SEO has been around as an industry as long as Google has existed, and possibly even before. As long as there have been, and as long as there will be search engines, there will be people looking to conform to whatever algorithm they use to rank content. Some will pursue every legitimate technique under the sun, while others will turn to the dark side, employing techniques with short shelf lives, high efficacy, and perhaps even a hint of exploitation.
As a marketer, I have – and you no doubt have – encountered dozens of businesses, brands, services, and consultants that will promise a wide range of various SEO services. I even provide some myself. As varied as the techniques are, there are dozens of providers for every technique. Link building is foremost among them, and the market is absolutely saturated.
You know what? Saturated doesn’t even cover it. Saturated makes me think of a towel that got dropped in the tub; it’s wet but it’s nothing you can’t handle. If you dropped a towel in the tub, picked it up, and it ran like a faucet for three days, now that is what the link building market looks like.
What I’ve done below is compiled a list of as many link building products, services, tools, and apps as I can find. By the time I’m done, this should be the biggest list available on the Internet. To make sure it’s great, I need a little help from you at home. If there’s a link building tool you use that I haven’t added to this list, let me know in the comments so I can add it. Likewise, if one of the tools below has been closed down or removed, point it out so I can scrap it from the list.
Disclaimer: I make no claims as to the utility, safety, or viability of any of these tools. As with any list of this size, there’s no way I could have used all of them, and there’s no point. Heck, many of them probably use the same tool in the back end, resold or repackaged with different branding. I don’t know, and I’m not making claims to know. Use any link building tool at your own risk. As with any form of link building, understand how the tool works, what quality links it is providing you, and how you can do what it does on your own should you desire to do so.
Here’s the list! Have at it. The tools are sorted into groups based on their rough purpose:
- Linkio – An engine that analyzes your existing links and helps you plan ways to earn more, better links.
- SE Ranking – An all-in-one SEO tool with link monitoring, tracking, and outreach options.
- SEMRush – One of the best tools on the market, an all-encompassing toolkit that does a little of everything.
- Cognitive SEO – Another large general dashboard comparable to a few others on this list. Backlink analysis, site audits, rank tracking, and more.
- Ahrefs – Another of the best link analysis tools out there, it shines with backlink analysis and deep data dives.
- SerpFox – A well regarded search engine monitor with powerful rank tracking features. Great to see how your link building is helping day to day.
- Advanced Web Ranking – One of the top-tier rank tracking tools in the world, used by multiple global brands on a daily basis.
- WhoLinksToMe – An aggregated tool that pulls backlink reports from multiple sources and compiles them for you.
- Majestic – When PageRank was deprecated, Majestic (and Moz) took up the slack. Powerful analysis and industry-standard ranking.
- Open Site Explorer – The Moz offering for link analysis. Their authority rankings are also industry standard.
- Moz Bar – A free toolbar for Chrome, provided by Moz. Shows you relevant site data on the fly for link scouting.
- Moz Pro – Worth including because it’s Moz. Their full suite of tools are some of the best money can buy.
- Followerwonk – A formerly stand-alone tool now owned by Moz, this is a social media – primarily Twitter – analytics and outreach tool.
- Raven Tools – A suite of tools comparable to Google Analytics, with additional features to help build your SEO.
- SERPs – Not what people mean when they say SERPs, but a tool that helps you track ranking across various search engine results pages.
- AgencyAnalytics – As you might expect, an analytics platform for agencies. Comes with a lot of link auditing and outreach features.
- Ontolo – A detailed SEO dashboard with link prospecting, outreach, and analysis features.
- WhiteSpark – A link and SEO growth tool that focuses primarily on local SEO, which can be arguably more powerful than general SEO.
- Link Prospector – A link analysis engine aimed at enterprise-level usage, but available for everyone. Includes 16 different reports.
- Broken Link Builder – A link prospector with a twist, searching for broken links with removed content, aka opportunities for you to replace it.
- URL Profiler – A link auditor that will scan your backlinks and help you identify what’s good, what’s bad, and what’s up.
- SEO SiteCheckup – A site audit that focuses on publicly available factors including your backlink profile and mentions on social media.
- MonitorBacklinks – Another excellent tool to audit the links pointed at any site. Scan your site for bad links, or your competition for good links.
- Kerboo – Another great link auditing dashboard with unique rankings for link risk, value, and opportunities.
- Link DTox – Another tool for scanning your links and auditing them compared to modern Google best practices. Gotta know what’s bad to know what to remove.
- Rmoov – A link removal tool, for when bad backlinks and negative SEO get the better of you.
- Google Webmasters – The general hub for official Google tools, formerly known as Google Webmaster Tools.
- Disavow Links Tool – The official Google link removal tool. Doesn’t delete links, but makes bad links not count against you.
- Disavow It – A tool that makes using the rather bare-bones Disavow Links tool easier to use.
- BuzzStream – Not affiliated with BuzzFeed. Relationship building, influencer marketing, content discover, and more.
- BuzzSumo – Also not affiliate with BuzzFeed or with BuzzStream. A great platform for content research and link prospecting.
- Long Tail Pro – A potent keyword generator to help you find niches and content you can use as a basis for link outreach.
- Ninja Outreach – A service for influencer marketing, which is really just a subdivision of link building when you think about it.
- Pitch Box – An excellent platform for influencer marketing, outreach, link building, and content marketing for publishers.
- GroupHigh – Another influencer marketing platform, with categorization options to keep different groups of influencers sorted, as well as post previews and more.
- Scrapebox – An incredibly powerful tool with both white and black hat potential. Can be tricky to use and might require a proxy list.
- GSA – A German SEO and backlink building tool with a bit of a sketchy appearance, but some useful, if gray-hat tools.
- GScraper – A very dangerous black hat tool that is useful for what it does, but what it does can be detrimental to your site and your reputation.
- Kontent Machine – A powerful but dangerous tool. It’s very easy to stray into black hat marketing with this piece of software.
- PBN Lab – PBN marketing is firmly black hat, but some people like that, so I’m including the tool even if most of you will find it dangerous to use.
- Market Samurai – A pretty powerful tool that comes with a lot of additional tutorials and information, with no regard for whether it’s black or white hat.
- SEO Quake – A potent SEO toolbox that performs link audits and data exports to help with a variety of optimization strategies.
- Screaming Frog – Another excellent tool you can use on your own, with a huge array of possible features for scraping your site and others.
- SEO Spyglass – Link analysis and prospecting in one tool, heavily involving spreadsheets. Excellent for competitive analysis and strategy cloning.
- SEO Jet – SEO for airlines. Just kidding! A jet-speed link analysis and profile building tool, with management features.
- SpyFu Backlinks – Another competitive intelligence link analysis tool, giving you a lot of site insight.
- LinkMiner – A plugin for Chrome that scans any page you’re on for a variety of metrics ranging from Majestic and Moz metrics to broken links on the page.
- MuckRack – An outreach tool/marketplace for contacting bloggers and journalists, assisting with outreach, PR, and awareness.
- HARO – Help A Reporter Out, another service for connecting journalists with authorities, useful for high-level citations and PR.
- Vuelio – A provider of both PR and communications software and networking with influencers through their platform.
- Rocket Reach – Another means of reaching out to potential influencers and potent contacts at various sites and businesses, using verified contact information.
- Just Reach Out – Another journalist outreach platform. All of these are only as useful as the community is wide, so give it a look.
- Link Assistant – An all-encompassing platform for SEO that allows you to choose a preferred method of outreach and recommends opportunities.
- SERPWoo – A general rank tracker and link analysis with a whole lot of very useful visualizations for different types of data.
- Norbert – An outreach tool that helps you find the contact information for a site editor or influencer who doesn’t list it publicly.
- Hunter – A similar tool to Norbert and Rocket Reach, aimed at helping you contact pretty much anyone, regardless of how hard it is to guess their email.
- Dibz – Link prospecting almost entirely automated, just fill out some forms and let it go wild, then work with the data it gives you.
- Fresh Link Finder – An active backlink monitor that notifies you of new links when you get traffic from them, so you can take appropriate action.
- Linkody – Analytics with an emphasis on link building and the tracking of link building campaigns.
- Linkstant – Another instant link tracker that hooks into your Google Analytics to send you notifications when new links are discovered.
- Microsite Masters – Another rank tracker, focusing slightly on PBN or microsite link building, but with more emphasis on tracking rather than building.
- SEOptimer – A site auditor that scans your site and gives you a fairly robust analysis and an overall grade. Useful for benchmarking.
- Authority Labs – Comprehensive daily rank tracking across all major search engines and for as many keywords as you need to use.
- Accuranker – A powerful rank tracker that shows you the divide in ranking between desktop and mobile search, important in 2018 and beyond.
- Broken Link Check – A very important tool that scans your site and looks for broken links, to make sure your site integrity is 100%.
- FirstSiteGuide – A site lookup and analysis tool with a focus on providing useful data to novice marketers who might not know what everything means.
- AuthoritySpy – A decent tool with some of the most aggressive marketing on its landing page I’ve seen in quite a while, at least for something that’s not a scam. Autoplay audio, guys? Really?
- Detailed – A company that performs deep competitive analysis and then makes (some of) the data publicly available for others.
- Content Bird – A broad content marketing and link management platform aimed at a variety of different opportunities all in one.
Once again, if you have anything to add to this list, nice! Just drop me the name of your favorite tool in the comments and I’ll give it a look.