Backlinks are an essential part of search engine optimization, so monitoring your and your competitors’ backlinks  is a key to success. We are going to discuss a lot of different options with their pros and cons, paid and free services, but always keep in mind that you always get what you pay for.

Free Backlink Tools

Let’s start with reviewing some options if you want to monitor your backlinks for free.

1. Open Link Profiler

OLP is an amazing source for your backlink reports. It doesn’t have a lot of limitations built in, so you can view the whole report for free. They also offer some other tools for backlinks research but they’re rather useless. OLP is a promo tool for Seo Profiler, which tries to upsell the premium version but nothing right in your face.

2. Ahrefs free backlink checker

Ahrefs is a premium service, but you can use their backlink checking tool for free with certain limitations. Definitely one of the best free options on the market.

3. Small SEO Tools

This is a great little tool that let’s you analyze the web pages that link to your website. It’s pretty limited in functionality like any other free backlink checker. It will show the number of backlinks to your domain or specific page, how many domains/ips refer to your’s, domain authority and how many of those links are dofollow and nofollow. They will only show you the top 10 links and if you want to see more – get a premium subscription from Ahref, but we’re going to talk about it later.

4. SEO Super Tools

Same as the first option but it doesn’t try to sell you the Ahrefs subscription on any click, but sometimes retrieves worse results, because their database is not as deep yet.

5. Backlink Watch

Not the best user interface but finds results that SEO Super Tools misses, so it’s a good idea to use both for the same search.

6. Google Search Console

While it’s a great and absolutely free tool to analyze backlinks – you are limited to your domains only, so you won’t be able to look up what helps your competitors get more SEO juice.

7. Majestic Site Explorer Preview

Majecstic is one of the most established SEO platfrom in the industry. It’s a premium SEO platform, but they allow you to have a glimpse at some of their tools for free – Site Explorer is one of the examples.

8. Free/Trial Accounts

We would suggest to try is way as this might be your best option. While you haven’t decided if you want to invest in a proper SEO tool you can try all of them! Usually they offer 1-2 weeks of trial but usually you can find a special promo links that offer up to a month of free premium account. So you can use premium platforms for at least a couple of month for free before you decide if you want to invest in one of them. In terms of free tiers a great example would be SEM Rush and MOZ.

Premium Backlink Tools

Now let’s have a look at paid options. Keep in mind that paid doesn’t just mean “same as free but without limitation”. If you’re going to invest in premium platform you not only be able to analyze where your backlinks are coming from, but also monitor any changes, receive reports and also get access to a whole bunch of other SEO tools that will help you imrpove your rankings and analyze your competitors.

1. Ahrefs

A we mentioned earlier, Ahrefs is one of the best if not the best place to go for backlink reports. In our testing Ahrefs was able to dig up the most backlinks, sometimes the difference was huge. If backlinks is the only thing you care about – it’s the way to go in our experience. But if you also want more in-depth SEO tools too – keep reading.

2. SEM Rush

While we wouldn’t rank as high as Ahrefs in terms of backlink reporting and monitoring, but they offer a great number of industry-leading SEO tools at a great price and also have a free tier (it is rather limited, but still has a lot of value).

3. MOZ

Moz’s Link Explorer is an incredible tool for analyzing backlinks for you and your clients. You can download the report and create a spreadsheets with tabs for your competitors. You can sort by Link Equity (dofollow vs nofollow) and remove the nofollow links, remove links with high spam scores and low domain and page authority etc.

4. Majestic

You can use this SEO tool for almost everything, from reviewing our own backlink report to competitor analysis. It is an awesome tool for filtering out links from spammy domains. Topical Trust Flow is another great feature that shows you whether referring domains are relevant to your niche.

5. Is that it?

No, there is a lot of SEO tools that provide backlink checking, analyzing and monitoring services. We mentioned the best tools that most SEO experts use (and there is a reason for that), but we would like to mention a couple more, because having options is always good! Also, it’s worth noting that some less known solution offer better plans and pricing that might work better for your business needs. Some great tools are: