As a digital marketer, could anything be better than being able to spy on your competitors’ SEO strategies, their keywords, their backlinks, and other aspects? Well, Ahrefs allows you to do all of these, and also offers its users the biggest backlink index than all the other tools. Ahrefs comes with a free trial period of 15 days; however, it is a bit on the pricier side. Through this Ahrefs review, I will walk you through the tool, thereby, helping you decide whether the tool is worth its price or not.
What is Ahrefs all about?
For those not acquainted with this SEO tool, the Ahrefs application helps you to analyze your site’s backlinks profile and your competitors’ sites effortlessly. Also, it comes in handy in exploring the most profitable keywords for both organic as well as paid search. In case you find yourself inept at finding relevant keyword ideas, Ahrefs comes to your rescue and provides you with the most accurate traffic estimations. Let us explore the unique features of this tool that make it awesome.
Get started with Ahrefs.
Upon entering a website’s link in Ahrefs search box, you will get the following information about the site.
- Ahrefs rank: The organic traffic to a website or URL determines its Ahrefs rank.
- UR (URL ratings): The UR determines the influence of the URL by the number of backlinks pointed to it.
- DR (Domain ratings): The large backlink index makes the domain rating of Ahrefs way more precise than the Domain Authority of Moz.
The Ahrefs tool gives you a graphical representation of how the referring domains and the backlink strength have developed over time. The backlink graph will help you to spot poor backlink creation on your competitor’s site. Thus, it allows you to use your competitor’s low growth of backlink profile to your advantage, helping you to create backlinks rapidly.
The graph for keywords and organic traffic aids you in monitoring how organic traffic to a site has grown over a period. You can analyze this graph and find out the search traffic that a website received at a specific time. The features mentioned thus far are only basic ones. Ahrefs comes with a host of powerful features that I will help you explore shortly.
What’s so special about Ahrefs’ Backlink profile?
Ahrefs’ backlink index isn’t just their greatest strength; it is also the best amongst all the other tools. When you enter the URL or the domain name, Ahrefs displays every backlink created for that URL or domain. What really impressed me were the many powerful filters that come along with this feature You get results with many useful filters like one link for every domain display, grouping similar links, the link type (Redirect, Gov, Edu, and Dofollow vs. Nofollow), and the platforms where these backlinks are posted. The Lite plan allows you to look up 100 URLs and 25 domains per day. The Standard plan, on the other hand, helps you look up to 500 URLs and 100 domains every day.
The Broken Backlinks feature helps you to know if visitors are being directed to the broken pages on your site. You can either fix the page or reach out to people to change the link leading them to your site. Thus, you can convert the links using the broken backlink feature. I used this feature to reclaim some of the links that were no longer in use.
Anchors help you to locate the anchor text in your backlinks. Filters like 2 words, 3 words, and 4 words will help you to figure out anchor texts for different lengths. Also, you can remove anchor texts from Nofollow links.
Spy on your competitors’ live SEO campaigns.
New/lost backlinks: This feature assists you in finding out at what time a backlink has been built. You can choose a date, and you will know which backlinks were created on that date. This feature enables you to find out the areas that your rivals are working on for generating backlinks. The “lost backlink” feature informs you about the lost backlinks. It is especially helpful for active guest bloggers who wish to know if a blog owner has removed their backlinks from their guest posts. In the absence of this feature, you will have to keep track of your guest posts manually and ensure that the backlinks to your site are still functional. Thus, it helps you to know whether your backlinks are live or not.
Know which keywords your rivals are using.
Upon entering the URL, you can see the organic keywords which are driving traffic to your competitor’s website. If you want to some fantastic traffic-driving topic ideas for your blog, this feature will come in handy. If some keywords help your competitor rank higher, they can help you too. The Pareto Principle states that 20% of your keywords drive about 80% of your traffic. How about using the top 20% keywords of each of your competitors? The results that you will get might just blow your mind.
Content gap: Through Content gap, you can find all the keywords for which you don’t rank, unlike your competitors. It informs you about the crucial areas that you should work upon, related to content. If your rivals can rank from a specific keyword, so can you. You won’t find this feature anywhere else.
What’s so cool about Best Pages?
Ahrefs displays the top performing pages according to the backlinks. The screenshot below displays top results which are the root domain. Then appear the top pages of my site with good backlink strength. Use the “HTTP codes” filter at the top to avoid the pages with 301 directions. This feature will help you to create backlinks quickly by publishing link-attracting proven content. All that you have to do is to go through the top pages of your investors to instantly get the pages with maximum traffic. Thus, you won’t have to go through the keywords at which your competitors are ranking. Isn’t that cool?
What makes paid search a boon for PPC marketers?
Running PPC campaigns has never been this easy and fruitful. Ahrefs not only enhances the return on your ad investment, but also lets you spy on your rivals, know their targeted keywords, and view the ad copies that they are using for those keywords.
Through this feature, you can also view the top landing pages that your competitors are using. Thus, you can easily find out all the pages that deliver excellent results for your opponents. If you are considering investing in advertising, then this feature can be of great help.
Content explorer: If you have used both the Ahrefs as well as the BuzzSumo tool, then you will know how the content explorer feature alone makes the entire BuzzSumo tool redundant. Using this feature, you will know the top shared content in every niche. After the results are displayed, it allows you to filter the results based on languages, date, referring domains, domain ratings, number of social media shares, organic traffic, word count, etc. Through these filters, you can find out precisely what you need.
The referring domains filter will help you to find viral content that attracts excellent links. This feature is very useful in generating content ideas for your blog posts that can go viral, thereby, earning links and social media shares.
This feature also lets you know all the people on Twitter who have tweeted a specific content on Twitter. Thus, it gives you a chance to know about budding social media influencers and build relationships with them.
If you operate in a niche where you have to cover viral news and content quickly, Ahrefs can be very useful. It allows you to identify viral content in any niche within a matter of hours. Instead of the topic name, you can enter your domain’s URL in Content Explorer. It will display all the popular content of the site. Clicking on the ‘details’ button below each of the presented results will help you to drill down the data further.
Ahrefs also displays the backlinks and organic traffic charts of the content, as you can see in the screenshot given below. Separate tabs allow you to explore backlinks and refer anchors, domains, and organic keywords for the displayed result. There’s no wonder what you can do after knowing your competitors’ data.
Keywords Explorer: The feature ‘keywords explorer’ effectively replaces the need for any keyword research tools. It makes keyword research quick and easy. All you need to do is entering your topic idea or seed keyword. Ahrefs will calculate how difficult the keyword is, and also give you the search volume for monthly local and global searches. The keyword filters are as follows.
- Phrase match: It will let look for the exact keyword.
- Traffic share: This filter will return the percentage of the seed keyword traffic obtained by every top 10 ranking blogs.
- Also rank for: Any content that ranks for your seed keyword might also be ranking for some other keywords. This filter returns those other keywords for which that content ranks.
- Having same terms: It returns the keywords that contain words of your seed keyword.
How about some fault-finding?
Although I am completely in love with the Ahrefs tool, a bit of nitpicking will do people no harm. While using this tool, I found certain areas where Ahrefs can improve, and can impress us through and through.
- Poor UI: Despite all its fantastic features, there is something about this tool that might not motivate rookies to try it. Ahrefs’ poor user interface might come across as very complicated for someone who is using the tool for the first time. With so many things adjusted into a single page, this tool, unfortunately, comes off as rather intricate and complicated.
- Displays limited backlinks: Although the tool is somewhat overpriced, what further burns a hole in the user’s pocket is the fact that Ahrefs displays only a limited number of backlinks. It charges for more money if you wish to view more backlinks created by your competitor.
- Overpriced: With a monthly charge of INR 8000, the price of the Ahrefs tool is somewhat on the higher side. The high cost will discourage many SEO professionals who are in their learning phase to let go of this wonderful tool. With so many features, only the ones with an accurate understanding of this tool and the SEO process can benefit from Ahrefs. For a novice, who is still trying to get the hang of the SEO work, investing money in this tool might only mean squandering their money.
I could only think of these three points, and honestly, I can’t think of anything that makes this fantastic tool look bad or worthless. Although its price is an issue, the ones who are more adept at using Ahrefs will find spending money on in this tool worth every penny. Ahrefs comes highly recommended to every SEO professional and digital marketer. Get a free 15-day trial and find out yourself if this tool is worth your time and money. While you are at it, do remember to share this Ahrefs review with your friends online. Have a nice time -:)