It is the golden era of SEO and as more run towards learning it, the competition for it only seems to get tougher! The truth be told, as Google constantly evolves, most of the SEO tactics we all used years ago don’t work anymore. And so we have to work way harder to churn out content that really sticks.
So if you also want to join the race and know about the Ahrefs tool, a very common name in the SEO world, continue reading!
There are many who are a beginner and hence want to learn about as many known SEO tools as they can! And so, we are here with an honest and in-depth review of the top SEO tool, Ahrefs. In this article, we are going to discuss everything about Ahrefs, from its pros and cons to the technical aspects of it, and tell the final word on whether it is worth the hype! So without wasting another minute, let’s get right in!
- Ahrefs Overview
- Pricing and Plans
- Pros and Cons of Ahrefs
- How to Get Ahrefs 7-Day Trial?
- Ahrefs Keywords Explorer and User Experience
- Ahrefs Site Explorer Tool
- Ahrefs Backlinks Checker Tool
- Ahrefs Keywords Explorer Tool
- Ahrefs Site Audit Tool
- Ahrefs Rank Tracker
- Content Explorer
- Who is Ahrefs not for?
- Is Ahrefs the Right SEO Tool for you?
- Do We Recommend Ahrefs SEO Tool?
- Similar Products and Tools
So if hearing just “Ahrefs” doesn’t ring the bell, and you want to know more about it, read on!
If you are looking for an SEO tool that offers exceptional crawling and domain analysis and also covers all the basic terms of basic keyword research, then Ahrefs can be the right tool for you.
While this SEO tool is fairly full-featured, we found that it didn’t spend a whole lot of time worrying about end-user niceties, especially an intuitive user interface. Starting at $99 per month for its Lite plan, which is an affordable price for small businesses, it is a full-featured tool aimed mainly at people who know what they’re doing when it comes to SEO, well, it’s slightly different from the SEMrush tool. So now, let’s get started with testing the tool already and get to the main agenda – is it worth it? Let’s find out.
Pricing and Plans
Ahrefs has different plans and pricing to offer. It basically has four plans – Lite, Standard, Advanced, and Enterprise. Let’s discuss their different subscription prices below briefly.
|Lite||Starts at $99/month|
|Standard||Starts at $199/month|
|Advanced||Starts at $399/month|
|Enterprise||Starts at $999/month|
Now, let’s discuss what these plans with different pricing have to offer:
- Lite: The Lite plan on Ahrefs has pretty much everything to offer that a small scale organization may need for their business. The features included in the plan are: SEO Dashboard, Site Explorer, Keywords Explorer, Site Audit, Rank Tracker, and Alerts. As per Ahrefs, this plan is efficient for small businesses and hobby projects.
|Users: 1 power user|
|Reports: 2,500/month per user|
|Data Export: 500,000|
|Dashboard: Verified – Unlimited, Unverified: 5 projects|
|Rank Tracker: 750 Tracked Keywords, Unlimited Reports|
|Site Audit: Crawl Credits/month – 100,000, Max Pages Per Report- 25,000|
|Keywords Explorer: 5|
- Standard: The Standard plan has everything that the Lite plan has and comes in a lot more features than Lite. It has features like: 6 months of history, Position History Chart, SERP Updates, Site Explorer (includes Content gap, Broken backlinks, Broken links, Outgoing links, Link intersect, Calendar view), Content Explorer, Alerts, Domain Comparison, Batch Analysis, Reports sharing. It is a good plan for those who are professionals in SEO and take it seriously.
|Users: 1 power user|
|Reports: 30,000/month per user|
|Data Export: 1.5M|
|Dashboard: Verified – Unlimited, Unverified: 20 projects|
|Rank Tracker: 2,000 Tracked Keywords, Unlimited Reports|
|Site Audit: Crawl Credits/month – 500,000, Max Pages Per Report- 50,000|
|Keywords Explorer: 50|
- Advanced: Just as the increase in the price of the plan, there is an increase in the number of features as well. The Advanced plan by Ahrefs, which starts at $399 per month, has a lot to offer as compared to the plans discussed earlier. The big brands or businesses that work on a big scale can also rely on it. It covers the Standard plan completely and has other features like 2 years of history, Site Explorer (with Site Structure and HTML source soon), Google Data Studio, Dashboard folders, and will also have Ahrefs Search in the upcoming time.
|Users: 1 power user|
|Reports: 75,000/month per user|
|Data Export: 4M|
|Dashboard: Verified – Unlimited, Unverified: 50 projects|
|Rank Tracker: 5,000 Tracked Keywords, Unlimited Reports|
|Site Audit: Crawl Credits/month – 1.5M, Max Pages Per Report- 250,000|
|Keywords Explorer: 100|
- Enterprise: If there are huge enterprises that function on an even larger scale, the Enterprise is a go-to for them. It has many amazing features to be launched sooner and included in the plan like API, Audit log, and SSO. As of now, it covers everything as an Advanced plan, Unlimited history, Access management, Pay by invoice, and Directory listing.
|Users: 1 power user|
|Reports: 150,000/month per user|
|Data Export: 10M|
|Dashboard: Verified – Unlimited, Unverified: 100 projects|
|Rank Tracker: 10,000 Tracked Keywords, Unlimited Reports|
|Site Audit: Crawl Credits/month – 5M, Max Pages Per Report- 5M|
|Keywords Explorer: 250|
So these were the pricing and plans by Ahrefs. Now, let’s discuss the 7 days free trial by Ahrefs.
Pros and Cons of Ahrefs
|It provides an exceptional domain analysis.||Provides basic UX (User Experience).|
|Covers all basics in terms of keyword research.||All the plans come with 1 seat only.|
|Gives internet-wide crawling capability.||It gives limited SEO reporting.|
|Provides in-depth SERP analysis.||The keywords suggestions do not have relevance score.|
|An all-inclusive domain monitoring comparison.|
|Provides solid data for search volume, backlinks, rankings, and other things.|
Now that you have pretty much got an idea of what kind of SEO tool Ahrefs is, let’s head over to one of the most important parts – the advantages and disadvantages of Ahrefs. In order to be sure enough to make the right purchase without a trial, one has to go through the pros and cons of the product. So let’s dive right in and get the ball rolling!
So after understanding the pros and cons of Ahrefs, if you are looking forward to knowing more about the tool and if it offers any trial, so you can test it, follow the article.
How to Get Ahrefs 7-Day Trial?
Unfortunately, Ahrefs has stopped providing the 7-day trial that it used to give. The trial included using all the tools and features for $7 only. So now, there isn’t a chance for you to have an idea of the tool before deciding to buy it. But don’t be sad just yet, as Ahrefs still offers free access to the free Ahrefs Webmaster tools – only the Site Explorer and Site Audit features on your website. Now, let’s move on to the main part of the article, where we will explain the experience using the Ahrefs tool.
Ahrefs Keywords Explorer and User Experience
Once you have logged in to your Ahrefs account, the first thing you will see is its Dashboard, which is slightly scattered. At the top of the Dashboard, there is a navigation bar with different sections – Site Explorer, Keywords Explorer, Site Audit, Rank Tracker, Content Explorer, and the drop-down More option.
There will be the current campaigns active on your screen as you enter the Dashboard. You can view and access the API (Application Programming Interface), Ahrefs browser toolbar, domain comparison, and quick batch analysis of multiple backlinks of your website(s) here. Below the different tools tab, you can view the search bar where you can enter the keyword, domain, URL, or topic that you want the analysis for. You can simply click on to enter Site Explorer for that site’s latest monitoring data.
We tried to focus the testing mainly on the Ahrefs Keyword Explorer tool and the Backlinks part. As most business users will find themselves using the Ad-hoc keyword research feature as they try to identify the best possible search engine results pages (SERP). This way they can target with an optimization strategy that can help with the higher ranking of their pages. Initially, the keyword results page was the most simple and straightforward of all the tools. So we tested in terms of how metrics returned, and, undoubtedly, Ahrefs has enhanced its Keyword Explorer tool with interactive data visualizations of the responsive page greatly.
Where there was a basic table with metrics before, on an average monthly search volume, there were better results of cost-per-click (CPC), how many total search results were on the page. And in the keyword difficulty score, in the updated Keywords Explorer interface, we got an overview page with interactive bar charts on total search volume and clicks, volume distribution, and difficulty distribution. And below that are tables and charts that break down SERP features, volume-difficulty distribution, top countries by volume, keyword ideas, and traffic share by pages and domains.
Ahrefs Site Explorer
The Site Explorer tool comes after the Dashboard and provides users with in-depth detail of any website’s search traffic. For instance, here you can see that we have entered our website GetAssist.net on the Domain and URL search bar, so now it is showing all the information under the Overview section. The Domain Rating, Backlinks, Referring Domains, Organic Keywords, Organic Traffic, Paid Keywords and Paid Traffic’s details are provided in a simplified manner which is pretty easy to understand. You can also view the Performance graph in detail as shown below in the picture.
It shows everything about the performance of our website – from Referring domains and Organic traffic to Paid traffic. Apart from this, it also presents the data for Traffic share country-wise and Organic pages by traffic in a graphical form.
Under the Traffic share by country, you can compare the top 5 countries on the chart as well. And in Organic pages by traffic, you will be provided with data for both Pages and the Total traffic.
Ahrefs Backlink Checker Tool
After the Overview section under the Site Explorer tool, we moved on to the most important part of the tool – the backlinks profile. Under this section, we can view Broken backlinks, Referring domains, Anchors, Referring IPs, Internal backlinks, and Link Intersect. As you can see in the picture below, we entered our website’s URL in the search bar section, and it shows the whole Backlinks profile accordingly.
The Backlinks profile data to view can also be customized as per the details that you wish to see. At the top of the section, there is the option to view All backlinks, Dofollow, Nofollow (Nofollow, UGC, Sponsored), Backlink type (Regular links, Redirect, and more options) DR, Domain Traffic, and search for a Word or Phrase.
Below that, you can see the main information of your backlinks – Referring pages, DR, Domain traffic, Referring domains, Linked domains, Ext. (External Backlinks), Page Traffic, KW. (number of ranking Keywords for a particular domain), and Anchor and target URL. You can also see the first seen, last seen, and lost links of it. There is pretty much everything that you want to look for in the Backlinks, and Ahrefs has splendidly given it all in the Backlinks profile as compared to the other tools.
Ahrefs is known for the in-depth Backlinks analysis and splendid reports that it provides the users for their websites. And it is undoubtedly the best in the game when it comes to Backlinks. So if you are looking for a tool that is focused more on telling you the data for backlinks of your website, Ahrefs is definitely the one.
Ahrefs Keywords Explorer Tool
Basically, the Keywords Explorer tool gives the users an overview of any keyword. For instance, we are going to take the example of the keyword “gmail account recovery” here and set the country to the United States.
After we hit search, the results for different aspects are loaded right away, as in the picture here.
So here’s the good part – the whole data is organized and easy to understand. And if you are a beginner, you won’t have a bad time using the Keywords Explorer tool of Ahrefs.
Ahrefs Site Audit Tool
In the Site Audit tool of Ahrefs, you can see your currently running projects as shown in the picture below. We tried adding at least 5 to 6 projects for different websites, and it worked just fine.
The site Audit tool basically analyzes your websites and shows you the issues and health scores of your website. Using the Site Audit tool after adding the project, you can either import data from GSC (Google Search Console) or add it manually.
In the Overview section of Site Audit, you can view Crawled URLs distribution, Health Score, Issues distribution (Errors, Warnings, Notices), and Error Distribution.
Below this, you can also view the status of Crawled and Uncrawled links in a chart form similar to a pie chart. There is also a list of top issues and bulked reports. If you are using a Lite plan of Ahrefs, and you run out of the monthly crawled credits, you can buy more credits.
Ahrefs Rank Tracker
As suggested by its name, Rank Tracker shows you the position and ranking of your projects’ pages.
Here, we can see the Visibility, Average position, Traffic, SERP features, Positions, and Location for our website GetAssist.net’s page’s ranking. You can add the keywords that you want to track. For example, here we have taken “macbook 12in m7” as the keyword for tracking. Apart from this, you can also add the location and language as per your need.
Not only that, but there is also the option to add competitors and compare your page’s ranking with them. Once the details have been added, you can click on any of the metrics for a detailed analysis.
After going to Content Explorer, a page with a search bar will appear. Here, you can enter any topic, and it will show the ranking for the pages of that particular topic. It will also show the top authors for that topic and their total, the total number of pages, the top 100 websites, and the total number of languages.
So here, we will put the topic “gmail account recovery” as an example. You can see that it is showing all the data we mentioned above. The information is also represented in a graph form over the different years.
The pages are given along with the ranking articles from websites. It shows DR, Referring Domain, and page traffic as well. You can also view the page traffic value. This tool is pretty helpful if you are looking for a good topic to write content about, and doesn’t disappoint.
After all the thorough review of the tools from the Dashboard of Ahrefs, you may think the review is over, but! There is a More section as well in the panel of Ahrefs. It has some pretty interesting features and tools which may help you out in a quick run. If you want to know what are they about and how they can be used, here is a list of some sub-options available. It is as follows:
- Alerts: Under the Alerts section, you will simply be able to see the Backlinks, Keywords, and Mentions for your different projects. You can add new alerts as well and make sure that it is enabled for the projects that you want to get the Alerts for.
- Ahrefs Rank: Ahrefs Rank (AR), ranks all the websites in the database by the size and quality of their backlink profiles or DR.
- Domain Comparison: As suggested by its name, in the Domain Comparison option, you can compare your website with your competitor’s website and see all the information and detail about both the websites as shown in the picture below.
What’s even more interesting is that you can view the comparison information in different formats and compare up to 4 sites at a time.
- Batch Analysis: If you want a quick analysis of your website, then the Batch Analysis feature is a boon for you! All you have to do is enter your website’s domain name or URL and select the Protocol, Target, and Index for it. Once you hit Analyse, the results will be in front of you!
- Link Intersect: Another useful tool in the Ahrefs More section is Link Intersect. With the help of this tool, you can do the task of finding out which sites are linking to your competitors’ pages but not with your website. With the help of “Show link opportunities,” you can see the possible respective domains.
- SEO Toolbar: Ahrefs SEO Toolbar is a free extension by Ahrefs available for Google Chrome and Firefox. It basically provides data about SEO for the pages and websites that you visit. It has a lot more to offer than you think.
- WordPress Plugin: If you want to optimize your historical content by running content audits, then the WordPress plugin can come in pretty handy for you. It combines the traffic of both Ahrefs and Google Analytics and by using it, you can monitor your backlinks as well.
- Ahrefs API: Ahrefs API is an advanced tool that will soon be released by Ahrefs. If you want to know in detail about it, you can read about it here.
- Apps: Designed for developers, the Apps option showcases the application that is built using Ahrefs data. Got to say, Ahrefs is blooming if it is about providing apt data and information to its users and making full use of it.
Who is Ahrefs not for?
Despite being a very helpful tool, Ahrefs isn’t for everyone to use. There are some categories that it most likely doesn’t fit into, and if you are included under any of the following, then you may have to rethink getting the tool:
- Marketers with a lesser budget: If you are a smaller business and think that you can’t afford $99 a month, then you can rather invest in your content instead of the Lite plan of Ahrefs.
- Common Bloggers: If you are a casual blogger who isn’t serious about SEO, you don’t need to have this tool as a must. The tool would give deep insight, but you are less likely to get a profit out of it.
- Market Pioneers: If you are getting started with a completely new niche (for instance, making vegan products back in 2012) in the market, the Ahrefs tool won’t be of much help for you.
- Websites with Irregular Updates: If you are not the kind of person who frequently updates or makes changes on their website, then this tool isn’t for you.
- Freelancers: SEO is a time taking process that needs patience and gives results over time. And hence, those who do SEO-related tasks for random sites don’t need Ahrefs as it can confuse them.
Is Ahrefs the Right SEO Tool for you?
As you can tell by this Ahrefs review, Ahrefs is a great tool for those who are serious about their sites. So with so much fresh competition, it’s only normal for website owners, enterprises, and agencies to look for advanced SEO tools like Ahrefs for helping them get to that coveted number one spot on Google.
With features like keyword research, backlink analysis, link building, and even rank tracking, Ahrefs is undoubtedly one of the best competitor research and SEO tools out there. And while Ahrefs isn’t cheap, the software can do it all when it comes to SEO, provided you actually require most of the features it offers. However, if it is about crafting a fantastic content strategy, it’s best to leave it in the hands of an SEO expert.
So is it the best tool for you?
In the end, it is up to you whether you want to go with using the tool, and hopefully, the review helped you with an understanding of the technical aspects.
Do We Recommend Ahrefs SEO Tool?
If you have made it through this review and thinking of the final verdict, let’s get right into it! Ahrefs is surely a great, top-notch tool for SEO with its own useful features. And we have got to say, we definitely recommend it.
It works really efficiently for keyword research and backlink analysis as well. If you are looking for a tool that is focused in-depth on the backlinks overview for your website, you can go for it with the Ahrefs tool. However, if you are thinking you will get quick results by using the Ahrefs tool, that isn’t the case. SEO is a time taking process, and you can’t become the old goat if you haven’t been in the game for long on a serious note.
So if you are thinking of getting the tool, you can get it from the official website of Ahrefs. Sign up there now and go through their plans with pricing.
Similar Products and Tools
There are many other SEO tools in the market, but are they better in comparison with Ahrefs? In order to be sure of the product you are getting, you must check whether it meets the needs that you are looking for. If you think that Ahrefs is not for you, you can check out its competitors and similar tools to get an idea about them:
|Ease of Use||✅||❎||❎||❎|
In the table given above, we have shown our research as per our tests, so we hope that now you will be able to go ahead with Ahrefs as an SEO for your work.
ANS: Yes, you can downgrade or upgrade the Ahrefs subscription whenever you want to, but the downgrade happens at the end of your billing cycle while the upgrade gets done quickly.
ANS: Yes, since there is a limit for data usage in different plans of Ahrefs, you can only do so much in your taken plan. However, if you use or exceed the limit more, the charges will automatically get deducted from your account.
ANS: We can’t deny the fact that Ahrefs is a great tool for those who are SEO professionals and are serious about SEO. Ahrefs continues to add new tools and features and many users have said that on the basis of pricing and plans, it tops the chart for worth.