This post was most recently updated on December 22nd, 2018
Competition is ever intense and on fire in the realm of the online world. It is no surprise that more keywords are emerging into the market than there are relevant domains which are covering them. We believe that using the right keywords at the right time in your website content is what makes your site stand above the competition. Therefore, today we are going to cover an exclusive Ahrefs review just for you.
So just dig in and let’s delve into the world of this keyword explorer. Let’s find out together what stupefying surprises does the Ahrefs keyword research tool has in store for us in this detailed Ahrefs review
However, before we start grinding our mind gears on how to make the most out of Ahrefs keyword explorer, we need to first learn what this marvelous tool is all about. Ahrefs is indeed a potent, powerful and result-driven keyword research tool that engulfs just about everything a digital marketing specialist needs.
What is Ahrefs & How Exactly It Helps Us?
Do you often find yourself engaged in the ineffective management of organic/inorganic traffic?
Are you eager to learn what your competitors are doing differently than you are? Which key attributes can make your content rank higher than someone selling a similar service?
If all such questions are circumferencing your head, you’re not the first.
We had the same questions troubling us until we found Ahrefs.
This particular tool is designed keeping different purposes in mind. It has an incredibly large index for backlinks; in fact, the backlink index on Ahrefs is one of the largest indexes on the market. If you want to research and learn what your competitors are doing on their websites differently, this tool can help you get a sneak peek into their ranking content and keyword optimization process.
Here’s a list of other things which you can easily do if you have already signed up for the tool:
- Build as many backlinks as you want
- Spy on your competitors at any time you want
- Explore new trending keywords
- Analyze trending content on websites
And that my friend is only the tip of the iceberg. So, without further Ado, let’s get into this Ahrefs review and take a better look inside.
The Swiss Army Knife for an SEO Marine – Complete Ahrefs Review
Let’s start this Ahrefs review with the sign-up process and all the way down to every single feature that this SEO research tool has to offer:
The Sign-Up Process
Signing up on Ahrefs is as simple as it gets. All you have to do is navigate to their website and click on Start-7 Day Trial for $7 button. You will be asked whether you wish to choose the Lite Package or the Standard one.
You choose your specific package and sign-up for the tool. If you’d like to use it first hand, utilizing the 7-day trial opportunity while you go through this Ahrefs review might be a good idea.
Starting Up with the Dashboard
Now, most Internet tools have dashboards that are equipped with basic features and functionalities of your software tool; but, the case with Ahrefs is a whole lot different.
The dashboard is one place where you can add your projects (websites) and monitor their respective performance in a summary based metrics. Unlike any other keyword research tool on the market, Ahrefs offers you a quick overview of the performance and rankings of your websites.
With Ahrefs in-built ranking factor, you will know where your website stands within the stratosphere of the legitimate commercial internet.
As you can notice in the screenshot here, the Ahrefs dashboard gives users complete information on how much their domain rating is and how many backlinks have they managed to build on their websites. They can also track referring domains and keywords in just a click.
In a nutshell, the Ahrefs dashboard is one place where you can easily compare your multiple domains and learn about their performance in a quick glance.
Ahrefs is not just a single tool, but it is a suite of tools merged into a single platform. The first on our list is Site Explorer. It is a quick tool that helps users identify different ranking metrics on a competitor website.
One can easily navigate to the site explorer and can access it from the top menu bar of the application. As you can see, we have searched the domain Forbes (the leading magazine) in the search bar of our Site Explorer tool.
It provides a complete overview on what UR and DR factor it holds on the Internet. Your URL ranking (UR) and Domain ranking (DR) decides how effectively your website is performing in terms of traffic. Both factors are based on an algorithmic numeral value ranged between 1-100. Normally, if a website has both the values above 40, it is considered an average performing one.
You can also analyze how many backlinks and referral domains are linking back to your websites.
This is similar to the URL and Page Keyword Competitiveness metric that we discussed in our Long Tail Pro Review.
Backlinks are other website URLs that have mentioned (and linked to) one of the pages on your website. They are links from other domains to your domain. Referral links, however, are links that help convert potential customers make a purchase on one of your relevant product or service.
Getting successful backlinks is one of the best ways to share link juice of other websites on your domain or a specific page on your domain. That’s why it is essential that you should focus on building multiple backlinks for your domain and important pages to gain authority.
The Backlink Profile provides you a complete insight into the various number of backlinks linking back to your website. It helps you analyze which of those links coming back to your website are new, which of them are broken or lost.
Essential backlink profiling can help you organize your links in a list view based on link counts. You can set your preferences based on link type (no follow, do follow and so on), platform type (blog, e-commerce and so on) or different languages.
You can also check which of the referring domains have referred back to you the most.
If you want to dig deeper into your keyword ranking competition, then organic search feature is one that can greatly assist you. It can help you perform a thorough keyword research on one of a competitor website and even on your own.
If you click on the Organic Keyword option from the left panel, it will provide you with a complete report on the keywords that are ranking the most. These keywords are categorized on how much volume a particular website experiences, it’s keyword difficulty (KD) value, traffic experience, position and the particular URL that ranks for those keywords.
By clicking the demographic sign adjacent to the SERP option, you can get a detailed position history of a specific keyword, and a list of other pages on that website where that keyword has been used on. You can check/uncheck each page to analyze the demographic performance on the position history chart.
In addition, you can dive deeper to analyze a particular keyword ranking in a number of countries, all you have to do is click on the More option and add as many countries as you want.
Pages & Other Options
The pages option allows you to check out some of the highest ranking pages on the website you want to analyze. They are organized in descending order based on how much network traffic each observes. Ahrefs allows users to organize pages further based on backlinks or by links bested by growth.
The tool further adds two more features which are outgoing links and paid search. The outgoing feature helps users to identify which of the links on the platform are broken and which of them are used as anchors. While paid search shows metrics on ads and PPC keywords on which certain URLs on the website are ranking for.
Another superb feature that Ahrefs keyword research tool has to offer its customers is the amazing Content Explorer. Now, the content explorer tool on Ahrefs, in my opinion, is a good replacement for apps like Buzzsumo or IFFFT content explorer tool.
How’s that? Let’s find out.
Content Explorer is a tool in Ahrefs that acts as a mini search engine for SEO experts and digital marketers by providing them search results from more than 870 million indexed pages. The content explorer on Ahrefs is said to be way better than others because, at an average, they add more than 5 million new pages to their index every 24 hours.
To make the best use of Content Explorer on Ahrefs, access your dashboard and select Content Explorer from the top bar.
Next; search for your keyword in the search bar within the Content Explorer tool.
It will show you thousands of relevant and popular content results which are ranked on several factors such as DR (Domain Rating Factor), Organic Traffic and Social Shares.
Then, pick each ranked content page, and go through it, in order to understand how your potential competitors are utilizing their content to rank high in organic search results.
Why Does the Content Explorer Tool Matters?
From SEO’s perspective, why does the content explorer tool matters for most of us? It’s because an SEO specialist is always on the hunt for guest blogging opportunities to build backlinks. Ahrefs allows SEO specialists to identify some of the most unique domains which have never linked back to your website before and here’s how you can identify the list potential website owners to build backlinks.
If you notice in the screenshot below, you would be able to select to display “one article per domain” by clicking on the checkbox in the search filter options (on the extreme right).
Check that box, and then click on the Highlighted Unlinked Domain option. It will open a pop-up box, where you can enter your websites URL.
Guest Blogging Outreach Email Template
Here’s what’s going to happen next. All of the domains that have not linked back to your website, will automatically be highlighted. It will provide you the opportunity to go and send them an individual email similar to:
Hey [Enter Name],
I recently went through a post on your website titled, “How Entrepreneurs Stay Committed” and I would like to say it is quite an interesting perspective you’ve shared.
It taught me the meaning of entrepreneurship and how one can avoid falling into being redundant and burning out of steam. It gave me an idea to dive deeper and create a well-researched post about “101 Reasons New Entrepreneurs Run Out of Steam”
If you can only approve my submission and publish the post on your website, it may not only create an affirmative understanding among readers, but might also result help build a loyal audience for both of us.
Looking forward to your response.
A strong email pitch is all that it will take to get the website owners/editors to consider you as a guest blogging option. And taking this as an opportunity, you can include a backlink anywhere in your guest blog post or author biography to help drive link juice back to your own domain.
Since Ahrefs is better known for its keyword researching capabilities, Keyword Explorer on Ahrefs tool suite is one of the highly significant SEO research tools. With keyword research, you can easily find 1000 of keywords ideas by entering your search term. In fact, the tool is designed in such a way that it offers you a chance to analyze each keyword suggestion separately in order to analyze how effective it will be for your relative content piece.
To navigate to the keyword explorer, choose the Keyword Explorer from the top menu bar. You will be directed to the keyword explorer window that looks like the screenshot right above this paragraph. It’s a simple search bar, that allows you to enter keyword terms to search for. After adding all your keywords into the box, just click on the search button.
In the example below, two search terms were entered in the keyword explorer (project management, project management software). Below is a screenshot of what the search results can look like. If you notice, there are two tabs for each search query.
The Overview Tab
The Overview tab presents different demographics on the searched keywords: total search volume, total clicks, volume distribution and difficulty distribution.
If you scroll down a little bit further, you would be able to find a number of keyword ideas that you can use in your content for your relevant search terms. You can also find which of the countries have searched the term most by volume.
The Metrics Tab
The Metrics tab, on the other hand, presents all information on the searched keywords without the demographics. It provides users with the exact information that the Overview tab offered; however, the Metrics tab displays a more detailed and raw form of data, with no charts or maps to visualize those metrics.
By the way, if you notice there is a panel on the left in the keyword explorer tool that looks similar to the one we already looked at earlier when we discussed the site explorer tool. This panel offers several other options that you can explore and make use of in order to optimize your keyword research process.
If you click on the Keyword Ideas option, it provides you a detailed analysis based on KD (keyword difficulty), CPC and volume on all possible keywords that can be generated from your suggested search term.
Note: Keywords with low keyword difficulty (numbers in green) are more likely to help you rank your content in SEO as compared to keywords which are red, orange or yellow.
The best thing about Ahrefs keyword explorer is the variety of options it offers you to arrange keywords that are more relevant to your particular need.
For example, if you are looking for new keyword terms on the market related to your search term, all you have to do is select Newly Discovered option from the Keyword Ideas drop-down menu. It will rearrange the list in such a way that newly ranking keywords will come at the top.
While we are here, Ahrefs has recently introduced a new search arrangement filter for its relative search option termed as the Questions.
By using Questions to filter keywords, Ahrefs will help users list all the relevant questions that people are asking – that include your search terms.
Long tail keywords are now more acceptable by search engines like Google in comparison to short tail keywords. If you start using questions within your content, it will not only increase the likelihood of landing an organic search click on your content, but it might also result compelling the reader to pay more attention to what you have to say to them.
This approach can also help you develop a more trusted relationship with your visitors.
The Traffic Share section of Ahrefs allows you to analyze and look at how much traffic is being shared by different websites for a specific keyword.
Traffic shares can be organized as per the following two categories;
Traffic Shares by Domain
Traffic shares by Pages
Not only would these options help you analyze the ranking of your target keyword, but it will also help you analyze how other websites around the world are making the most out of that specific keyword.
It can help you generate more ideas on which content is getting a greater exposure over the Internet. It can also enable you to put a content strategy in place to shape the future of your website in order to attract more visitors.
Rank trackers are tools that help you monitor the change your website observes in Google Search Results. Although the market is full of different rank tracking tools such as Rank Tracker Pro that can offer you great insight on your website ranking.
But, when you have Ahrefs, you will not have to look anywhere else to track the ranking for your website or any competitors.
It’s like how Long Tail Pro also offers a rank tracking option.
The Ahrefs rank tracking feature checks for your website’s rank on several attributes including website’s visibility, SERP features, and traffic volume. It also shows how many keywords does the website ranks for in different locations. Which of them are moving up. And which ones are going down. Plus the charts also make it better to visualize the ranking performance.
So, whether you are located in Poland, Canada, America or Africa, you can always track how your website is performing on targeted keywords within any specific location.
Site Audit Tool
A Search Engine such as Google utilizes more than 200 different ranking factors to analyze a website before it decides whether the website needs to be ranked higher or not.
With so many different ranking factors, the chances for SEO specialists to identify all factors (including technical ones) for site optimization becomes a daunting task.
For us, Ahrefs is one tool that gets all of it done within no time. It makes use of the inbuilt site auditing tool which performs a thorough analysis of the website.
Worrying about your website’s health and wondering how you can fix unwanted on-site issues? The Ahrefs site auditing tool is one of a kind tool that crawls the entire website and creates a number of reports that can help just about any SEO specialist.
Ahrefs is also a great tool to have to help you get a clear perspective on what’s critical for your website’s optimization process.
If you click on the More drop-down in the top menu bar in Ahrefs, you will come across some additional features that the Ahrefs tool/suite has to offer. One among them is Ahrefs Rank feature.
Now, since Ahrefs is in itself a whole indexing directory, it contains a part of a large chunk of the commercial Internet.
Based on several factors, Ahrefs has organized its directory by ranking most of the websites on the Internet.
If you’d like to browse through the huge website directory to see some top performing websites across the entire web, you can navigate to the Ahrefs Rank option.
There are a few more additional features that the Ahrefs keyword research tool can bring to strengthen your marketing strategy needs.
- It includes domain comparison, a feature which allows users to compare multiple domains together so they can predict which website is performing better in comparison to the other
- If you are a search professional, and you want keyword analysis to be on the go, the Ahrefs SEO toolbar is a feature which allows you to add a keyword research toolbar to your browser. Now, you can easily perform any research in just a matter of seconds using the ultimate power of Ahrefs integrated browser toolbar.
- Not a big fan of working on the tool from web platform, integrate the Ahrefs API with any possible way that you find the best fit for your application or website need. Ahrefs index can easily be configured with your platform using the ultimate Ahrefs API.
- The Link Intersect feature offers you a complete overview of the backlinks which are intersecting with one another on competitor domains. You can compare at least 3 different domains at a time.
- If the domains you are comparing are possibly involved in a similar index, they will represent a complete list of various Internet domains that are linked to the 3 specified domains and are intersecting one another. For instance, we searched the following three domains and got this result in return. Take a look!
Verdict: Did This Ahrefs Review Help You?
So there you go! That’s every single feature which has been independently covered in this Ahrefs review and is offered by Ahrefs keyword research tool. Its a robust tool for every SEO specialists’ looking to up their game. We feel that Ahrefs is a must-have SEO tool if you an online entrepreneur or a small business trying to increase organic traffic and sales.
It can keep track of site rankings, enable you to cook up new content ideas, help you engage yourself in finding more backlink opportunities, provide you with intelligence to compare competitors with one another, and with your own domain, and also empower you to generate more powerful keywords to use them within your content.
Ahrefs is not cheap. But it is really not just a tool. Ahrefs is a complete SEO suite that offers you a collection of powerful of tools for your online marketing needs. In fact, purchasing a single subscription of this keyword research tool will eliminate the use of SEMRush, Moz or Buzzsumo or any of the Rank Trackers available on the Internet.
If you separately purchase individual services on these platforms, they will be limited and also, you will be billed an enormous sum of around $300/month. Whereas, by only sticking with the Standard Legacy plan, you can start at a minimum price of $79/month.
Therefore, in our opinion, Ahrefs is a great option you can explore. Utilize the 7 day trial period to see if it fits your needs. Besides, this expansive SEO research suite goes on adding new features every now and then which you can easily make use of when they become available.
So that’s all for today folks… I hope you enjoyed this Ahrefs review. Stay tuned for more, and tell us what you think about it if you’ve used it before.