgets are simply unlikely to be as invested in it.
Feedback from users and algorithm updates are at the centre of the Ahrefs and SEMrush tools, whereas Moz Pro is not as advanced. Moz Pro has made one improvement recently, which is their keyword tool “Keyword Explorer”. As with many of these tools, you can opt to pay a higher subscription fee to access a greater range of features, although again, if you are going to pay for the premium version of Moz, choosing Ahrefs or SEMrush might be the more effective choice for some people.
It is undeniable that Ahrefs and SEMrush have more advanced features, although Moz do have a very in-depth keyword tool that is professional and efficient. This feature is also good for generating long-tail keyword suggestions, although again, this isn’t to say that the tool is better than SEMrush and Ahrefs. The backlink checker can compete with the performance of these two competitors, but overall, it lacks the overall features. If a focus on keywords and backlinks is what you are looking for, then this can be a great and affordable option.
Moz is a good choice if you have a specific reason for not using SEMrush or Ahrefs, and the key spelling point of having the domain authority checker built into the webpage is an advantage, although this wouldn’t be enough to justify a similar price to the main competitors.
As mentioned Ahrefs is one of the biggest and best digital marketing tools for good reason, however, there are viable alternatives out there which might be the right choice for your business in terms of the tools available and your budget. If you are unsure about any of the features, it would be worth doing more research or getting in contact with the companies directly so they can help you to navigate the tool and make the right decision for you and your business.
Whether you’re a freelancer, work for a digital agency in Manchester or in-house in London most SEO’s use a variety of tools to assure they’re analysing the most accurate data. This is often the most accurate way to read and analyse data to maximise the potential of your client’s SEO strategies.