Whether you are a seasoned SEO Pro or just getting started in the world of search, link-building tools are critical to your success. The days of gaming search engines has come to an end, all those advantages that geeks have had for years, is gone, in the new era of SEO the playing field is level, as long as you have the right tools.
At the core of SEO is link-building, getting links from high-quality sources on the web. Search engines like Google and Bing use these links back to your site as a key determinant of rank. The more high-quality sources linking back to you the better you will rank.
This is great for some people that are doing big things and getting coverage in major online new sources, but what about everyone else? Link research is all about understanding your market and what links are the most valuable to you. It’s not just about looking at your own links, but looking at where links to your top competitors are coming from as well.
Link research tools give you a window into the top-ranking sites in your niche so you can see what links are giving them the most juice. You can also see how your link profile grows and evolves and make sure you’re maximizing every opportunity.
Okay, so now you understand why link research tools are important, so let me share my three favorites:
1. Majestic SEO – this is in the #1 spot for a reason. Majestic really has become a mainstay in the SEO world. You can view your link profile along with a velocity that shows how long it takes you to build backlinks for a site. The best part is you can start using it for free and then move up to one of the paid premium packages later on.
2. Raven – when it comes to managing all your links Raven takes the cake. You can easily identify opportunities and assign tasks to team members making this great for businesses that have more than one person working on their SEO efforts. Also the people at Raven are pretty cool too so I give them bonus points for that as well!
3. Open Site Explorer – this was the first link resource tool I ever used and it will always have a special place in my heart. Too sappy? Don’t forget I’ve been doing this since the mid-90s so I used many of these tools when they first hit the market! Open Site Explorer is an awesome tool that is fantastic for competitive analysis and really understanding which links are giving the most juice to your competitors.
If you’ve been procrastinating on your SEO strategy take the time to get started with one of these tools today. You can start for free with all three of these and by just identifying a few good links you could see the kind of progress you’ve been looking for.