55 SEO Experts Reveal 3 Favourite Link Building Tools

by Richard Marriott on July 24, 2013

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Think you need dozens of tools for link building? Think again.

Two weeks ago I asked 55 SEO experts and prolific bloggers a simple question:

“If you could only use 3 SEO tools for your link building campaigns which 3 would you choose?”

I wanted to know plain and simple which tools I must seriously consider and what I can live without.

As a newbie blogger I’ve been overwhelmed by all the top 10, 20 and even 100 lists that have got me nowhere closer to choosing a manageable selection of tools. That’s why I decided the only way to know for real was to ask the experts and see if the best tools in the industry would indeed reveal themselves. Well guess what…they have:

Favourite Link Building Tools (as voted by 55 experts!)
#1 BuzzStream – 18 votes
#2 Ahrefs – 15 votes
#3 Majestic SEO & Open Site Explorer tied with 12 votes
#4 Google Search & Google Webmaster Tools tied with 9 votes
#5 Followerwonk & Link Prospector tied with 5 votes

BONUS VIDEO: Watch me build links using BuzzStream, Ahrefs and Screaming Frog SEO Spider in my advanced broken link building tutorial:

Read on to discover each expert’s favourite 3 tools along with their awesome tips on how to use them! You can either skip to your favourite expert using these quick links or grab a coffee, get comfortable and commence scrolling!

Adam Connell, Aleyda Solis, Amal Rafeeq, Ann Smarty, Anthony Mangia
Bill Hunt, Bill Sebald, Bob Jones, Brian Dean
Carrie Hill, Chris Ainsworth, Chris Antoni, Chris Dyson, Chris Gilchrist
Dan Petrovic, Dan Stelter, Darren Paterson, Debra Mastaler
Geoff Kenyon, George Stevens, Gianluca Fiorelli, Gregory Ciotti
Harris Schachter, Harsh Agarwal
Iness Bokhan
James Agate, Jason Acidre, Joel Widmer, Jon Dykstra
Kane Jamison
Lyndon Antcliff
Matt McGee, Mauro D’Andrea, Miguel Salcido, Mike Essex
Neil Patel, Nick Eubanks, Nick LeRoy, Nicole Beckett
Paddy Moogan, Pawel Grabowski, Peter Attia, Philip Bryant
Rhea Drysdale, Ryan McLaughlin
Samuel King, Sanket Patel, Sean Stahlman, Sebastian Cowie, Silicon Beach Training, Simon Penson, Sujan Patel
Tim Grice
Wiep Knol
Zac Johnson

Responses listed in the order they were received in:

Pawel Grabowski - StayCity Pawel Grabowski

BuzzStream - Great tool for blogger outreach and prospecting management. Think of it as your link building CRM with research tools built in (my personal definition of it of course :) ). A tool I simply can’t live without. Oh, an important thing, their support is absolutely magnificent. One of the best I have ever seen.

Link Prospector by Citation Labs - A tool for finding link building opportunities. It’s fast, super easy to use and can find plenty of great websites you can build links from. Although as with any tool of that type, the results you get largely depend on what information you put in first (just thought I’d mention).

Rank Tracker - Perhaps not the most ideal tool but the one I use so thought I’d include it here too. It’s good for checking out your rankings but since it runs from your local machine, make sure that you use some sort of proxy or VPN if you want to check results from other location than yours.

Brian Dean – Backlinko

Good question ahrefs buzzstream and excel not sure if MS office is on Twitter LOL

Aleyda Solis – Aleyda Solis

I really like Buzzstream CognitiveSEO & Link prospector

Amal Rafeeq – BloggerDoc Amal Rafeeq

I think I’ll be going with Alexa. It records backlinks more quickly than others I think. And I recommend you NOT TO care much about the backlinks and Social Shares. Just continue what you are doing, produce great content and natural links will flow to you.

Chris Dyson – TripleSEO

my top LB tools Scrapebox ahrefs & followerwonk

Miguel Salcido – ProfessionalSEOConsultant Miguel Salcido

First off, 3 tools is tough! Link building is so dynamic and encompasses so much. But if I had to only live with 3 tools for link building they would have to be Link Prospector, Google Docs, and BuzzStream.

Google Docs is just invaluable for things like organization, collaboration, and data management. What I mean by data management is being able to slice and dice data for different URLs or links and pull in metrics, contact info, etc. There are also tons of great tools built in Google Docs that one can leverage to generate content ideas and search queries.

Link Prospector is great for quickly developing lists of potential link targets whether it’s guest blogging, niche directories, contests, etc. This tool, I could not live without! It does what many of us had to do manually for years in terms of finding link prospects. It’s also extremely affordable and pays for itself easily.

And Buzzstream is useful for contact management, task management, and finding contact information. You can get alot with the paid version, but their free tools are excellent as well! You can use their free tools to find contact information, generate search queries, build lists, etc.

With these three tools one can build a very successful link building campaign that can last as long as you can keep working.

Adam Connell - BloggingWizard Adam Connell

BuzzStream - this is an essential part of our process at UK Linkology. It allows us to manage large guest posting campaigns with ease, track links and social mentions – even prospect for link building opportunities. The built in CRM is perfect for link building and it makes what can easily spiral out of control into something that’s easily managable.

Ahrefs - I use a couple of different sources for examining link profiles, but Ahrefs has got some really impressive tools that make it stand out… the way they break down anchor text into different numbered terms makes identifying issues very easy. (Ross Hudgens wrote about the possibility of using term anchor text a while back here: http://www.rosshudgens.com/term-anchor-text/).

The crawler comes in handy, along with the mentions and batch analysis tools.

The graphs it spits out come in handy for reports too.

Advanced Web Ranking - I’ve tested a lot of rank tracking tools and I know that tracking rankings is really difficult, lots of factors involved but you still need a bench mark – this bench mark will help you identify possible issues in the future.

I’ve tried desktop and online based tools to track rankings and I’ve had problems across the board – lack of features, poor reporting but AWR does everything that I need with some crawling and site evaluation tools too.

Paddy Moogan – PaddyMoogan.com Paddy Moogan

BuzzStream – most people know that I’m a big fan of BuzzStream, it has so many uses but ultimately, it lets you scale link building in the right way because you build up your “black book” of link building contacts which can help you get more and more links the more you use the system. It also does a great job of pulling in link metrics so you can do quick link analysis tool

Followerwonk – I like link prospecting with Followerwonk because it lets you find true influencers in an industry which means that if you can build a relationship with them, the value goes far beyond just a link.

Google – you can find all the link prospects you’ll ever need by learning how to use Google properly. It sounds basic but you often don’t need fancy tools to scrape Google for you, you can get much more granular by refining your own queries quickly and pulling in the results manually than having to rerun tools.

Jon Dykstra – BTwoWeb Jon Dykstra

My 3 most-often used tools are:

Google Keyword Tool – I have Market Samurai and Long Tail Pro, but tend to use GKT the most.

Google Trends

Camtasia Video Screen Capture – I make tons of videos and transcribe them. It’s one of my favorite content-generation methods these days… plus I put the videos on YouTube.

Iness Bokhan – SEOLots Iness Bokhan

As for the 3 SEO tools I’d use for link building, I’ll probably pick the following ones:

1. SEO Spyglass – the tool has a huge database that gets regularly updated and it brings back the unlimited number of backlinks and analyzes top backlink page factors (PR, age, Alexa, anchor text, etc.).

2. Google Analytics – pretty obvious, but still, this is the tool I keep open in the browser tabs most of the time.

3. The SeoQuake plugin for Firefox – for instant analysis of potential backlink pages.

Chris Ainsworth – HighPosition Chris Ainsworth

My answer would depend upon the purpose for your link building tools.

If you’re looking for link analysis tools in the post-Penguin era then personally I would have to say:

1. Google Webmaster Tools
2. Ahrefs
3. Link Detox

If you’re looking for actual link building tools (i.e. automated tools) then don’t!

Otherwise if you’re looking for tools to help with the placement of links (i.e. identification of a trustworthy domain) then there are an array of tools such as Archive.org, WHOis, Majestic SEO etc which will help to establish the history of a domain.

My answer would depend on your goal for the tools but getting it down to just 3 may be a problem. Any SEO with clout will advise using an array of tools to ensure you obtain the widest overview possible. I hope that helps.

Gregory Ciotti – Help Scout Gregory Ciotti

For the sake of being different, I’ll try to include a few of the less obvious options.

Yesware - I’ve written thousands of words about email outreach and networking over email and if there is one tool I can’t live without, it’s this. Reminders, tracking, customizable templates, it’s got everything a link builder needs for email.

Ahrefs - Simply put, the premier tool for checking links. Their mentions tracker is also highly underrated.

AuthorityLabs - Instead of wasting time tracking the results of your linkbuilding, tools like AuthorityLabs let you get an overview of your current rankings quickly so you can go back to (surprise!) building more great links.

Ann Smarty – SEOSmarty

MyBlogGuest BuzzStream Google search

Silicon Beach – SiliconBeachTraining

to be different Twitter outreach photoshop creating content & feedly keeping track of target blogs for engament

Chris Antoni – TheTrafficBlogger Chris Antoni

3 Essentials to my link building:

Community Specific Forums, YouTube, and Guest Posts. I don’t need no stinking tools!

Just playing with you, but that is my real answer.

Matt McGee – MattMcGee Matt McGee

I can give you one tool: Help A Reporter Out (www.helpareporter.com), also known as HARO. It’s a great place to discover journalists and writers that are looking for expert sources, and then reach out to them to be interviewed for their reporting needs. That can lead to great mentions and links from trusted websites — so-called “editorial” links that are given freely and seem to be highly valued by Google.

Hope that helps. I don’t do “traditional” link building anymore, just PR/outreach like I’ve described above.

Mauro D’Andrea – BlogGrowth Mauro D'Andrea

I love Long Tail Pro. You can integrate it with your Moz free account so that you’ll have the chance to analyze your competitors and their links pretty easily. Other than links you can check site age, domain authority, page authority and page rank of many sites at a glance.

Open Site Explorer is another powerful tool. It gives you many insights about links pointing to a certain page.

As a third tool, I’d think about Microsoft Excel, or other similar softwares (even though it isn’t really a SEO tool). With it you can track your link building strategy, your search engine rankings, your keywords, important websites and email contacts.

Bill Hunt – WHunt Bill Hunt

Google Webmaster Tools – to find broken and misdirected links often to the home page

Majestic SEO – for bulk links and drill down in link value

Link Research Tools – primarily for their Link Detox tools to weed out bad and old links

Anthony Mangia – MangiaMarketing Anthony Mangia

I love the Moz Keyword Analysis tool. I don’t think there’s a better tool on the market to quickly analyze the SERPs and really look at how competitive a given keyword will be to rank for. The interface is slicker than ever with the re-brand from SEOmoz to Moz, and their Full Reports are as in-depth as it gets. I use this tool a ton when I’m prospecting for new niches to enter when building websites for myself.

GroupHigh is my favorite blogger outreach tool. It’s Buzzstream’s slicker, more powerful, much more expensive older brother, but I think it’s worth every penny for some of my larger clients. Being able to mass import URLs by the thousands and pull down basic blog information, SEO and traffic metrics, social networking stats and even things like whether or not the blogger normally runs giveaways/guest posts/sponsored posts makes prospecting for new blogger connections a breeze.

Evernote isn’t really an SEO tool, per se, but it is my whole life. I use Evernote to organize any and all information relating to various clients and websites I own, including notes, to-do’s, new content and any important files. This allows me to access the files I need from any device, whether I’m at my apartment, at a client’s office, or on the road. My favorite feature of Evernote, however, has to be the Clearly extension. Whenever I see an article on Inbound.org that I know I want to read, I just hit the Clearly button and the content of the article gets scraped and saved to my Evernote account in a clean, easy-to-read format that I can access offline on my iPad, which makes my Subway rides a million times more productive.

Zac Johnson – ZacJohnson Zac Johnson

Three tools that I like to use are:

Google Keyword Tool - always a good resource for people just starting out and don’t have money to spend on premium services.

Serpfox - a nice little site that keeps me updated with all of my site rankings and movement.

Long Tail Pro - an awesome software application that provides deep research and numbers or finding winning keywords.

Nicole Beckett – PremierContentSource Nicole Beckett

You really got me thinking! :)

One tool would definitely be Open Site Explorer. Some of the best SEO advice I ever got was ridiculously-simple — Google your target keywords, and see what kind of links the top 3 results have. Then, try to get links from the same places (like publishing a guest post on the same blog, etc.). It’s easy to do with Open Site Explorer and it really works!

Another tool I use is Google’s “sites like” option to find guest blogging opportunities. For example, I have alot of articles published on Site Pro News, but I’m always looking for similar sites that I can contribute to. The “sites like” option has helped me find websites that I may never have found on my own.

I think those are the only 2 tools I really use. Since SEO has changed so much over the past few years, I’ve focused more and more on other opportunities (like guest blogging and even *quality* forums that I can join and build relationships on — not just drop a link on). Luckily, I’ve gotten some great exposure AND some really great links in the process!

Kane Jamison – ContentHarmony Kane Jamison

In a hypothetical world where I only get 3 tools, the best answer to this question will always be the following:

  1. An email client
  2. A Google search box
  3. A spreadsheet to track it all

I think the smartest link builders would argue that a phone is just as good as an email client. That said, linkprospector.citationlabs.com is the one paid tool I wouldn’t give up – it greatly speeds up the prospecting process. After that, OSE & BuzzStream are the next best additions to our toolset.

Darren Paterson – QueryClick Darren Paterson

Personally, I find the following three tools to be the most important and potentially invaluable in terms of my day to day activities and “tools for your offsite link building campaigns”:

Open Site Explorer – There is really no need to explain in detail why and how we utilise OSE, but mainly the ability to download and manipulate backlink profiles for both clients and competitors is quick and simple.

Ahrefs – I have found Ahrefs to be a great secondary tool, which provides a lot of data, which is easily accessible, which otherwise would involve hours of work when using OSE. For example, anchor text distribution graphs are automatically created and require no additional work when entering a URL into Ahrefs.

Google Webmaster Tools – Although not necessarily within the “tools for your offsite link building campaigns”, it has to be one of the main tools I use day-to-day. A lot of my my time, especially within the last few months, has been focussing on identifying measurable backlink data. Therefore utilising the the ability to download ‘discovered’ backlinks over the last few years is incredibly useful. Especially when conducting backlink audits for new and potential clients.

Bill Sebald – GreenlaneSEO

Bill Sebald

BuzzStream would be my first. My love for BuzzStream knows no bounds.

Second would be RankRanger, a daily rank tracker with a lot of different metrics and a great whitelabel option. This is a big time saver with clients.

Third is the Web Developer plugin for Chrome and Firefox. I use it all the time for audits.

If you wanted a fourth, it would be Google Drive. Our entire company runs on it, from client management to deliverables.

Bob Jones – Visible Bob Jones

Raven Tools – The link manager is an essential part of our daily link building hustle.

Majestic SEO – Although we also use OSE from Moz and Ahrefs, Majestic seems to have the right type of functionality for us when it comes to competitive research.

Google – This includes GWT but also Google.com itself. Learn all about advanced search operators and you’ll be able to find fantastic link opportunities if you do it right.

Samuel King – SEOSamuel Samuel King

My 3 top tools are:

Google Analytics – This is the only tool I need to evaluate campaigns, track conversions and monitor set KPIs.

Google Webmaster Tools – Another google tool. Tells me what is going on with links.

Raven Tools – A very robust SEO assistant that pulls in data from multiple sources.

Chris Gilchrist – HitReach Chris Gilchrist

I don’t have time to explain all the choices but,

Majestic SEO
Screaming Frog

James Agate – SkyrocketSEO James Agate

Very quickly…

Google Docs
Link Prospector

Those would be mine :-)

Carrie Hill – IgnitorDigital Carrie Hill

My 3 go-to tools for linkbuilding are:

Raven Tools – their Backlink explorer and link manager are awesome

Open Site Explorer – you don’t need both Raven and OSE, but if you have them, they’re great!

HARO – Help A Reporter Out service looks for niche experts to provide info to reporters and journalists. A great resource for certain businesses looking to get the word out

Harris Schachter – OptimizePrime Harris Schachter

1. Ahrefs domain comparison. I’ve always been a fan of Ahrefs and this tool tucked away in the site is no different. With it, you can compare up to 4 of your competitors alongside your own domain. It presents very useful data, including link and referring domain counts, backlink sources, TLD types, link types, authority metrics, social lovin’ and more. You can quickly size up the competition with this, before diving into the individual sites. Once you identify some top performers, you can then go into the main section of Ahrefs and export all their links and pivot in Excel to find some great opportunities which your competition has but you might not.

2. Plugins. I know this is kind of cheating because it’s more than one tool, but the Moz Bar, Check My Links, Web Developer Plugin, and some handy bookmarklets are too crucial not to mention.

3. LinkRisk. Simply put, you can’t grow a garden without pruning some things here or there. I got in during the beta, but I’ve really been digging on LinkRisk. It does a great job of identifying bad and risky links which you might want to consider disavowing or removing. For sites with a ton of backlinks, this tool saves a lot of time and can also serve as validation for your own opinions about the quality of links, as sometimes this type of judgement can be subjective. I love that you can take an ahrefs or Majestic export and plug it right in, identify different classes of risk and then automatically export a disavow file. It’s simple, useful and plays nice with other tools I already use.

Rhea Drysdale – Outspoken Media Rhea Drysdale

Majestic SEO
Screaming Frog
Google Webmaster Tools

I’d say that covers 99% of our needs! :)

Harsh Agarwal – ShoutMeLoud Harsh Agarwal

For me, these two tools work great: Ahrefs and Moz.

Also SEMrush deserve a mention….not directly for link building…but help me to determine for what keyword any page is ranking for.

Gianluca Fiorelli – ILoveSEO Gianluca Fiorelli

The tools I would use – and that I actually use – are:

BuzzStream, which is the state of art CRM for link builders. It solves tons of time consuming tasks so you can spend your time for what it counts: outreach

Majestic SEO/OSE, for finding opportunities and doing competitive analysis

Followerwonk, because I consider that the best way of doing link building is targeting your audience well – its tastes, dislikes et al – but especially analyzing those ones who influence your audience. Try to understand what they like, what they share, from what sites and create that kind of content and target the sites they read and share things from, because it works!

Philip Bryant – Outspoken Media Philip Bryant

My top three SEO tools for linkbuilding would have to be:

Majestic SEO
Google Advanced Operators

Debra Mastaler – AllianceLink Debra Mastaler

Hub Finder from SEOBook – Finds co-occurring sites

Link Detective – Analyzes back links by type

Social Crawlytics – Identifies most shared content

Sean Stahlman – Outspoken Media Sean Stahlman

Three link building tools I can’t live without? While I use BuzzStream for management, I think there is some great value in the following tools. With the recent Google updates, I’m spending significantly more time for clients auditing link profiles and cleaning them up before earning them some great value.

Screaming Frog – I use this for anything from site audits, detailed backlink analysis, redirect mapping and so much more. Pair it up with data exported from other tools and it’s a massive time saver. You also can’t beat the customer service that Dan delivers!

Majestic SEO – I know there are a variety of 3rd party link tools available but Majestic has always been one of my favorite sources. It’s affordable, fast and provides the majority of information I’m looking for. That doesn’t mean I don’t still leverage OSE, FWE or other tools for some missing components.

Google/Bing Webmaster Tools – Free information directly from search crawlers! Regardless if some data (links) is not entirely complete, I think it’s extremely valuable to know how crawlers are interacting with your site, how their index matches up with the actual amount of content you are presenting and what roadblocks are being encountered. While I wish the link data from Google was more accurate, I’m happy to have a fairly solid starting point for reviewing potential threats.

George Stevens – Nebstone George Stevens

I’d probably say:

1) Google Webmaster Tools – gives you your fundamentals – a place to check how Google is looking at your website. Also one of the best lists of backlinks you can get – links that tools like MajesticSEO and Open Site Explorer don’t pick up. I’ve found link lists in Webmaster particularly useful for combating negative SEO.

2) Majestic SEO – I prefer MajesticSEO to Open Site Explorer. I use this for lots of backlink profile metrics.

3) Moz (SEOmoz) – wide selection of tools to help with SEO. E.g. checks websites for errors and issues and gives keyword competition.

Joel Widmer – FluxeDigitalMarketing Joel Widmer

Happy to contribute. My top 3 are:

Open Site Explorer


SEO Toolbar by Moz

Sebastian Cowie – SCDigital Sebastian Cowie

Top 3 Tools / Sites for me:

Ahrefs – Invaluable and definitely the leader of the pack when it comes to backlink data and competitor research.

Scrapebox – Too many tools to list, but it’s basically got everything you could ever need for data collection, scraping, rank tracking… the list goes on.

Google Webmaster Tools – Great at detecting issues and the backlink data is definitely more accurate and inclusive. Also offers insight into key term visibility and effectively does your keyword research for you.

Nick LeRoy – BackBreakingSEO Nick LeRoy

The three SEO Tools I rely on the most are Open Site Explorer, Majestic SEO and good ol Google Docs.

I like OSE and MajesticSEO as tools to do competitor research. Not only is it good to find links going to their websites but also other websites the sites link out to which might be relevant for me to hit up in the future.

After that i am  a purist — i like google docs and excel spreadsheets. I’ll simply keep a list of what site i’ve reached out to, dates, domain value (seomoz metrics & PR) and relevance. I also utilize this spreadsheet as a little black book in case any of these websites i’ve received a link before are relevant for future projects!

It’s as simple as that for me. No fancy tools in my arsenal!

Ryan McLaughlin – Clarity Ventures Ryan McLaughlin

BuzzStream – Every time I discover a new opportunity, I immediately click my Buzzmarker in order to get it queued up in this tool. As someone that really appreciates easy organization, BuzzStream is a lifesaver.

Open Site Explorer – Of course, for backlink research everyone has their preference (whether it be OSE, Majestic, ahrefs). Personally I use all of them, but my “go to” is usually OSE. The export of competitor’s backlink profiles in order to identify their top links is one of my first things I check.

Google Search – Advanced queries in the big G are invaluable to the link building process. I could go on and on about the ways in which to do this, but Geoff Kenyon already wrote a good summary here.

Simon Penson – Zazzle Simon Penson


BuzzStream, Ahrefs, our tool for finding influencers :)

(if not ours then Excel and the Linkedin or Twitter API!)

Peter Attia – CucumberNebula Peter Attia

It would depend on many factors including the type and scale of link building. I’ll focus on traditional outreach link building, as I feel that’s what most people are seeking. However, the scale of link building is still a factor here. For example, if I was working with a high budget business with a team of link builders who are getting as many links as they can, all day every day, I would say:

BuzzStream – To keep track of who got a link where (so two link builders don’t approach the same person) and to churn out outreach emails more efficiently.

Ahrefs – To keep track of my back link profile and make sure things look organic and healthy.

Excel – To organize everything properly, keep track of budgets, and assess which terms to go after moving forward.

For a low budget business that is trying to get a small amount of high quality links, I would say:

Followerwonk – To find higher quality candidates with healthy social profiles.

Ahrefs – For competitive analysis and to see if I can mine some higher quality leads from competitors.

Boomerang – To make sure I send out a follow up email if I don’t get a response from someone.

Sujan Patel – SingleGrain Sujan Patel

My favorite tools are:

Open Site Explorer – Finding the competition’s links

Ontolo – building a contact list

Cognitive SEO - for link cleanup and removal. Because these days everyone needs to remove a few links.

Wiep Knol – Wiep Wiep Knol

If I could use only three, it would probably be:

Majestic SEO (for raw data)

Cognitive SEO (for detailed analysis)

BuzzStream (for campaign management)

Dan Stelter - DansSEOCopywriting Dan Stelter

As a copywriter, I don’t get into the SEO side of things too extensively, but some concepts, like keyword research and on-page optimization, are critically important for my copy to succeed. I use some tools to check SEO health too, but when I’m talking about SEO, I’m more discussing tools I use for keyword research etc…

So, here’s what I use:

1.      SEMrush – I use this tool mostly for keyword research. You don’t even need the paid version. Basically, you can type in competing domains and see the exact keywords they’re targeting, as well as where they rank for those keywords.  It works great for generating ideas.

2.      SeoQuake toolbar – This toolbar is pretty awesome for checking competition. It gives critical stats like domain age and page rank of the pages you that show up in Google’s SERPs. This information is vitally important for me to have when determining which pages and keywords to target when designing clients’ or my own websites.

3.     My own eyeballs – I use these because Google wants to give the best rankings to websites that provide the best user experience. That can only be judged by looking at the site yourself. About 80% of the guest post requests I get come from spammy, awful websites I’d never link to. The same goes if I’m guest posting on someone else’s website – I know I’ll get the best SEO value if the site has great content and comes across as a credible resource.

Sanket Patel – Blurbpoint Sanket Patel

Three tools which i use always are:

BuzzStream – As far as finding good link prospects is concerned, I love this tool. I have made many channels through this tool and recently have added one more to have a far and wide reach to bloggers. I have been able to pick microinfluencers having conversations about their products. This software really helps me in finding better opportunities easily.

Moz – The best thing i like about this tool is the toolbar provided by Moz Community. It gives us a bunch of SEO metrics in few seconds. I am able to evaluate many things for the initial start-up of the web promotion.

I love other stuff too, like OSE for link analysis, Onpage checklist analysis and recently added Followerwonk for twitter analysis and many more tools which enables quick tasking. All Moz tool makes your workflow easy at the end.

IFTTT – If you are running social media campaign then do not forget to add IFTTT. You will get powerful connection through normal triggers via ‘if’ & ‘then’ statements. There are 57 channels which are associated to this tool. I have setup the same for youtube, twitter and many more channels and i am getting quick reactions through those trigger which i have set already. It becomes easy to measure all social signals from one easy platform.

Lyndon Antcliff – CornwallSEO Lyndon Antcliff

Email, Twitter and occasionally the free Moz bar.

I am a content based linkbuilder, a buzz marketing, newsjacking, linkbaiting type. I no longer care about seo as such. Don’t get me wrong it’s certainly not dead and never will be. But the aim of the game is to get links, improve brand awareness and improve customer base.

The three tools I mention are what I could not do without, although most will not think that Email and Twitter are a tool, but that is how I use them.

My experience tells me what I need to know about a website these days. Few tools can replicate that

Dan Petrovic – DejanSEO Dan Petrovic

There are many great tools which my team uses for link building and link management. This includes Majestic, Raven, Moz, BuzzStream, Ontolo and recently we’ve been looking at Cognitive SEO as well. But since the question is about what I use I’ll have to go off the beaten path, so I hope it won’t disappoint.

Google Webmaster Tools

I’ve built so much functionality around Google Webmaster Tools data that I would find it really uncomfortable to plan my campaigns without it. Before I create an outline for a link building campaign I look at the pages that have already attracted natural links and ask a question: “What made this content linkworthy?”. Once I answer that question I can then plan content creation strategy and then focus on outreach. Google Webmaster Tools also helps me prioritise which type of content and keywords are worth targeting. I even built a custom tool which helps me crunch all the Webmaster Tools numbers and streamline the decision making process.

Fresh Link Finder

I try to keep link creation process as organic as possible and for this reason I’ve built a tool which helps me track natural links as they happen. Fresh Link Finder analyses three link sources: Google Webmaster Tools, Google Analytcis and server log files. It’s also capable of tracking referrer string data with .js much like Google Analytics code. I log in daily and observe what content has attracted links and the quality of links generated. This allows me to connect with fans, build new relationships and credit those who link to me. From time to time I’ll have an opportunity to correct a link or in rare cases request a removal (if I feel the link is a risk to our link profile). One fun thing is that I can tell that I will get a link from an article before the article goes live (e.g. blogger clicks the link in a post draft before publishing the story).

Fresh Link Finder


Link building is relationship building. I like to start with my existing connections to source links from, rather than begging for links form complete strangers. What better place to start with than your own followers on Twitter? I drop my Twitter username in Muil and it gives me a list of users and their websites/blogs in a CSV file. For me that’s a great starting point when building links through relationships. Of course you wouldn’t spam people all at once as social outreach works best when applied on an individual level.

Neil Patel – QuickSprout Neil Patel

Majestic SEO


Open Site Explorer

Tim Grice – SEOWizz

response source, follwerwonk and Google That's for link building, link analysis is a different story

Geoff Kenyon – GeoffKenyon Geoff Kenyon

1. Link Prospector

The Link Prospector by Citation Labs is a great tool for finding outreach targets – it’s easy to use, fast, and while you can use advanced search queries in Google, this scales a lot better making it a much more efficient way to do your prospecting.

2. Open Site Explorer API

Once you have your prospects from Link Prospector, you have to determine which targets you should pursue as not all sites and links are equal. The OSE API provides a fast way to do this. There have been several posts written about using gdocs to access the API, but the best way is to use Pyscape.

Additionally, OSE (and Pyscape) are great for doing competitive analysis so that you can determine where to concentrate your efforts.

3. Google Analytics

Your analytics is ultimately what you need to turn to in order to determine how effective your link building is (You don’t have to use Google Analytics, I just like GA, more on that here). Rankings don’t matter, your organic traffic and your revenue matter so it’s important to spend more time in your analytics, understanding what’s happening on your site  rather than checking ranking reports.

Mike Essex – Koozai Mike Essex

Majestic SEO: Fantastic for checking which links have been received and analysing competitor strategies

Gorkana / HARO: Both great ways to see active PR queries that journalists need help with

TweetDeck: I add lists of journalists on Twitter so I can see whenever they have questions and can interact with them, building long term connections

Nick Eubanks – SEONick

hmm tough one, I would say SERP IQ, ahrefs, and buzzstream

Jason Acidre – Kaiserthesage

SEOquake, Google Search and Ahrefs


HUGE thanks to everyone who contributed to this mammoth post! Please share if you think it was useful!

Make sure you follow me on Twitter for more exciting interviews like this one :) and just to recap, here are the results again:

Favourite Link Building Tools (as voted by 55 experts!)
#1 BuzzStream – 18 votes
#2 Ahrefs – 15 votes
#3 Majestic SEO & Open Site Explorer tied with 12 votes
#4 Google Search & Google Webmaster Tools tied with 9 votes
#5 Followerwonk & Link Prospector tied with 5 votes

If you want to give BuzzStream a test drive click here to try BuzzStream for 14 days FREE.

P.S. This post is part of a 3 part SEO case study. Use these links to check out Part 1 and Part 2. I’m always running ongoing case studies on clambr so if you’re interested make sure you sign up to updates below!

If you could only use 3 SEO tools for your link building campaigns which 3 would you choose?

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180 comments… read them below or add one

Zac Johnson July 24, 2013 at 2:44 pm

Excellent list of resources, tools and people. I know this post took a lot of time to put together and the quality is really there. Thanks for including me on the project. Great job!


Richard Marriott July 24, 2013 at 4:46 pm

Hey Zac! Thanks for your comments and really happy to have you onboard with this!

I’ll definitely be in touch soon because I’ve got another expert roundup post in mind that is very much geared towards affiliate marketing.


Elite Gurus July 24, 2013 at 2:52 pm

Amazing post. Full of the top SEO’s on the web, I definitely recognized some of these folks. Thanks for the article read!


Richard Marriott July 24, 2013 at 4:49 pm

Thanks for the support Matt! you’re most welcome!


dorje July 24, 2013 at 4:31 pm

This is so true . I myself use buzzstream and opensitexplorer as my favorite link building tool
Also can u tell me one thing.Which social buttons are you using for your website. The floating bar ?
Please tell me


Richard Marriott July 24, 2013 at 4:54 pm

Hey dorje!

Happy to help :) The floating share bar is called: Flare


Will July 24, 2013 at 5:23 pm

Great post, thanks!


Richard Marriott July 24, 2013 at 6:04 pm

You’re welcome Will! Glad you enjoyed it!


Sanket Patel July 25, 2013 at 6:52 am

Great roundup post Richard and thanks for including me as well. Love to see your second post soon with the same concept and great idea i must say! Looking forward to it.


James Norquay July 25, 2013 at 9:31 am

A few good tools I use:

1. Netcomber.com (finding hidden relation ships with sites and qualifying link prospects)

2. Mean Path – (Like building links using advanced search queries, but on overdrive, has been great for broken link building)

3. Probably Ahrefs or Majestic data for collating huge excel sheets of data.


Richard Marriott July 25, 2013 at 10:51 am

Cheers James!

I tried to reach you for the roundup actually but must have failed at getting through. Should have reached out to you on LinkedIn. My bad!

Anyway, thanks for your tools and will be in touch soon.


James Norquay July 26, 2013 at 12:00 am

Yeah just add me to linkedin on contact me via Twitter =)

But thanks for the list I will admit one or two I need to test.

Thank you


Richard Marriott July 25, 2013 at 10:48 am

You’re very welcome Sanket!

Will let you know when the second post comes along. Not sure if I’ll be able to replicate the success of this one but will give it a go!

Thanks again!


Rohit Palit July 25, 2013 at 10:17 am

Nice compilation. :)


Richard Marriott July 25, 2013 at 10:54 am

Thanks Rohit! Glad you liked it.


Iness Bokhan July 25, 2013 at 11:58 am

Richard, you’ve created a wonderful post (and yes, thanks for adding me to your list)! I’m sure it’ll help SEOs choose their “working tools” and get the most precise data for their projects.

As some guys have mentioned the fourth tool, I’d also add a free backlink tool that delivers thousands of backlinks (with SEO factors included): http://webmeup.com/backlinks/ – works pretty good for my sites.


Richard Marriott July 25, 2013 at 8:31 pm

Hey Iness!

Really happy to have you. No need to thank me, it’s you and everyone else who’ve made this post so epic! I can’t thank you enough!

I’ll check out your fourth link building tool now, it looks good! It’s hard to find free tools that offer unlimited amounts of backlinks so thanks for the addition :)


Thomas July 25, 2013 at 6:25 pm

Cheers for sharing this sterling post Richard, some excellent tools listed here. I really like SEO Spyglass for researching the backlink profiles of competition to find niche specific opportunities.


Richard Marriott July 25, 2013 at 8:38 pm

Greetings Sir Linksworthy!

Indeed, there are some fine tools worthy of kings listed here. We must endeavour to embrace them as would a Knight embrace a fair maiden he hath conquered many broken links to rescue.

Godspeed with your link building campaigns!


Thomas July 25, 2013 at 9:07 pm

Dear Richard of Marriott

The Archduke of Linkton sends his warmest regards, indeed he asked me to pass on the fact that he found this post exceedingly stimulating and will be hosting an impromptu jousting tournament in its honour. He tips a warm glass of vintage Port eastwards towards Beijing and has ordered me to tweet CLAMBR haste post haste!

Sir Linksworthy


Josh Hamit July 25, 2013 at 7:59 pm

Hi Richard,

Great job on the post! It’s fantastic to get insight from the great marketers you’ve contacted.

Really interesting read.



Richard Marriott July 25, 2013 at 8:41 pm

Cheers Josh,

Glad you enjoyed it! I too am going to heed the advice from everyone’s input because there are so many great tips here worth learning from.

Many thanks and all the best!


Lukáš Pítra July 26, 2013 at 7:36 am

That’s one huge list of resources, thanks a bunch for doing this survey :-)

For me personally the favourites would be:
- Google + Webmaster Tools + MS Excel for research
- Ahrefs + Majestic for getting insights
- Collabim (czech tools) for management


Richard Marriott July 28, 2013 at 9:42 am

Cheers Lukáš! Glad you found it useful and thanks for sharing your favourite tools.


Divi Fernando July 26, 2013 at 9:57 am

Lol@ my own eyeballs, Dan Stelter. This blog was a nice read.


Richard Marriott July 28, 2013 at 9:48 am

hehe thanks Divi, glad you liked it.


frank joseph July 26, 2013 at 10:53 am

complete tools you have hear! some of this tools i have never heard off. :D
am going to look them up…


Richard Marriott July 28, 2013 at 9:51 am

Cheers Frank! Indeed there are many tools here I too had no idea of until this roundup.

Will be testing many of them in the next few weeks to learn what works best for me.


SKI USA July 26, 2013 at 11:15 am

Such an awesome resource. I would also add Ann Smarty’s My Blog Guest and Cathy Stucker’s Blogger Link Up as other great resources (for guest posting) when it comes to link building.


Richard Marriott July 28, 2013 at 9:57 am

Thanks and cheers for sharing a couple of your faves.


Irving July 27, 2013 at 12:43 pm

Awesome post.


Richard Marriott July 28, 2013 at 9:57 am

Irving, thanks!


most wanted boy July 27, 2013 at 2:29 pm

well researched article mate,you really hard worked in listing all those people and their recommendations.Really enjoyed my last 20 minutes


Richard Marriott July 28, 2013 at 10:34 am

Thanks for the support! Happy you found it a good read :)


Agencja interaktywna July 28, 2013 at 7:57 am

Next question You should ask them is about 3 fav black hat tools to link building :)


Richard Marriott July 28, 2013 at 1:36 pm

That’s a damn good idea! I might just do that ;)


Ed Yates July 28, 2013 at 4:33 pm

A fab roundup full of endorsements – I love this!!! This kind of post hangout is much more credible than the usual form of hand curated lists – it shows thought for your readership, diversity, interaction, research and engagement! Great!!!! I’ll now be reading the rest of your work Richard.


Richard Marriott July 29, 2013 at 4:54 pm

Cheers Ed! What an AWESOME comment!! You’ve made my day!

I’ll do my best to keep the content diverse and engaging for you (that’s a promise) and will look forward to seeing you on clambr again soon. Thanks again!


Spook SEO July 29, 2013 at 7:42 am

Buzzstream is defintely number one, SEOquake would also help and also OSE. Google in itself is also invaluable with all the advanced searches.

These 4 tools can make your linkbuilding life a lot easier. Its a must use for linkbuilders!


Richard Marriott July 29, 2013 at 4:57 pm

Indeed, BuzzStream gets my vote any day of the week too. I’ve been using it constantly since signing up a few weeks ago and can’t imagine doing email outreach without it.


chwilowki przez internet July 30, 2013 at 3:02 am

I have been browsing online more than 3 hours today, yet I never found any interesting article like yours. It is pretty worth enough for me. Personally, if all webmasters and bloggers made good content as you did, the web will be a lot more useful than ever before.


Richard Marriott July 31, 2013 at 7:22 am



Chris Lockyer July 31, 2013 at 12:54 am

The biggest timesaver in link building is http://netcomber.com . You put in your spreadsheet and it tells you who owns what domains. So no need to contact the same person 100 times, and you can target the right message to the right kind of person.


Richard Marriott July 31, 2013 at 7:25 am

Chris, I haven’t heard of Netcomber. Will check it out soon. Thanks for adding a tool into the mix!


Website Domain August 6, 2013 at 12:32 am

I love it when individuals get together and share opinions.
Great site, keep it up!


Richard Marriott August 11, 2013 at 9:03 pm



Shamim August 6, 2013 at 9:26 am

This post is a great resource for all who is concerned for SEO. Thanks for the nice share


Richard Marriott August 11, 2013 at 9:02 pm

Shamim, thanks a lot!


Mark Holt August 7, 2013 at 7:43 am

I just keep it simple with Seo Quake and Alexa. In my opinion there’s no need for fancy, state-of-the-art tools to get the job done, most of which aren’t free.

So long as you know what you are looking for i.e bounce rate below 50%, avg. visitor duration 1.30 – 2.00 minutes then you won’t have to spend on these tools. You can also check if a website is spammy and not worthy of your guest post with the obl checker.


Richard Marriott August 11, 2013 at 9:17 pm

Hey Mark, thanks for sharing your favourite tools. I agree that there’s no need to break the bank in getting a load of fancy pantsy tools, especially if you’re only managing one or two sites.


Seo expert uk August 7, 2013 at 11:35 am

Thanks for sharing this great Post


Richard Marriott August 11, 2013 at 9:17 pm

No problem, thanks for stopping by.


Paul Sarwana August 11, 2013 at 3:07 am

Nice collection of link building tools. What you put together here is truly well-prepared, quality post. Looking forward to get updates on your next SEO case study.


Richard Marriott August 11, 2013 at 9:21 pm

Cheers Paul, really glad you liked it!

I’ll try not to disappoint you with the next SEO case study. It’s going to be a similar type of expert interview but this time I’m going to refine the process and try to avoid some of the mistakes I made with the promotion of the first roundup.

All will be explained in a teaser post which I’ll send your way on Tuesday. Thanks again and see you around soon!


Ryan Cote August 20, 2013 at 6:15 pm

Awesome resource Richard. I myself love Majestic SEO. And SEM Rush for competitive analysis which I then use for link building.


Richard Marriott August 21, 2013 at 8:27 pm

Cheers Ryan, and thanks for sharing your favourites.

I’ve started using SEM Rush a lot more recently too. It’s awesome!


3d printing August 20, 2013 at 7:09 pm

Great blog you’ve got here.. It’s difficult to find high quality writing like yours these days.
I truly appreciate individuals like you! Take care!!


Richard Marriott August 21, 2013 at 8:29 pm

Thanks, glad you like it and take care too!


carl August 21, 2013 at 10:24 am

I got to know about your post from backlinko, great work and good to know what tools people are using. I use SEO powersuite and moz ( at times) and i love it.


Richard Marriott August 21, 2013 at 8:33 pm

Cheers Carl! Yeah I love seeing what tools people are using too and thanks for sharing your favourites!


Gorilla Advertising August 21, 2013 at 2:53 pm

Have you done the link building in this article for your own website? Did it work, you are still a PR 0? I think this is one of those posts that is very misleading. DONT USE ANY OF THESE TOOLS. These “tools” are a lazy way to build links, and will get you nowhere. Link building is a mirage, and will not get you the success you are looking for. Only 40% of link building SEO campaigns are successful, and of those not many have staying power. Look at the link profile of the top 10 sites when you google your target keyword. Many of the sites will not have masses of inbound links, and some will have 0 links built at all. SEO does not = link building. Link building tools = waste of time and money. Its all about onsite optimization, following the SEO guide by Google, and creating good content.


Richard Marriott August 21, 2013 at 8:15 pm

Hey Gorilla Advertising,

I’m sorry but you’re more of a troll than a gorilla. Your comment makes no sense whatsoever. Perhaps this is your aim, so people will check out your site?

This post is not misleading. In fact, it is probably the least misleading post about link building tools on the internet. That’s because it is not written from one person’s perspective, but from 55 different people.

If you actually read the above article, rather than skipping directly to the bottom to submit your rant, you will have gathered that the contributors all have various different points of view about what link building is and what link building tools are.

In a nutshell, here’s a list of some of the tools (in alphabetical order) mentioned in this article. If you don’t use ANY of these then I have no idea how you run the SEO services you sell on your site.

Ahrefs, Bing Webmaster Tools, Boomerang, BuzzSteam, Email Client, Evernote, Excel, Feedly, Followerwonk, Google Analytics, Google Docs, Google Keyoword Tool, Guest Posts, HARO, Iftttt, Majestic SEO, Moz Tool Box, Open Site Explorer, Photoshop, Screaming Frog, SEMRush, Twitter, YouTube.

You said “DON’T USE ANY OF THESE TOOLS. These “tools” are a lazy way to build links, and will get you nowhere.” Believe me I’m intrigued. Please kindly define a non lazy way to build links without using any of the tools in this article.

Is posting a video on YouTube with a link to your site not link building?
Is Tweeting a link to your site not link building?
Is talking about your site on Facebook and making friends with people who might link to your site not link building?

I hope you get my point.

I originally responded to the rest of your crazy statements from your comment but I’ve removed my full rant from this reply because it’s not what my readers want to see.

Please take your negative attitude somewhere else and next time actually read the article before sharing your judgemental points of view.


Amal Rafeeq August 23, 2013 at 1:25 am

Hi Richard,
I’m back! :)
I’m sorry I couldn’t engage more on this discussion. Well, I’m amazed to see all this engagement and so happy to see that you made this one really viral. Good work mate. You’re doing great.
Hehe, about the Gorilla dude, He was just born to spam. Why don’t you take his comment down? And I recommend you approve comments one by one before making them live. What do you say?



Richard Marriott August 24, 2013 at 4:28 am

Hey Amal,

Nice to see you again!

I decided to approve the Gorilla dude to let him have his say. I agree with him that it’s always better to focus on producing great content, but link building is highly necessary and you can’t ignore it if you want to have a fighting chance in competitive industries.

Hope your blog is going well mate! Will jump on to get involved in a discussion some time soon. Just been too busy working on the next roundup that’s going live next week. After that’s gone live I’m going to take a break for a bit, so will come and chill at your site soon.


Amal Rafeeq August 27, 2013 at 2:26 pm

Glad to have another conversation with you too.
Yeps, my blog is going absolutely fine these days. Thanks.
Is it that SEO strategy post you’re talking about? I’ve already read that. Great work mate.

Talk to you soon. :)

Gorilla Advertising August 26, 2013 at 7:29 pm

Posts like this are peddling garbage and steering people in the wrong direction. The above comment sis not make sense to you… perhaps white hat is too confusing for you. Enterprise level, and the best in the business do not use any tools like this, it’s all black hat and puts your client at risk. Its not negative, its the truth. I rank high, as do my clients, and my white label clients. My techniques are corporate based and taught at advanced levels. Its harder to do research and optimize a site properly than just build links with tools. These tools are like cooking with infomercial kitchenware.


Eugene August 29, 2013 at 3:04 am

Ha! Is this comment for real?

Clearly coming from someone who didn’t actually read through it. What garbage is it peddling?

Also, there are people on here with proven track records of getting results for VERY large companies.

Tools are just that…tools. They don’t do anything by themselves. The results you get depend on the user.


Richard Marriott September 2, 2013 at 5:56 am

Haha cheers Eugene! You couldn’t have put it any better!

I’ve blacklisted Gorilla now. Hope he doesn’t return for further monkey business under another alias ;)

Lawless August 23, 2013 at 10:00 am

Awesome resources! I’m buiding a new website but no rank after three weeks’ hard working (no link building). Is the BuzzStream really reliable?


Richard Marriott August 24, 2013 at 4:48 am

Hey there, glad you liked the resources :)

Yes BuzzStream is a kick ass tool! I use it every day to manage my email outreach, relationships and keep track of the links I’ve built.

I’m going to write a post about how I use it soon. Will send you an email when it’s live.


Sean Rasmussen August 31, 2013 at 8:31 am

Hi Richard,

At the risk of sounding cliche’, my tools are only 2:

1. Experience
2. Content

Having been full time in the game (online marketer) since 2005, I realised early that content (formatted and delivered correctly) was the one thing one thing that would stand the test of time.

Of course, I was not 100% sure back then but with the Panda and Penguin updates I was jumping with joy!

Now, all I do for SEO is to look for popular headlines (Google Search) and tailor the headline to suit the topic. Meanwhile I will on-page optimise the content and rely 100% on social signals from my readers.

That’s it. No tools, really. SEO has never been easier. I’m not a fan of Google, but their updates lately have made me a lot of money and saved me a lot of time.

Consistent content ranks itself now.


Richard Marriott September 2, 2013 at 5:41 am

Hey Sean,

Thanks for sharing. It’s good to hear you weren’t hit by the Panda and Penguin updates by doing things right from the get go. Nicely done :)

Like your tactic of looking for popular headlines in Google search and tailoring a headline to suit the topic. I’m actually going to be doing this for my next post hehe. Found a ridiculous content hole that seriously needs filling!!!


Jamesthomas2211 September 4, 2013 at 7:08 am

am using the tools like : backlinkwatch, alexa, and other Google tools..
and more over that am using the opensite explorer.


Richard Marriott September 8, 2013 at 9:51 pm

Hey James,

Thanks for sharing the tools you use!


scottishseo.co.uk September 12, 2013 at 4:32 pm

Highly descriptive post, I enjoyed that a lot. Will
there be a part 2?


Richard Marriott October 12, 2013 at 4:30 pm

Glad you liked it, but I doubt they’ll be a part two. Maybe an update in a year or something ;)


Mögel September 13, 2013 at 6:30 am

Excellent entry! I’m been looking for topics as interesting as this. Looking forward to your next post.


Richard Marriott October 12, 2013 at 4:31 pm

Cheers Mögel, thanks for stopping by.


linkbuilding“Allowed HTML tags:” September 20, 2013 at 2:29 pm

Thumbs up!
great work Richard.but with due respect i would like add something to this, that working hard and surfing new things is better than using tools.we learn more as we explore more.so we should look for better ways to make good ranking.


Richard Marriott October 12, 2013 at 4:32 pm

Good point. It is indeed much better to rely on tools as little as possible.


Iffi September 27, 2013 at 9:16 am

SEO Expert must have the techniques to deliver the results with in the time frame, Richard Marriott i agree with your points here.


Richard Marriott October 12, 2013 at 4:33 pm

Cheers Iffi, thanks for hanging out here.


Gorilla Tools October 5, 2013 at 8:12 am

Wow, tons of details and responses, is there a tool to get so much involvement or to write great posts. This shows me that we are all looking for SEO nuggets! I believe on site factors are super important now and creating keyword rich pages that capture readers attention and a photo and video does not hurt.


Richard Marriott October 12, 2013 at 4:35 pm

Hey Gorilla,

You’re right about videos. They make great sticky content.


Reginald October 29, 2013 at 12:48 pm

Hi Richard,

Thanks for the wonderful list. BuzzStream seems to be the top huh. Where’s the love for Magestic :(

Anyway, great list and thank you so much for sharing again!



Richard Marriott November 7, 2013 at 8:20 pm

Thanks for stopping by Reginald!


sandeeparron November 3, 2013 at 3:09 pm

Awesome collection of link building tools, i came to know a lot of new tools. Thanks for the post .


Richard Marriott November 7, 2013 at 8:21 pm

Cheers Sandee, happy you like it :)


Jim Barracael November 5, 2013 at 2:01 am

I’m am happy knowing that I have come to know and somehow learned to use some of those tools like Buzzstream, Ahrefs, but there’s one tool that is really my favorite, it’s SEMrush. I think every marketers should have it.


Richard Marriott November 7, 2013 at 8:21 pm

Indeed Jim, SEMrush is a real must have. I use it all the time to spot content holes.


Văn Phòng Phẩm November 7, 2013 at 8:38 am

I’ve tested a lot of rank tracking tools and I know that tracking rankings is really difficult, lots of factors involved but you still need a bench mark


Richard Marriott December 21, 2013 at 12:22 pm

Indeed you do, thanks for sharing your thoughts :)


Giấy photocopy November 7, 2013 at 8:40 am

One thing is certain, interlinking sites doesn’t help you from a search engine standpoint. The only reason you may want to interlink your sites in the first place might be to provide your visitors with extra resources to visit. In this case, it would probably be okay to provide visitors with a link to another of your websites, but try to keep many instances of linking to the same IP address to a bare minimum. One or two links on a page here and there probably won’t hurt you.


Richard Marriott December 21, 2013 at 12:23 pm

Excellent advice there Giay, I couldn’t agree more with you.


Jacob King November 12, 2013 at 4:58 am

Oh man, I would have stuck out like a sore thumb on this list.

GSA Search Engine Ranker
Wordai API

And let’s get dirty!!


Richard Marriott December 21, 2013 at 12:25 pm

Haha you sure would man!

Thanks for dropping your fave tools into the mix. I’m definitely gonna get down and dirty with link building for my new niche site, so’ll be sure to give these tools a ride for their money.


Imtiaz Ahmed November 13, 2013 at 12:59 pm

relay very informative article .well written dear sir..


Richard Marriott December 21, 2013 at 12:26 pm

Thanks for stopping by Imtiaz


Avnish Gautam November 27, 2013 at 4:56 pm

Both Buzzstream and ahrefs are good and I recommend seo specialists to use it.


Richard Marriott December 21, 2013 at 12:27 pm

For sure! These two tools work wonders together.


Idrees Khan April 30, 2014 at 7:13 am

My favorite is ahrefs.


Rajendra Pal December 3, 2013 at 4:29 pm

Each of them are the best ones in there own ways. Each one has got a specific specialty compared to the other in the process of utility. Even one has turned a bit primitive compared to other but the utility and value is equally important ever since the came into public. The operating process are sometimes bit tough for a Lehman which requires deep SEO knowledge. Still I would vote for Google tool for its invincible reliability and market value.


Richard Marriott December 21, 2013 at 12:30 pm

You’re right Rajendra, they all have their own unique advantages for performing certain tasks.


Bui Hong Diep December 5, 2013 at 2:31 am

Neil Patel introduce me these value link building tools in this post, I need some days to test the tools and more time to study from these famous people, they are all the best SEO and online marketing experts.

Thanks RICHARD MARRIOTT for this post and thanks Neil for introducing me…


Richard Marriott December 21, 2013 at 12:31 pm

No problem Bui! Indeed, it’d be worth following everyone in the list.

Thanks for stopping by :)


Joe Q December 8, 2013 at 9:22 am

I have tried Ahrefs and it provides information regarding your backlinks for Free.


Richard Marriott December 21, 2013 at 12:38 pm

Yeah the free version of Ahrefs is great. I generally use a combination of Open Site Explorers and Ahrefs to get a really detailed report. They both have their advantages.


Matt December 16, 2013 at 6:10 am

Very good information and learn few newer tips from this article, thank you


Richard Marriott June 25, 2014 at 11:14 am

Cheers Matt, glad you enjoyed it!


Top SEO December 16, 2013 at 4:09 pm

I really enjoyed and got something new about SEO, so thank you very much for sharing this article with us.


Brian Zeng December 17, 2013 at 7:11 pm

Hey Richard,

Nice work, this should have taken you a lot of time to gather information from 55 people to deliver a great piece of content like this.

I will curate your post and link to you.

Keep going.


Richard Marriott December 21, 2013 at 12:34 pm

Hey Brian,

Thanks so much for the link man and I read your curated post :)

Awesome stuff! My Chinese isn’t perfect but I was still able to understand quite a bit from it. Your followers must be very grateful for your advice.

I’ll be checking out your blog regularly to learn how to talk SEO in Chinese hehe. Take care man and thanks again for the link!


Simon December 18, 2013 at 1:11 pm

Interesting to see what other people use and a real eye opener, couple there that I haven’t tried so I will test them out.


Richard Marriott December 21, 2013 at 12:36 pm

Hey Simon, for sure, it is so fascinating to see what all the big names are using! Thanks for stopping by mate :)


Hire SEO Expert December 23, 2013 at 1:39 pm

For my website I am using one more tool, its name is (www.webmeup.com) tool. By this tool you can easily analysis your website including on-page factors, off-page factors, social media effect on your website, ranking factor and many more.

In above post, mention best link building tools. I am using some of the tools like ahrefs, majestic SEO and Google webmaster tool.


Richard Marriott January 24, 2014 at 9:06 am

Thanks for sharing your favourite tools. I’ve been using Google Webmaster tool a lot more recently and think it’s awesome. Really good for seeing what keywords you can work on a little harder to rank #1 in the SERP.


Abdul December 26, 2013 at 8:53 pm

Great stuff indeed. If you want me select the best from 55, then my vote goes to Brian Dean. I really like the way he writes. He is very straight to the techniques with different case studies.

It does’t mean i am not following others. I like all of them :D and i follow everyones blog.


Richard Marriott January 24, 2014 at 9:08 am

Hey Abdul, I’m a big fan of Brian Dean too. His strategies rock.


Terry December 29, 2013 at 1:54 am

I thank thank you enough for this informative post. Actually they are great tools.



Richard Marriott January 24, 2014 at 9:08 am

No problem Terry, thanks for stopping by.


Dan Carter December 31, 2013 at 8:48 pm

I am using ahref and moz. I am using raven trial. I love ahref. Thanks for the great info. This list is so exhaustive


Richard Marriott January 24, 2014 at 9:09 am

It is a long list indeed! Thanks for sharing your faves Dan!


Increase Organic Traffic January 10, 2014 at 9:33 am

Yeah I Use MOZ And Ahrefs .! And Thanks You Very Much For this Tips About Linkbuilding


Richard Marriott January 24, 2014 at 9:11 am

You’re welcome mate and thanks for sharing you’re favourite two.


Devteam.vn January 14, 2014 at 5:05 am

I am using ahref. I love ahref. Thanks for the great info. This list is so exhaustive.


Richard Marriott January 24, 2014 at 9:12 am

Cheers Devteam, thanks for stopping by.


Tony Nguyen January 18, 2014 at 10:48 am

I’m using Opensiteexplorer for my link building campaigns. Ahrefs sounds to be a great tool to use, I have tried their free trial, it seems to be great.
But to be honest, I tested between Opensiteexplorer and Ahrefs for a link building campaign, I do see that Opensiteexplorer does update their database more often.



Richard Marriott January 24, 2014 at 9:14 am

Hey Tony, I agree with what you said about Opensite Explorer. It does seem to update more often, I just wish it was a little cheaper.


link removal service January 21, 2014 at 4:00 am

Great list indeed. I use Buzzstream all of the time, it’s revolutionized my outreach and effective link building.

For backlink checking I’d second Ahrefs, it’s the best of the backlink checking tools and they are constantly making it better.


Richard Marriott January 24, 2014 at 9:19 am

BuzzStream is by far my favourite tool too too. It makes email outreach enjoyable and I love how it displays the response rate for each email template so you know what works and what doesn’t.


климатици София January 24, 2014 at 12:00 am

Ahrefs is what I prefer, but I`m looking for tool atomatic making backlinks. Payed one but effective.Can somebody show me tool like this?


Richard Marriott June 25, 2014 at 11:09 am

Ahrefs is one of my all time faves too. If you’re looking for an automatic tool I’d recommend you check out some of the tutorials on http://www.MatthewWoodward.co.uk.


arnankerbe January 24, 2014 at 1:09 am

Thanks for the list. I might consider trying this to make my website jump on google


Richard Marriott June 25, 2014 at 11:09 am

It’s definitely worth a go!


fa January 24, 2014 at 6:25 am

Buzzstream is the one i like the most so far. I tried other one but didnt like them too much tho..
try Link Prospector long time ago , lost time and lost money , (my point of view)


Richard Marriott June 25, 2014 at 11:11 am

I’m also a HUGE BuzzStream fan. It’s literally all I use to build links these day. Combine BuzzStream with Ahrefs and you’re all set!


Krish January 24, 2014 at 8:14 am

wow… now that what I call case study. You have done tremendous job over SEO. Thanks and keep posting these kind of articles, i love these kind of stuff.

More over, please do post some stuff about link building.


Cheat Poker January 28, 2014 at 8:44 am

this is great I did not know about all of these


PartyLook January 29, 2014 at 8:40 am

Thanks for sharing that article. Now I got more information about SEO.
Best Regards


Ramunas Bruzgys January 30, 2014 at 4:23 pm

Richard, thank you for interviewing and collecting information!
Good list of link building tools.

I’m fan of free link building tools. I’m from small country with low budgets, so I always need maximize my effort. And bellow is my list of free tools:
1. Google Search – With some browsers plugins you get details of top results. It’s always good to scan TOP100 results and collect prospects.
2. Alltop.com – Best resource for trending blogs in almost all niches.
3. Email – I’m trying use email to contact prospects for build relationship, asking how can help them with and only then ask for help.

Paid tools I love to use:
1. Link Research Tools – Find all best healthy links of your competitors. Helps to build strategy and SEO campaigns.
2. Raven Tools – Good SEO suite for managing & reporting.


Prabhat February 2, 2014 at 11:05 am

I am new in SEO and learning from reading articles and I loved this article Thanks..


DP2Web February 3, 2014 at 7:26 am

Thanks for sharing the tools you use! But how can you easily build links if you have a new website. How to check dofollow websites where we can comment for link building?


tinh dau thien nhien February 3, 2014 at 10:03 am

Yes, for backlink checking I’d second Ahrefs, it’s the best of the backlink checking tools and they are constantly making it better.
Thank you anyway for sharing. That’s great!


Bobby Chahal February 20, 2014 at 6:27 pm

No Doubt AHREFS is best and widely used. But Majestic SEO is making an impression also.


dịch vụ seo web February 10, 2014 at 9:59 am

I like AHREFS most. In my opinion, it’s the easiest and most effective tool for check backlinks.


Donne Mature February 14, 2014 at 11:05 pm

The best for me is AHREFS,but this days i’m going to try Majestic SEO


Manish Vinash February 20, 2014 at 4:28 am

Now a days I am using ahrefs to check backlinks and along with that I am looking for good backlinking software which help me to build backlinks.


beylikdüzü bayan escort February 27, 2014 at 10:24 pm

Hey Tony, I agree with what you said about Opensite Explorer. It does seem to update more often, I just wish it was a little cheaper.


beylikdüzü bayan escort February 27, 2014 at 10:25 pm

Hi The best for me is but this days i’m to try Majestic


Paid Social Media Jobs Review March 3, 2014 at 4:24 pm

Amazing post. Full of the top SEO’s on the web, I definitely recognized some of these folks. Thanks for the article read!


SF Website Design March 18, 2014 at 9:38 pm

I personally think that SEMRush is a grate tool. And I think it has to be mentioned here. Is really good because you can:
-track your website rankings
-spy the competition
-check the backlink profile of a website
-see if your competition is advertising on google and what keywords they are using
Also ahref and google webmestar tool is really nice to have them.


Jhon March 19, 2014 at 8:41 am

Is link building effective for my forum website…??? Or is there any fear of penalty from Google..??


sundar March 21, 2014 at 7:25 am

Great article. Amazing post. Full of the top SEO’s on the web, I definitely recognized some of these folks. Thanks for the article read!. Thanks for sharing this information. http://www.dreamdestinations.in/


Rohit Roy March 22, 2014 at 11:40 am

Great article Now i got very useful information about Seo….Thanks SEO Expert’s for sharing.


The Best SEO in Abohar March 22, 2014 at 11:55 am

These tools are best for doing the link building. you have done a great job by providing information regarding the link building tools


website design March 26, 2014 at 8:05 am

I mostly use ” a href” where allowed some some times I feel problem about the hyper linking of my key word.I wonder whether it’s the application problem or something wrong with the blog.


Corsi inglese roma April 3, 2014 at 9:58 am

I use this tools every day, but every night a dream for a free tool! :)


Afiq April 10, 2014 at 5:18 am

Thank you for the list.

I read about your post on Backlinko, totally amazing case study!

Can I share about this on my Malay site, so that Malaysian blogger can get the benefit too :)


raj April 11, 2014 at 6:09 pm

Nice article.I got very useful information related SEO. Thank you SEO Expert’s for sharing.



maria April 12, 2014 at 6:07 pm

Hi Richard, these tools are awesome. Thanks for the post! I can certainly tell you know your stuff. Good to know there are nice people like you on the internet looking to help people out.


seo services April 24, 2014 at 10:09 am

All are really awesome tools, but my favorite is ahref. It helps me a lot during my seo work. But honestly each tool has its importance in the field of seo.


Ajay April 29, 2014 at 1:09 pm

It is an awesome post.
By reading this post, newbie bloggers can pick up a best tool for them.


Harpal Singh May 3, 2014 at 6:36 pm

Hi Richard, honestly tons of thanks from the depth of my heart. I was finding for link building tool from last 2 days, but most of them were fake. Thanks for this awesome list, keep posting such nice info.


Arun May 8, 2014 at 7:32 am

For SEO point of view such tools are great, but if these tools are available freely, no doubt score billions of smiles on trillions of faces.


Abinav May 16, 2014 at 10:00 am

Hi Richard, Thanks for suggesting me those tools! I’ve decided to give all the 3 a try..Thanks buddy


sivani May 23, 2014 at 6:02 pm

Most helpful tools.Thank you for the informative article , helful for the link building.
My favorite option is also buzzstream and Majestic SEO .
thanks richard!!!


Muhammad Ammad May 28, 2014 at 9:16 am

Great . Thanks for sharing these tools



solidbangla June 7, 2014 at 12:23 am

i have tried most of these tools but majesticseo seemed the best to me but expensive subscription though. Google webmaster tools helps a lot too.


Techunveils June 15, 2014 at 4:45 am

Hello Richard ! Thanx for suggesting tools ! This tools are more accurate then alexa and update very fast !


Richard David June 19, 2014 at 2:05 pm

Hi Richard, we also use Buzzstream for prospecting links which has increased our link builder’s productivity massively.

For Rank Tracking and client reports we use http://www.webfingerprints.com
Which provides ranking reports for google and bing which can also be localized if required.

The system also links with google analytics and web master tools as well as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to provide a one stop shop for monitoring your website.

Another new tool which looks promising is https://www.linkbird.com
Which helps with link building and project management.
Thanks Richard


Seo Ahmedabad June 25, 2014 at 9:54 am

Hey mate! Thanx for sharing these tools ! This tools are perfect than alexa as their updating is quite good enough !Keep Posting.


Ankit bansal June 27, 2014 at 6:03 pm

Hi Richard,

1. Awesome post.
2. More awesome idea. You thought of putting together something that is not there already and creating such a useful webpage that has all the big names on it. And now this page has PR 3 and it must have a great boost to your blog as well inviting lots of social shares evidently.

Great post and great blog man. Keep writing.


uberontime July 4, 2014 at 8:31 am

Link building is key if you need to be successful online.


Foto Nunta Brasov July 9, 2014 at 8:39 am

I now know the importance of link building, thanks to you!


Film Streaming July 10, 2014 at 1:24 am

Link Building is 80% to win !


Tube Jammer July 10, 2014 at 11:29 am

Very quickly…

Google Docs
Link Prospector

Those would be mine


Nishadha July 20, 2014 at 6:54 am

Wow, buzzstream surprised me. I’m familiar with most of the tools and although I have heard of Buzzstream never really thought of exploring it. But if its the top choice of 18 then definitely worth checking out.


Justin July 21, 2014 at 12:31 pm

Google analytics and webmaster tools are definitely my bread and butter.


Waqas Ahmed July 27, 2014 at 9:21 am

Hi Richard,
No doubt These tools are awesome and great to use. I can certainly tell you know your stuff. Good to know there are nice people like you on the internet looking to help people out.

I like Darren Paterson tools that he mentioned and also agree with Harsh Agarwal that SEMrush should also here. Any ways great post, great tools, and great to know.

Thanks Again.


Martin July 29, 2014 at 10:36 am

I think Google Webmaster Tools is the best tool to track the performance of your website and Google is best platform to build your links. Well written article and bundle of thanks for sharing it with your readers.


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