Ahrefs (pronounced A-H-Refs, probably) is a powerful SEO (search engine optimisation) tool that helps businesses and online marketers improve the visibility of their websites on Google and other search engines.
With a suite of tools for backlink analysis, keyword research, traffic analysis, and rank tracking, Ahrefs provides users with pretty much all the data and insights they need to optimise their SEO strategy and drive more organic traffic to their websites.
In this article, we’ll answer the question, “what is Ahrefs?” and discuss some of the key features and benefits of using this tool for SEO. Stay with us for more.
What is Ahrefs?
As mentioned above, Ahrefs is simply a suite of SEO tools that help users improve the visibility of their websites in search engines like Google and Bing. It was created back in 2011, and all marketers rejoiced since they finally got the SEO tool (well, chronologically, it came after SEMrush, which was founded in 2008).
Ahrefs includes various tools for all kinds of SEO-related tasks, such as analysing website traffic, keyword research, backlink analysis, competitor analysis, and more.
Here are some of the key features of Ahrefs:
Ahrefs allows users, such as yourself, to see which web pages are linking to their websites and to analyse the quality and relevance of those links. This can help users identify opportunities to build more high-quality backlinks, which can improve their search engine rankings.
Ahrefs has several tools that you can use to find and analyse relevant keywords, including a keyword explorer tool that shows users the search volume, difficulty, and cost-per-click of different keywords. You can also use Ahrefs to check the keywords any website is ranking for, which is super useful when it comes to competitor analysis.
Ahrefs provides detailed data on a website’s traffic. That data includes the number of visits and pageviews it receives, the top referrers and sources of traffic, and the most popular pages on the site.
Ahrefs allows users to track the ranking of their website for specific keywords in different search engines and to see how those rankings change over time. As you adapt and optimise your SEO strategy, keeping track of rankings is crucial to see what’s working and what isn’t.
Furthermore, Ahrefs has a site audit tool that helps users identify and fix technical SEO issues on their websites. This includes issues like broken links, duplicate content, and slow page loading times, which can all impact the visibility of a website in search engines. Using such a tool can save you plenty of time and money since such an audit would cost a lot if done manually.
This is one of Ahrefs’ most used features and for good reason. The content explorer tool allows users to see the most popular and shared content on the internet for specific topics or keywords. Such data can be used to identify trends and opportunities for creating high-quality content that will be widely shared and linked to. What’s better than free links, am I right?
As you can see, Ahrefs has a plethora of other tools to explore. That’s good news for advanced users looking for an all-in-one solution, but it can be bad news for new users since the toolset can start to feel overwhelming pretty fast.
How much does Ahrefs cost?
In March 2022, Ahrefs launched new pricing plans. If you’ve never used the tool before, those plans may be hard to understand. Worry not, though, as we’re here to help.
Before, every user had access to (almost) every feature on the platform, and the only difference between plans was the quota for different tools. These days, the features you can access differ depending on your chosen plan. As you’d expect, the more you pay, the more features you get.
Ahrefs currently has four plans:
- Lite, which costs £79 per month
- Standard, which costs £159 per month
- Advanced, which costs £319 per month
- Enterprise, which costs £799 per month
Each plan comes with one Power User, which can consume up to 500 credits per month. Those credits are consumed whenever you open a report, apply filters, or request additional data in Ahrefs (credits do not apply to Rank Tracker and Site Audit). So, you’re basically paying for every click you make on the platform. It does sound greedy, doesn’t it?
Well, that’s because it is, which is why Ahrefs has been getting backlash recently.
Why you should use Aherfs (Pros)
Thinking of using Ahrefs to boost your SEO efforts? Here are some of the reasons it may be the right option for you:
All the features you need in one place
As mentioned, Ahrefs offers a plethora of SEO tools. Those include features for backlink analysis, keyword research, traffic analysis, and rank tracking. This makes it a convenient option for users who need various SEO tools within the same dashboard.
Ahrefs provides users with a lot (like, A LOT) of data on their own websites and on their competitors. That data includes information on backlinks, keywords, traffic, and rankings. This can help you make informed decisions about your SEO strategy.
Ahrefs has a user-friendly interface that’s not only modern and beautiful, but also easy to navigate and understand, even for users new to SEO. If you’ve never touched an SEO tool before, this should be great news!
The team behind Ahrefs is regularly updating it with new features and improvements, which helps to keep it current and relevant. This is crucial in the fast-changing world of SEO.
For example, back in October 2022, not only did the Ahrefs team update their data on all of the keywords and improved a bunch of pre-existing features, but they also introduced News mode in Content Explorer, which allows you to see how trendy a keyword has been amongst – you guessed it – news outlets and websites rather than all websites.
Good customer support
Ahrefs has a good reputation for customer support. They have a dedicated support team available to answer questions and help users get the most out of the tool (to be honest, this is the bare minimum considering the price you pay for this tool). This can be particularly useful for users who are new to SEO and may have inquiries about how to use the tool effectively.
Why you shouldn’t use Ahrefs (Cons)
Although excellent as an SEO toolset, Ahrefs still comes with a few caveats that can be dealbreakers for some users.
It’s hella expensive
As mentioned above, since Ahrefs is a subscription-based service, the cost can be high depending on the plan you choose. Not to mention that you can run out of credits faster than you’d think. This may be a barrier for some users, especially those who are just starting out with SEO and may not have a large budget to invest in tools. If an affordable solution is what you seek, steer away from Aherfs.
Here, it’s worth noting that when hiring an agency like ours, you needn’t worry about such costs. We pay for such pricey subscriptions so that you don’t have to (wink wink).
It can be overwhelming
Ahrefs offers a plethora of features and data, and while that makes it an excellent option for SEO veterans, it can make it overwhelming for some users. This complexity may make it more difficult for beginners to understand and use the tool effectively.
Limited data for some countries
Ahrefs provides data for a wide range of countries. The problem is; the data can be more limited for some countries compared to others. That’s because although SEO as a marketing medium has been around for quite some time now, some countries are just starting to see it bloom. This can be an issue for users trying to optimise their websites for specific countries or regions other than the US or European counties.
Limitations on data updates
Ahrefs updates its data regularly. That said, the frequency of updates can vary depending on the type of data and the plan you are using. This means that the data you see in Ahrefs may not always be completely up to date.
It relies on third-party data for some of the features
Some of the data Ahrefs uses comes from third-party sources, which can sometimes be inaccurate or incomplete. This can affect the reliability of the data and insights the tool provides.
Ahrefs is a great toolset; there’s no denying that, but it’s not for everyone, especially with the current pricing structure. Thankfully, several alternatives offer similar SEO tools and features. Those alternatives include (non-comprehensive list, obviously):
SEMrush tops the list of Aherfs alternatives, and for good reason. Just like Ahrefs, it’s a comprehensive SEO and marketing tool that includes features for keyword research, backlink analysis, traffic analysis, and more. Keep in mind that SEMrush is also expensive, and it constantly tries to nickel and dime you within the platform.
Although a bit outdated, Moz is a well-known SEO tool that offers a range of features for every marketer.
SEO PowerSuite is a collection of four SEO tools that cover a wide range of SEO tasks. Those tasks include keyword research, backlink analysis, website audit, and rank tracking.
SERPstat is yet another all-in-one SEO platform that includes tools for keyword research, site audit, backlink analysis, and more.
Many other SEO tools on the market offer similar features to Ahrefs. That’s why it’s worth considering a few options to find the best fit for your needs and, of course, budget.
Feeling confused? We can help
Using Ahrefs, or any other SEO solution for that matter, is easier said than done, especially since you still have to take care of manual tasks, like implementing and testing the suggestions made by such tools. If you’re too busy running your business, why don’t you leave the marketing part to our experts?
Just book a discovery call with us today!